Thousands of years ago, Taoist sages discovered powerful practices that enabled them to channel the gifts of nature. Since nature is vastly abundant, this discovery allowed them to cultivate all of the qualities that matter most to humans—health, vitality, and inner peace, to name a few.
One of the oldest forms of these practices is known as the Five Animal Frolics Qi Gong. It focuses on harnessing the gifts of five unique creatures, including the Tiger.
What Can Tigers Teach Us?
We all have an inner tiger. However, many of us are often disconnected from the archetypal energy that this mysterious creature embodies.
Tigers are fierce, courageous, and powerful. They stride through the jungle with quiet confidence and poise, knowing that they’re fully capable of thriving in their natural habitat. They don’t pretend to be something else, because they’re fully comfortable in their own skin.
All humans can learn from these beautiful creatures. Although we may never grow claws or three-inch-long fangs (we looked it up; that’s actually how long their teeth are), we can still embody their unique energy.
In humans, tiger energy expresses itself in similar yet “species-specific” ways. In our social lives, we can learn how to stay true to ourselves instead of seeking to impress others. When making decisions, we can act from a place of courage and strength instead of conforming to societal expectations.
Tigers embody a unique blend of fiery energy and deep relaxation. When it’s time to hunt, they become concentrated, poised, and ferocious. When it’s time to relax, they close their eyes, lay back, and let go of all stress and anxiety.
In the 21st century, humans may not need to hunt to survive, but we can still channel tigers’ fire and passion into our work, goals, and relationships. Giving our full attention and energy when pursuing our aspirations doesn’t just help us succeed, it also nourishes us on a deep, primal level.
Similarly, fully relaxing and letting go allows us to experience a deep sense of peace, as well as to recharge.
Unfortunately, humans often have difficulty letting go and fully relaxing. We have a tendency to hold onto stressful thoughts and allow them to buzz throughout our bodies, preventing us from being present. That’s not the case with tigers.
Tigers are experts when it comes to letting go of stress and experiencing inner peace. Observe a tiger and you’ll notice how they move with graceful, intentional motions, just like a Qi Gong practitioner going through a flow sequence. Their grace and their power are not separate, but one and the same. Like tigers, we can all seek to move through the world with effortless power—the same power that tigers embody.
In the Five Animal Frolics, each animal corresponds to one of the Five Elements of Chinese Medicine. Each element also corresponds to an organ within the body. By working with specific Qi Gong exercises, practitioners can cultivate health and vitality in each element and part of the body.
In some forms of the Five Animal Frolics, the Tiger is connected with the Metal Element and the lungs. The lungs, which of course are the source of breathing, allow us to purge old energy from the body and cultivate inspiration.
In other forms of the Five Animal Frolics, the Tiger is also connected with the Wood Element and liver. The Wood Element and liver can help us transform stress into strength and inner peace; a lesson that the Tiger knows well.
Five Animal Frolics Online Course
In Lee Holden’s Five Animal Frolics Online Course, he’ll be teaching the movements and meditation practices for each of the Five Animals. He’ll also be sharing the philosophy behind the Five Animal Frolics so you can gain a holistic understanding of the ancient practice.
Learning the Five Animal Frolics allows you to connect to the archetypal energies of each of these powerful creatures so you can channel their wisdom into your own life. Some days, you may want to call on the energy of the Tiger, while others may require the lessons of the Bird.
Click on the banner below to learn more about how the Five Animal Frolics can help you cultivate health, vitality, and inner peace.