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Breaking Through the Barriers of Darkness: Recognizing the Cult of Qigong for What It Is

Chapter 6

The Danger of Qigong

"Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD, and because of these detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you" (Deut. 18:10-12).

1. The Danger of Qigong to Its Practitioners

After we have understood the principles and essence of qigong, we know that it is extremely dangerous and harmful to the practitioners themselves, their families, the society and the culture. When a new religion has been newly started by evil spirits, it breaks out with tremendous force and victimizes a lot of people severely.

Among all the harms it does, that done to the practitioners themselves is the greatest and the most direct. I practiced qigong for about ten years. I can hardly bear to recall my experiences with it. I have deeply experienced the danger of qigong and the cunning and viciousness of the evil spirits associated with it. I have also witnessed many qigong practitioners just like myself, who are helplessly entangled in the hellish quagmire of qigong. They are desperately swallowing the bitter fruit they have planted within themselves. They are like blind slaves weeping in the dark, not knowing there is light in the world.

The harm qigong causes its practitioners is reflected in their worldviews, views of life, moral values, character, personalities, spirituality, consciousness, thinking modes, and practical lives. We will discuss in the present section in detail the harm qigong does to its practitioners. Please be aware that the various kinds of harm discussed below are comprehensive and are inclusive of the situations faced by practitioners of all levels.

The Dangerous Influence of Qigong on Its Practitioner's Worldview

For people who do not have any religious beliefs or who have very vague worldviews or views of life, qigong is tremendously dangerous. Qigong was started at a time when most Chinese had lost all beliefs. Atheism was the main worldview for most people. I started to practice qigong precisely at that time.

The first experience people get with qigong is the "qi" sense. What follows immediately is the magical healing of diseases. This inflicts a great shocking effect upon the practitioner's mind. Since people cannot find out why, they accept very naturally the theories of qigong gong methods as the only theoretical explanation available. Hence, the concept that there is a mysterious "qi" existing in human bodies is accepted. Qigong theories explain "qi" as a fundamental life matter existing in human bodies and the natural world. They hold that it is consistent with the theories of Chinese medicine. "Qi" runs in the channels of human bodies and thus opens up blocks built up in them and heals diseases in this way.

As the gong practice goes deep, the practitioner can emit "qi" and achieve great effect in the healing of other people's diseases. The practitioner thus further experiences the power and incomprehensible mystery of "qi." Because the practitioner feels debilitated after emitting "qi," it seems to comply with the theory that holds "qi" as an essential energy of the human body. The practitioner then practices harder, hoping to get more real "qi" and expecting to obtain energy-carrying "qi". The evil spirits come gradually then into deep contact with the practitioner.
When supernormal phenomena start to happen to the practitioners, phenomena like hearing or seeing something, they will find that many of these phenomena tally with the folk beliefs of ghosts and gods. Atheism begins to shake, and qigong theories become authoritative. Qigong explains those strange phenomena as good things and as information.

As the practitioner still furthers his practice of qigong, he/she begins to attain supernormal capabilities and is able to "emit gong" to heal the diseases of other people. It is no longer the method of "qi-emitting." Supernormal capabilities cause most people to give up their materialistic view, for qigong is mainly guided by consciousness and has imagination as its method of practice. This is a very different from the atheism and materialism instilled in the Chinese. What should people believe in? Of course, they choose to believe the facts and their own experiences and logic. They thus accept the traditional belief in ghosts and gods and the qigong theories that can explain these phenomena.

After reaching the above realm of qigong, its practitioners start to reflect on the principles of the world and the universe and of ghosts and gods. Though they do not as yet have any systematic theory which provides a clear explanation, they have already rejected their atheistic view. They now believe in ghosts and gods and become theists. According to my investigation and logical analysis, most qigong practitioners hold that ghosts and gods in all religions are the same. For many reasons these people's view of ghosts and gods has not become of representative of all qigong philosophical theory.

