Nick Loffree on Restoring Connective Tissue

Nick Loffree on Restoring Connective Tissue

Nick Loffree, a young QiGong teacher based in Boise, ID, who's YouTube classes are attracting tens of thousands of views by sharing ancient, Taoist, "bio-energetic" practices for greater health and spirit, talks with AllCreation cofounder, Tom VandeStadt.
At age 17, Nick Loffree was diagnosed with schizophrenia and after years of searching for solutions he ended-up discovering QiGong ("Chi Gong"). Today Nick is a leading QiGong instructor and historian, helping people help themselves by reconnecting to their bodies and Nature around the world. In this conversation, Nick and Tom VandeStadt, co-founder of, discuss QiGong, the history of Asian energy practices, Nick’s journey from illness to mastery, and more.

About Nick
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References (links coming soon)

0:00 Intro & Welcome

4:00 What is Qigong? (Chi-Gong)
6:20 What is Chi? (Ki, Prana, Ruach, etc.)

7:20 How has Qigong helped your personal healing?

15:30 You say, “Most of Taoist practice, including Qigong, is a disciplined return to Nature.” What does that mean and why do we need a discipline to return to Nature?
21:00 Does getting back into our bodies help us experience ourselves as natural beings? 
23:00 What are the shamanic roots of Qigong? 
27:00 Can Qigong help us experience our animal selves? (Aren’t we animals, after all?)
30:20 Contrast the Taoist medicine understanding of the body with the Western medicine understanding.
33:20 How is Qigong an antidote to modern-day stress?
38:45 Can Taoism and Qigong serve as a spiritual practice that moves us to restore as much of this damaged connective tissue as possible, not just in our bodies but in the world around us?

42:50 Thank you, Nick, for inspiring this issue of AllCreation!

From the Taoist perspective, Nature has an energy to it and different natural environments have different energies. So, a lot of Taoist monasteries would be built at the top of mountains… If you needed more of a physical healing you might want to go somewhere more Yin, to the valley of the mountain where the waters collect and you can more nourish your body with that sort of energy.

I think most people who’ve spent a lot of time in a city and then go camping or something like that, you notice a difference in the way you feel in your body, just being in Nature. And, the Taoist perspective is that that’s because there are energy fields. The trees, the mountains, the Earth, and everything are emanating an energy field our bodies are evolved to attune to with.

At the psychological layer, there’s no real, pure return to a natural state, but theTaoists try to push in that direction. So Taoism is often seen not as a movement forward and upward towards heaven or enlightenment, but a movement backwards, towards sort of an innocent, child-like wonder, a return towards a simpler, more natural state.

If you really wanna look at the Taoist path authentically, it’s a disciplined return. You don’t just fall back into Nature, you have to train yourself to fall.

In Chi-Gong we mirror nature in our movements, and you can never quite draw distinctions between where one movement ends and another movement begins.

Our bodies have a lot of information they give us that I think we’ve kinda been culture out-of being able to listen to. The body’s full of intelligence.  I think the body has a lot of wisdom that we tend to try and think our way out of.

You’re actually trying to become the Tiger and look through its eyes as you’re practicing. And so researchers think that because this is the oldest known form of Qigong it probably came from Shamanism.

A lot of the postures are still named after Nature, things like “mountain” or “moving like a river” or “standing like a tree.” But it really is those older forms where you were really being the animal, and looking and moving like these animals.

Speaking of people creating the future who don’t want to be animals, if you look at Silicon Valley where I lived for seven years, it’s full of people who are just up in their heads. And they think they can turn their consciousness into binary code and just stick it in a robot and become immortal that way. . . I think a lot of them really are out of their body. They often have a very hard time with the dating world. They can have a hard time figuring our how to navigate women, because women are looking for an animal. They’re looking for an animal that can think and do smart things… they’re looking for a physical being. Qigong I think really puts you in touch with that animal side of yourself. I think one of the under talked-about benefits of Qigong is it actually really helps your sex life…

There’s a weak interface between body and mind for most people, especially well-educated, smart upper-class people. I think people who work in those kind-of mental fields need something like this.

Stress narrows our perception.

All the great spiritual teachers have tried to tell us to go past the nation, to go past the tribe, to go past the religion.

On tithing: "There’s a very weird relationship between the energy you’re putting out, generosity, and the universe.”

Thanks for listening.
This podcast is 1 of 4 keynotes from our Summer Solstice
2022 collection, "Restoring Connective Tissue." It was produced 
and edited by Chris Searles. 
@BioIntegrity Partnerships