An understanding of the principles and philosophy of Dahn Yoga is essential to deriving the greatest benefits from its practice. Dahn Yoga originated in Korea and is based on its rich history of holistic healing and mind-body practices. Dahn (also known as Dahn Hak or Dahnhak) is a Korean yoga practice and business, founded in 1985 by spiritual leader and author Ilchi Lee. In Korean, dahn means “primal, vital energy,” and hak means “study of a particular theory or philosophy.” Dahn teachings are said to place equal emphasis on physical, emotional, and spiritual health and well-being. Dahn Yoga exercises are often described as, “A blend of yoga, tai chi, and martial arts exercises.” Dahn Yoga is taught through for-profit and non-profit studios as well as community centers. The concept of Ki, or vital life energy, is fundamental to East Asian philosophy, arts and medicine. In Korean “Dahn” also refers to the concept of Ki. “Yoga” is derived from the Sanskrit word for union. Dahn Yoga applies East Asian energy principles to help people develop union of body and mind.
Dahn Yoga focuses on the concept of the Three Bodies and the three “energy centers” known as Dahn jons.
- Jung Choong - Upper Dahn jon, correlates to strengthening the Physical Body
- Ki Jang - Middle Dahn jon correlates to maturing the Energetic Body
- Shin Myung (From health to happiness to peace.) - Lower Dahn jon, correlates to brightening the Spiritual Body
- Seo Sung Hwa Gang (Water Up, Fire Down) - 7 Chakras - Oriental/Korean Medicine
- Brain Health & Physiology - Shin In Hap ll - Muah - Chun Bu Kyung
There are several elements or aspects unique to Dahn Yoga that are designed to provide an experiential learning component to the practice. Depending on the format of a class, workshop or body of study they include:
Dahn Yoga Centers Body + Brain
Dahn Yoga (also known as Dahnhak) was created in 1985 by Ilchi Lee. Based on Korean Taoist philosophy and holistic traditions, including the practice known as Sun Do, the first classes were free and held in a public park in South Korea. After five years, Lee expanded into a studio space and structured it into a more formal business which he named “Dahnhak Seonwon,” meaning Vital Energy Arts Center. The popularity of the practice grew steadily in Korea throughout the 80's and 90's. By 1991, Dahnhak had spread to the U.S., through several companies managed by Ilchi Lee's students. in 1996 the largest and most successful of the companies consolidated to form what would become Dahn Yoga & Health Centers, Inc.
Body & Brain Holistic Yoga
In 2008, Dahn Yoga & Health Centers, Inc. recognized the value of local ownership and commitment and altered its expansion strategy. Instead of corporate-owned centers managed by employees, it offered Instructors the opportunity to own and operate their own businesses. Body & Brain centers replicate the success of Dahn Yoga centers, often on a smaller scale. Body & Brain centers offer Tai Chi, Dahn Mu Do and meditation in addition to Dahn Yoga classes. Some locations also hold special Brain Education classes geared toward teens and children.
1980 Ilchi Lee starts teaching holistic exercise in a park.
1985 After five years of developing his methods with free classes in the park, the first Dahn Center opens in downtown Seoul. The first edition of “Dahnhak: Its Principles and Training Method” is published.
1986 The practice grows and advanced students start spreading the practice.
1987 Dahnhak's becomes known as an effective practice. Large corporations, including Gold Star (now known as LG), SK, and Daewoo ask for Dahn Yoga to be taught to employees. Dahn Yoga is also introduced to athletes-in-training and troops in the Korean military. 1989 The energy healing side of the practice starts to develop. A small energy healing center offering energy evaluations and treatment plans based on Dahn Yoga and energy healing opens in Seoul.
1991 As practitioners experience Dahn, they are eager to bring it to where they live. A Korean businessman living in Philadelphia invites Ilchi Lee to the U.S. Soon after the speaking engagement, his top student opens a small center in the U.S.
1996 The first Japanese Dahn Center opens in Tsuruhashi, Osaka. Shortly after, Canada gets its first taste of Dahn Hak. The first Canadian Center opens in North York, Toronto, Ontario.
2001 Ilchi Lee starts the Healing Chakra tours in the U.S. This tour would extend through the next three years around the world. By the end of the three-year tour, close to 15,000 people have participated in these workshops. Today, the Healing Chakra is lead by senior Dahn Yoga practitioners.
