Friday, May 1, 2009

Qi Revolution: Supreme Science Qigong

I just got back from a Qigong workshop that I attended with my wife. Neither of us knew anything about Qigong, so we didn't know what to expect. To say that we were disappointed would be incorrect; rather, we were appalled and disgusted, not by the Qigong instruction itself, but by the instructor, Jeff Primack.

To begin with, the event was misrepresented. The Qi Revolution website declares,
With live music & the most powerful techniques you can’t go wrong.
With the exception of music played by a duo during lunch breaks (when most people were eating lunch elsewhere), all the music was canned.

Primack is a personable young man, but he is about as spiritual as a carrot. He decided to dedicate his life to Qigong, he said, when he realized that “chi was the greatest thing since sliced bread.” There is nothing spiritual about sliced bread, nor about the metaphor he used. He refers to this incident as his “enlightenment”, but it is not that, only a decision taken about his career. He tells how his life has been directed by “miracles”, which he defines as “statistically improbable” events.

Primack found $72 in a bush one day. This he considered miraculous because he had studied the 72 names of God one week previously. But finding money is not an unusual event, or even rare. Nearly everyone has done it. The coincidence of having found $72 only becomes unusual in retrospect. This is a mystical number for the kabbalah, but if he had found $10, he could have considered that the number of commandments; if $3, the number of the holy trinity; if $9, a mystical number for Qigong; and so on, so that whatever amount of number he found, he could have discovered some “meaningful” correlation.

A second miracle he described involved looking out though the window of a house he was considering purchasing and seeing a dolphin jump from the water. Since he lives in Miami, where dolphins leap from the water every day of the year, this can hardly be construed as a miracle.

Primack lectured about spirituality and the existence of what he at first called the “true source”. His discourse was a jumble of Eastern philosophies, primarily Daoism and Buddhism, with many references to the kabbalah and Christianity. He claims to have studied with a “Siberian Shaman”, but a little research indicates that he is referring to Tanya Storch, a professor in Eastern Religions who at that time was teaching at the University of Florida. Storch does not represent herself in published literature as a Shaman. What he seems to have learned from Storch is a syncretistic knowledge of world religion with an emphasis on Daoism and Buddhism as an academic discipline. His understanding, and his explanations, are entirely superficial, however. He sprinkles his lectures with vignettes from several religions. He tells of Shaolin monks who stand “on the edge of a cliff” for hours or days; of monks who meditate for years without sleeping or going to the bathroom.

But Primack did not explain why monks might meditate for years; he only mentioned the fact that they did. Nor did he mention the great sage Bodhidharma, who is famous for having spent years in meditation and who brought zen meditation to China. Bodhidharma is also supposed to have introduced qi exercises to the shaolin monks.

Later on, Primack led the assembly in an advanced Daoist meditation. This meditation included meditation on four organs corresponding to four colors, all of which was to be visualized. He stated that this meditation was usually not taught to beginners, and proceeded to lead it without any explanation whatever. Such meditations are part of yogic teaching, but they are always preceded by exercises to enhance visualization abilities and accompanied by explanations of their esoteric meaning. Primack had three 8-hour days to explain Daoist teachings like this one, but he imparted little information on this subject. Instead, he regaled us repeatedly with slogans like “soy is not a toy... not for your boy” and “beets beat disease”.

Primack calls his Qigong style, “Supreme Science Qigong,” and intersperses his teachings with phrases like, “absolutely scientifically proven”, and with scientific-sounding words like “phytonutrients”, although he never offers any evidence of scientific proof nor an adequate definition of a phytonutrient, making it seem more mysterious than it actually is. But his understanding of science is just as limited as his understanding of religion. He claims that a man in the Himalayas lived 250 years eating goji berries, and that avocado pits are scientifically proven to be full of lifesaving chemical compounds, but he offers no proof for these extraordinary claims, nor have I been able to find corroboration on the web. His interest in these two subjects is not mere intellectual curiosity, since he is selling bags of goji berries at $20 a pound and a heavy-duty blender for $400 on the basis of its ability to pulverize avocado pits. As evidence of the healthful virtues of seeds, he cited verses from Genesis; he then quoted more scripture to “prove” that humans should be living to the age of 120. He left out the part about Methuselah's 900 years... but perhaps even Primack found that Biblical assertion far-fetched.

