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Submitted by Ken Rose on May 6, 2007 - 11:27pm.
"Language serves as a link between humans and the world: once this link is broken or lost, people have as good as lost their control over the world. In this sense, it can be perfectly justifiably said that language equals the power to control. To chemistry experts, a complex chemistry laboratory is like their own backyard; to someone ignorant of chemistry, it's a terrifying minefield, covered in death traps. To those who've grown up in the city, a bustling city is their home teritory, there's nowhere more convenient or comforting; but to people from the countryside with no knowledge or experience of the city, it's a thorny jungle where enemies, obstacles, and nameless, unshakable terrors lurk everywhere. There's a very simple reason for all this: a world hard to describe in words is a world beyond your control." Han Shaogong, A Dictionary of Maqiao, tr. by Julia Lovell, Dial Press, 2003 How do Han's words apply to people dealing with qi? Welcome to the city. Or, if you prefer, that is if it suits your personal background and perspective, welcome to the countryside. Or to the laboratory. Wherever we are, here is qi. Qi is our link, our connection between the city and country scapes we hold so precious in our minds and those we encounter in our fellow humans and the wide world through which we are all wandering. In fact, the language of qi evolved out of an ongoing effort to provide us humans with ever more effective ways of linking ourselves with one another and with the terrors, deathtraps, pleasures, potentials, challenges and opportunities that we discover during the course of a day on earth. As I've suggested elsewhere, qi is connectivity. How much linkage exists between your patient, your partner, your opponent, your friends, your family, your self and your world? The answers to such questions can be measured in qi. But only by those who invest themselves in the particulars of its integral language. Here we are. This space is our laboratory. We are bound together as well as separated by these words that we use to measure, mitigate and modulate the ebb and flow of qi in, around, and between us. Qi blog - day 2.