Taoist qigong is a spiritual discipline that cultivates body and mind simultaneously. Originally called daoyin, which means 'guiding the flow of internal energy (qi), it has been practised for over two thousand years in China. Laozi, the founder of Taoism, was said to have been the first to practice techniques of conserving, gathering, cultivating, nourishing, and transforming energies that are the source of a healthy body and a clear mind.
The techniques of Taoist qigong were systematized during the Han dynasty (3rd century BCE to 3rd century CE) by the father of Chinese medicine Hua Tu. From then on taoyin, or qigong, has been incorporated into Taoist spiritual practices up to the present day.
The techniques of Taoist qigong can be divided into three categories - outer, inner, and secret. Outer qigong focuses on physical strengthening, inner qigong with nourishing the internal organs and gathering and conserving energy, and secret qigong with dissolving the duality of mind and body to merge with the primordial energy of the Tao.
No spiritual discipline is complete without integrating its formal practices into everyday life. In this respect, Taoist qigong advocates a lifestyle of simplicity and moderation, encourages the cultivation of generosity, compassion, and wisdom, and fosters the development of honour and respect for ourselves and the world.
Xiantianwujimen is a Taoist lineage founded by Chen Xiyi, the hermit of Huashan, in the 10th century. Huashan (The Grand Mountains) is a chain of rocky mountains rising up from the plains of Shaanxi province in central China, and is home to 108 Taoist shrines, temples, and monasteries.
The lineage specializes in using qigong techniques to build the foundation for sitting meditation. The techniques favoured by this lineage include self-massage, tendon-changing, callisthenics, marrow-washing, and breath regulation. A hermit tradition, Xiantianwujimen qigong has been transmitted uninterrupted from the 11th-century to the present day. Eva Wong is a 19th generation lineage carrier of Xiantianwujimen Taoism.
Yiquan Zhangzhuan is a Taoist-inspired lineage of standing qigong founded by martial artist Wang Xiangzhai (b. 1886). The eight postures of Zhangzhuan are designed to still the mind and gather and circulate internal energy simultaneously.
Eva Wong studied with Hong Kong yiquan master Sun Di and Fa Xuan from Taiwan, who first studied Wang Xiangzhai and later with Yu Peng Xi.