The Foundation (or Primack) makes a hefty profit on the sale of each blender, probably $150 or more. It is repulsive to see a man who claims to be interested in spiritual enlightenment demonstrating of a blender on stage during a Qigong workshop one day, and the next day beginning his lecture by taking a drink of his concoction and musing, “I wonder what they're eating for breakfast.”
Primack's commercialization of religion is crass. He repeatedly told his audience that they don't need to take notes, because everything he says is in the manual; he sells this “manual”, a set of printed powerpoint slides, for $45. In point of fact, he had a lot of merchandise for sale, all of it grossly overpriced ($95 for a cd; $145 for a book)-- and he managed to mention every item, at least once.
Another “smart” business move Primack made involves the way he got 2,000 people to enroll in his seminar. He used his Master's Degree in Eastern Religion to set up a “class” in Qigong, then invited Florida's Licensed Massage Therapists to take the class under the auspices of the state regulatory board. So 2,000 people came to his event, but many, perhaps most, of them were only interested in getting cheap credits to continue working in the state. This must have been disappointing to Primack, who claims to have trained 600 instructors nationwide, for with that number of instructors, including 130 at the event itself, surely more than 1,000 devotees should have shown up to take a workshop from the master? Even those most impressed by the energy of the convention must doubt how sincere a group of disinterested therapists can be, especially when they are subjected to sales pitches for food products which have no relationship to the course they signed up for. Prices were high and sales were slow, but then massage therapists are not wealthy.
Speaking of other conventions I have attended, I don't recall being confined in a large hall with 2,000 people and little else. Sure, there were tables where we could buy Jeff's merchandise (and only Jeff's merchandise). The floor was bare concrete and pretty unforgiving when covered only by the yoga mats we brought with us. The music was constant, and constantly loud and rhythmic, not what I consider conducive to meditation. Perhaps Primack could have spent a little more of the $200,000+ that the foundation grossed from entry fees to put down a few carpets and have a few “optional” events in smaller meeting rooms, which were available but not used. In fact, the event used less than half the space available, curtaining off the rest. This caused friction at times between people who wanted to place their mats in the same general location.
One corner of the hall was carpeted, with cushions and a shrine, but this corner had room for no more than 10 people and was always full. The people in it may have been seeking solitude or refuge. I recall them looking out with wide, sad eyes.
Since Primak does not believe in starting on time, the people had to wait for 1 to 2 hours at the beginning of each day, and since Primack does not like to stop talking when he has a captive audience, his final presentation of the day ran over from 30 minutes to an hour. He also enjoys keeping people from eating lunch at noon, one day waiting until nearly 3 pm before releasing us for a one-hour break: just enough to get back to the hotel room, eat, and get back to the convention center.
Although many of the people there were new to qigong, the exercises were intense and long. Primack reminds me of a personal trainer who keeps saying, “just one more rep, just one more!” We did not sign up to be abused, however. The long group exercise at the end of the third day, using the “nine breath” method was particularly excruciating. Since we were all holding hands, we felt compelled to continue, despite discomfort and, for some, a strong objection to the prayers that Primack was reciting pretentiously during the exercise. The nine breath method, according to him, is an advanced method that is usually taught only after several years of instruction. There are reasons for teaching subjects in a certain order. It is irresponsible for a teacher to give instructions to novices that may harm them.
On the first day, Primack was careful to speak of the “true source”, by which I supposed he meant the Dao. By the third day, he was directing each prayer to divine father, divine mother, or God. As a long-time student of Asian religions, I was offended by this. My wife took extreme personal offense to being constrained to listen to his “directed prayer” routine. Neither of us is Christian and neither wanted to be part of someone else's religious fantasy, especially since it seemed designed to offend nearly everyone.
On the way out, after the prayer circle was over, I spoke with others who were disconcerted by the event. I saw a couple of women who were too upset to speak and others who were simply discussing their reactions. My wife and I left and did not return for the fourth day of the event.


zpcsos said...

