What inspires a person to be kind to others? It’s easy to notice kindness when you see it, but it’s not always clear where it originates from. While each person is unique, according to Chinese Medicine, there are some common energetic qualities that contribute to kindness.
In this blog, we discuss the energetic qualities of kindness from a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Qi Gong perspective. We also discuss why Qi Gong can be a powerful practice at helping you (or anyone) cultivate more kindness in everyday living.
Where Does Kindness Come From?
In TCM and Qi Gong, kindness is connected to the Wood Element and your feeling of abundance. When your Wood Element is strong and healthy, you feel abundance within yourself, and in turn, it’s easy to treat others with respect and generosity. If your Wood Element is depleted, on the other hand, you may feel a sense of scarcity as though you don’t have what you need. And when your mind is overcome by feelings of scarcity, it’s easy to become disconnected from the qualities of generosity and kindness.
Based on this, you can see that the feelings of abundance and kindness are closely connected. It’s important to note that feeling abundance doesn’t mean that you have to have a lot of external possessions or wealth. In fact, it’s very possible to be extremely wealthy but still feel insecure or inadequate, both of which reflect a certain kind of scarcity (not feeling enough). When a person experiences any form of scarcity, it can be hard for them to treat others kindly.
On the other hand, a person may have very few material belongings or wealth but feel confident, secure, and abundant and that they are enough just as they are. In general, such a person will treat others with kindness, compassion, and generosity.
Of course, humans are dynamic beings who can change over time or even from moment to moment, so it’s normal to feel confident and abundant on some days and wrestle with feelings of scarcity or insecurity on other days. Often, a person’s level of kindness will correlate strongly with their feelings of abundance and scarcity. There are many factors that can influence these feelings, one of the most important of which is stress.
How Stress and Kindness Are Connected
Stress manifests in many negative ways, including by contributing to feelings of scarcity. Sometimes, stress might be connected to a feeling that you don’t have enough time to complete a project or task. At other times, stress could be associated with the fear that you might lose something or not be able to get something that you want. In both of these situations, there’s fear that you might wind up not having enough. And, of course, everyone knows that stress is a major contributor to conflict and disharmony at home. Even if someone doesn’t have the conscious intention of being unkind, it can still happen if stress is dominating the mind.
Reducing your levels of stress can often reduce or eliminate your feelings of scarcity and in turn, make you a more kind and generous person. Fortunately, Qi Gong is a wonderful practice for overcoming stress and cultivating a feeling of true abundance. Below, we’ve included a brief yet powerful exercise designed to help you boost the Wood Element and experience this transformation for yourself.
Qi Gong Posture for Cultivating Kindness (Embracing the Tree)
This is a great exercise to do whenever you want to release stress and recharge your energy system. If you can do it while surrounded by trees, that’s ideal, but you can always do it at home or in the office if you don’t have enough time to get outside.
Start with your feet about shoulder-width apart and hold your arms in front of you as if you’re holding a large tree against your chest. Take some slow, deep breaths. Try to relax your entire body and bend your knees slightly. It can be helpful to do a brief body scan and relax each part of your body that you move your mind to. Start with your head and then move down to your neck, shoulders, upper back, chest, lower back, torso, hips, legs, and feet.
Once you feel fully relaxed, continue breathing deeply and imagine rich, nourishing Wood energy circulating through your body like a tree’s roots channeling nutrients to its branches. With each exhale, feel stress leaving your body like leaves falling to the ground.
As you continue breathing, feel the energy from all around you shining into your being. Feel the sun and stars above you and the strength of the earth beneath your feet. Just like a tree, imagine that your body is a vessel absorbing all of the abundance that the world has to offer. Feel that energy in your arms, torso, legs, and feet as you imagine yourself standing strong like a tree. With each breath, you release stress and welcome the abundance that exists all around you.
Do this standing posture as short or long as you’d like. When you’re done, bring your feet together and put your hands over your lower abdomen. Take a few more deep breaths to center your energy and take that feeling of relaxation and abundance into the rest of your day.
Learn Qi Gong Practices to Improve Your Sense of Inner Peace and Goodwill Toward Others
If you’re interested in learning more Qi Gong practices to release stress and improve your sense of peace within yourself and goodwill toward others, be sure to check out our free two-week Qi Gong trial.
When you try our free two-week trial you’ll learn a variety of Qi Gong exercises designed to release stress and cultivate a feeling of internal abundance throughout your entire being. By doing so, it becomes easy to feel at peace within yourself and experience goodwill toward others. Click on the banner below to discover how Qi Gong can help you reach your fullest potential today.