By Stefan Stenudd
I'm a Swedish author and aikido instructor. In addition to fiction, I've written several books about life force concepts and East Asian traditions. I'm also a historian of ideas, researching ancient thought and mythology. My personal website: stenudd.com
The life energy exists in many traditions, such as qi (chi) in China, prana in India, pneuma in Ancient Greece, spiritus in Latin, and vitalism in philosophy. Here they are all explained.
Books by Stefan Stenudd:
Cosmos of the Ancients
The Greek philosophers and what they thought about cosmology, myth, and the gods. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
Tao Te Ching
The Taoism of Lao Tzu Explained. The great Chinese classic, translated and extensively commented by Stefan Stenudd. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
Qi Energy Exercises
The ancient Chinese life energy qi (chi) explained and how to exercise it. Click the image to visit.
Taoism, the old Chinese philosophy of life, based on Tao, the Way. Click the image to visit.
Creation stories from around the world, and the ancient cosmology they reveal. Click the image to visit.
Life Energy Beliefs
Life Force Ideas Around the World
Here are the U entries of life energy beliefs around the world and from antiquity to the present. An edited and expanded version of this Life Energy A to Z is published in my book Life Energy Encyclopedia
Udana see prana.
Unitary principle is an expression introduced in 1948 by the English
physicist Lancelot Law Whyte (1896-1972) for the thesis that asymmetry
decreases in isolated processes. This points out a driving force in all of
nature – and civilization – toward the perfect state. This driving force and
its direction, humans can know through their unconscious, which should
therefore be given priority over the conscious mind. Whyte’s principle has
sometimes been mentioned as a synonym to life energy such as qi, which is doubtful since it is
more of a natural law than a kind of energy.
Universal intelligence is a principle within chiropractics, presented in
1927 by Ralph W. Stephenson (1879-1936) in the Chiropractic textbook,
which states that this intelligence exists in all matter, constantly giving it
properties, and thereby also assuring its continued existence. Life, which
unites this intelligence with matter, consists of equal parts intelligence,
matter, and power. The function of the intelligence is to express power,
while the function of the power is to unite intelligence with matter. This
power is expressed through the natural laws. In humans, the universal
intelligence moves from the brain to the body through the nervous system.
The chiropractic adjustments of the spine and vertebrae are ways of
assuring this flow. It is sometimes mentioned as a synonym to qi. Within
chiropractics, founded in the USA in 1895 by Daniel David Palmer (1845-1913, see the photo), there were ideas about a life force flowing through the body, prior
to Stephenson’s book.
Universal life force is an expression used by the Russian baron Eugene
Fersen (1873-1956) in the book Science of Being from 1923. Fersen left
Russia right before the revolution in 1917, and moved to the USA. He
founded the movement Lightbearers, which was dispersed after his death.
He had familiarized himself with the Polynesian concept mana (see this
word), which was at the time regarded as a kind of life force. Still, he
developed his own ideas about a primal, vibrating life force. He used deep
breathing, standing straight with his arms out to the sides, forming a kind
of pentagram of his body, in order to receive this life force.
Universion is a term introduced in 1927 by the Russian engineer Georges
Lakhovsky (1870-1942), stationed in France, for a cosmic primordial
energy of radio waves, affecting every living thing. In 1931 he patented a
multiwave oscillator, which was supposed to find each cell’s natural
frequency and make it vibrate in resonance, which would cure certain
diseases and give a lasting health.
Life Energy Beliefs A to Z
Life Energy Books
I have written two books on the subject of life energy:
Qi, prana, spirit, ruach, pneuma, and many other life forces around the world explained and compared. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.
The life energy qi
) explained, with several very easy exercises to awaken, increase, and use it. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.