I attended the Qi Revolution event in Chicago recently and had a very positive experience. I found Jeff's meditations for world peace to be spiritual but not religious. Jeff is Jewish not a Christian and yes he spoke of God or True Source occasionally but I doubt that many atheists will be attracted to qigong.
First you said that you were put off because it was supposed to be a qigong workshop and there were too may "presentations". Then you complained that the qigong was too long and hard. Well what is it, did you come to practice qigong or not?
Having taken numerous yoga and qigong workshops I found the exercises to be pretty easy, if a bit challenging at certain moments. I found doing synchronized qigong with 900 other people to be quite profound at times.
The food healing material was a bonus for me. Yes there were some mild pitches for books and DVDs. The seminar was only $99 so I wasn't surprised they would try to do some back-end selling. I didn't find it obtrusive.

allanm051 said...

Thank you for taking the trouble to read and respond to my post. I can't say I agree with your points, however.

Primack may be Jewish, but I found his spirituality tailored to the Christian beliefs shared by most of the people at the workshop. But Qigong has its roots in buddhism and yogic meditation. I did not expect to find my religious views ignored by the instructor. I shared my concerns about this with another Qigong teacher, who replied as follows:

As for religion, tai chi qigong is not meant to have any religious affiliation. While at the more advanced stages, it does promote spiritual development through development of higher states of consciousness, and while it does have religious origins (Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism) on which it bases its philosophy, qigong itself is strictly nonreligious in practice. I have students with all kinds of religious and atheist/agnostic leanings who come together to practice qigong without religion coming into play.

You said, "I doubt whether many atheists will be attracted to qigong. Therefore you believe it is ok to abuse them? But Primack's views are also insulting to many other believers, including hindus and buddhists.

In fact, I did come to do qigong. But I was a beginner, not an adept. I did not come to be abused by someone with the mentality of a Marine Drill Instructor.

I also did not come expecting to hear continuous pitches for merchandise. Furthermore, the food healing material was erroneous, less educational and more intended as advertising for Primack's blender franchise.

Irene said...

As an instructor of Supreme Science Qigong, I am really sorry that you had such a horrible experience at the seminar.

We actually felt bad that the floor was concrete (usually we have it at venues with carpeting), but wasn't able to do anything about it at the last minute.

I suppose once someone starts becoming successful in their chosen venture, people take that as a signal to examine more closely the nature of that success. And to that end, I guess all the "debunking" sites were inevitable.

What Jeff has created is a form that allows even the most basic beginner to have the experience of qi. I've also heard from some advanced practitioners of Taiji and other forms of Qigong that this has helped them feel more energy in their other practices. I, for one, also am a Yoga devotee and practicing this form has enhanced my balance and overall strength.

He has NEVER claimed that his form is the one all/be all of Qigong (a practice that is pervasive in the Qigong/Martial Arts world). In fact, his most advanced instructors are highly involved in studying other forms (one is in a Medical Qigong program with Jerry Alan Johnson and another is currently in China in a personal Taiji/Yoga 3-month immersion study). His gift is the offering of one of the most tangible experiences of Qi, a no-frills (which may have been a bit plebeian for your taste) form that builds strength and is easily adapted in the western culture, and a low-cost, 4-day seminar that is designed to enhance your experience with music, lights and a qi family that really truly cares about others.

So please know that your presence at the event was appreciated and hope that if you do come back, that you will approach us with any of your questions or concerns. And if you decide that you've had your last experience with SSQF, I'd say I love you and hope that happiness finds you in whatever practice you adapt in your life.