2002 The Dahn Yoga practice spreads to England, and a center opens in Surrey, England, just outside of London.
2006 Volunteering in the community was part of Dahn Yoga's history since Ilchi Lee taught free classes in the parks. Dahn Foundation is born as a 501©(3) non-profit organization to officially develop and support such activities.
The first Dahn Center is opened in Samara, Russia.
2007 Ilchi Lee develops the Brain Education program to organize the various programs developed over the years into one complete training system. After experiencing significant improvement in MS symptoms, an active member in Arizona develops Dahn Yoga Classes for MS sufferers through the Dahn Foundation. Eventually, a Dahn Yoga for Multiple Sclerosis and Similar Conditions DVD is made for people with MS to benefit nationwide.
2008 A franchise system is developed in the U.S. for individuals who want to own and operate their own Dahn Centers. They are called Body & Brain Centers.
Brain Wave Vibration evolves from Brain Respiration as the quintessential Brain Education training and spreads quickly throughout Dahn Yoga centers. The Brain Wave Vibration book is published and translated into four languages.
2009 Brain Management Consultant (BMC) is developed to train instructors who want to be licensed to share the principles of Brain Education through teaching Dahn Yoga, Brain Wave Vibration, or principles of Brain Management in their organizations, homes, and workplaces.
The franchise centers start to spread overseas, and the first Body & Brain Center is opened in Sweden [which city??]
“Ilchi” is the name Ilchi Lee chose for himself nearly 30 years ago, following a life changing spiritual experience. Il (一) means “one” and chi(指) means “finger.” Ilchi refers to the index finger “pointing the Way” referring to the Taoist concept of Oneness, the natural order of existence. Embracing the Korean Taoist tradition, known as Sun Do, Ilchi Lee awakened to the universal principle that humanity is connected to the Cosmos, the Earth and all of creation.
Born to a family of educators in South Korea during the Korean War, Ilchi Lee had severe learning disabilities. Though he graduated from high school, he was not able to pass his college entrance exam. This concerned his father, who blamed himself for failing to educate his own child and retired early.
With his father’s retirement weighing heavily upon his shoulders he was greatly discouraged until he found an opportunity to take action. He began cleaning up a garbage mound under his town’s main bridge. He carried several loads of garbage to a nearby field where it became fertilizer for a pumpkin patch. Later he shared the pumpkins with neighbors. Through this experience, Ilchi became aware of the transformative potential of work, the joy of sharing with others, and the value of his own contribution.
After that experience, Ilchi began running regularly. This improved his concentration and helped him focus on his studies. He eventually graduated from college with a degree in Clinical Pathology. Ilchi then opened a clinical pathology practice while training in the study of Taekwondo and other mind-body practices. He soon developed an interest in the relationship between certain postures or stances and their effect on the body.
From his early youth, Ilchi Lee had been driven by questions about the true meaning of his existence. Dissatisfied with intellectual answers, he learned that training his body helped him gain a sense of centeredness and peace. In the summer of 1980, he climbed up Mount Moak in South Korea to pursue answers to these questions. Following 21 days of intense fasting and meditation, he experienced a special state of awareness through which he found answers to his questions about existence.
He came to an intuitive understanding that his experience was directly related to the brain, and that it was an experience others could share. He also saw that state of consciousness ultimately affected the condition of the world we live in; our choices could lead to the destruction of our world or the revival of its primal harmony and beauty.
Since that time, Ilchi has devoted tireless efforts toward teaching others about the power of our choices, which begins in our brains. His efforts have fostered research, development, and experiential learning in the utilization of the infinite potential possessed by the human brain and how we can steer our own life path.
Following his life changing experience on the mountain, Ilchi Lee felt a strong conviction to share what he had learned. He wanted to help people become physically healthier so they could make healthy choices, recognizing how people making healthy choices helps improve society.
He began teaching for free in a park in Anyang, South Korea, first assisting a lone stroke victim, and then training large groups of people. In 1985, after five years of lessons in the park, he rented a space in Seoul that became the first Dahn Center.
The exercises he taught gradually evolved to include a wide variety of over 360 meditative and brain enhancement techniques, which he systemized into different programs and workshops, and organized into five steps. This system of mind-body-spirit training is now known as Brain Education. It integrates ancient Korean philosophy and Sundo culture with applied neuroscience to teach optimal brain utilization. Brain Education and its exercises offer wisdom for healthy living and successful development to all ages, from small children to the eldery.