Some other qigong practitioners still hold that qigong is a "science" and "materialistic." They take the so-called ghosts and gods as the information and energy of humankind and of the natural world. They too begin to hold reverence for the ghosts and gods and idols in the traditional religions. They consider ghosts and gods and idols as reflections and communications of information, hence worshipping of these idols brings good information and upgrades gong power. They do not regard these different happenings as results of the ghosts and gods' doings, but as caused by information that has come from man and the universe. Though they do not believe in ghosts and gods, they have already started to worship the evil spirits and idols. The materialistic and atheistic mode of thinking, adulterated with theory about ghosts and gods, produces a very characteristic worldview of qigong, with its main features being worshipping the mystery of the universe and humans themselves and the concept of not believing in, yet worshipping, ghosts and gods. Hence the materialistic and atheistic mode of thought holds that all the ghosts and gods in all religions are mere superstitious terms and that they can all be explained in terms of qigong. According to this view, many founders of religion are qigong masters. In this theory, words like "mysterious", "abstruse" are very frequently used. The concept of perceptual knowledge is the principal part of qigong theory. In a word, qigong is regarded as scientific and materialistic. This view is the leading theory among contemporary practitioners of qigong in China, and it is a theory that can be taught without violating the law.

Harms to the Practitioner's View of Life

As the new worldview is formed in the practitioners, their new view of life is established on this new base.

The practitioner's view of life is strongly deterministic and pessimistic, tinted by an inclination for escaping the world. "Let it be" and "follow one's sense perceptions" are the main characteristic of this type of view of life. This view of life is held for the following reasons:

First, qigong theory holds that in order to reach the desired high realm of qigong, the most important thing to do is to have a clear heart with few desires and to get rid of selfish ideas and personal considerations. Practitioners are required to lay down worldly affairs such as any concern for loss and gain, including job, career, hobbies, reputation, wealth etc. This theory is like the "all things are empty" of Buddhism, the "doing nothing" of Taoism. Many people find it hard to give up those many things. They cannot get their "six desires cleaned" and are unable to achieve good results from practice or even to continue their practice. Yet the majority of Chinese intellectuals have in their possession no scholarly honor or official rank or benefits or wealth; hence they have no problem giving up such things. These intellectuals become outstanding figures in the qigong field, especially in its theory, of which they are qualified to be called the founder.

Second, due to the obscure power that they have experienced in their qigong practice and that they feel is controlling their lives and the traditional theory about ghosts and gods that they have already accepted, they hold a deterministic view about their lives and decide they do not have to make any specific effort to cause any particular things to happen for them. "Let it be" becomes a classical view of life for qigong practitioners. Thus they simply obey the guidance of "the power that determines human fate," and by doing this, they have given up their primary consciousness in a broad sense and started to follow the leading of evil spirits.

This view of life brings direct harm because the practitioners grow more and more averse to the many practical things in their job and life, for these practical matters are contradictory to the moods that qigong practice requires. After some time they develop an inclination to escape the world, which is yet a goal they are unable to realize. The result is that their enthusiasm for, and concentration on, their work and life are greatly lessened and many benefits in life due them are lost.

Because of the different view of life that qigong practitioners have in relation to that of the people around them, they are looked upon as strange people and are treated coldly or are regarded as queer people to be respected but kept at a distance. Very few persons show them any understanding.

For the above reasons practitioners gradually withdraw from the society and are discarded by communities. They have their spiritual life blocked, are lonely, and are helpless mentally and spiritually. They have to lead a life of seclusion within qigong, savoring by themselves the loneliness of life.

The Harm of Qigong to the Practitioners' Moral Values

The moral values of qigong are basically a combination of Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism. They includes no murdering of human beings (qigong practitioners of high levels do not kill animals either), no robbing, no stealing, being ready to take up the cudgels for a just cause, controlling one tyranny by another, and correcting mistakes while upholding righteousness. In a word, the moral values of qigong encourage beneficent deeds in addition to respecting Buddhist monks, Taoist priests and idols, having no desire for scholarly honor or official ranks, and making no fuss about loss and gains.

