How to Befriend a Tree
Beginning practitioners of Chinese internal organ massage (Chi Nei Tsang) are taught how to commune with trees. Shouldn’t this be part of everyone’s education?by Mantak Chia
“Chi Nei Tsang: Internal Organs Chi Massage”, Mantak and Mannewan Chia’s manual for practitioners of traditional Chinese medical massage, is yet another fine fruit of Chinese Taoist cosmology. Mao retained Traditiional Chinese medicine while otherwise industrializing his country, which allowed China to continue its multi-millenia tradition of developing this great clinical science unencumbered by Communist dogma (while also spreading it throughout the Western world). That a large percentage of potential in-patient visitors to Chinese hospitals are almost immediately discharged on the basis of a chi massage argues for what a serious and effective medical methodology it is. How playful and profound the artful science of Chinese internal organ massage actually is can be at least partially appreciated through the exercises presented below.
COLLECTING TREE ENERGY
1. The Healing Abilities of Trees
Taoist Masters observed that trees are tremendously powerful plants. Not only can they absorb carbon dioxide and transform it into oxygen, but they can also absorb negative forces and transform them into good energy. Trees strongly root with the Earth, and the more rooted the tree, the higher it can extend to Heaven. Trees stand very still, absorbing the Earth’s Energy and the Universal Force from the Heavens.
Trees and all plants have the ability to absorb the light of the energies and transform it into food; in fact, they depend on light for most of their nourishment, while water and earth minerals make up about 30% of their nutritional intake. Trees are able to live very long lives.
a. The Tree as Healer and Friend
Trees are the largest and most spiritually advanced plants on earth. They are constantly in meditation, and subtle energy is their natural language. As your understanding of this language grows, you can begin to develop a relationship with them. They can help you open your energy channels and cultivate calm, presence, and vitality. You can reciprocate by helping them with their own blockages and devitalized areas. It is a mutually beneficial relationship that needs cultivation.
b. Choosing a Tree to Work With
Throughout history human beings have used all parts of the tree for healing and medicine. The best trees for healing are big trees, especially pines. Pine trees radiate Chi, nourish blood, strengthen nervous systems, and contribute to long lives. They also nurture souls and spirits. Pines are the “Immortal Tree.” Early Chinese poetry and painting is full of admiration for pines.
Although pine trees are often the best choice, many other trees or plants can be used. The larger trees contain the most energy. Among the most powerful are trees growing near running water. Some trees feel warmer or hotter than others; some feel cooler or colder than others. Practice distinguishing the varying properties of different trees.
1. Cypress and cedar trees reduce heat and nourish Yin energy.
2. Willow trees help to expel sick winds, rid the body of excess dampness, reduce high blood pressure, and strengthen the urinary tract and bladder.
3. Elm trees calm the mind and strengthen the stomach.
4. Maple trees chase sick winds and help reduce pain.
5. Locust trees help clear internal heat and help balance the weather of the heart.
6. Banyan trees clear the heart and help to rid the body of dampness
7. Cinnamon trees can clear coldness from the heart and abdomen.
8. Fir trees help clear up bruises, reduce swelling, and heal broken bones faster.
9. Hawthorn trees help aid digestion, strengthen the intestines, and lower blood pressure,
10. Birch trees help clear heat and dampness from the body am: help to detoxify it.
11. Plum trees nourish the spleen, stomach, and pancreas and calm the mind.
12. Fig trees clear excess heat from the body, increase saliva. nourish the spleen. and help stop diarrhea.
13. Ginco trees help strengthen the bladder and alleviate urinary problems in women.
You do not need to go far out into the forest to find an appropriate tree to work with. Trees that are used to having people around understand our energy and are actually more accessible and friendly than those far out in the wilderness. City parks and suburban yards are filled with powerful and accessible trees that would love to have closer relationships with the humans that dominate their environment.
There is a certain size range within which trees are most accessible to human beings. When a tree is too small, it does not have enough energy to make much of an impression on you. When the tree is too big, you have the opposite problem, so it takes more persistence to get large trees to take an interest in you. As a source of healing energy, it is best to choose a large, robust tree from within the accessible size range. For playful interaction it is best to choose a small to medium sized tree. While it is not necessary to climb the tree to develop a relationship, it does open up a whole new world, Climb gently and carefully so as not to harm the tree.