LionKing said...

selling from the stage, using state license CE as a hook, charging for admission and the back end upsell of products, self grandized expert.... sounds like he's been coached in direct sales from the likes of Dan kennedy or some other marketing guru... don't hate... he's just hustling :-) Making money... there's always someone ready to buy anything...

Amanda B. said...

Thank you for stating what a terrible organization this is. In fact, I am writing to have them registered with the FTC and our state attorney general's office, and the state licensing department. My grandmother was in such horrible pain on day two that my mother had to take her home, after 9 hours the previous day of sales pitches and being told to stay on her feet. Add to that the fact that they won't give refunds and that they were rude when they left. Well it just makes me so angry when people use something that's so good for their own selfish greedy purposes.

Nadia said...

I found this seminar very helpful. I had taken a few qi gong classes previously but never was able to feel the energy between my hands until the seminar. Now I can feel it even when practicing on my own or in a small group. Jeff's group of 1000 or so helped me feel the qi. The more people the more energy.

Kristie Gilliland-Gundzik said...

I cannot agree with this more. Three of us just came back from one of his seminars. It's a weekend long infomercial disguised as Qi Gong. I truly feel he's forming a cult and all three of us made the same observations as listed in this blog...and were very disturbed by them. I question how this counted as anything educational and do not agree that LMT’s should have this offered for their CEU’s. After 2 & ½ days we should have walked away with some knowledge about Qi Gong, but I learned nothing. I did learn about the books, DVD’s, CD’s, workshops, seminars, retreats, food, blenders and MORE for sale. He couldn’t go more than 15 minutes without plugging something for sale. And the people! Some of these people went to truly find help for diseases and he’s telling them that they will be cured of HIV and cancer! People were weeping all weekend. I sat next to a woman who was just openly sobbing while our wannabe prophet was performing a healing on some guy. This is not education. I am a pagan and my two companions are atheists. It was their idea to come to this thing, so don’t assume atheists don’t want to enrich their lives and be healthier. All three of us were offended that a Taoist/Buddhist heath care system was being used for a guy telling me to visualize the son of god and quoting bible scripture. It is a cult. You shut us off from the world for large periods of time, you exhaust us, deny us food for long periods, the level of misery form the cold concrete floors, all the lightheadedness from mild hyperventilation, and always at that lightheaded point….you tell me over and over that you love me. It’s a cult. We started joking in the beginning to watch out for the grape kool-aid, but by the end on Sunday I became truly concerned for these people.

Allan Masri said...

Thanks, Karen. This post has been on my blog since 2009. It has had the largest readership, nearly 2,000 page views. I wrote this post after one particularly painful experience. I had several years of experience with eastern religions, so I was particularly offended by Primak's abuse of ancient transmitted wisdom to sell blenders. My wife is agnostic, so she was more offended by the guided meditation at the end of the workshop, where Primak spoke about the divine spirit looking down on us, or some such nonsense. But we couldn't get away from it, because we were all holding hands. Some people really got a charge out of that moment, but others, like your friends, suffered.

I've been worried that Primak might have cleaned up his act since then, but your post lets me know that nothing has changed. Thanks for that!

Tara Dietrich said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sandy Chase said...

I wish that I had read these posts before I went to the convention in Orlando (June 5th to 9th, 2015). I was scheduled to attend for all four days, however, I could not even make it past the second day. I was utterly disgusted by the sales pitches and blatant lying. I am embarrassed that I even told any of my patients that I was attending this seminar. The amount of misinformation that was passed on should be a criminal offense. There is no way that this seminar should be considered to be a continuing education class for anyone at all. I am going to write to the Georgia State Licensing Board and make a formal complaint about this course and report the fraudulent activities that have occurred. I urge each person that has been similarly duped to do the same.

Allan Masri said...

