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Interview with Chunyi Lin of Spring Forest Qigong


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#1 sean

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 11:28 PM

Some of you may remember back in July I was given an opportunity to interview Chunyi Lin, the creator of Spring Forest Qigong.

I started a topic here asking for questions and received some great ideas. It took a bit, but I organized them into an interview format for Chunyi, sent them over, and here are his responses.

Pretty awesome, I hope you enjoy. :)

Interview with Chunyi Lin, creator of Spring Forest Qigong

Sean: Chunyi, just to start things off with a bang here, what would you say the unique qualities of your Spring Forest Qigong system are, that differentiate it from other forms of qigong?

Chunyi Lin: All qigong systems are based on the same underlying principle that everything is energy, including your body. Your body's energy system is designed to be in perfect harmony and balance with your energy flowing smoothly. Problems arise when your body's energy gets out of balance. All qigong systems work to help restore and maintain your body's energy balance.

My training began in the traditional forms of qigong, very regimented, very disciplined. It was through this training that I became certified as an international qigong master.

However, very early on in my training I began receiving a message from the universe, "Qigong is simple. Everyone can do it." This message kept coming and grew more powerful as I meditated in the cave for days and weeks at a time. It is this message that led me to create Spring Forest Qigong. It is a system that is so simple anyone can learn it and start benefiting from it right away. It is simple yet is also very powerful. In fact, in my experience, simple is usually best.

In this way, Spring Forest Qigong is different from most other qigong teaching. Also, from the very beginning I teach my students - You were born a healer. You were born with the ability to help yourself to heal and to help others to heal. So from the beginning I teach my students a technique that can learn in minutes and start using right away to help others. This also makes SFQ different from traditional forms of qigong. The vision I was given for Spring Forest Qigong is "a healer in every family and a world without pain." Everything I teach and do is guided by that vision.

Let me add that I am not saying my way is better than other ways. I think they are all beautiful and if the qigong teaching you have is different from mine and you are benefiting from it then I encourage you to stay with it. If it's working for you there is no need to make a change. Keep growing in that system.

S: If you could only teach one exercise from your entire system, which would it be and why?

CL: Fortunately, neither I nor my students have to make this choice.

But, if I only had one option for an exercise to benefit my energy it would have to be the Small Universe meditation. There are many wonderful meditations in the world but the Small Universe is the single, most powerful one I have ever experienced.

Small Universe focuses the power of your mind in moving your body's energy. It is specifically designed to open the two most important energy channels in the body - the Front Channel or Governing Channel and the Back Channel. The front channel governs all the female energy channels in the body while the back channel governs all the male energy channels. Keeping these two energy channels open and the energy flowing smoothly through them will bring you the greatest benefit. Keeping them open is the key to experience your optimal health, wellness and happiness.

If you are asking for a physical movement, a posture, then it would be the Moving of Yin & Yang. It is the fundamental movement of SFQ. It balances and helps all of the internal organs, helps open the heart and helps align the spine. Six of the body's twelve major energy channels begin or end in the hands. From the top of the head to the bottom of the torso there are multiple energy points associated with all twelve major energy channels. So, in the Moving of Yin & Yang you are stimulating the flow of energy along all the major channels.

S: What is the importance of transmission in Spring Forest Qigong? Is it enough to learn from the video and audio programs, or is there something fundamentally unique and necessary that comes from attending a seminar?

CL: Transmission is not part of the terminology I use. I will answer in this way. I designed Spring Forest Qigong to be simple enough for anyone and everyone to learn and benefit from. All you have to do is put in a DVD or a CD and follow along. It is just that simple and also very powerful.

At the higher levels, Level 3, Level 4 and beyond, being present in a class, seminar or retreat is very valuable. Even in Levels 1 and 2, of course, there will be information that you do not receive in home study. But, it's not about knowledge. Qigong is all about the energy. In Spring Forest Qigong we start with the importance of breathing, the power of your mind, mental focus and intention, then movements and sound. All of this you will learn with the DVDs, CDs or manuals.