One of the motivations for the practitioners to abide by qigong moral values is to acquire a higher level of gong power. This motivation to moral values is a half-true, half-false theory. It can easily delude people and lead them to worship the devil, evil spirits and idols, thereby distracting them from God and the true meaning of life.

The Harm of Qigong to the Practitioners' Character and Personal Qualities

The qigong worldview, view of life, moral values, and especially qigong practices determine the character and qualities of the practitioner.

According to qigong theory, to possess the ideal character of the practitioner is to be loving, kind, gentle, persevering, patient, modest, slow to anger, on guard against impetuosity, and magnanimous. Actually, beginning practitioners try to abide by these rules out of their enthusiasm, but later they become queer, irascible, impatient, and even cruel, callous and unfeeling under the long-term pressure their souls go through and the disturbance from the evil spirits within them. The practitioners usually do not notice the change that happens to them, but they find that friends are distancing themselves from them or exhorting them.

In the first place, the practice of qigong emphasizes one's feelings, and "following one's feelings" is its classical principle. In the beginning, it is "feeling the qi" and "the state of qi." At high levels, it is the feeling of one's own soul and of evil spirits and of things in the natural world. The pet phrase of qigong practitioners is "feeling." As the practice deepens, the practitioners live almost completely in their feelings. The first feeling they have when they get up in the morning decides their mood of the day. When they feel good while practicing qigong, they can be excited for days. Having such a lifestyle makes one very sensitive, changeable and impetuous.

Second, many qigong practitioners believe in ghosts and gods, yet qigong theories do not provide any views on the origin or destination of life, giving only the meaning of life at the highest level of qigong, which is immortality. Therefore, these practitioners ponder over the meaning of life only on the basis of the traditional beliefs in ghosts and gods. As to the atheists, they are even less able to find a direct answer to the meaning of life. However, the many supernormal phenomena that appear with qigong practice give them great encouragement and make them believe that qigong will be able to explain the meaning of life sooner or later. For most practitioners of qigong, what will happen after death is unsure, so they often worry, have anxieties, carrying their bafflement with them all the time.

Finally, practitioners believe in divinations and omens and believe feelings and dreams are foretokens of happenings in their lives. So whenever they see any natural phenomena in the natural world or sense a different attitude of others towards them, or suddenly get a strange feeling, they will analyze the implications of these things, which will then make them happy or sad. Especially are those qigong masters who perform supernormal abilities to heal others more bound by their feelings and under the pressures of life, having no freedom in their lives at all. The evil spirits manipulate and get control of practitioners through influencing their feelings.
In a word, the change in the practitioner's character is an obvious mark of the danger qigong inflicts upon people.

Now, let us take a look at the change of the practitioner's moral character. Practitioners pay a lot of attention to their moral character images. Most common practitioners abide by qigong virtues, restraining themselves, watching their words and deeds, and trying their best to present themselves as being detached and magnanimous. These people help to build up much fame for qigong in the society. Adherents of qigong generally hold that the social mores and morals will be bettered if everyone practices qigong. But the fact is qigong has very little influence upon one's moral character.

Most qigong practitioners have little change in their moral character after they start to practice qigong. They acknowledge only orally qigong virtues and abide by them superficially. Even though qigong theories hold that evil deeds will be punished, the fact is that practitioners with poor moral character are not affected at all in their qigong practice by the evil deeds they perform, but, on the contrary, they achieve better effects for doing those things.
Through the discussion of this chapter, we discover that the strange impressions people have about qigong practitioners come mainly from their character and morals, while their deep impressions of those with supernormal capabilities come from the supernormal abilities and strange signs they display and perform.

The Harm of Qigong to the Practitioners' Souls

The character and morals of the practitioners inflict direct influences upon people around them, but the harm by qigong on the soul afflicts directly the practitioners themselves.

For a lot of qigong practitioners, the worst misery is the pain of their heart.

First, the practitioner's perplexity about life and the universe causes great puzzlement in his/her heart. This is true even with high-level qigong masters. Though they can do many things that other people are not up to, they are powerless before the problem of life and death. They may believe that they very possibly might attain the highest state of enlightenment and live forever, but they are unsure about it.

