from Chapter 3
Head, Neck, and Shoulders
The eyes are the doorways to the soul. They are connected to the entire nervous system, which gives them a special importance. In Taoism the eyes are regarded as yang energy that guides all chi flow in the body.
The different areas of the eyes correspond to different organs of the body, so they reveal the health of your entire body: You can tell which organs are weak or toxic by looking at your eyes. Nowadays people use their eyes much more than in the past to read, watch television, and work with computers, other electronic devices, and microscopes. This strains them a great deal and allows much of the energy of the connected organs to be drained out. Massaging the eyes will reenergize the vital organs.
Performing Eye Massage
Begin with the procedure for bringing energy to the hands and face, contracting the middle, left, and right sides of the anus. When your hands and face are hot, direct the chi to both eyes until you feel them filled with energy.
1. Close your eyes. Use your fingertips to gently massage your eyeballs through your closed eyelids, six to nine times clockwise, then six to nine times counterclockwise. Then gently massage the area around the lids the same number of times. Be aware of painful spots and massage those places until the pain goes away. Pay special attention to the inner and outer corners of the eyes. Massaging these points of the Gall Bladder meridian will relieve eye ailments. However, when rubbing near the corners of the eyes, do not rub too hard, because you can make the corners of the eyes droop down. Finish with rubbing the corners of the eyes upward.
2. Pull up the eyelids to increase the fluid. Use the thumb and index finger to gently pinch and pull up the eyelids then release them. Do this six to nine times.
3. Massage the eye sockets by bending your index fingers and using the lower section to rub the upper and lower bones of the eye sockets six to nine times.
4. The next step is to get a tear out of your eyes, which will strengthen them. Hold an index finger up about eight inches from your eyes (or put a dot on the wall five or six feet away from you). Stare at it intently without blinking until you feel like a fire is burning in your eyes. The Taoists believe that this technique burns the toxins out of the body through the eyes.
5. Bring chi to your eyes by rubbing your hands until they are warm, then closing your eyes, and covering your eye sockets with your palms. Feel the chi from the hands being absorbed into the eyes. Rotate your eyes six to nine times, first in a clockwise direction, then counterclockwise.
The eyes have many muscles that we typically do not exercise very much. This causes them to become weak, contributing to poor eyesight. In addition, the eyes are closely connected with certain organs and nerves. Exercising the eyeballs is not only the best exercise for the eye muscles but will also exercise these linked areas by putting pressure on them:
• Contracting the middle of the eyeballs strengthens the back of the eye muscles and the inner ear.
• Moving the eyeballs upward by looking toward the crown strengthens the upper eye muscles and stimulates the pituitary and pineal glands.
• Moving the eyeballs from side to side strengthens the side eye muscles as well as the ear canals, eardrums, tear ducts, and the nose.
• Moving the eyes downward strengthens the lower eye muscles as well as the lower parts of the ear canals and the nervous system.
Performing the Eyeball Exercise
This exercise begins with closing the eyes and becoming aware of them.
With the eyes still closed, cup your palms over them, inhale, and contract the sexual organ and the part of the anus as directed, while looking straight ahead, to the left, above, to the right, and below.
1. Contract the middle of the anus, and pull the eyeballs back into their sockets.
2. Contract the left side of the anus and the left sides of the eyeballs.
3. Contract the front of the anus and the tops of the eyeballs.
4. Contract the right side of the anus and the right sides of the eyeballs.
5. Contract the back of the anus and the bottoms of the eyeballs.
If you have difficulty maintaining eye contact when you are talking with someone because you feel nervous and frightened, this can be caused by weakness of the gallbladder and kidneys. You may also experience that your voice becomes very low and hard to hear. To improve this, you can use the Inner Smile, Six Healing Sounds, and Chi Self-Massage as described above, plus the practice of staring.
To perform the practice of staring, look at your face in a mirror for two to five minutes each day for the first week. After ten days you can begin to stare at your eyes and increase your confidence by looking at your irises. Gradually you will lose the fear of looking into other people’s eyes.