Sandy Chase: Thank you for your comment. Rest assured your comment will reach an audience of people who need to find out more about this scammer. To date, 2,835 people have looked at this post. Unfortunately, many of them will be unable to find other classes to fulfill their CE requirements. Feel free to use the contents of this in any letter you write to responsible authorities.

Jennifer S said...

Thank you for this blog post. I received a postcard in the mail for this seminar and have been debating with myself on whether or not to sign up for it next month. I almost did, thinking I could handle 4 days of weirdness for cheap CE credits; but after reading your review (and one other I was able to find online) I have decided against it. I've sat through a 4 hour timeshare pitch - but could I do something similar, that also includes holding hands with strangers, not eating for hours, guided hyperventilation, and preaching for 4 DAYS? Nope. Not even for the CE hours I so desperately need. Thanks again for saving me $150.

Unknown said...

I went to several Qi Revolution events and always enjoyed them. To be completely honest I only attended first 2 days every time. They are quite exhausting. Jeff is a great speaker. Though..he knows how to captivate the audience. I enjoyed his stories and jokes. And the holding hands with strangers prayer was a wonderful experience for me.
I feel sorry for those who had a negative experience in Qi Revolution seminar. But don't blame Jeff Prima for it... just because you didn't like what he has to offer doesn't mean nobody likes it. There are people whose lives have been transformed there, myself included, by the collective energy that was created in that room thanks to Jeff's effort. I'm thankful for that.

Angel O said...

Ok Here it is...

I really took on the teachings of Jeff Primack when introduced to them by my friends about 5 years ago. I could not afford to go to his seminar but I took the teachings from their info and actually taught food healing classes at a Spiritual Center in the suburbs of Chicago from what I have learned.

OK well I eventually got to go to the Jeff Primack seminar about 3 years ago.. and I experienced a lot of the same that was mentioned on this website. I saw the cold cement floors, I saw exercises that were not 'gently taught' and saw elderly or disabled people struggling with them and no one to help them. I saw all the expensive products and people going there to get certified. I experienced hyperventilation, stressful exercise, and even hallucinated during the 9 breath method holding hands at the end. I saw genuine people following and working for Jeff with 'fear' in their eyes of him, they all dressed like him and seemed like dis-empowered followers trying to impress him by doing what he said.... and he even spoke to some of his co-workers who were aggravated by his attitude....Yes it's true.

SO I did the breathing methods (which made me very light headed) and had my chance to talk to him, I was very excited. I said 'Jeff! I have been following your teachings and so on... and I taught a class with your info and...' (He had been looking at me with a frown the whole time) and said 'What! you have taught a class??, have you been certified by my food healing program?' I said No, and he seemed very angry and said 'Do you know you can be arrested for that? and it felt like he energetically grabbed me by the ear and said: "follow me!" and I followed him (it felt like I got in trouble in elementary school or something). He asked a man to sign me up for the class which was 300 dollars, and I said I don't have money for that, I am a student. and Jeff really didn't seem to care even though he knew I was actively trying to help people with his wisdom.

To make a long story short: In the Presence of a young person (me), who wanted to teach his info and actually help people, Jeff Primack yelled at me, threatened me, had no mercy that I did not have enough money for the program and told me to save up for next year.

He did not value helping people that suffer illness... over profit. He just didn't seem to care. And, I felt like I was punched in the stomach after that.. Seriously let down, emotionally hurt and truly disappointed by a cold elitist-capitalist cult-like figure who knew powerful things but who just seemed to lack compassion. The main ingredient he was missing.. was LOVE.

My grandmother died of colon cancer and have seen much suffering of sick people I love through lifestyle diet-related illness, I truly want to help people with healthy food education, and after meeting Jeff Primack I really wish to never charge a DIME for it. And if a young person came up to me trying to help people with my wisdom, I would ENCOURAGE them and help them feel loved/supported.

I really do think Jeff Primack has valuable info, I do think my life changed because of masterful teachings he provided... I also think he taught me never follow someone fully and always be your own leader and guiding light. I agree he can offer a gateway into a healthier way of life but it is only a stepping stone for most people.

