This week I got a sign from God!
I’m going to tell you about it and it may sound a bit hippy dippy, but it’s a cool story anyway, whether you believe in that type of stuff or not… so here goes!
Lately, I’ve had a number of people around me pursuing the practice of Qigong, which got my curiosity up. In case you don’t know what Qigong is, it’s a discipline combining movement, breath, and meditation to enhance health and well being. Qi is a term that basically means ‘life energy’ and Gong means ‘discipline’. Qigong is similar to Tai Chi, but the movements of Tai Chi tend to be related to martial arts movements while Qigong movements are not as specific.
So when I saw an advertisement for a four day Qigong seminar for $99, I figured it would be a good intro at a reasonably low price. If I dug it, I would incorporate it as a complement to my yoga practice. One thing that made me skeptical about the seminar was that they said that attendees could get another two days of training a couple of weeks afterwards and get instructor certification. I would assume you had to practice for a few years before becoming a teacher…not six days!
Anyway, I did the seminar, and it was really good. There were about 350 of us and we did some Qigong, learned about food healing, practiced some breath techniques, and listened to some philosophical lectures. It was well worth the 99 dollars.
But I’ll say this: The first time I went to a Yoga class, I fell in love with it. However, I didn’t fall in love with Qigong in that way. I like it ok and figure I’ll practice it from time to time, so that’s cool.
I was still toying with the idea of doing the instructor training figuring I could learn the Qigong better and get instructor training that would help my Yoga teaching. It turned out that the cost was 99 dollars per day for the 2 days of training, plus one should get a $45 dvd of the routine to practice for the two weeks before the training. I figured $243 was a good price for instructor training and certification, but I was still skeptical about the 6 day thing, so I was on the fence.
The problem was that you had to pay for the first session before the end of day 4 of the seminar. Now, the guy leading the seminar, at one point, taught us a prayer he used when he had to make a decision. The gist of it is “Oh, God, creator of the universe, please give me a signal if I should <insert your issue>. Please make the signal clear and conspicuous so that I will not have any doubt.”
I figured, “What the hell…I’ll use his prayer to ask if I should do the instructor training.” and I said my own prayer modeled after his, and added that I needed to know by the end of the seminar the next day. The next day came and went. THERE WAS NO SIGN! I’m skeptical of that type of stuff anyway, so I went ahead and paid for instructor training, and went on my way.
The day after, I was back at work and at the end of the day was feeling kind of ragged, and even though I felt like I should have stayed late to get some stuff done, I split and headed for Yoga class. When I arrived, there was a parking spot at the meter right by the studio door that is usually filled at that time, so I grabbed it, pleased at my good fortune. The meters need to be fed until 6:00 p.m. and it was 5:45, so I figured I’d put in a quarter rather than risk getting dinged for $50 by the parking Nazis coming by at the last minute. But more good fortune! There was still 21 minutes left on the meter from the prior parker!
Went to class, good practice…very sweaty and detoxifying. After class, I went to my car. AND THERE IT WAS! …right on the ground next to the front passenger door.
A PEACOCK FEATHER!
Bear in mind that the name of this blog is ZenPeacock and the peacock is my totem. For the story behind that, read my blog entry, “Why Peacock?”. Suffice it to say that peacocks have a major significance to me and two days after I asked for a sign, I wind up in a premium parking spot which just happens to have a peacock feather next to it!
So what did it mean? The sign did not come before I had to pay for the training. It came immediately after a particularly satisfying Yoga class, which reaffirms to me that YOGA IS MY PRACTICE! Qigong is cool and I may practice if from time to time, and maybe add some moves to the ‘tune in’ portion of classes I lead, but I’m not going to put a lot of energy into the practice. I don’t discourage anyone from pursuing Qigong or anything else as a discipline…but for me, it’s Yoga.