Stretch the Hips and Lumber, Turn Your Senses Inward

These practices can help the reader regain lost vital energy. Once it flows back in their bodies, it can support the numerous biological and psychological functions of all the organs.

These exercises are for opening the hips, strengthening the spine, and loosening the psoas muscle. Each of these aspects of human anatomy are compromised by our modern lifestyles. Sitting, commuting, and lack of interaction with the Earth can close the hips, weaken the spine, and make the psoas muscle very tight. As the Taoists say, “the strength of the spine is the strength of the organism.” Reverse the process when you can, a little at a time.

-The Alchemist’s Tao Te Ching, by Andrew McCart

Turn Your Senses Inward

Constantly looking outward,

Exhausts the eyes and liver.

Over-reaching with the ears,

Exhaust the ears and kidneys.

Eating too much numbs the tongue,

And burdens the stomach and spleen.

Compulsive thinking of past and future

Will drive a person crazy.

An unquenchable desire for more

Will break the heart.

Therefore, the alchemist turns his senses inward.

He feels the ebb and flow of creation but maintains his center.

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