The body and mind are constantly working, but there has to be a time where we rest; during this resting time, the self-healing process – also naturally called regeneration – can be triggered or positively encouraged with the simple things I am about to explain in this post:
Most people never experience a real regeneration process – if your natural regeneration is suppressed, you also age much faster!
This is a must-read for everyone on their Daoist journey:
Three categories are important:
- Circulation – is promoted through specific stretching
- Nourishment – is promoted through natural food
- Sleep – is promoted through the environment
Let’s go through it step by step:
The circulation is going through the big circulatory system – the main organs and the minor circulatory system – limbs, joints…
The circulation is vital because it directly connects with your Qi – your body is nourished over the circulatory system. While the five main organs are rather easily circulated, the minor circulatory system is often troublesome if the body cannot push through the joints and veins well enough. Parts that are not reached by your circulation become necrotic and die off in the worst case.
The main indicator of weak circulation is fascia pain, especially in the back, shoulders, and neck. Also, the joints may be very small and lack the natural movement range. You can easily fix both of these problems with our Qi Gong training specializing in fascia and joints stretching.
What Daoists eat
It is a common mistake that Daoists do not eat meat; this is only true for priests. A balanced diet is preferable, but there are crucial points you need to keep in mind when you want to eat the Daoist way:
Do not use salt, pepper, or other spices – spices are very effective in changing our perception. As Daoists, you want to taste what you really need; spices are only confusing our body. They can be very effective as medicine, but Daoists never use spice to enhance the taste. It would be best if you never used especially salt; food normally has natural salt.
Do not overcook; use a steamer instead! Because Daoists do not use spices or other extras – the natural nourishment of food is highest when it is only slightly cooked to retain most of the vitamins and elements. A steamer can be a nice change in the kitchen, as it makes a lot more things possible without overcooking and degrading the food’s nourishment value.
Do not eat raw! Overcooking has less nourishment but not cooking will use up a lot of energy to digest. We want to make it as easy on our stomach as possible; using up a lot of energy for digesting will make you tired.
Besides these simple rules – you can basically eat everything. There is no golden rule, but in China, we eat many steamed vegetables, almost no fruits, and sometimes meat. Keep this in mind when you want to change your eating habits.
If you have more questions about this topic, keep in mind that I will gladly answer your questions in the community forum!
You train and eat properly? Then it would help if you learned about sleeping:
Sleeping is the process where the actual healing – your regeneration – happens. So, of course, you want to know how you can promote your regeneration during your sleep!
First of all, you need to sleep hard! Soft mattresses will only compress your spine and hence block your circulation in your circulatory system. Your bed should’ve firm, and you should not sink when you lie on it.
In Daoism, we focus on energy saving, and there is nothing more compelling than a good rest. There are many rules on how to sleep. However, sleeping should be natural, and every individual has different physical habits. There is no fixed rule on how to sleep, but there are ways to achieve the “great” sleep.
Understanding the Basics
(This might sound a little abstract but this knowledge is ancient, and it was forbidden to cut bodies open) The Daoists believe the right side of your upper body is “air”, while the left side is filled with blood/vessels. Before sleeping “look inside your heart”. You are not going on a journey, so there is no need to let your mind wander.
Don’t sleep like a dead man.
Do not put your hands on your chest or rest in other awkward positions. Everything that makes the oxygen intake harder should be avoided. The resting position should be easy to breathe and should promote the internal blood circulation. Do not tighten your joints or your blood cannot flow. Some tight areas will close the blood vessels on the joints, and you will wake up feeling that the “cut off” part is numb.
The Three Positions of the Sage
Lie on the back if you want to promote a straight posture. This position is excellent if you have back pain from hard work, but be careful not to lie too soft. The bed should not be so hard that you feel your bones but not too soft so that you feel compression on your spine and rips. Soft beds have a compressing effect which leads to spinal curvature. Your hands should be relaxed, and look down to your feet. If you have warm hands (if not, rub them first), place them on your “Dantian” (~2 fingers below navel).
Lie on the right side when your stomach is empty. This posture will balance the “blood” and “air” parts in the body. You reduce stress on the heart and have an overall deeper sleep. People with heart problems should prefer this position. Your right hand should support your neck and ear. The left hand should rest on your hip or upper leg. Do not put your chest and stomach inside too much; let the breathing go easy and naturally.
Lie on the left side to reduce stress in the stomach. If you have eaten something or your body has some water inside, this position can help to sleep quietly for a shorter duration. Be careful not to press your heart too much inside, and do not warp your body inside. The heart should be able to work efficiently, take your time to find the right position. This position will reduce pressure on your digestive organs. The left hand should support your neck and ear to bring the upper body in the right position. The right hand should rest on the hip or upper leg.
With all this said – it is clear now:
That the Daoist way is a well rounded way of life to preserve energy and promote our natural healing abilities. Never give up, cultivate yourself and share your experiences with the world!
Buy me a cup of tea! 🙂
Hello! I am Master Ziji and always working hard on writing blog posts and making educational videos. If you like my work, I really appreciate your donation, as this keeps me going! Thank you for your support!