No more appointments

As of 2014 I do not offer consultations in private practices anymore. I am pursuing my work as researcher and lecturer at university  … more 


Teaching animal husbandry and care

Since 2011 I teach for the Swiss animal dealer association in Lausanne. This year I also participate in the training of animal keepers at the professional school EPSIC in Lausanne.  … more 


Radioprogram on animal communication

A subject that annoys, surprises, triggers smiles or disdain, and yet aleviates our daily grind some times. We are talking about animal communication. A radioprogram in French  … more 

white necked crane

氣 (Mandarin "qi", Japanese "ki")

氣 is commonly translated with "energy" or "vital energy". I fundamentally disagree with the equalisation to "energy", because physical energy is measurable in Joules and I doubt that this is the case with qi. Who has experienced 氣 in martial arts, meditation or traditional Chinese medicine will soon have an understanding of what is meant with that term. What can be felt as warmth or relaxation at the first encounter will unfold numerous further qualities and hues, which cannot be translated with "energy" nor with "vital energy". Short of an adequate English term I am naming the sum of these experiences with the transliteration qi (say "chi") of the Chinese character 氣.

What is qi?

At the first encounter with qi it is usually a mental help, a visualisation, which helps to manage the complex events in our body consciously. By concentrating on this virtual qi, the body simply follows this thought and the movements harmonise without our contribution. This concept can be further elaborated. With external or moving qigong (training the qi) one gains continuously more precise control over movements. The internal or still qigong uses the same principal internally, i.e. instead of moving limbs inner structures of the body are moved and activated. Hence it is also called inner alchemy.

The grand masters of martial arts use qi to move their opponents without touching them. This might sound absurd in theory, but if you have experienced it once your doubts will fade.

Qi can also be used for telekinesis (moving things on a distance) and the concept of "qi" participates in many phenomena that are considered paranormal or psychic in the west. To date there are no scientific explanations and only very little scientific work exists on the matter, which are predominantly published in Russian.

In my opinion, qi is a summarising term for a multitude of phenomena that are partially differentiated in the West. The feeling of warmth for example can be explained with augmented blood circulation and the prickling in the muscles with relaxation. Nevertheless, the term qi exceeds the entities recognised by western natural sciences. It appears to include some form transmission of information, of which we ignore the properties and carrier medium.

Rupert Sheldrake explains psychic phenomena with "morphic fields", which he still needs to prove, and Fritz-Albert Popp postulates "biophotons", which could also explain parts of these phenomena. Russian scientists have investigated the matter more thoroughly and based their conclusions on system theory.

For me personally too, system theory has provided the most plausible explanations so far. My thoughts about it are relatively extensive and include many aspects from medicine in general, epistemology of a consultation to the significance of complexity in biology. A copy of this paper in German can be downloaded here (pdf, 138KB).

Further documentation on qi (氣), parapsychology and psychic phenomena

Here I am continuously gathering details concerning the term qi, parapsychology, psychic phenomena and the scientific endeavour to explain them.


Unfortunately, there are no documents available yet


The following web sites include interesting further information. I have no influence on their content nor do I necessarily adhere to the stated opinions. The reference to these links is intended to broaden the field of discussion and I disclaim any responsibility for their contents.

Further reading

Further references are given in other languages.

  • Body speech, Samy Molcho 1985, ISBN: 978-0312087418, St. Martins Press.
  • Chinese Fitness: A Mind/Body Approach - Qigong for healthy and joyful Living (Qigong - health & healing), Qingshan Liu 1997, ISBN: 978-1886969377, YMAA Publication Center.
  • Steps to an Ecology of Mind - collected essays in anthropology, psychiatry, evolution, and epistemology, Gregory Bateson 2000, ISBN: 978-0226039053, University of Chicago Press.
  • Martial Arts Teaching Tales of Power and Paradox - freeing the mind, focusing chi, and mastering the self, Pascal Fauliot 2000, ISBN: 978-0892818822, Inner Traditions.
  • Dao-de-jing by Lao Tsi, no particular version recommended.
  • The book of the five rings of Miyamoto Musashi, translated by Thomas Cleary 2005, ISBN: 978-1590302484, Shambhala.
  • Dogs That Know When Their Owners Are Coming Home - and other unexplained powers of animals, Rupert Sheldrake 2000, ISBN: 978-0609805336, Three Rivers Press.