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Lunch and Learn | Rediscovering Jing, Qi, and Shen
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The AOBTA® Lunch & Learn Webinar Series 

Rediscovering Jing, Qi, and Shen as a Foundation for Bodywork

Presented by Michael DeAgro, AOBTA®-CI



Join Michael for this special webinar presentation!

"In my Daoist studies of jindan (Golden Elixir practice), I learned to frame jing-qi-shen as the material body (jing), the animating force of motion (qi), and the spatial imagination (shen). An aspect of jindan practice involves keeping the body still, emptied of all intent, while extending the spatial feeling mind infinitely in all directions. The fruition of this practice is the distillation of jing and qi and the revelation that action can be initiated with the spatial mind outside of the body. Through my practice of jindan, it became easier for me to observe how touch as an act of attention constructs these basic perceptions."...






Attendee responses:

"I have worked with Michael live several times at Zen Shiatsu Chicago and he is an engaging and very thorough teacher; highly recommended. His dedication and passion are impressive and infectious." 


"I really enjoyed Michael's organization of the topic and his terminology, which is very qigong and yet a good way to explain it to a modern audience; like the term spatial imagination; sensory perception." 


"This class was fantastic! I really enjoyed learning and experiencing what Micheal thought!" 


Resource books (by Scott Phillips) mentioned in the presentation:

Possible Origins

Tai Chi, Baguazhang and The Golden Elixir: Internal Martial Arts Before the Boxer Uprising



Michael DeAgro, AOBTA®-CI

Michael DeAgro has been investigating the nature of healing touch for thirty years. His insights about healing touch and consciousness have culminated from many influences. He began his career as a visual artist, psychotherapist, and expressive arts therapist with a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design in 1985 and an MS in counseling psychology from Loyola College in 1990. His interest in somatic psychotherapies and natural healing lead to his study of classical Japanese-Chinese traditions of medicine. In 1993, he began his Asian bodywork studies at the Baltimore School of Shiatsu, with Rosemary Scavullo and Barbra Esher. After his foundation training, he studied extensively Pauline Sasaki’s method of Quantum Shiatsu, which evolved from her direct studies with Shizuto Masunaga and Akinobu Kishi. Michael also researches the roots of bodywork in Daoist body art traditions. He has been studying and collaborating since 2011 with the historian and internal martial arts teacher, Scott Phillips. With Scott’s mentorship, he has been cultivating the Daoist methods of jindan (the Golden Elixir), zuowang (non-conceptual meditation), daoyin (emptying and transforming), Daoist text study, and internal martial arts. His Daoist cultivation studies form an important basis for his approach to bodywork.

Michael has also extended his bodywork practice to horses. In 2015, Michael began his studies in natural horsemanship and equine bodywork. He completed training in the Masterson Method of Integrated Equine Performance Bodywork. He chose to study the work of Jim Masterson because his method aligns beautifully with the bodywork approach of Daoist traditions and generates a profound harmony in human-horse relations. He is furthering his equine studies at University of Denver, Institute for Human-Animal Connection's Equine-Assisted Mental Health Practitioner program. Michael also trains privately with his Appendix Quarter Horse, Django and his trainer, Nan Lynch.

In addition to his bodywork practice, Michael is also an experienced herbalist specializing in classical Chinese herbal medicine. He has study extensively with Sharon Weizenbaum of the White Pine Institute, Dr. Feng Shi Lun of the Hu Xi Shu Classical Medicine Research Association in Beijing, China, Yaron Seidman of the Hunyuan Institute, Gonzalo Flores of Ground Spring Healing Center, and the Institute of Chinese Herbology. He continues his cultivation of herbal medicine under the instruction of Sharon Weizenbaum. Michael credits his herbal studies for giving him the clearest understanding of classical medicine.

Michael has been teaching Shiatsu and Asian bodywork therapy since 1999, initially for the Baltimore School of Massage and later in his own program, the Blue Lotus School of Shiatsu. More recently his teaching work has been hosted at Shiatsu School of Vermont and Zen Shiatsu Chicago, where he developed the former Postgraduate Clinical Shiatsu Program. He has been a past presenter at the Shiatsu Symposium held by Zen Shiatsu Chicago as well as previous AOBTA® conferences. A Certified Instructor member of the AOBTA® and member since 1993, he has served for the AOBTA® as Central Regional Director, Director of Education, Chair of the Research Committee, and a member of the Peer Review Committee.

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