Second, long-term training in imagination and complex mediation steps severely tortures the practitioner's heart. This is called by qigong adherents "tempering one's character." Its purpose is to trample on human nature and make it weak and suppliant without any power or consciousness for resistance. Sometimes when the imagination process is excessively complex and lasts for a long time, it exhausts the practitioner's heart and even causes him/her to vomit. After his/her soul has been tortured like this, he/she will feel very uncomfortable when practicing qigong. Yet the problem is that the gong may start by itself in daily living without warning and is uncontrollable. Practitioners will then have the following symptoms: their moods fluctuate wildly, sometimes desperate, sometimes hopeful; they are often world weary, making light of life; they are sometimes extremely cowardly and do not want to do anything.
When the practitioner feels hurt in his/her heart and soul, it is the period of time when his/her gong power increases the fastest. This is the practitioners' biggest comfort and is the only driving force for them to continue practicing. They use the very popular principle "the more you lose, the more you will gain" to explain their pains.

Harm by Qigong to the Practitioner's Consciousness and Mode of Thinking

The practitioners' view of life, worldview, and knowledge and experience of qigong form in them a peculiar consciousness and mode of thinking whose characteristic is "everything being decided by consciousness" and whose logical thinking is based upon feelings and produces different ways of logical analysis.

First, when good or bad things happen to the practitioners, they think that they should neither be happy when good events occur nor feel sad when bad events occur. They try hard to adjust their consciousness, believing all things that have happened to them are due to happen as they actually have, that such events are unavoidable. "When the old man on the frontier lost his mare, who could have guessed it was a blessing in disguise?" They call bad things good and good bad. It is the so-called traditional cultural consciousness of "inter-transformation between blessings and disasters." Hence the practitioners gradually lose the consciousness of avoiding misfortunes and seeking happiness.

Second, human consciousness and feelings are believed to have a deciding effect on one's life. This can be well illustrated by the qigong-like mode of thinking as related to illness. When someone is ill, qigong masters always find reasons to make the patient believe that the illness has been caused by his/her consciousness or mood. For example, they will say it is because the patient has too strong desires and expectations in life and that his/her consciousness suppresses his/her health so that the physical body has to take on some diseases to achieve balance with the excessively strong desires. As long as the patient lowers his/her expectations and desires, health will be improved.

Qigong theory holds that the happenings of things are decided by "the degree of purity" of one's consciousness and feelings. If bad things happen, it is because a part, even if it is a tiny part, of one’s consciousness has believed it would happen. It is the same case with good things. This is the so-called theory of "conscious wholeness." For example, if your consciousness believes event A will not happen and your consciousness has no doubt at all about it, leaving no loopholes at all in your consciousness, then there will be no information about event A entering into your consciousness and feelings, and event A will not take place because you are in "conscious wholeness." In contrast, if you hope for something to happen, it will happen.
Such thinking and consciousness will focuses people's attention more upon their own feelings, moods and deep-level consciousness and away observation of the outside world. They are often self reflective, but do not actively seek to solve the problem itself or analyze the principles of objective things. They always try to adjust their own sub-conscious and feelings in order to determine the coming about of events. What actually happens is that they cannot deal with even a simple thing in life. Let us see another example. A seriously diseased person goes to see a qigong master. It may happen that the qigong master is unable to heal this person. If this is true, the qigong master will say to this person, "You do not completely believe in qigong in your heart, for your imagination does not cooperate with me, and my information cannot enter into you. I cannot heal you in this way." Or the qigong masters will say, "Your consciousness has caused the disease in you; such and such expectation and desire of yours are too strong. If you are unwilling to give them up, nobody will be able to cure your disease." How will this patient feel? He/she will be saddened. If he/she believes what the qigong master says, he/she will endeavor to adjust his/her own feelings, state of mind and consciousness. He/she will be trapped in a prison of feelings and have his/her soul bound up.

