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Tai Chi and Qigong in A "2012 Phenomenon" Thriller
Can a Mind-Body-Spiritual Thriller Change the World? Can it help expand Tai Chi & Qigong worldwide?

July 25, 2010 - The 2012 phenomenon comprises a range of eschatological beliefs that cataclysmic or transformative events will occur on December 21, 2012, which is said to be the end-date of a 5,125-year-long cycle in the Mayan Long Count calendar. A New Age interpretation of this transition posits that during this time, Earth and its inhabitants may undergo a positive physical or spiritual transformation, and that 2012 may mark the beginning of a new era.

Bill Douglas, the Founder of World Tai Chi & Qigong Day, has written a new mind-body-spiritual thriller, "2012 The Awakening" (click here to order the book), which will be released soon. Recently  American Tai Chi & Qigong Association (ATCQA) had the opportunity to discuss with Bill about this book and how Tai Chi and Qigong can play a role in the spiritual transformation.

Watch what Tai Chi & Qigong Masters are saying about "2012 The Awakening"

ATCQA: So, Bill, why fiction?
WTCQD Founder: Gary, let me start by thanking you and the American Tai Chi & Qigong Association for your great efforts to expand the use of Tai Chi and qigong, and thereby improve the state of our world.

This segues into why I wrote this novel. For me, the organizing of World Tai Chi & Qigong Day has never been about just celebrating Tai Chi & qigong. Just as in my personal classes, my teaching isn't just about Tai Chi & qigong. In fact, Tai Chi and Qigong was always about improving my life, not just learning an art. It helped me change, and become a better man, and that is why I stuck with it over the years. My goal in my local classes and in my world organization has always been about transformation and evolution � personally and globally. Tai Chi & Qigong are powerful mind-body systems that help enable transformation to happen more easily and with less stress damage.

ATCQA: Your statement sounds like transformation is an inevitable part of life?
WTCQD Founder: Exactly! Especially our generation. Our generation is facing a demand for rapid change, or transformation. Most of us alive on this planet today were born near the end of World War II. At that time there were 2 billion people on Earth. It had taken about 200,000 years for humanity to reach 2 billion people. However in our lifetimes we are reaching over 7 billion people. We have nearly quadrupled the population of earth in one generation. The strains this has put on our planet's resources, our ecosystem, and our psyches are profound and nerve wracking. Ancient Mayans called this time we are living in "the quickening." We, more than any generation in history are being pushed to change the way we eat, think, and interact with one another and with our environment. The strain is almost unbearable.

ATCQA: And how do Tai Chi & Qigong fit into this equation?
WTCQD Founder: Actually, that is what is so exciting about Tai Chi & Qigong, because they fit perfectly into this equation. Eckhart Tolle, who's book, A New Earth, rocketed to fame when Oprah made it one of her Book Club picks, wrote in his book, "Spiritual practices that involve the physical body, such as t'ai chi, qigong, and yoga . . . will play an important role in the global awakening." It is really amazing synchronicity when you think about it. Qigong is several thousand years in the making, and Tai Chi evolved from Qigong around 700 years ago. So, it took thousands of years to develop the high science mind-body technologies of Tai Chi and Qigong. The ancients who created them could have had no idea how badly these technologies would be needed today. Yet, they created these strange and very subtle internal arts, and then it took thousands of years for them to spread around the entire planet. Now, in the last 20 years, Tai Chi and Qigong have reached into every culture, every language, and every corner of our planet . . . and at a time when they are most needed by a humanity being rattled apart by the stress of change.

ATCQA: And you say Tai Chi and Qigong are the antidote to this modern stress plague. What do you base that conclusion on?
WTCQD Founder: Emerging medical research showing that Tai Chi and Qigong can lower high blood pressure, improve concentration and sleep, reduce ADD and ADHD symptoms, reduce anxiety and depression, etc. show that they are powerful antidotes to modern stress. But, more than that they are lubricants, that enable the heart, mind and body to more fluidly handle the challenges of rapid change.