In August of 2000, Ilchi Lee stood as a guest speaker in the main hall of the United Nations building in New York City during the Millennium World Peace Summit of Religious and Spiritual Leaders. He recited the Prayer of Peace he had authored for the occasion, and he promised himself that the prayer would not see its end as mere words. He vowed to someday return to the UN with practical means of achieving world peace. To keep his promise, Ilchi Lee made efforts toward a multi-level strategic partnership with the UN. His chief interest was to make contributions to its global peace and humanitarian efforts.
In 2001, he hosted the New Millennium World Peace Humanity Conference in Seoul, South Korea, an event that gathered 12,000 people from around the world to find workable means of fostering a more peaceful, sustainable global culture. Speakers at the event included former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, environmental activist Maurice Strong, and renowned journalist Seymour Topping. In addition, Ilchi Lee continued to have public seminars and academic seminars in Korea at the Korea Institute of Brain Science (KIBS) and the University of Brain Education (UBE). In 2007, KIBS earned consultative NGO status with the UN.
Then in 2008, eight years after his guest speaking post at the UN, Ilchi Lee stood on the UN grounds not as a guest, but as a host. That June, he held the Fourth International Brain Education Conference there, while also celebrating the inauguration of the International Brain Education Association (IBREA). With this event, he created a foundation for Brain Education to be utilized by the UN’s international peace activities, educational projects, and welfare promotion efforts. At the International Brain Education Conference, several distinguished neuroscientists such as Dr. Antonio Damasio and Elkhonon Goldberg, Ph.D., as well as several other guests, lectured. In July of 2009, Brain Education was introduced to UN officials at the Annual Ministerial Review in Geneva, Switzerland during the seminar “The Role of Brain Education in Global Mental Health.”
Based on his earlier understanding of the transformative potential of work, the joy of sharing with others, and the value of his own contribution, Ilchi Lee taught this to others and developed a unique style of operating a business. Profit for the sake of helping others, for improving society, was the basis of his businesses. His unique business philosophy is embodied in the work of the management advisory company he founded but no longer manages, BR Consulting, Inc. Based in Sedona, Arizona, this company and its subsidiaries develop and provide advice on business methods and products related to Brain Education for more than 50 clients around the world.
To express his pioneering views about the brain and human consciousness, Ilchi Lee has authored a total of 32 books. His most recent work, “Earth Citizen: Recovering Our Humanity,” as well as “Brain Wave Vibration: Getting Back into the Rhythm of a Happy, Healthy Life” (Gold Medal Winner in the Living Now Book Awards), “Full Bloom: A Brain Education Guide for Successful Aging” (with Jessie Jones, Ph.D.), “Principles of Brain Management: A Practical Approach to Making the Most of Your Brain,” “Know Your Brain, Know Happiness” (with Dr. Hee-Sup Shin), “Healing Society: A Prescription for Global Enlightenment,” and “Human Technology: A Toolkit for Authentic Living.”
To reach people around the world, many of his books have been translated into different languages, especially English and Japanese. “Brain Respiration” has been translated the most; it exists in eight different languages. Other popular books such as “Human Technology” and “Healing Society” can be found in five different languages, including English and Korean. “Brain Wave Vibration” will soon be published in seven, including Russian, German, Japanese, French, and Mandarin Chinese.
Bowing: Bowing is an important tradition at Dahn Yoga Center. Every class begins and ends with bowing to one another. When one boes, it prepares the mind to focus inward and encourages one to leave worries at the door.
Shoes: Please take off your shoes before entering the room and leave them by the door. Taking off one's shoes is symbolic of “taking off” stress and emotions. It also shows respect for the environment, keeping it clear of debris and pollutants.
Start of Class: Ban-gap-seum-ni-da, “Nice to meet you,” is usually said at the start of a class or when one is walking through the door.
Conclusion of Class: Kam-sa-ham-ni-da, “Thank you,” is usually said at the conclusion of a class or when one is leaving the center.
Ah Shiwanada!: We usually say this several times in class, and it means “feels so good!”
Baek-Hwe: An acupressure point located on the top of the head.
Ban-gap-seum-ni-da: Greeting that translates as “Nice to meet you” and is said at the start of class or when you enter the studio.
Chun-Ji-Ki-Un: Cosmic energy.
Chun-Ji-Ma-Um: Cosmic mind.