The key to getting the greatest benefits from qigong, in my experience, is tapping into what Gandhi called "the most powerful force the world possesses," the power of unconditional love. This is where the healing energy truly comes from. So, in SFQ we focus from the beginning on helping you open your heart to connect with this most powerful force. And opening your heart is something you can do anywhere and at anytime.

S: There is a lot of talk about "water methods" vs "fire methods", could you speak a little about this distinction? Does Spring Forest Qigong fall into one of these categories?

CL: Since these are things I never teach about it would not be helpful for me to enter into this discussion. I hope you will forgive me for not addressing this question but I do not want to create any confusion.

S: One of the longest standing debates which shows up again and again on the forums is whether practices such as movements and visualizations that consciously direct energy in specific patterns are necessary, or if it's better to simply cultivate a state of emptiness and allow the energy to naturally and spontaneously "do what is best". Can you shed some light on this debate?

CL: In Spring Forest Qigong I always talk about Good, Better and Best. Everything you do to help enhance your energy flow and balance your energy are good for you. The more you can do it the better you will be at it and the more benefit you will receive. The very best, in my opinion, is connecting with the limitless, unconditional love of the universe and the infinite source. Opening your heart, connecting with this unconditional love is always the best. There simple is no more powerful healing energy than unconditional love. When you open your heart like this you can get into the emptiness/the oneness faster, then the Qi will do what is best for you naturally and spontaneously.

S: Would you speak a bit about how sexuality fits into a Spring Forest Qigong practice? I know that is a huge questions, but more specifically, is it true that having an orgasm depletes qi? If so does this effect men more than women? Would celibacy improve results with SFQ, or not necessarily?

CL: These are, as you say, "huge questions," and I do not have the time here to go into them in detail. However, I will say this. Yes, sexual relations and orgasm can deplete your energy. And, sexual relations and orgasm can enhance your energy flow and development.

This depends on many things, The level of love, commitment and connection you have with your partner are very important. At the right level you can utilize the moment of orgasm to take that sexual energy and move it up through your heart and to your mind to develop "wisdom energy" which is very beneficial. For some people celibacy may help them focus and enhance their energy development.

Again, and I cannot emphasize this enough, the most important factor in your energy development is opening your heart and connecting with the unconditional love of the universe and learning to live your life in this love, powered by this love and radiating this love to help others.

S: From a spiritual and healing qigong point of view, how would you describe the "ultimate goal" that we are trying to achieve through all of this? Is it Enlightenment? Immortality of some sort? Or maybe something more basic, like simply living in harmony with Tao or nature?

CL: An "ultimate goal" would be a very individual decision. We all take this human form to experience life as human beings. Through these experiences we shape so many things. As for "immortality" we are all immortal. Our energy, our souls, will continue forever. It is only this human form that will change as it is designed to be a temporary home, an important home in our eternal development but only temporary.

It is very important for each of us to have goals. I would not presume to establish those goals for others.

My views on this subject have evolved as I have deepened my personal connection with the universe. My goal is to continue to deepen my connection with the unconditional love of the universe and to live in this love every moment of every day, to live as my friend Marci Shimoff would put it, "Happy for No Reason." Living in unconditional love brings happiness to me every moment. Sharing this love with everyone I encounter deepens this connection even more. This is my ultimate goal and I think it is an excellent goal that everyone will find rewarding in ways we cannot even begin to imagine.

S: Given your sense of the ultimate goal, is it possible for you to describe a basic road map of steps or stages a person has to take to reach this ultimate goal?

CL: I make the following suggestions to all of my students.

1. Smile. S.M.I.L.E. = Start My Internal Love Engine!
2. Connect. Make the Love Connection
3. Enhance. Enhance the Flow
4. Radiate. Let it Glow - Become a Love Radiator!

1. Put a Smile on your Face

S.M.I.L.E. = Start My Internal Love Engine!

