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Thread: Banishing qigong in my building! (Shanghai)

  1. #1

    Banishing qigong in my building! (Shanghai)

    Today my building management came to our apartments door by door and had us sign an oath that we wouldn't practice any forms of demonic religions based on qigong and if we saw anyone practice it we should call them or the police immediately(notice that there was no mention of FLG and it only mentioned qigong). At first I didn't want to sign but then I realized that these people might actually cause trouble for me. I don't know anything about FLG and I don't really care but I guess I need to do my zhanzhuang and qigong training somewhere outside of this complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xinyidizi View Post
    Today my building management came to our apartments door by door and had us sign an oath that we wouldn't practice any forms of demonic religions based on qigong and if we saw anyone practice it we should call them or the police immediately(notice that there was no mention of FLG and it only mentioned qigong). At first I didn't want to sign but then I realized that these people might actually cause trouble for me. I don't know anything about FLG and I don't really care but I guess I need to do my zhanzhuang and qigong training somewhere outside of this complex.
    Really? Really?! WTF. Are you telling me I can't do qigong in the park in the morning when in China? What about all the tai chi people? I thought the Chinese government was on a promote qigong kick? No?

  3. #3
    It was just my building's management and I don't know where they got the idea from. The exact term was 邪教 and it described it as religions based on 气功 and 神话 that are 反科学. It didn't mention anything about Taiji but I bet the nosy old ladies in my complex won't know the difference between FLG and zhanzhuang or sitting meditation.
    Last edited by xinyidizi; 06-13-2012 at 05:58 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xinyidizi View Post
    Today my building management came to our apartments door by door and had us sign an oath that we wouldn't practice any forms of demonic religions based on qigong and if we saw anyone practice it we should call them or the police immediately(notice that there was no mention of FLG and it only mentioned qigong). At first I didn't want to sign but then I realized that these people might actually cause trouble for me. I don't know anything about FLG and I don't really care but I guess I need to do my zhanzhuang and qigong training somewhere outside of this complex.
    Looks like the anti FLG Camp is getting into the lives of the people and their net has been forced into Shanghai from the North. Good luck!
    The governmental structural is exerting their influence to make sure the people are 'in-line' for the coming change-over! Just a guess!

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    My daughter is an American born Chinese. She is in China right now. When she applied visa to go to China, She was asked to provide a copy of my US passport to prove that I didn't come from China (She is 36 years old, not a kid). There is definitely something going on in China right now.
    Last edited by YouKnowWho; 06-13-2012 at 08:17 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xinyidizi View Post
    It was just my building's management and I don't know where they got the idea from. The exact term was ”邪教“ and it described it as religions based on 气功 and 神话 that are 反科学. It didn't mention anything about Taiji but I bet the nosy old ladies in my complex won't know the difference between FLG and zhanzhuang or sitting meditation.
    My friendly thought is the religion bit might not be that big a deal If they don't want to be known for housing activists- which FLG has the reputation of being.

    I read a recent Chinese media tidbit about reassessing the way the govt treats FLG and such groups though, noting that it could improve some Chinese people's health and govt may be opening the doors to it in future


    I'd be surprised if those ladies didn't know zhan zhuang or whatnot - most elder Chinese I've met all know a fair amount about tai chi and at least have heard of or seen some form of zhan zhuang. Why not try a local park? When I am in Shanghai I always enjoy early am in the park and then watching others activities there too (of which I have seen lots of zhan zhuang too)

  7. #7
    Yes it's different in the parks and many old people who go to the parks have tried some taiji or qigong (though I have never seen them doing zhanzhuang) in their lives but generally most of the Chinese people that I have met are clueless about these things. Once while doing zhuanzhuang I heard some of them whispering to each other that I was practicing FLG.

    Anyway today I did my training at a park where many others also do things like taiji but the bad thing about these public places is that they are packed with people and sometimes they circle around me and take my pictures as if they have never seen a foreigner doing kungfu before.
    Last edited by xinyidizi; 06-13-2012 at 11:12 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xinyidizi View Post
    Yes it's different in the parks and many old people who go to the parks have tried some taiji or qigong (though I have never seen them doing zhanzhuang) in their lives but generally most of the Chinese people that I have met are clueless about these things. Once while doing zhuanzhuang I heard some of them whispering to each other that I was practicing FLG.

    Anyway today I did my training at a park where many others also do things like taiji but the bad thing about these public places is that they are packed with people and sometimes they circle around me and take my pictures as if they have never seen a foreigner doing kungfu before.
    Thanks for the reply, xinyidizi

    I had to laugh at the last part about people watching you. I often had elder chinese watching me too- and after I Finished I might have some elder people asking about my zhan zhuang.

    As to your first part- I'm very suprised. I would guess a couple things- you are in closer to the city center in the most inner ring?

    and my second guess is that you are not going to the park before 7 am? or sometime late morning/early afternoon when it is family activities?

