Living Through Crisis: Developing Evolutionary Consciousness: Part 3.
The first two parts of this series spoke of the need to develop “evolutionary consciousness”: to boost our immunity, but also strengthen the ability to adjust to these changing times. The acupuncture Extraordinary Vessel called “Yang Wei Mai”: the active linking vessel was described as one of the best methods for awakening this type of strength and endurance. It empowers us to think innovatively, with motivation and a sense of faith in ourselves. It taps into our survival willpower. It also strengthens our ability to resist external pestilence: environmental or epidemic challenges to our survival.
Part 3 of this series will describe a meditation practice, visualizing the Yang Wei Vessel to activate its power within ourselves. As with many ancient Chinese medical meditation practices, it is performed standing ideally. To be able to visualize the acupuncture points and the channel itself, you may want to use touch in the form of light self-massage to become acquainted with the acupuncture points until you can visualize the channel.
Until relatively late in classical Chinese medical history the Extraordinary Vessels (the channels connected to the organs of evolution: the brain, uterus, sexual organs, blood vessels, bones and marrow) were mostly meditated on. They weren’t needled in the acupuncture clinic. Therefore the Yang Wei Vessel is ideally suited for meditative practice. May you all enjoy and feel empowered by this practice!
Yang Wei Vessel Self-Massage Qi Gong Meditation:
Begin standing with feet apart, ideally barefoot. Feel your feet making contact with the ground. Take a moment to allow yourself to become calm, centered, focused and grounded. Become aware of your body as it stands in stillness. Feel your feet, your legs, your hips, shoulders, neck, back, head and face.
The following movements are ideally meant to become a continuous sweeping movement. I will break them into steps here for clarification sake. As you become acquainted with the general flow of the Yang Wei Vessel, its helpful to take the channel in steps or segments to get to know the points. It’s important to find your own natural way to locate the points. Your body will show you where they live. Usually acupuncture points make subtle crevices, indentations or “holes” in the flesh that you can locate by running your fingers along the region. It is also important to begin to feel the connection between the points. They are segments along a meridian with continuous energetic flow. In between each acupuncture point is a channel: a pathway of movement and communication. Begin to become aware of both the points as well as the channel in which they live: the continuous flow of energy that creates the dynamic Yang Wei Vessel.
Bend forward so you can place the palms of your hands on the outside of your feet. Feel the prominent bone on the outside of the foot, making contact with the acupuncture point Jin Men: Golden Gate (BL-63). Feel it activate as you stimulate it with your hands, sweeping its activated energy up the outside of the lower leg.
As you sweet up from the feet to the lower leg, make contact with the acupuncture point Yang Jiao: Exchange of Yang (GB-35), activating it. Feel the connection between these two points: BL-63 and GB-35.
Continue sweeping up the outer leg into the sides of the hips to contact and activate the point Ju Liao: Squat Bone Bone Hole (GB-29). Connection should be established along the outer aspect of the lower body: from BL-63 on the feet to GB-35 on the legs to GB-29 on the hips. This is step one of this process. Continue repeating moving energy from the foot into the lower leg and hip until you strongly feel a connection and flow.
Once connection has been established on the lower body, allow the energy to build in the hips so there is enough power to sweep it up from the hip region along the sides of the torso to the shoulders. This is a big jump so the lower body connection must be strong. On the shoulders, make contact with the points Bi Nao: Upper Arm (LI-14) on the lower aspect of the deltoid muscle and Jian Liao: Shoulder Bone Hole (SJ-14). Feel the crevices these two points create in the shoulder, feel how the energy of these two points wraps and encircles the shoulder joint. This is part two of the process. Take your time to establish the jump from the hips to the shoulders and the wrapping of energy around the shoulder joint.
Bring the energy inwards from the shoulder joint into the crest of the trapezius region between the shoulders and neck, into the point Jian Jing: Shoulder Well (GB-21) and then to the top of the scapula, to the important insight point Tian Liao: Celestial Bone Hole (TB-15). Rest at this point for a moment and feel into it. Like the hip region (GB-29), TB-15 is a very important point: a hole in the bone where we can contact very deep energy. Continue the energy movement from TB-15 into the base of the occiput into the point Feng Chi: Pooling of Wind (GB-20). This is part 3 of the process. Take your time to travel along the back of the neck/scapular region into these bony areas. See what images appear to you as you penetrate your focus into the bone holes.
The final upwards sweep of this process glides from the base of the occiput (GB-20) around the top of the skull, through the Gallbladder points GB-19-GB-13: Nao Kong: Brain Hollow (GB-19), Cheng Ling: Soul Support (GB-18), Zheng Ying: Upright Nourishment (GB-17), Mu Huang: Eye Window (GB-16), Tou Ting Qi: Head Receptacle of Tears (GB-15), Yang Bai: Yang White (GB-14), and Ben Shen: Root of the Spirit (GB-13). You should ideally feel an opening of the frontal brain when focusing on these points on the head. Spend time allowing each of these points to light up. See if you feel your brain activating inside your head.
Once the entirety of the Yang Wei Vessel has been contacted, activated and connected via the upward sweep, take the palms of the hands and sweep down the front of the body from the face, down through the neck, chest, abdomen, front of the legs down along the tops of the feet into the ground.
It is necessary to become acquainted with the acupuncture points of the Yang Wei Vessel before allowing a full mental sweep of the channel. Stop at each point, feel around the region, locate the point via feeling. Feel into the point, allow your fingers to vibrate the point – press into the crevice of the point and with pressure and intention vibrate the point, asking it to activate. Then with your awareness, tune into the point and see what you notice. What images or sensations appear? Is the point full of energy and color, or is it dull and empty? Just observe. And watch how it changes. Then go onto the next point. I encourage you to stay with each point until you feel it activate. As you move from one activated point to another, concentrate on making a linkage between the points. If you feel you lose the linkage connection with the prior point, go back to it and reactivate it, as if you are pulling a string from one point to the other. If you drop the string, or it becomes disconnected from the last point, return and gather the string and bring it back.
Ultimately you will find each point is vibrating on its own, with a connection to both the prior point and the subsequent point along the vessel. Ideally you will feel the entire vessel communicating, exchanging and vibrating altogether. Depending on your clairvoyance, you may also see the entire vessel become alight. At the very least you should gain an awareness or feeling of the vessel having become activated. The Yang Wei Vessel is connected to the organs of evolution, especially the brain. Expect it to activate consciousness that you are not used to: images, memories, insights. Observe these, takes notes if you life. You can expect physical, mental and even emotional response. We are tapping into the collective consciousness with this meditation, the wisdom of the ancestors and our spirit guides.
Once the entire Yang Wei Vessel has become activated and connected, you can begin inquiring into the quality of each point: which areas are more active and which are less. This will show you where you have abundant energy and where you may be more energy poor.
I will continue writing articles discussing the various acupuncture points and regions along the Yang Wei Vessel to illuminate their many functions, actions and attributes. I’m also happy to hear from you all and your insights and experiences with this process.