Dahn-jon: An energy center in the body where energy (Ki) is accumulated. The word most often refers to the lower Dahn-jon located in the lower abdomen.
Dowoo-nim: Means companion, to go the same path and to help each other.
Geumchok: Geum means “to abstain from” and chok is “collision” or “meeting.” Geumchok refers to the meeting, or impact of, external physical stimulation of the five physical senses. Geumchok means to strive to not let external stimulation disturb or influence your emotional state or inner balance and harmony.
Haeng Gong: Breathing method, often used in conjunction with Dahn Yoga postures.
Hongik: “Hong” means “wide” or “all;” “Ik” means “benefit” or “help.” The literal translation of Hongik is “widely benefit.” Though it is considered an ancient Korean philosophy, it is also a universal concept, with counterparts in many cultures. It can also mean “universal welfare” or “service to all.”
Hwan-Ham-Ni-Da: Translates as, “I am so bright.” Bright happiness and joy are what comprise Life Particles, the bright energy of the universe.
Jang-Shim: An acupressure point located at the center of the palm on each hand.
Ji-won-jang-nim: Means headmaster and is what the Dahn Yoga center manager is called.
Jeong: Love, deep affection, bonding, friendship, adoration, maternal love. Also, emotional connection and sensual appreciation.
Kam-sa-ham-ni-da: Means thank you and is said usually at the conclusion of a class or when leaving the center.
Ki: Life energy or vital life force.
Myung-Hyun: Literally translates as “brightness” (myung) and “darkness”(hyun). Myung-Hyun is the phenomenon of feeling different energy sensations, some of them unpleasant, as the body begins to recover from physical and emotional imbalance. Similar to healing crisis.
Sa-bum-nim: Refers to the assistant manager.
SaengMyungJonJa: Life particle.
Yong-Chun: An acupressure point located on the sole of each foot. It is approximately center of the foot, and just below the ball of the foot.
The goals of all Yoga practices are to balance or unite into one the mind, body and human spirit in good health through five main methods: Relaxation, Exercise, Breath, Diet, and Meditation.
Dahn Yoga integrates all five methods through the view of traditional Korean culture, philosophy and medicine.
Dahn Yoga practice marries the dynamic body strengthening forms of hatha yoga poses, martial arts such as Tai Chi, and stretching exercises with the mind and spiritual awareness building of meditation. Dahn Yoga focuses on the development of both the body’s core strength and the mind's health as the basis of physical, mental, and spiritual wholeness.
In Korean Dahn literally means “life force,” or energy. Dahn Yoga's primary focus is on this energy – managing, balancing, healing and supporting it through various forms, from meditation to body movement to brain education.
The literal meaning of yoga is yoke (as an ox is yoked to his cart). Taken further, the word implies union and discipline of body and mind. The aim of yoga is to unite, through mastery of the practice, one's self in perfect union with life's truth.
Sun Do is a type of martial art based on Taoist principles and uses stretches, poses and focused breathing patterns to unblock, or release, energy channels (meridians), to let the body's vital force, Ki, flow and circulate freely. Sun Do was developed in Korea more than 5,000 years ago. Practiced in its traditional sense for centuries, in ancient times, when outside influences threatened to dilute or change the original forms and intent of Sun Do, some practitioners retreated to the mountains to practice their art. Traditional Sun Do practice has only been re-introduced into Korean culture in the past 25 years.
A Dahn Yoga practice is informed and inspired by the traditions and philosophies of ancient Korean medicine that, in turn, are informed by Oriental Medicine and include the modalities of Acupuncture, Acupressure, Herbal Medicine, Moxibustion and Aromatherapy. Dahn Yoga also has a strong emphasis on Meditation and Energy Balance Energy Medicine that form the foundation of its practice.