Furthermore, qigong theories teach the superstition of "cause and effect retribution." What is generally believed is that "cause and effect retribution" refers to good returns for good deeds and evil retribution for evil deeds. But qigong practitioners think the reference should be broader, believing that if someone harms animals (especially snakes) or does evil things to idols, qigong masters, Buddhist monks or Taoist priests, then this person will be severely punished. This is very typical of evil spirits' principles. In the Bible the snake is the symbol of Satan. Yet in the Chinese traditional belief in ghosts and gods, the snake is a lucky totem. In fact, qigong practitioners and people accepting the traditional lore about ghosts and gods often feel that "good people are not rewarded for their good deeds and evil people are not punished for their evil doings." They find this hard to understand and can only say "it is not time yet" to explain it and to comfort themselves.

In conclusion to all the above, qigong practice leads to a morbid consciousness and mode of thinking. It causes people to think and do things from a wrong starting point and enter into a vicious circle. In such a mode of life, practitioners ignore the practical principles and reasons of things, stray away from scientific thinking and wise principles for handling things, and lack a logical thinking method based up facts, resulting in erroneous behavior and language, queer ways of doing things, and passivity in all things. Their life is like playing hide and seek. They are losers in life, having no certainty about anything nor any overall vision of the significance of their lives.

Let's discuss the last aspect of harm.

Harm by Qigong to the Practical Lives of Its Practitioners

There is no more severe damage from qigong than that to the practical lives of the practitioners. This harm includes not only the results of the harm to human nature listed above, but also those most practical, most actual miseries that practitioners of qigong are unable to explain.

As the practice goes deeper, the practitioners lose more and more of the happiness of life and grow tired and helpless. The things that happen to them can roughly be placed in the following categories:

1. A qigong practitioner is often thwarted in all areas of his/her life, including his/her study, work, career and love. Many of the practitioners' basic skills for carrying on living degrade after they start to practice qigong. They find unfortunate events coming in rapid succession, and they are all unforeseen, as if a piece of stone were to come crushing down on their head.

2. The qigong practitioners cannot heal their own diseases with qigong, and they feel heavy hearted because of this.

3. A practitioner's family members may meet with mishaps and strange events, even though these family members do not practice qigong or believe in it.

4. The practitioners will get injured from accidents for unforeseen reasons that may be man made, or related to the actual practice itself, or for other reasons.

5. Practitioners will be excluded, attacked, and misunderstood by others.

6. Practitioners will be perturbed by dreadful sounds, visions, shadows, and other strange things of this sort, either during the night, whether or not in dreams, or during the daytime. They have these experiences either for a long time or a short time, and, as a result, are very nervous and exhausted both spiritually and physically.

7. The practitioners may suddenly become lunatic because of what they say they have seen or heard. They may also become dull witted and remain close mouthed.

Most of the cases listed above seem, on the surface, not to have any direct relation to qigong practice. Not only qigong practitioners but also any people may have unhappy things happening to them in their lives, so it is not easy for people to see that those things have to do with qigong. But if we pay even a little attention to the occurrence of these phenomena, we find out that they tend to share the following characteristics: they are strange, abnormal, illogical, totally unexpected and seemingly very unlucky, weird, unbelievable, and like living under a strong curse.

We read in the Bible that God hates most for people to worship idols and evil spirits. The practice of qigong brings God's anger upon the practitioner.

It is a good thing that many practitioners give up practicing after they have experienced the strange things mentioned above, but it is not good enough. If one does not know Jesus Christ, he/she does not know God and will not be able to get away from his/her misfortune at all because evil spirits will not let one go easily and human power is absolutely too weak to defeat the devil. As to how to win a victory, it will be discussed in detail in chapter eight.
Qigong practitioners and performers with supernormal abilities should understand that only through accepting Jesus Christ and through the power of God can they overcome evil spirits and enter into God's protection and blessings in order to enjoy the happy life that God has prepared for them. There is no other choice whatsoever.