The simple act of smiling immediately helps your body to relax.

A smile also sends a message to your brain to produce endorphins, the body's natural feel-good hormone. If you're helping another person, your smile will help her or him to relax, too.

By smiling you help to open your connection to the unconditional love in your heart. That's what S.M.I.L.E means: Start My Internal Love Engine. A simple smile helps you open your heart.

2. Connect - Make Your Love Connection

Breathe, slowly, gently and deeply - take three slow, gentle, deep breaths

Breathing is the Key to Connecting your Mind, Body & Spirit. There are three aspects to every human being - Mind - Body - Spirit. In our busy stress filled lives, our minds are too often filled to overflowing with so many things we have to get done, while our bodies are racing around trying to get everything done, and our spirit is simply ignored.

With your mind buzzing, your body racing around and your spirit lost in space we have divided ourselves. A person divided can never be as strong, as powerful, as wonderful and as a whole person - a person united in all three aspects.

Breathing is the key to uniting your mind, body and spirit into one powerful whole person as God intended each of us to be.

3. Enhance - Enhance the Flow of Unconditional Love

Visualize the Light of a Beautiful, Golden Sun, coming from the center of the Universe, flowing into your body and collecting in your Middle Dantian - Your Heart Center

Feel the warmth of the light filling you up ... filling you with joy ... filling you with perfect peace ...

You are feeling the limitless, healing Love of the universe ... a Love of Perfect Purity and Perfect Peace.

Even if you don't feel Loved or Loving, this Love exists within you.

Even if you don't see this Love within others, it always exists within them, too. It is the Source of our Existence ... and, it is the most powerful, healing force in all the universe.

Feel how wonderful this Love feels, flowing into you and throughout your body.

This Love is always available to you. In this Love, in this golden light, you are always connected to the infinite wisdom and power of the universe. You are never alone.

4. Radiate - Let Your Love Glow - Become a Love Radiator

Allow this unconditional Love to flow into your heart center, filling you up and radiating out to everyone. Focus on Sending this Love - this beautiful, golden light - out from your Heart Center to the person, or persons you are interacting with ... or will be interacting with.

You can visualize sending this Love directly to the other person's Heart Center. You can visualize filling an entire room, or house, or building with this Love. Like a radiator filling a room with warmth. This Love has no limits. Again, as Gandhi also said, "Love is the simplest force in the universe. It is also the most powerful."

S: Where would you say Spring Forest Qigong fits into these stages toward the ultimate goal? Can SFQ take someone "all the way"?

CL: Spring Forest Qigong has done this for me and I believe SFQ is helping many of my students in this way as well. There are many ways for each of us to reach our "ultimate goals," whatever they may be. If your goal is like mine then I believe Spring Forest Qigong can be very helpful in assisting you in achieving that goal. This is why I created Spring Forest Qigong, to help you and to help you help others.

S: Spring Forest Qigong is generally advertised as a medical qigong system. Is SFQ limited to physical and mental health or is aimed at "higher levels" of alchemy, such as Kan & Li and fusion?

CL: Spring Forest Qigong is a tool to help you open your heart to unlimited possibilities.

S: Are there practices from any other systems you have found that might safely complement or even enhance Spring Forest Qigong?

CL: There are many practices that can help you in so many beautiful ways. I don't want to slight anyone by overlooking something so I won't list them here. I will only say that with energetic practices it is never helpful to mix them. So, if you are practicing different systems take a break in between sessions, an hour, a day, whatever you feel most comfortable with. I say this because different systems move your body's energy in different ways. Practicing them too close together can confuse your energy system and limit the benefits of each.

S: Specifically, could you speak a bit about Kundalini? What is your opinion about practices that try to pro-actively awaken Kundalini?

CL: Kundalini is a powerful form of energy in the body. SFQ does not focus on it. It is a different system.

S: What is the significance of reverse breathing? Do you recommend practicing reverse breathing frequently throughout the day, or would it be better to only practice this when doing Spring Forest Qigong exercises?