Although the origin of acupuncture remains elusive, some attribute it to the Neolithic Age after discovering stone and bone needles among relics from the era in North Hamgyeong Province, now North Korea. This is the oldest archaeological implement associated with acupuncture found to date.1) Moreover, the oldest existing Chinese medical text, “Hwangjenaegyeong,” or “The Yellow Emperor's Classic of Internal Medicine,” claims that the needle, a vital instrument for acupuncture, originated in the East.2) In the period of the Three Kingdoms, traditional Korean medicine was influenced by other traditional medicines, most notably Chinese Medicine. More intensive investigation of domestic herbs took place during the Goryeo dynasty and numerous books on the subject of domestic herbs were published. Medical theories at this time were based on medicine of the Song and Yuan periods, but prescriptions were based on medical texts of the Unified Silla period such as the “First Aid Prescriptions Using Native Ingredients” or “Hyangyak Gugeupbang” (향약구급방), published in 1245. Medicine flourished in the Joseon period and a book named “The Classified Collection of Medical Prescriptions” (醫方類聚, 의방류취) was produced. This work was written by Kim Ye-mong (金禮蒙, 김예몽) and other Korean official doctors, known as the Three Physicians, from 1443 to 1445. It collects more than fifty thousand prescriptions from one hundred and fifty-two medical works of ancient China before the Fifteenth Century. It also collects prescriptions from a Korean medical book called “The Concise Prescriptions of Royal Doctors” (御醫撮要方, 어의촬요방), written by Choi Chong-jun (崔宗峻, 최종준) in 1226.
There are three physicians from the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) who are generally credited with the development of traditional Korean medicine. They are Heo Jun, Saam, and Lee Je-ma. After the Japanese invasion in 1592, Heo Jun, the first of the major physicians, wrote “Dongeui Bogam” (동의보감). This work further integrated the known Korean and Chinese medicine and was influential to Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese medicine at that time.
The next major influence to Traditional Korean Medicine is related to “Metabolism Theory” or Sasang Constitutional Medicien (사상의학) and the text, “Principal of Life Preservation in Oriental Medicine,” (東醫壽世保元, 동의수세보원)written by Lee Je-ma in 1894. Lee Je-ma realized that even if patients suffer the same illness, patients need to use different herbal applications to treat the same illness due to the different metabolisms of individuals. Sasang Constitutional Medicine(사상의학) or Four Metabolism Theory focuses on patient individuality and their differing reactions to disease and herbs. Treat illness by the treating the root cause through proper diagnosis. Key to this diagnosis is to first determine the metabolism type of each patient. The next recognized individual is Saam, the priest-physician who is believed to have lived during the 16th century. Although there is not much known about Saam, including his real name and date of birth, it is recorded that he studied under the famous monk Samyang. He developed a system of acupuncture that employs the Five Element theory, a method of diagnosis and treatment based on the five physical elements of wood, fire, earth, metal and water. Lee classified human beings into four main types based on their emotions, or biopsychosocial traits that dominated their personality and developed treatments for each type. The four types are Tae-yang, So-yang, Tae-eum, and So-eum. based on their ; Tae-Yang(Greater Yang), So-Yang(Lesser Yang), Tae-Eum(Greater Yin) and So-Eum(Lesser Yin) types.
Meridians are energy channels and they make up the foundation of Eastern medicine, including Acupuncture and Acupressure. A meridians vessel is so narrow, delicate and transparent it is nearly impossible to detect. So hard to detect, in fact, that before breakthrough experiments using a new method of staining tissue revealed a meridian vessel, few in the medical community believed these vessels existed. But in 2008 a significant shift in meridian research occurred when Dr. Soh Gwangsuh and his associate researchers at Seoul University, South Korea targeted meridians in organisms with Trypan blue dye. About the width of a fine hair, liquid flows very slowly through a meridian, much slower than it would through a blood vessel or the lymphatic system. Yet meridians are considered to be the vessels through which Ki, vital energy or life force, flows freely. Meridians run throughout the body and are an intricate a network of vessels and nodes. Meridians can be accessed by two methods: acupuncture needles inserted at certain points, or through acupressure applied to those points. Each point correlates to a specific organ or system and by stimulating them, increases Ki, or energy circulation, to restore health. Dr. Soh was so successful in identifying meridians, essentially discovering a third vascular system, Korean researchers have renamed these tiny vessels the primo vascular system. Identifying a third circulatory system in the body has profound implications for disease research and treatment, most notably cancer and Alzheimer's.
[Image] Moxibustion is a form of heat therapy used in conjunction with acupuncture. Traditionally, moxa is made of dried mugwort leaves. The heat generated by burning cones or pellets of moxa is used to stimulate or otherwise help the acupuncture point being treated. There are three methods of moxibustion:
Acupressure, as opposed to Acupuncture which punctures the skin, balances the body's energy through pressure, or touch, at specific points of energy channels. Acupressure can complement acupuncture or replace it altogether. Both techniques use and work on energy systems, the meridians, in the body. Acupressure can be highly effective and need not be heavy or intense pressure. The body's energy balance can be effectively treated by even light touching.