I forgive him and wish him the best, I am grateful for what he has taught me. I hope to see him let go of ego and profit to help people with his energy because he is truly gifted, but the most enlightened teachers in my eyes are..... KIND. If you are not kind, you are not in a harmonious alignment with God, Love, and the Universe.

Angel O said...

ALSO, My friend Jody also went to his seminar in Florida a few years ago, and when a protester showed up calling Jeff a 'False Idol', Jeff Primack actually snapped and started threatening and cussing at the man in front of over a thousand people. Don't take my word for it there were many eye-witnesses of this.

You don't need an outfit and gimmick to help people. But in the long run, his way has gotten good info to a lot of people that may have not gotten to them otherwise. I think we could take the good with the bad here... But let's just be honest with ourselves and others about our mistakes and lessons learned, and go forward into the future with LOVE & Honesty to truly heal each other and the world.

Life lessons should never be taken personally, but used to empower us toward goodness on our journeys.

Thank you, I have been holding that one in for years :D

Allan Masri said...

Thank you for your comments. It means something to me that I have been able to help some people with this post, which is the most popular one on this site. Every year, Primack sells his seminars to thousands of unsuspecting people. But a few of them have checked with this site first and have decided not to go.

I'm sorry you feel you were abused by Primack. I know what it feels like to have something like that gnawing away at you for years. Something I say or someone says to me takes over my brain every now and again. It's painful.

Primack's opinions are not original with him. There are many others who are also interested in healthy eating. If you use their writings or videos instead of Primack's, you will find many of the ideas are similar and you will be able to craft your own seminar without referring to Primack at all.

Nevertheless, you should understand that, while Primack can copyright books, articles, and videos, he cannot copyright ideas. No one can. My wife Holly is very much into healthy eating. She has been reading some books that you may also like: Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. Wild Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz. The "Food Matters" columns of Mark Bittman in the NYTimes and his cookbooks. Here in Portland there are Colleges that award degrees in nutrition and health.

Look around you. You are not alone. Many people share your concerns. Some of them could use your energy to help them improve their diet.

Thanks again for reading my blog, writing to me, and letting me share your opinion on the Internet. Good luck and live well!

Allan Masri

Beverly Kune said...

Angel O., I am sorry that you felt "punched in the stomach" by Jeff, however there are definitely liability issues that are real-world oriented. Some could affect you, and Jeff had every reason to insist that you got certified if you were teaching classes. There are, fortunately or unfortunately, laws about this in virtually every state.

I am a licensed clinical counselor, a naturopathic doctor and licensed bodyworker so that I am protected legally on all 3 levels I work with in order to help others. I hope to get certified in the latest level of Jeff's Food Healing Program as well (which, by the way is based on complex chemistry, latest scientific research, backed by studies, and supported now I believe by Harvard). While I hardly want to subject myself to a 300 + complex exam to get certified, it is an important legal necessity. I also stand to absorb lots of points that will ultimately be more helpful to people than if I just read the books and do it on my own.

No body claims that Jeff Primack is an enlightened guru, although I am sure some view him that way. He is a human being, and relatively young as well (just, I believe turning 40). He learns as he goes and is quite generous, really, in imparting what he has learned. He has helped many people, through food healing, qigong exercises and breath exercises. He certainly is not a saint, nor claims to be one ... he has lots of issues, as do we all. Some of his issues are relational -- he does not have the best bedside manner at times ... and you got in the way of that. I don't believe that taking it personally is helpful, nor is turning this into a blanket negation of Jeff Primack and everything he offers and is.

