Chi – everyday energy
Jing – reserve or adaptive energy
Shen – spiritual or integrity energy
Chi is the everyday energy you need to think, move, act and get through the day. Western medical science recognises chi and calls it ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Another close equivalent to chi is bio-photons, because chi is also light. People with lots of chi do seem to literally have a kind of radiance about them as if they are full of light.
Chi also makes you feel light. The more chi you have, the lighter you feel and the less you have the heavier you feel. Chi makes us feel good about life as well. If you have a lot of chi you tend to see the world as a lovely place full of light and full of people who mean well. If you’re deficient in chi you tend to see the world as dark and people as inherently bad.
Our everyday energy comes from what you digest and what you breathe. Breathing is the primary source of energy. The quality of the air you breathe and the way you breathe has a lot more to do with your health than anything you consume. We hear very little about this in our culture because nobody can make money out of selling breath. We all tend to breathe from the chest because of accumulated tension in the body but we need to breathe from the belly, through the nose for healthy and energy – the first thing you need to do before anything else. The air doesn’t just contain oxygen and nitrogen, it contains chi. We can’t measure it yet but it’s there. The more high energy the environment like near the sea or a waterfall, the more chi you can breathe in. It’s transformative to your energy levels. It’s fundamental and there is no substitute.
You also create chi from the food you digest, though this is secondary to the breath. Just how secondary is illustrated by the difference between what happens to a unit of food in the cells of a person who is breathing properly and so is well-oxygenated, compared to someone who breathes shallowly and who lacks oxygen. In the cells of the first person with plenty of oxygen, one calorie of food will provide up to nineteen times the amount of energy or chi than in the cells of the poorly oxygenated person.
Creating chi from food in the best way isn’t just about what you eat. What you take into your body is important, and you need to observe the basics about avoiding toxic food like cooked fats, eating greens and so on. It’s also about the way you eat. Like with correct breathing, not enough people focus on correct way of eating. Even if you eat the healthiest stuff on the planet, if you wolf it down, then it will harm you – possibly even more than if you ate a steak and kidney pie with chips very slowly. It’s that big factor.
The question you need to ask is not just what do I eat but what do I digest? If you’re not chewing thoroughly then the answer is, not much. A healthy digestion depends on using your teeth to chew your food to a liquid state before swallowing it. To do that, you need to be relaxed. A good way to relax is to breathe! Even just taking a couple of deep slow breaths into the belly through the nose will help you digest much better.
Chi tonic herbs strengthen your ability to digest ie to absorb nutrients from food and to absorb oxygen from the air you breathe. This in turn increases your everyday energy.
individual Taoist Tonic herbs you can try are Astragalus, White Atractylodes, and Codonopsis.
White Atractylodes is particularly powerful because it corrects the condition of ‘damp spleen’ where you have an excess of phlegm and lack of digestive fire. Food intolerances or allergies, and waste building up in your digestive tract can be signs of damp spleen. One of the nice things about chi herbs is that they tend to taste sweet so they are pleasant to take.
You can make a tea by boiling the whole herbs, or you can even chew on the whole herb, as these three herbs are all roots. You can also add the herbs to foods; to soups, smoothies or casseroles. In Chinese culinary institutes, these herbs are used in dishes to make the food more digestible.
If increasing your everyday energy is what you are looking for, using Taoist tonic herbs is an easy and effective place to begin!
Elwin is also the Founder of Complete Detox Academy, Taoist Health Academy, the Health Coaching Institute and High Energy Academy, as well as the author of 'the Easy Exhaustion Cure' and 'the 4 Step Safe and Effective Detox Action Plan'.
Elwin is highly Enthusiastic about empowering people to feel Energized, Joyful and Alive, Naturally and Sustainably, and has worked over 5 years with over 1000 clients towards this goal. Elwin is particularly passionate about working with clients who are highly committed to reaching high levels of Health, Energy and Wellbeing, by natural and sustainable means.
Elwin has always been interested in Health since childhood. With a mother who had cancer 4 times, and a father with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Elwin is determined to get to the Root Causes of what really creates Disease, and what it really takes to have Outstanding Health and Wellbeing. After suffering from Health Challenges all his life, Elwin became determined, in 2007, to 'Get his Energy back or Die Trying', and, with this level of Resolve, made rapid progress, after a few false starts, which led him naturally, organically, after many requests, to dedicate himself full time to helping others get the kind of Results that he had achieved.