CL: Reverse Breathing is a very beneficial technique in balancing your body's energy. In Reverse Breathing you pull your lower stomach in a little as you inhale and let it out a little as you exhale. The upper part of the body belongs to yang energy; the lower part of the body belongs to yin energy. Breathing in is a part of yin energy; breathing out is yang. One of the reasons we get sick is that yin and yang energies are not communicating well. By pulling your lower stomach in as you inhale and letting it out as you exhale, you are enhancing the communication of the yin and yang energies. When you do Reverse Breathing focus on your skin that is even better.

While I believe Reverse Breathing is the most beneficial way to breathe and I breathe this way all of the time do not get caught up in trying to breathe this way if it is challenging for you. Remember, we teach Good, Better and Best. It is more helpful for you to relax than to be stressed over how you breathe.

Breathing slowly, gently and deeply is the most important thing. This automatically helps your body to relax. It helps expand your lung capacity enabling you to uptake more oxygen which is critically important since oxygen is your body's number one fuel and you get most of it from breathing.

S: There is a lot of discussion on the forums about the full lotus posture. What is so uniquely powerful about the full lotus? For those that cannot achieve this posture, is there an alternative that can give the same or similar benefit?

CL: There are a lot of benefits you can get from this posture. One of them is to strengthen your vitality faster. It can also help you stay in the emptiness/oneness longer. But, other postures can also help you with these, too. The most important thing is the level of your unconditional love.

S: It seems like it would be a good thing for the world if more people knew about qi and qigong. Why not engage with scientific skeptics and prove without a doubt that qi is real and physically exists?

CL: I am always open to talking with anyone at any time if my schedule allows and I work with doctors and engage in independent research practices to help establish the benefits of Spring Forest Qigong practice.

I don't know that anyone, as the state of science stands today, can ever "prove without a doubt that qi is real."

Dr. Shin Lin at the University of California/Irvine, who is also a Tai Chi and Kung Fu master, has probably done more research in this area than anyone and he never talks about "qi" as being real. Instead, he focuses on the results of "qi" based, or "energetic" based practices.

I don't feel the need to convince anyone of anything. I simply want to live my life as an example and offer my assistance to everyone who is interested. I can fully understand their skepticism. Before my life was totally changed by qigong I was a skeptic myself.

S: What are your feelings about the future of humanity? Is the human race improving at all? Any cool predictions for 2012?

CL: I live in this moment and I live with joy from my heart. I strongly believe tomorrow will be a better day than today.

S: Ok, last question. Could you tell us 3 simple things we could do every day to enhance our lives, no matter what system or path we are following?

CL: 1. Put a S.M.I.L.E. on your face.

2. Breathe slowly, gently and deeply as often as you can each day.

3. Focus on your heart and connect with the limitless unconditional love of the universe. Be a love radiator. Remember, the more unconditional, healing love energy you send out to others, the more you will draw into yourself.

Just doing these 3 simple things can help to enhance your life and the lives of those around you in so many, many, wonderful ways.

S: Chunyi, I want to thank you personally, and on behalf of the entire community at The Tao Bums for taking the time to do this interview. It's been a pleasure. Thank you.

*Deep Bow*

Sean

If you are interested in getting started with Spring Forest Qigong practice, check out the Spring Forest Qigong Fundamentals course.

For more information about Chunyi Lin, visit the Spring Forest Qigong website.

#2 Mal

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 04:36 AM

Thanks for the interview Sean

Again, and I cannot emphasize this enough, the most important factor in your energy development is opening your heart and connecting with the unconditional love of the universe and learning to live your life in this love, powered by this love and radiating this love to help others.


Nice :)
KAP

bye for now
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#3 TheSongsofDistantEarth

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 05:01 AM

Awesome indeed, Sean. From your interview, here's the key to it all according to Master Lin (lest we get lost in details):

Again, and I cannot emphasize this enough, the most important factor in your energy development is opening your heart and connecting with the unconditional love of the universe and learning to live your life in this love, powered by this love and radiating this love to help others.