    Correct me on those if I'm wrong. I noticed the later I went to the park- the less cultivation oriented the activities were. Also as to your people gathering around you- I used to find a nice place in between some trees/around bushes where few could stare, let alone gather. This is why I guessed you might be in city center without good park coverage.

    I'm really surprised what you said about people you've met not knowing what it is, while I'm not surprised they may associate Zhan Zhuang with FLG, the park I practiced at was where one of Fu Zhong Wen's highest students (not his son) taught years ago and many good teachers still teach Tai Chi.

    Case in point, every morning any any given time in early am I would see 5 to as many as ~15 people spread around the park doing some sort of standing stake. Some of the tai chi players warm up with it too, in classic fashion. This was an older age area in Shanghai though, which might contribute that that knowledge about zhan zhuang.

    Somewhat related- I found that WuXue culture is really integrated into everything in China- TV shows in China, commercials, movies, magazines, elementary middle high school lessons, etc that all include some martial arts lesson/idea/aspect/history in some form that the average Chinese elders I've met have some fundamental concepts (maybe not practices) about what qigong/neigong/tai chi/etc looks like from the outside at least

  9. #9
    It's partly because as you guessed I don't normally go to parks before 7 am. The other problem is that where I live is far from the older Shanghainese neighborhoods where the well known martial artists teach. Here we just have a few small parks with small groups of old people learning very low level Taiji. It is very rare too see any serious martial artists around here.

    As for the wuxue culture, for the last few years I really haven't seen many people interested in anything related the traditional Chinese culture around me let alone martial arts or qigong. On the contrary I was surprised to see how negative they think of their traditional culture but it might be because of where I live and the type of people around me as they are very westernized or very money oriented.
    Last edited by xinyidizi; 07-02-2012 at 06:25 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xinyidizi View Post
    It's partly because as you guessed I don't normally go to parks before 7 am. The other problem is that where I live is far from the older Shanghainese neighborhoods where the well known martial artists teach. Here we just have a few small parks with small groups of old people learning very low level Taiji. It is very rare too see any serious martial artists around here.
    That's tough man. I bet you have a full schedule there, but if you had extra time it might be worth befriending those tai chi players when they finish practicing with some friendly chatter.
    'How are you' 'i see your tai looks nice/fun (hao wan)!' 'how long, why, what do you like about your tai chi practic,etc - anything to befriend them.

    I bet they will let you be in the future when you are practicing for yourself at the least, at the best you will make park friends. I hope it turns for the better and you can frame it as a challenge instead of a problem!


    Quote Originally Posted by xinyidizi View Post
    As for the wuxue culture, for the last few years I really haven't seen many people interested in anything related the traditional Chinese culture around me let alone martial arts or qigong. On the contrary I was surprised to see how negative they think of their traditional culture but it might be because of where I live and the type of people around me as they are very westernized or very money oriented. To meet my teacher and my type of people I need to spend a long time on the subway so that I can keep my sanity.
    I sympathize on the apparent desire for material goods/materialization and loss of traditional culture. Those people are there though for sure, just harder to find/see. Did you ever think of traveling to Su Zhou or Han Zhou on your weekends? They're really traditional with a lot of people looking to preserve tradition.

    Stick in there man-I felt Shanghai city life can be a heavy obstacle to cultivating.. or if you let it, it can serve as a noise/distraction to overcome (people staring, noises, constructions, etc) and boost cultivation-

    At first, I hated the metro because of how over populated it was/ long it takes.. then I took it as a great place to zhan zhuang. once I got past the poor air and bumping shoulders with people, if you can release your mind of the idea (or plague!) that it is a problem or distraction, I've found it does wonders!

    maybe your teacher could help you with these questions or thoughts too!

    stay cool I know that Shanghai heat is wild

    Matt

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    My daughter went to Beijing last summer for 3 weeks and I had to tell her to stay away from any FLG or similar congregating groups! No worries or hassles!
    I always thought Shanghai was a little more "liberal" so perhaps it is just the building manager trying to be safer than sorry!

  12. #12
    It seems that they are doing this in the whole neighborhood but my Chinese friends think that it's not really a big deal and no one really cares who practices qigong or whatever.

    @Matthew: I like the idea of Zhanzhuang on the subway. I tried it today and the good thing about it was that it was a little bit challenging and it was a good exercise both mentally and physically.

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    I am confused. What would qigong have to do with demonic religion?
    Jackie Lee

  14. #14
    What would qigong have to do with demonic religion?
    邪教(demonic religion/cult) is the term that the government uses for referring to FLG and a few other belief systems. What qigong has to do with all of this is a very long story.
    Last edited by xinyidizi; 06-17-2012 at 04:02 PM.

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    I've never understood the whole crackdown on Falun Gong.
    If the government just ignored them, there would be no problem. But since they try to supress them, they do battle with the government.

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