In Oriental medicine energy flow and blood flow are both considered to be circulatory systems. As such, energy channels are traveled by Ki and blood. Acupressure points , the energy flowing in the channel is attracted to the surface. An acupressure practitioner will hold a point until she feels a pulsation under her finger. When energy is attracted to the surface, the flow of blood increases at that location and the pulse is felt. The pulse is a confirmation that the energy is now flowing.
Acupressurists use the same variety of tools as acupuncturists and include taking the pulse, looking at the tongue, ear and eyes, and asking questions of the patient to determine a diagnosis. Acupressure can be a better option than acupuncture in cases where a point is too inaccessible because of location, too close or too painful to a bone or a nerve, for example. Because acupressure relies on reading energy imbalances through touch, it can penetrate to do its healing work where needles cannot go.
Herbal medicine, also called botanical medicine, uses the chemicals, compounds and constituents of plants to treat or prevent illness. Herbalists find use for every part of a plant–seeds, berries, roots, leaves, bark, or flowers–, and derive the benefits of the plant from many methods, from drying and grinding to distilling. Herbal medicine can be prepared as teas, tinctures, ointments, powders, syrups, oils, sprays, liquid extracts and dry extracts (pill form). Herbalism has a deep and vast history and has been part of every traditional medicine culture.
Why and how an herb or herbal blend is effective, or why it may work well for one condition or person yet not at all in other cases remains a modern mystery. Some ingredients are effective in isolation while others work best as a synergistic blend. Like all other growing things, plants used as medicine are affected by the environment it which it grows: wet or cold climate, dry or rainy weather, air and soil quality, sunlight and shade, insects and chemicals, both organic and manmade. The process and time of harvest also affect the quality and characteristics of herbs. The type of tea a tea plant produces is an example. White tea comes from the young top buds of the tea plant while black tea requires drying the mature leaves.
Most people use herbs for chronic or acute conditions that are undiagnosable by allopathic physicians, because they wish to avoid unpleasant side effects of synthetic medications, or to support a preventative medicine or health maintenance lifestyle.
Aromatherapy uses volatile plant oils, also known as essential oils, to promote health and wellness. It is important to note the difference between the synthetic chemicals in fragrances such as perfumes or household cleaning products and pure, plant-derived essence. Sources of natural aromas include flowers, herbs, seeds, bark. The most common use of plants for aromatherapy are its essential oils. There are several methods and types of extractions including absolutes, CO2s and hydrosols. Absolutes are highly concentrated and aromatic liquid extracts that require solvents to produce. Absolutes last longer because they are so concentrated. Although most solvent is removed in the last stages of producing absolutes, trace amounts can remain. The CO2 method extracts oils by first pressurizing carbon dioxide until it is liquid, dissolving the plant into itself. Then the CO2 is depressurized to its natural gaseous state, leaving no trace of itself and only the oil. The CO2 method avoids the hazard of heat damage from distillation. Hydrosols, a byproduct of distillation, are the aromatic waters or condensation left over from steam or water distillation. Hydrosols are also called floral water or distillates. Hydrosols are water soluble and, because they are dilute, can be safely applied to the skin. Hydrosols can replace plain water in natural fragrances and skin care products. Hydrosols are perfect for the bath, as a body spray, room freshener or facial toner. Common, widely available scents are chamomile, rose, rosemary, bergamot, geranium, rose, neroli and lavender.
From the Korean perspective, aromatherapy practitioners use plants in their natural state for their aromatherapeutic qualities. Burning pinewood for smudging homes, sandalwood paste for incense, dried lavender and buckwheat for scented pillows and sachets, are all examples of non-essential oil botanical uses.
The concept of meditation, as defined by Dahn Yoga, is awareness of yourself as the true essence of life within a state of stillness, without idle thoughts and emotions. Dahn Yoga is a mind-body method for following the flow of energy into a state of meditation. A meditative state allows the body to relax and open to receive the flow of restorative Ki energy throughout the entire system: body, mind and spirit. Dahn Yoga uses energy as a medium to focus on the breath. Practitioners of Dahn Yoga are taught to still the mind through energy training called Ji-gam. Dahn Yoga regards breathing to be so important that the saying “Breathing is meditation, and meditation is breathing,” is a core tenet of the practice. Many Dahn Yoga exercises include meditation or visualization to expand and support the intake and circulation of Ki energy while stilling the mind.