ATCQA: Are you diminishing the martial arts value of Tai Chi and Qigong?
WTCQD Founder: Not really. The martial applications are a slice in the pie of what Tai Chi & Qigong offer practitioners. But, the direct translation of Tai Chi is the "supreme ultimate." For our generation the supreme ultimate battle is not with other human beings, but with our consciousnesses struggle to release out-dated ways of approaching the world, and open to embrace fresh approaches that can enable our survival and evolution into the future � a future we can love living in. This actually goes to the heart of my new novel, "2012 The Awakening." It explores the yin-yang of humanity's consciousness, noting that for 50,000 years of human development our yang-masculine approach of explore, conquer, and exploit earth's resources has been dominant.

ATCQA: Have you had any indications of your novel's potential?
WTCQD Founder: Yes, very exciting indications. Preview readers I've shared it with have become VERY excited about my novel. Deepak Chopra recently wrote of it, "It is such a gift to see fictional entertainment tackling the large issues of humanity.!"

A famous actor, Holmes Osborne, recently took my manuscript with him to read while in LA working on a new Tom Hanks film. Holmes called me when he was back home for a break, very excited about the novel. He told me that it would make a terrific film, and is talking to people in the industry about it. A former FBI whistleblower, and a Time Magazine Person of the Year, Coleen Rowley preview read it and was very excited about how the novel exposes some of the dark Machiavellian ways people's thinking is manipulated in the modern world.

ATCQA: Really, I thought this novel was a spiritual-thriller, how does that angle fit in?
WTCQD Founder: It's fascinating that Deepak Chopra just recently released a new book called "The Shadow Effect" about how we need to be able to look at our dark side, so that our whole being can be brought into the light, and we can forgive ourselves and evolve. Also, a father of modern psychology, Carl Jung, wrote on this, saying, "Enlightenment is not imagining figures of light but making the darkness conscious." My novel deals with these issues, in both the characters and in society as a whole.

ATCQA: Does this distract from the Tai Chi, Qigong, mind-body aspect of the novel?
WTCQD Founder: It goes to the core of the power of these internal arts. The heroine of the novel is capable of enduring tremendous challenge, and severe stress, caused by her own transformative process and the world's challenges happening all around her.

When we first start doing Tai Chi, Qigong, meditation, we often hang onto the "highs" we get from it. And those are important and enjoyable. But, over my life another powerful benefit of these tools has been to equip me with the stress management tools needed to be able to look into the frightening dark heart of myself and the world I live in. These tools enable me to look directly into face of the disturbing realities in the world, and not lose faith and become depressed and despondent. They have enabled me to walk a tightrope of consciousness where I don't turn away from the hard realities of the world, but rather look right into their dark heart with a hope that things can evolve and be improved.

Lao Tse, who I consider to be the grand master of the philosophy that Tai Chi embodies, said, "Darkness within darkness. The gateway to all understanding." I think part of what he was saying is that we should not shy away from the dark dusty corners of ourselves or of our society.

Tai Chi has often been kind of lumped into what some have called the "new age" movement. My novel actually makes a case that we are indeed entering a new age. BUT, we won't get there by pretending that everything is hunky dory. We get there by digging into the dark corners of what is, and bringing light and hope forth that will enable personal and global evolution to occur.

ATCQA: Wow! Sounds like your novel bites off a lot.
WTCQD Founder: No more than we can chew, IF we remember to breathe, and to loosen around it as we explore it. It's actually a nail-biting fun adventure. Tai Chi is the perfect model of how we will move into this new age of limitless possibility my novel reaches toward.

ATCQA: How's that?
WTCQD Founder: My novel's heroine says, "the loosening of the human central nervous system, will make everything possible." As I mentioned, Eckart Tolle wrote that Tai Chi and Qigong would be a major part of the global awakening. These ancient tools, now spread into every corner of the planet and being practiced in hospitals, corporations, churches, and senior centers worldwide . . . are loosening the human central nervous system, enabling people to be more adaptable to the changes rushing at us. In my novel we are rapidly nearing a global population of 10 billion. There are 10 billion neurons making up the human brain. That critical mass that brought human intelligence to our planet can now be reflected in an awakening of the mind of humanity.

As people all over the world loosen their central nervous system and open their minds with transcendental tools of the mind and body, our global mind will open, and our world will transform in a way that can nurture the planetary house-hold sharing the Earth together. It is a wonderful time to be practicing and teaching Tai Chi and Qigong.

ATCQA: Thank you for spending some time sharing your vision with us.
WTCQD Founder: Thank you for this opportunity.

To read more information about Bill Douglas' "2012 The Awakening" or order a copy of the book, please go to





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