#4 Marblehead

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 05:31 AM

Very nice, Sean. Thanks for sharing.

I reserve the right to be wrong.
 
Posted Image          I reserve the right to change my mind.          Posted Image
 
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#5 Pero

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 05:32 AM

Very cool Sean, thank you and thanks to Chunyi Lin. :)
I hate my enemies and cling to my friends.
Groping in dark delusion as to what to accept and reject,
When practicing the Dharma, I fall prey to dullness and sleep.
When involved in non-Dharma, my senses are clear and sharp.
Guru think of me, regard me with compassion.
Bless me that I destroy my enemy - disturbing emotions.

- From Calling the Guru from Afar by Jamgon Kongtrul Lodro Thaye

#6 Junbao

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 06:21 AM

Thanks for taking the time to do this Sean and thanks also to Chunyi Lin. Very inspiring and yes, he mentions opening the heart to giving and receiving unconditional love several times during the interview as well as one of the three things people can do regardless of any system they practice.

Great interview and great way to kick off my day! Thanks! :D

#7 vortex

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 06:26 AM

Fantastic interview, Sean! I think you succinctly covered all the pertinent questions. Thank you both for this! :D

Edited by vortex, 26 October 2010 - 06:28 AM.

Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes. - Carl Jung
The ability to see in realtime that experience is not self is called enlightenment. - Kenneth Folk
Knowledge can be taught, but skill must be practiced.
Donít move the body Ė you train your Qi. Donít move your mind Ė you train your Spirit. - Fong Ha
I used to sit in full-lotus even on the can but there's not a lot of space in my bathroom. - drewhempel

#8 OldChi

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 06:33 AM

I thought it was particularly interesting what he said about the small microcosmic orbit meditation and also about not practicing multiple Chi gong systems one after another.

-I enjoyed this interview, thanks Sean. :)

Edited by Tao Apprentice, 26 October 2010 - 06:34 AM.


#9 Junbao

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 06:39 AM

I thought it was particularly interesting what he said about the small microcosmic orbit meditation and also about not practicing multiple Chi gong systems one after another.

-I enjoyed this interview, thanks Sean. :)


Yes I agree, and also the part about reverse breathing. ;)

#10 Aetherous

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 07:24 AM

Very nice interview!

The Mayo Clinic Guide to Stress Free Living is an excellent practice that all people can benefit from, and is particularly healing for the mind and emotions.

Om.


#11 Taomeow

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 09:51 AM

Thank you, Sean and Chunyi Lin!

#12 adept

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 10:06 AM

Very good interview and some good honest answers to the questions.
It makes me want to learn the system now I have read this.
Thank you very much.

#13 rainbowvein

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 10:30 AM

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#14 mYTHmAKER

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 11:40 AM

Thanks
Each day
I
maintain
my body,
only to find
the sea once more
at my sand castle.

#15 Taomeow

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 05:08 PM

S: There is a lot of talk about "water methods" vs "fire methods", could you speak a little about this distinction? Does Spring Forest Qigong fall into one of these categories?

CL: Since these are things I never teach about it would not be helpful for me to enter into this discussion. I hope you will forgive me for not addressing this question but I do not want to create any confusion.


Is this why the practice is called Spring Forest? A Spring Forest is Wood, located smack in the middle between Fire and Water. Spring Wood is Water's child, Fire's parent equally removed from both, or equally close, however you look at it. (Summer Forest would be Wood with Fire, and Winter Forest, Wood with Water.)

#16 Birch

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 05:29 PM

Thanks Sean!

Interesting post TaoMeow. If the notion that we're (and by "we" I refer to contemporary humans) is that we're too "fire-oriented", where would that stand with respect to a "wood" practice? I'm not sure I'm making sense, but you get my drift. Hopfully.
"Chi is free!"- "Don't give your chi to your practice" Both unknown, if you know where these come from, let me know!




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