Nei Gong Notes, October 27, 2020

Oct 27 2020

Still sleepier than I’d like; maybe that’s getting better, maybe not?

I listened to the Calm Abiding video again; I’m supposed to spend 70% of my attention calmly paying attention to my Dantian, 20% to the rest of my body, and 10% to what my mind is doing. Not entirely sure how much I’m supposed to be pleasantly zoned out, but there was this bit about relaxing while paying attention.

Anyways, I’ve been trying to do that, and today was super interesting; I did get back to the pleasantly zoned out state, at which point all of a sudden my attention was shifting to my body as a whole. (And, to the extent that there was a center to my attention, it was quite a bit higher.) So the difficulty wasn’t in getting 20% of my attention on my body, it was in restricting my attention so that only 20% was there and keeping 70% on my Dantian. (And who knows what’s going on with the last 10%.)

I should probably ask about that, though I’ll wait until I’ve gotten a little more experience with it. It does feel plausible that what I’m doing is consistent with generating qi, at least, which is the goal of the exercise.

This week’s video was on preparing for sleep; you’re supposed to try to pay attention to exactly when you switch from being awake to being asleep. Which is hard, Damo said it took him several months. And, if you do it wrong, you run the risk of having your mind racing a bit, which is counterproductive; that did indeed happen to me, and honestly really isn’t what I need right now. Still, I’ll keep on poking at it…

Also, standing in Wu Ji is continuing to be interestingly different. I’m kind of feeling like my upper body is being held up by its tendons now; I relax the tops of my shoulders, my arms go out, my hands go up a bit, and muscles don’t feel particularly active in any of this, it feels a lot more sinewy. And it actively feels like there’s energy flowing through all of that, too, which is nice. If I could get to that situation with my lower body, I’d really be happy, but it’s definitely progress, and even a bit of a state change. And, honestly, somewhat surprising given that I haven’t been practicing for as long the last couple of weeks because I’ve been tired, but I’ll take it. (Not as much of the buzzy Dantian feeling as I’d had a week or two ago, though.)

No class with the local Nei Gong folks this week; Tai Chi on Saturday, we’re almost done with the Jian, I’m somewhat optimistic that I’ll be able to retain that? It’s been useful reviewing the last few moves that we’d done before COVID, I’d been a bit iffy on those even back then.

And I did practice Jian at home on Sunday, hopefully I can keep that up. I should practice a bit more during the week, though, and probably do one round of Silk Reeling during the week – Saturday is good but not quite enough on its own. And my back has actually been aching a bit, in ways where I think Silk Reeling could help; I need to get back to the back exercises, too. (Might be a consequence of me not exercising quite enough, might be a consequence of how I’ve been turning off use of musculature in my torso?)

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