Weirdest Qigong Superpowers Caught on Video
What's the strangest ability you've confirmed with your own eyes?
Ancient texts all over the world are littered with stories of sages with supernatural abilities. From Jesus walking on water and healing the sick, to the Yoga Sutras detailing every possible psychic ability one can gain from the practice of Yoga, there is no shortage of such descriptions. But could any of this stuff possibly be real?
We know the human eye can be easily fooled, and magicians take advantage of this fact for a living, so take the following examples with a grain of salt. In fact, even if the following abilities are possible, the very ancients who discovered them often also cautioned against placing importance on them.
Many spiritual texts spell this out clearly, but here is one clear example from a Taoist text called the Hua Hu Jing (Or more formally, the Taishang lingbao Laozi huahu miaojing, or "The Supreme Numinous Treasure's Sublime Classic on Laozi's Conversion of the Barbarians"):
"The clairvoyant may see forms which are elsewhere,
but they cannot see the formless.
The telepathic may communicate directly with the mind of another,
but they cannot communicate with one who has achieved no-mind.
The telekinetic may move an object without touching it,
but they cannot move the intangible.
Such abilities have meaning only in the realm of duality.
Therefore, they are meaningless.
Within the Great Oneness,
though there is no such thing as clairvoyance, telepathy, or telekinesis,
all things are seen,
all things understood,
all things forever in their proper places."
So while we might associate the supernatural with spirituality, the sages have often taught that such powers still operate within the realm of the worldly and the mundane.
Either way, they sure are interesting to investigate out of curiosity. So just for fun and inspiration, let's look at a few examples you can actually see on video.
Human Electric Eel
First, there is the one I often speak of: The ability to produce electricity with the body.
In this BBC documentary, the filmmakers follow a man under the alias "John Chang" in Indonesia, who shows how he can electrocute patients through their acupuncture needles, as well as generate enough power to light a newspaper on fire!
I met a master of this skill who was visiting from China, and I have to say it was quite painful being electrocuted by him. He even taught my teacher Lee Holden the beginning stages of the practice, and I have since been electrocuted by Lee a couple of times (by accident).
Qing Gong: Light Body Skill
Most people are familiar with movies like Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, where kung fu masters run along walls and through the air, and sword fight in the canopies of bamboo forests.
As it turns out, this wasn't invented by the film industry, but is a whole practice within Chinese martial arts called Qing Gong, or Light Skill.
There are legends of masters who got so good at this that they were able to fly, but there are no videos of this claim. Most of the videos we have look like people who just got really good at parkour. None the less, some of what they can do looks pretty amazing.
The practitioners of Qing Gong claim that meditation, tai chi and qigong help their body in developing this "lightness". Personally I think what they are really developing is a "springy" quality to their connective tissues which improves their ability to be bouncy and "light on their feet".
Here is a video of a particular master from a Taoist Temple in Wudang, China. The first minute is him showing off his skills, and the rest is just a rather gratuitous slideshow made by what I'm guessing is a really big fan of his. Either way, enjoy!
This is probably the most well known Qigong superpower; Probably because it has the best ratio of super impressive to actually attainable.
This ability is trained through a mixture of special breathing techniques, Qigong exercises, application of herbal ointments to the skin, and just straight beating the s**t out of one's body. It is particularly made famous by the Shaolin Monks, who are known for their combination of zen Buddhist meditation, qigong health techniques, and dramatic martial arts training methods.
The idea with Iron Body is to condition parts of the body to be almost completely invulnerable to attack. It was apparently quite effective against attacks from punches, kicks, and even sharp weapons, but fell out of usefulness to some degree with the advent of firearms.
Some practitioners use it for offense as well, strengthening the hands, fingers, shins, or forehead to be iron-hard weapons. If you ask them, they will tell you that it isn't just callouses, but rather chi that they are directing to certain areas of their body for defense. In this video from a show called "Fight Science", they examine just that question on two Shaolin Monks in a laboratory setting:
And in this longer but very entertaining video, a whole bunch of Qigong masters compete in a Dragon Ball Z-like tournament where they show off their various Iron Body abilities:
Well I hope you enjoyed these entertaining videos. While most of these abilities probably aren't worth the time investment required, they do show us that the human body is capable of so much more than most of us may be predisposed to think. What are we capable of achieving with our Qigong practice, or whatever practice you're committed to? What illnesses can be healed, or good health can be gained? What emotional patterns can be transformed by dedicated practice?
Let's walk the path and find out together.
In good chi,