here is some nice experimentation

Discussion in 'Tai chi' started by tpyeon, Nov 18, 2007.

  1. inthespirit

    inthespirit ignant

    Bear, I see what your saying, I don’t really think there is anything wrong with it, I mean perhaps if I was wholly fixated in a Taoist framework then I may feel differently, but being “fixated” in Taoism (IMO) is against its ideals anyway, so it would not make much sense. But, I don’t know if qi is an energy, feeling or anything other than a concept. The purpose it serve to me is as a name for a feeling, which can be replicated, manipulated and provides me with a positive outcome, whether it exists physically outside of me or not, I have no idea nor I see any point in speculating on it, unless a future experience tells me otherwise, but in such case I would only think so if I had evidence that it did. If someone via testing can prove that it physically exists in the world, that’s good, but I doubt it would make much difference to me, though I cant really speculate on that. So yeah, I guess testing can be a positive thing, I certainly have nothing to lose by it and potentially something to gain.

    The thing is though, can anyone that practices qigong tell us what qi is, (I cant) as soon as it is pinned down things become awkward. I think its like this, in Taoism, qi is simple, qi is qi, there are methods for feeling it and using it, and regardless of how ambiguous it is intellectually, it will remain so as in Taoism there is no need to intellectualize it, it just is and can be felt, used etc. As soon as we try to figure out what it is, and someone says “qi is energy”, we have to prove its existence as an energy, within the scientific framework, as the term energy resides within this scientific framework. Is there a need for this? I guess maybe there is, because if it actually is an energy, then we may gain from it, and if it isn’t, then we don’t lose anything and the qigong practitioners don’t lose anything either, as to them qi effects are still beneficial and real on a personal level. But, I guess at the end of the day it all boils down on how you personally define that which is “real”, hence all my gibberish regarding reality, frameworks and such.
  2. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    Yes, but what if qi doesn't affect things in that way? Look, consider any belief, let's take Christianity. Let's set aside for the moment the debate over whether it is a true belief, and assume that it isn't - it's just a made up set of ideas, and there is noGod, whatever.... Now, can you say that that belief had nomeasurable effect on our society? Can you say it never promoted betterhealth, or a real effect, like someone having the will to live and get better whn otherwise they might not have? Can you prove that when people say it cured them, as JK does with God, that it didn't?

    I'm aware of straying in to asking a negative to be proved, but looking deeper, the believers are presenting a positive - that God did cure them. What you have to do is prove your negative - that He didn't.

    Either way, if we have a result, as in, a belief actually affected people; not just society, bur health, mental well being, morale, will, world view, over all sense of happiness and belonging - well these things have powerful effects on people, whether or not the belief is true. So you can never meausre this, except by seeing it, realising that it happens. This kind of "information" is not within the scientific remit.

    If people believe in qi, well there might be something going on that is far more advanced than can be detected in a mis placed experiment with superficial scientific method. If I believe in qi, and my doctor believes in qi and we use the medium of qi as a word and method, and yet cerebrally somethign else is occuring, such as the power of my mind to affect or boost by immune system or will to live and fight infection, then even if you had a measruable improvement you couldn't definitively put it down to qi without someone like me who really does understand methodology pulling your experiment to shreds.

    Another example is cancer sufferers. Cancer sufferers who take part in programmes to build and maintain morale during chemo therapy can have very beneficial results, and it is thought now, even have an increased chance of fighting the cancer because they don't suffer as much emotional fatigue if they are cared for properly. So what do we do, set up an experiment to see if morale exists? Try to quantify, or define morale?

    As for Black Holes, saying that they "exist" is a linguisitc conceit within a standardized word game. It's actually a cocneptual "package" artificially defining an area. There's nothing, beyond the judgment of aware beings, to separate a blackhole from its surroundings, or you for that matter - it's all one meaningless blob until we start separating it off.

    Of course, that seems facile for scientists, because it's of little functional value to their work - within the common sense use of words, it works perfectly fine. But this is what Gramsci meant when he said that common sense was the practical ideology of the ruling class - if you have control of the terms and definitions, then you have control of what people percieve to be real, to exist.

    No one actually "knows" that black holes exist, because no one has directly experienced one, as far as we know... But we don't know, because we don't know everything.... is it a paradox, or a faliure of language? Nad is there really a difference?

    As for maths, maths is flawed - and human in invention. Suprised to find that during yourinvestigation of post enlightenment thinkers you never came across goedel or Turing, and discovered that mathematics, far from being "in" the structre of the universe, is an artificial "map" which humans created. You can call that Post enlightenment thinking.
  3. tpyeon

    tpyeon Valued Member

    hi inthespirit,

    nice post.

    qi is a difficult thing to pin down a definition on. probably why when we talk about qi qigong, we look at studies that prove/disprove its clinical use.

    i'm sure that for some people, not having a definition for qi really makes no odds. but for a others the lack of definition makes it easy to market. it makes it easy to dodge difficult questions (and at the same time slur thorough investigation). it makes it easy to sell false hope when real solutions may exist.

    this is part of the reason i found firequans posts so unhelpful. yes, you could argue to you are blue in the face (whether you're wrong or right...) about semantics, ideology, etc.. but we need trials and experiments as the results will have a direct and important effect on the quality and possible duration of a persons life.

    imagine if we had put the theory of bodily humours into a unquestionable area; where would medicine be now? or the theory of aether for transmission of light? etc etc etc.
  4. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    No, it wouldn't, but there's a reason for that. It's called "the direction of knowledge" - what we use knowledge for. Science, for example, generally uses knowledge to build ever more fixed views of the world, via explanation and demonstrable models. That of course is changing now as some physicists and mathematicians explore abstract thinking and possibilities.

