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Vital Breath of the Dao: Chinese Shamanic Tiger Qigong Paperback – February 1, 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 246 pages
  • Publisher: Dragon Door Publications; UNABRIDGED VERSION edition (February 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0938045687
  • ISBN-13: 978-0938045687
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 6.9 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,096,110 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Master Zhongxian Wu was born on China’s eastern shore in the city of Wenlin in Zhejiang Province, where the sun’s rays first touch the Chinese mainland. He began practicing Qigong, calligraphy, and Taiji at an early age. Inspired by the immediate strengthening effects of this practice, Master Wu committed himself to the life-long pursuit of the ancient arts of internal cultivation. He devoted himself to the study of Qigong, martial arts, Chinese medicine, Yijing science, Chinese calligraphy, and ancient Chinese music over the next thirty years, studying with some of the best teachers in these fields. Master Wu is the lineage holder of four different schools of Qigong and martial arts: • 18th generation lineage holder of the Mt. Wudang Dragon Gate style of Qigong (Wudang Longmen Pai) • 8th generation lineage holder of the Mt. Emei Sage/Shaman style Qigong (Emei Zhengong) • 7th generation lineage holder of the Dai Family Heart Method style of Xin Yi (Dai Shi Xinyi Quan) • 12th generation lineage holder of the Wudang He style of Taijiquan. In China, Master Wu served as Director of the Shanxi Province Association for Somatic Science and the Shaanxi Association for the Research of Daoist Nourishing Life Practices. In this capacity, he conducted many investigations into the clinical efficacy of Qigong and authored five books and numerous articles on the philosophical and historical foundations of China’s ancient life sciences. Since he began teaching in 1988, Master Wu has instructed thousands of Qigong students, Eastern and Western. In 2001, Master Wu left his job as an engineer in Xi’an, China, to come to the United States to teach Qigong. For four years he served as Senior Instructor and Resident Expert of Qigong and Taiji in the Classical Chinese Medicine Department at the National College of Naturopathic Medicine (NCNM) in Portland, Oregon. In addition to his work at NCNM, Master Wu was a sub-investigator in a 2003 Qigong research program sponsored by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH). Currently, Master Wu presents trainings and workshops for professionals and the general public in Qigong and Taiji and on topics related to the classical Chinese arts. Vital Breath of the Dao—Chinese Shamanic Tiger Qigong (Laohu Gong 老虎功) is Master Wu’s first Qigong book in English. Master Wu is committed to bringing the authentic teachings of Chinese ancient wisdom tradition such as Qigong, Taiji, martial arts, calligraphy, Chinese astrology, and Yijing science to his students. In addition to his classes, workshops, and seminars, he offers a long-term Qigong and Taiji training program that provides a strong foundation for the study of shamanic Qigong, internal alchemy, Taiji and Qi-healing skills, including classical Chinese energy techniques, medical Qigong, and martial arts applications.

Customer Reviews

A "Master" has the ability and responsibility to give his students the best possible teaching.
Patrick J. Meath
Far from being a dry, abstruse treatise on esoteric matters, Master Wu's personable writing style conveys his deep love for Qigong in an accessible way.
Margaret H. McDonald
If you are interested in making Qigong a commitment, then I highly recommend reading this book.
Scanapina

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Patrick J. Meath on July 7, 2006
The word Master means many things to many people. The traditional meaning of Shifu, the Chinese word, meshes rather poorly with our modern definition of Master (which in my opinion still carries the sour taste of America's not so distant past). I don't know what the title means to other self-proclaimed Masters in the US but I have had the good fortune to meet with Master Wu and learn what the word means to him. A "Master" has the ability and responsibility to give his students the best possible teaching. The word is a reminder of that intention. His sincerity and ability was evident when I studied with him and I believe it is evident in the pages of his book.