I think having some perspective here could be quite useful for all who are complaining and turning Jeff Primack and his offerings into something extraordinarily negative, verging on evil. There is no one size fits all in any field. I personally have gained enormous amounts of health and vitality from both the qigong that Jeff teaches, as well as the presentations, books, etc. on food healing that he offers. I know many who feel the same, and have the stories to prove it. And by the way ... the 4 days offered might seem like an infomercial to some , but there is another perspective here: Jeff is dedicated to presenting a system of health, vibrancy and wellbeing; qi gong is part of this, breathing is part of this, food healing is part of this. The blenders that used to be at sale at his conferences sold for the exact same price as buying it directly from the company -- I know, as I bought mine directly from the company.

Lighten up guys.

Stardust said...

Hi, thank you for posting this. I wish I had read this before we signed up and went to the event in Daytona Beach, FL. Believe it or not, I am still trying to understand what happened, we go KICKED OUT of the event for asking for a refund on Saturday morning!!

We went to the event last night and the place was a concrete floor and extremely cold, the cold air was blowing on us the entire time. Many people were complaining how cold it was. They said there were 1200 people there and you could tell because we were very crowded. there was not enough room to put the yoga mats on the floor we were all overlapping on top of each other. My husband and I laid down in what space was available, but I couldnt even lay flat of put my arms down from my side. I couldnt wait to get out of the room because I was so cold, I was literally shivering.

So today we went back, I brought a jacket and a blanket. When we got there, there were no available chairs to sit in, people were sitting all over the floor. After sitting on the floor and still freezing, there was a break and it lasted for nearly an hour because Jeff Primack was signing books. We kept wondering when the event would start again because we were already behind schedule and my husband said, not as long as there is a line to sign books. He was absolutely right. We were very behind the schedule.

So, while we were waiting and not happy with the situation, I suggested we ask for a refund and leave. So I asked a volunteer behind the counter selling books. I just said, we are not real happy with the event, who do we need to talk to about a refund? She left to get someone. We waited and when the guy (middle aged, shaved head) comes up to us he is already angry. He said no refunds, I didnt challenge that. But I continued to calmly tell him what the problems were, it was too cold and no chairs and he very angrily said they already changed the temperature (actually Jeff made an announcement to that fact and everyone cheered at the same time this was going on) and then in a very sarcastic angry tone said, you want chairs!! I can get you chairs! Then when I said there were too many people here and that we had no room last night and we were all on top of each other. He started yelling at me and very angry and then he just said get out!

Stardust said...

He kept yelling get out of my event, get out my building. Over and over again I heard MY this, My that. I'm going to call security. We walked out of the event area with him, he was still yelling at us the entire time while calling security, we were voluntarily walking out. I kept saying, what did we do.

Anyways we went out the doors to the Ocean Center and he followed us out the doors and got so close to my husband he was literally in his face and was so angry and said, do you want some of this! My husband did nothing but stand there. I think he wanted my husband to touch him or hit him. I said, we are peaceful people. Two guys came from inside and pulled him away and back inside. They saw how angry he was and how in danger he was from just losing it totally.

Needless to say, I came away shaking and crying. I have never experienced anything like this before. EVER. And this was an event of peace loving people.

I believe this guy clearly was a bouncer in a club or biker bar somewhere in the past, that is how he behaved. But I dont understand why he was hired to run this event. I thought Jeff Primack was better than this, but after reading the comments here, I guess I misjudged that.

This whole thing was very disturbing and I have never been treated so badly in my life. I am not a trouble maker, I am a tiny woman of only 4'10" and over 50. I dont see how in any way I was threatening, My husband is not either. We went to learn about Qi Gong and came away with a very distressing experience that I wish had never happened. I had no idea that this would happen and could not in my wildest dreams imagine this scenario.

So, you have been warned, if you dont want to heed the above advice given by others and you choose to go to Qi Revolution, just make sure you DONT complain or ask for a refund. You will be dealt with in a not so nice way!!

Unknown said...

I agree with Masri's assessment and I too wish I had read this before going. We were at the same event as Stardust. Sorry Stardust had such a terrible experience. These guys should be used to dealing with unhappy customers! We went just to learn, but many of those I met were feeling held captive to getting their CEUs!. The freezing cold, lack of ANY kind of organization, long 'breaks' at odd times, and moving those darned chairs back and forth - ugh.