Dahn Yoga also applies breathing and meditative states to dynamic poses. Two Dahn Yoga breathing techniques are Jung-Choong Breathing and DahnMuDo. Both techniques improve circulation of energy and blood to achieve a deeply relaxed and meditative state.
— Editor 2012/04/09 15:18
The vital energy of the universe that Oriental Medicine calls Ki divides into Yin and Yang, all phenomena existing in relationship with its counterpart. According to Dahn Yoga principles, maintaining the balance of Yin and Yang can contribute to healthy body, mind and spirit. Yin and Yang Concepts - The concept of Yin and Yang describes two opposing and, at the same time, complementary and completing aspects of any one phenomenon, be it object or process, or comparison of any two phenomena.Yin and Yang are universal quality standards of the systems of correspondence seen in most branches of classical Chinese science,philosophy and traditional Chinese medicine.
Yin Qualities - Yin qualities are characterized as soft, slowness, tangible, water, cold, conserving, tranquil, gentle, and corresponds to the night or shade.
Yang Qualities - Yang qualities are characterized as hot, fire, restless, hard, dry, excited, intangible, rapidity, and corresponds to the day or sunlight.
Yin and Yang in perfect balance is a primary tenet of Chinese medicine and is the specific application of Taoism and Universal law.
Five Elements: The Yin Yang relationship is further described by the changing aspects of nature, in 5 elements. Vital energy works with and through the Earth's five natural elements: Water, Earth, Wind, Fire and Metal. Balance includes our bodies, mind
Relationships to ourselves to the earth
Water Up, Fire Down refers to strong, harmonious and freely circulating primal energy, the vital life force Dahn Yoga calls Ki. The body in balance, is the core Dahn Yoga principle for health.
The prime energy of the universe divides into Yin and Yang qualities, all phenomena existing in relationship with its counterpart. According to Dahn Yoga principles, maintaining the balance of Yin and Yang can contribute to a healthy body, mind and spirit.This vital life force flows in microbiotic environments, like the human body, and macrobiotic environments like our planet Earth.
Water Up, Fire Down draws upon the Taoist Yin and Yang philosophy of energy balance, which is the foundation for diagnosis and treatment in Traditional Chinese Medicine. According to Traditional Korean Medicine, blocked or imbalanced energy circulation is the primary cause for most modern disease and ailments.
Cool water energy and hot fire energy flow within our bodies simultaneously. When the body is in balance, the cool water energy travels upward toward the head while the hot fire energy flows down to the lower abdomen, where it is stored. The underlying principle behind this natural flow of energy is called Si-seimg-hwa-gang or Water Up, Fire Down. Examples of this balance are all about us in the natural. Think about the cycle of water on earth. When the fire energy of the sun shines down on the earth, the water energy of rivers, lakes and oceans rises to form clouds.
When the human body is in balance, the cool water energy travels upward toward the head along the back side of the body, while the hot fire energy flows down the front side of the body to the lower abdomen. This constitutes a complete cycle of energy circulation. By repeating this circulation, life maintains its balance and continuity. Perhaps you have heard the expressions, “I have a fire in my belly,” or “Keep a cool head.”
The kidneys and the heart facilitate this natural circulation with the help of the body's energy center. The kidneys generate water energy in the human body while the heart generates fire energy. When the energy flow is smooth and balanced, the Dahn-jon imparts heat to the kidneys and sends the water energy up. This cools the brain and brings down the heat from the heart so that fire energy moves downward. When the water energy travels upward along the spine, the brain feels cool and refreshed. When the fire energy flows down from the chest, the lower abdomen and intestines become warm and flexible. In this cycle of energy flow, the Dahn-jon, the energy center in the lower abdomen, performs the most crucial function.