There's no way I can remove all bias from my review. However, I have read a great number of qigong books in my study of Classical Chinese Medicine and I believe Wu's work merits special attention. Though scholarly, the tone of his work is personal rather than academic. His is a conversation over tea. Your chance to casually sit with a man of genuine ability and share his experience.

I recieved this book days before leaving for China to continue my studies and it has since given me many invaluable insights into traditional Chinese culture. The book answers many questions I wanted to ask but never found the words to do so. Wu writes in a fluid fashion that nurtures an understanding of shamanic tradition and leaves room for intuition. I believe this book is useful for people who want to know more about Chinese Shamanic Tradition and invaluable for students who seek to cultivate greater personal understanding.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Nicole Spencer on August 6, 2006
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I have to say that I've really ENJOYED this book, which is meant to be savored (as the author explains) like a cup of fine tea. Gems of real wisdom are delivered almost casually in a conversational style that requires us to slow down and sit with them for a while. As with anything REAL, it's not about the abstract information per se, but how you relate to it and make it your own. I especially appreciate how the author is able to relate Daoist and traditional medical ideas to the even more primordial worldview of Chinese shamanism.

As far as the qigong sequence is concerned, you'd have to have had a good deal of previous experience to be able to learn it from these pages, even though the instructions are reasonably thorough and clear. Dragon Door Publications has produced a video of the form as performed by Master Wu, but even that is likely to serve best as a reminder of instruction received from him directly. Still, I've found Master Wu's discussion of the individual movements to be both interesting and personally useful. If I give the book only four stars instead of a full five, it's in recognition of the print medium's limitations as far as detailed qigong instruction is concerned.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Margaret H. McDonald on November 22, 2006
This delightful book is a gift to the senses as well as the soul. Far from being a dry, abstruse treatise on esoteric matters, Master Wu's personable writing style conveys his deep love for Qigong in an accessible way. His invitation to sit with him and drink tea as we contemplate the (deceptively) simple wisdom of this shamanic Qigong tradition is no mere clever conceit; it's the best way I can think of to capture the apprentice-teacher relationship in a book.

Some readers might prefer a more linear, academic style of presentation. However, I found the format refreshing, as it is like a series of conversations (which is the oldest style of teaching, as evinced in texts as diverse as the Huangdi Neijing and Plato's Dialogues). The writing is fresh and heartfelt, and there's much wisdom here for both the newcomer to Qigong and the long-time practitioner. Thank you, Master Wu, for sharing your tea and your heart with readers.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Tomas on May 13, 2009
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The book arrived very quickly and was in excellent condition. Master Wu is a very genuine Qi Gong master who spent his life until 7 years ago in China. He grew up in a small village on the Eastern Coast of China in a very traditional surroundings and had direct contact to shamans/wise men. He also is a very modern and cool young master. You will not be disappointed!

Thank you!
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36 of 52 people found the following review helpful By t on March 27, 2006
Vital Breath of the Dao provides an alternative look at Qigong practice and is thus interesting from that standpoint but if the theme of the book was to elucidate Shamanic Qigong then this book is lacking. I found the organization to be poor, with unrelated folk stories, poorly documented attempts at historical scholarship, and comments about modern life often thrown out to the reader without making any connection to a theme. The explanations of information contained within the Chinese character descriptions of Qigong concepts and Tiger Qigong movements are the bright spots of book. It would have been interesting to find out more of what distinguishes this form of Qigong from the thousands of others currently being practiced or more of the lineage and the author's own teachers whom he gives only passing acknowledgement. The descriptions of the Tiger Qigong movements were spotty, with some being clear and others confusing even after several reads. Don't expect to be able to learn this particular Qigong style from this book.

My BS guard was up from the first glance at the cover, for what true master calls himself "Master", and his remarks on enlightenment were fairly cliched. The author does assert that Ramana Maharishi could not have been enlightened because he died of cancer which we assume means that the Buddha could not have been enlightened because he died of food poisoning. Go elsewhere for any pointers on enlightenment.
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