2. The Danger of Qigong to Society

The greatest function of religion is to form in human societies a cultural ideology by providing an entire philosophical system, including a worldview, a view of life, and ethical morals.

Since qigong is a new religion in China, its philosophical system is still in an embryonic form and is just now beginning to exert its influence on the culture and society.

Chinese culture as a whole is moving rapidly from atheism to theism. Qigong's influence forms a false cult characterized by worship of idols, evil spirits and even of humans themselves, and this cult leads the entire society into danger.

First, no matter what education they have received, all qigong practitioners take qigong virtues as moral principles and believe in the existence of incredible supernatural powers in human beings. Their pride grows with each passing day. They worship human beings themselves and also idols devotedly. Even atheistic practitioners, in order to increase their gong power, worship idols and great qigong masters with supernormal capabilities. For qigong practitioners the most important goal in life is to reach a higher level of qigong, to obtain more powerful supernormal abilities, and to be like a god. They give up many desires and expectations of life, are reluctant to spend time seeking material gains or spiritual life and gradually lessen their social involvement.

Second, due to some strange methods of practice, qigong practitioners are believed to have odd behaviors, which lead to strange cultural events. For example, years ago, there were innumerable practitioners coming to the Temple of Heaven to collect energy. Because it was said that the ancient trees there have a strong "qi field," many took various postures in order to collect "the energy of trees," causing passers-by to find them both amusing and annoying. Since the Temple of Heaven was the place for offering sacrifices to gods or ancestors in ancient times, evil spirits frequent this place. There were also people who played, either at home or in their work units, tapes of qigong masters' teaching or of "nan wu a mi tuo fu," repeatedly chanted. The evil spirits ran wild in those places, making strange atmospheres.

Also, due to the traditional qigong system of clans and groups and attacks on each other and rejections of each other, many cell groups and sub-societies are formed. Qigong disciples adhere to their own clan or group and worship their own head master. In each clan or group, there is their own peculiar sub-system of philosophy. Although they abide by qigong virtues on the surface, they need to give vent to the tremendous pressure their souls undergo because of the intrusion of evil spirits. They thus interfere with the normal order of other people's daily living. Many qigong disciples pay their masters blind obedience, a fact which leads to many severe evil results.

Generally speaking, qigong practitioners are passive and have a pessimistic view of life. They ignore study, work, career, and love and show no interest in new things, but instead worship ancient people and culture. They think Chinese culture is the most profound, the most enduring, and the most outstanding culture, rejecting the excellent culture of the West and looking down on science and technology. They think qigong can solve the fundamental problems of human beings, taking physical health as the most important thing in life and immortality as the highest goal. They hold an attitude of escape toward modern civilization because they are unable to deal with the issues of life. Qigong exerts a negative influence on society.

When qigong endangers the society and culture, it surely endangers the state in the political sense.

Because of its spiritual background of evil spirits, qigong forms an erroneous culture. We know that from the Holy Bible that God bitterly detests the worshipping of idols and evil spirits and human arrogance and conceit as well. He always punishes countries, nations and individuals that believe in evil spirits and worship idols.

When an individual starts to practice qigong, God's anger comes upon him/her, and he or she will then live under a curse. When a country or nation has a lot of people practicing qigong, God's anger comes upon this country or nation. Just like the harm that qigong brings to individuals, the harm inflicted upon the country may seem on the surface to have nothing to do with qigong, even though the connection is incontrovertible. The disasters are due to God's anger. At the climax of trend toward qigong in China, the whole world saw the disastrous events that happened to this country.

On the other hand, God blesses individuals, nations and countries that believe in Him. Now, because of the revival of Christianity in China, God's blessings are upon China. It is estimated that there are slightly more Christians than qigong practitioners in China and the difference will be much greater within one or two years. The number of Christians is growing much faster than that of qigong practitioners.

More people will begin to see the harm inflicted by qigong upon individuals, the society and the nation. More people will get to know God through Jesus Christ. This is the hope for China—both individuals and the nation as a whole.

No doubt, the truth will win the victory. In fact, He has won already!


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