KEEPING STILL. Keeping his back still|
So that he no longer feels his body.
He goes into his courtyard
And does not see his people.
True quiet means keeping still when the time has come to keep still, and going forward when the time has come to go forward. In this way rest and movement are in agreement with the demands of the time, and thus there is light in life.
The hexagram signifies the end and the beginning of all movement. The back is named because in the back are located all the nerve fibers that mediate movement. If the movement of these spinal nerves is brought to a standstill, the ego, with its reslessness, disappears as it were. When a man has thus become calm, he may turn to the outside world. He no longer sees in it the struggle and tumult of individual beings, and therefore he has the true peace of mind which is needed for understanding the great laws of the universe and for acting in harmony with them. Whoever acts form these deep levels makes no mistakes.
I Ching, 52. Keeping Still, Mountain
Sitting Neigong "Inner Cultivation" Meditation
Taoist Neigong sitting meditation has been practiced for thousands of years. Neigong translates as "inner work" or "inner cultivation" and is considered an important part of a Tai Chi person's complete practice. Meditators learn to generate, transform and circulate internal energy for the purpose of health and longevity by stilling, emptying and calming the mind.
Long time Neigong practitioners are known to reach wonderful states of sublime tranquility. Of course this is not easy to accomplish! Beginners ---and even those who have sat for years --- will sometimes find it difficult to empty and still the mind. The Taoist attitude toward inner work is gentle, supportive and never far from a smile --- just keep going and good things will happen in good time. With patience and practice your personal journey is endless.
We at the Tai Chi Center of Chicago are practitioners of the Kunlun Pai school of meditation. The Kunlun mountains are well known in Chinese mythology and are believed to be Taoist paradise. The first to visit this paradise was, according to the legends, King Mu (1001-947 BCE) of the Zhou Dynasty. He supposedly discovered there the Jade Palace of Huang-Di, the mythical Yellow Emperor and originator of Chinese culture, and met there Hsi Wang Mu, the Royal Mother of the West, who also had her mythical abode in these mountains.
Neigong with Grandmaster Hsu Fun-yuen
How To Begin
Grandmaster Hsu Fun-yuen received his training from the late Liu Pei Zhong. Master Zhong received his "lu" (spiritual registery) from Kunlun Pai in China. During to the Cultural Revolution Liu Pei Zhong escaped and opened the Jingxiu Gong ("Unruffled Attitude," or "Undisturbed Attention" Temple) in the outskirts of Taipei, Taiwan where his teachings are still practiced today. We are thankful that Grandmaster Hsu is willing to share his years of experience with us at the Tai Chi Center of Chicago.
It is required before entering the Ongoing Meditation program that you receive preliminary neigong instruction. There are two ways you may receive this training.
Can Anyone Practice Sitting Meditation
- Private instruction by Elizabeth Wenscott.
- Attend a Sitting Nei Going Seminar conducted by Hsu Fun-Yuen.
Seminars are offered once a year, privates and semi private are available to accommodate individual scheduling needs.
Yes. For those that find it hard to sit on a floor meditation mat then sitting in a chair is fine. For those with health concerns, first consult your doctor.
What to Wear - General Rules of Ettiquite
Come clean, with no perfumes and colognes. Wear loose-fitting clothes or Tai Chi uniforms of dark coloring (no bright colors, printed images or text on clothing; no shorts; only Tai Chi shoes or socks are permitted in the practice space). Jewelry should be removed during practice.
Because this is practice in calming the mind, latecomers are not accepted. The door will lock promptly at the starting time. Please come 15 minutes early to prepare.
Upon Entering Daochang (place of Daoist practice)
Meditation gives us all the opportunity to quiet our minds. It is important that we as a group/individual do everything possible to create a supportive sacred space.
The quieting process begins as soon as you enter the Daochang (place of Daoist Pracitce). Quietly choose your place to sit then wait for session to begin.
If for any reason you think you might need to end a meditation session please sit near back door and leave as quietly as possible.
If you need to change your position, move slowly, making the movement part of your meditation. This way you will support the best quality of stillness and silence possible for yourself and others in the room.
Costs in Getting Started
Private or semi privates with Elizabeth Wenscott - $100 for a in-depth one hour preliminary instruction. Initiates will be instructed on how to maximize and customize their meditation practice using the standard Kunlun Pai neigong techniques.
Seminar and Q&A with Hsu Fun Yuen - $200 ($100 for repeaters) for 2 hour seminar. (Next date to be determined)
Once the required preliminary instruction is complete you are not required to join the Ongoing Meditation and Health & Philosophy course.
Time: Every Sunday (except holidays)
Meditation Time: begins at 10:15am - 11:15am come 15 minutes early to set up.
Cost: $60 per month for non Ongoing Tai Chi. (first month free for the newly initiated)
$30 per month for Ongoing Tai Chi members
Meditation supplies are not included (amount to be determined based on individual needs)
Included in the Ongoing Meditation fee is the Health and Philosphy Study Group.
Read the Health and Philosophy page for times and topics.
Tai Chi Center of Chicago
4043 N. Ravenswood, Suite #228
Chicago, IL 60613
Call 312.933.3827 to register.