|Practice/Style||Key Elements||Dahn Yoga Similarities/Differences|
|Hatha||Physical; general stretching and poses; basic breathing exercises||Similar to elements of Dahn Yoga Basics, which also includes warm-up tapping and shaking exercises|
|Vinyasa||Physical; dynamic postures; vigorous; breath-synchronized movement||Similar to elements of Dahn Yoga Basics, which also includes deep breathing exercises|
|Ashtanga||Physical; Special Vinyasa; Set Series of flowing postures; intense||Similar to elements of Dahn Yoga Basics, which also includes elements of Qi Gong and Tai Chi|
|Iyengar||Physical; prolonged static poses; emphasis on alignment; uses beneficial “props” to aid practice development||Aligment in Dahn Yoga is emphasized in special breathing postures|
|Kundalini||Physical; breath-sychronized movement; emphasis on energy circulation||Similar to elements of Dahn Yoga Basics, which also include energy meditation; Advanced energy training available in workshops|
|Bikram||Physical; set series of 26 postures; vigorous “Hot” environment (95 to 100 degrees)||Exercises generate “heat” in the lower abdomen|
|Raja/Kriya||Mental; Meditation oriented; advanced breathing exercises; Concerned with bringing mind and emotions into balance||All Dahn Yoga training includes physical component|
|Kripalu||Combination; Meditation and Physical;||Combined in all aspects of Dahn Yoga training|
|Jnana/Vedanta||Wisdom/Spiritual; Meditation; Discipline of Self-Reflection; Concerned with Self-realization and cosmic consciousness||Similar elements in advanced workshops and Instructor training|
A Dahn Yoga class can be categorized into four major parts: Meridian Stretching, Brain Wave Vibration (BWV), Energy Meditation and Dancing (Ji-gam and Dahnmu), and Jungchoong Breathing. Rather than focusing on a strict set of poses, Dahn Yoga incorporates a wide variety of mind-body exercises that help practitioners develop their personal health. Dahn Yoga's training is intended to access and improve the practitioner's energy circulation, both in the physical body and the subtle body, drawing on the concept of Ki. A typical class begins with what is called “Meridian Exercises” believed to stimulate and strengthen Ki. After these stretching exercises, practitioners normally follow a sequence of postures to accumulate and circulate energy in the body. The one-hour Dahn Yoga class that you take is ultimately designed for the goal of helping you breathe well and creating a state of meditation.
Intestinal Exercise refers to the rhythmic pulling in and pushing out of the abdominal wall. This exercise will increase the flexibility of the intestines and facilitate efficient circulation of both energy and blood. There are many benefits to intestinal exercises including better digestion, headaches relief, more efficient elimination of metabolic waste, clearer skin and increased energy.
Do means to lead or pull the Ki energy into the body. In means stretching. Do-In exercise is an effective Ki exercise that consists of simple but highly effective movements that can be easily practiced by everyone, irrespective of physical strength. It is the most basic step of Dahn Yoga practice.
A Body & Brain Center is a smaller version of the Dahn Yoga Centers that have a stable and successful 30-year history of bringing health, happiness and peace to the world. Operated by Franchisees, they form a network of passionate and dedicated individuals who are simultaneously learning the know-how of successful business management and an holistic approach to self-healing. The Body & Brain Centers strive to bring health, happiness and peace to individuals and to humanity. Our business model has proven successful and effective in creating goodness for the business, the clients and the wider community. The Body & Brain Centers are owned and operated by people who were inspired by the changes and growth they have seen in their own lives through the practice of Brain Education and Dahn Yoga. They have chosen to dedicate themselves to sharing these benefits with others. The owners and instructors of Body & Brain Centers are committed to providing customized service and exceptional facilities that give authentic opportunities for people to improve the quality of their lives.
Energy medicine refers to treatments or processes that work with putative–things that are unmeasurable by conventional methods–energy fields. Examples of veritable energies, that which can be measured, are sound, light, magnetism and radiation. The energy medicine field is based on the idea that everything in existence, from physical objects like our bodies and the earth, to non-physical concepts like thoughts, emotions, and beliefs are types of energy. Therefore, all bodies are believed to be infused with a “subtle” energy or life force. This life force is known by a variety of terms corresponding to different traditions. In traditional Chinese medicine it is called qi (pronounced CHEE), in the Judeo-Christian tradition it is called spirit, and in Ayurvedic medicine it is represented in the doshas.
Chakra is a Sanskrit word that means wheel. The Chakras are the seven key energy centers within our bodies that, when functioning optimally, spin energy throughout our bodies. When all seven Chakras are active and functioning optimally, we live a life of physical, mental and spiritual health. Each Chakra center has its own spiritual and psychological properties which correlate to color, sound, The Chakras run up the spine, from the 1st Chakra located near the tailbone to the 7th, highest vibration Chakra, at the crown of the head.