    Taoism, as in Lau Tzu era Taoism, is a method of perceiivng the artificial nature of belief systems. It isn;t, in itself, a belief system - it's a method of exploring how we came to view our world. Sometimes, people have a great deal of difficulty accepting that a "method" phrased "within" our world view could be used to "deconstruct" our world view. The reason it seems so paradoxical, and the reaosn they are forcerd again and again to return to saying "Yes, but isn't your belief system just a belief system as well?" is that they have been taught, and duly believed, that knowledge has only one direction - forwards, in to building belief structures and making them fixed. In fact, there are many "sytems" which are designed to reverse the process, using "tools" to develop awareness of the artificiality of belief systems.

    People becme fixated on Taoism, or Buddhism, or science, or Christianity for the same reasons - it's always the same - the way ego and ideology mutually interface. It can take a lot of skill to prevent that, or a lot of experience to get past it. But fixating is a step on the path as well - it teaches us first hand - real knowledge - how it works.
  5. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    Boy are you not on the same page as me. I'm not saying don't test it - i've been saying for weeks, test testable claims. What I'm saying now is be aware of problems with your own thinking.
  6. tpyeon

    tpyeon Valued Member

    thanks firequan,

    always looking for mental and spiritual growth.

    the point of this thread was just straightforward investigation into the use of qi/qigong. i believe this has been stated on many occasions.

    posting in this thread would mean you were interested in these quite practical aims.

    your conversation tends to pull quite strongly away from this into areas of metaphysics. which are not relevent or useful to a conversation on clinical trials about qi. they just aren't.

    i'm personally completed uninterested in your posts regarding your views on my thinking. you've contributed nothing useful in this thread once. you may have valid points, but you choose to post in your own particular style which is patronizing and boring.

    of course you will carry on to do as you please. but i will politely ignore you as long as your ramblings have no practical application. in my opinion, of course.
  7. inthespirit

    inthespirit ignant

    I see what you mean FQ, I guess it could be said that it is really dependent on the individual and their state. Of course also, saying that this or that is a fixed view, even if you are saying there are no fixed views, is in itself a fixed view. Hence, "the tao which can be spoken, is not the true tao", I guess its just the nature of duality.

    Thanks Tpyeon.

    But, now my brain hurts! :)

    I've just been looking at some old trheads and came across this:

    I don't know what to make of it, my thinking capacity for the day has been exhausted..
  8. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    What, like you're doing now you mean? Tell you what, you just get on with your thing, and I'll get on with mine - which was the original plan.
  9. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    Well, isn't that exactly what i just said? Aya!

    Point is, that there are areasof understanding, knowledge, and direct experience which aren't linguisitc. Within language we'll always be stuck to binary concepts. Ideas like Taoism use language as a "dirty tool" - hence, it's not without self awareness that Lau Tzu says that the Tao that can be spoken of is not the true Tao - he's telling you that the understanding of it, in its proper form, will be non-linguisitc - but he's also telling you that it is possible touse language to guide towards that.

    "Individual" is a made up idea. "Individuals" are products of social programming.
  10. Polar Bear

    Polar Bear Moved on

    uhuh, however correct maths does accurately predict the nature of the universe so it while it may have flaws it is most reliable tool discovered. If you have discovered a better method please enlighten us.

    Again you are falling into the crippling nihilistic position that of something has the slightest flaw then there is no value in it. Sometimes in research you have to accept the flaws and work on the hope that a body of work will build up around the research the will support of destroy your initial conclusions.

    I am glad you are catching up on your reading but remember you have your own thoughts too don't rely too heavily on the thoughts of others. That way leads to stagnation.

    The Bear.
  11. Polar Bear

    Polar Bear Moved on

    "Made" is a made up idea but that doesn't really help.

    It's academically very interesting but other than turning off girls and impressing people in polo necks, how does it help in the specified clinical trial?

    The Bear.
  12. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    Boy are you playing with the wrong playmate.
  13. Polar Bear

    Polar Bear Moved on

    Belief is fine as long as you don't claim it can affect someone else other than the believer. Once someone states, "qi" makes you fight better than someone without "qi" then you've entered the consensual reality and you gotta back that up or face ridicule like many "qi" practitioners do.

    The now well known Dan Doherty incident spring to mind.

    The Bear.
  14. Polar Bear

    Polar Bear Moved on

    I quake in my boots and await your latest name drop.

    The Bear.
  15. tpyeon

    tpyeon Valued Member


    i didn't know about that incident until my tjq teacher showed me an artical about it and asked my opinion on it. it was pretty rude to do it in the mans own seminar, and it gave the man lots of room to argue about conditions not being right and such. but still, pretty funny.

    polar bear, who did you do most of your tjq training with by the way?
  16. inthespirit

    inthespirit ignant

    Don't you mean its what we just said, there is no individual. :D

    I guess I was just rephrasing in my understanding, thanks anyway.

    I propose another experiment with twins, same conditions as I last proposed except this time we make them do an MA too! :D
  17. Fire-quan

    Fire-quan Banned Banned

    Mirror, mirror... Here's a tip - don't name drop, express actual knowledge of people's work. Otherwise, you'll be spotted a mile off. You know, spare me the rescue effort - I'm pretty much bored with our connection now, and unless you're stalking me or something, let's part intellectual company.
  18. Polar Bear

    Polar Bear Moved on

    Bye Bye.

    The Bear.
  19. Polar Bear

    Polar Bear Moved on

    Wudang Tai Chi in Glasgow. First under Pamela Teubig and then Charlie Gorrie.

    The Bear.
  20. tpyeon

    tpyeon Valued Member

    wudang is dan's system right?

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