I had hoped for a QiGong learning experience, but felt I was mostly waiting around and listening to speakers drone on about nothing! I did not like the Judeo-Christian overtones used - nothing in my previous QiGong practice ever came close to that before.

I am glad that many seemed to enjoy this experience despite but unless you have a lot of patience for dis-organization, look elsewhere for QiGong inspiration and training.

cloud said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
IgknightInDarkness said...

Yep, don't be suckered in to this garbage. I went to an event he had in Tampa years ago. Seemed like a good thing at first. I even paid to get the instructor certification. While I was doing the test for instructor, a women came to the door of the room. Jeff snapped and went out the door and I could hear him yelling at her with the door shut (not sure what it was about, not that it matters). This made me extremely nervous as I was taking the test while this was going on. Another thing that bothered me was that it seemed that he would pass anyone that paid the money. I could clearly tell that one guy didn't have it all down and was passed anyway. While these second tests were being done, he sat there getting his feet massaged and not paying much attention. The thing that drove my away the most was mixing monotheistic religious ideas into his teachings.

Allan Masri said...

@IgnightInDarkness: Great comment. Captures the true nature of this guy in a few words. The fact that Qigong arises from a polytheistic tradition is not so bad as the fact that he just assumes we all want to worship one "God".

The Blunt Masseuse said...

I'm about to go to this thing in ocean center in daytona. I guess I'm bringing a sweater, socks, a blanket, and something to snack on. If anything outrageous happens I'm calling the cops. I don't take shit from anyone.

Tansaics said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tansaics said...

Hi Allan.. well it's 2017 and I am heading out even before attending the second day. I am so disappointed. I put a lot of time and money into getting here- felt it was going to be so much more! Although I did experience amazing energy from the two tiny snippets of morning practice- there's not enough pull to keep me in that chair for another 9 hours! Jeff does have a lot to offer- really, especially for those looking to change their lifestyle. Wish id've read your blog before so enthusiastically committing! No need to interject more for all else has already been touched upon - Namaste

Tansaics said...

And... since he's a walking infomercial you think we would get the, " if you act now!" phrase. Jeez his items are pricey!

Allan Masri said...

Thank you for your comment, Tansaics. I just reread the comments of others and remembered how upset I was. Aside from his preaching about one god during the group meditation when everyone was supposed to stay connected with our neighbors, what bothered me most was how he taught yogic meditation techniques for one hour on one day. I've studied yoga for many years and there's one thing all the gurus say: Don't teach people techniques they're not ready for. The other thing they all say is don't take payment for teaching yoga. He has a lot to offer, true, but all he thinks about is how to make money.

Kristina Bliss said...

Hello and thank you all for this post and comments. I went to one of the seminars about 5 years ago. I went on the get the instructors certificate. I do not regret doing this, but I have learned all I feel Jeff has to teach me. It is sad that he has let his success go to his head, even to the point of becoming abusive, because his level one practice is quite valuable, as is his promotion of nutrition. I was able to tolerate the sales pitch because the seminar was affordable, even though the content which was really valuable for me could have been conveyed in just a few hours with the video in hand to take home. Nevertheless, the level one qigong is a great compilation of techniques that are very good for beginners, and as mentioned in other comments very helpful even for more seasoned practitioners in learning to better feel the qi. I am glad I participated in the course and can tell people I am certified to teach qigong. Nevertheless I do not associate myself or my instruction with Jeff or his "cult." I do not tell people that the practices are from his seminar, because his self-aggrandizing is an embarrassing disservice to qigong in general. If you are considering going, it is a fairly easy way to get credits and most people I attended with (albeit 5 yrs ago) in Baltimore seemed to get a lot of positive benefit from the seminar. It is certainly not all bad, but it can be crowded. If you decide to go, take a sense of humor and try to let Jeff's god-complex run off. It is a great place to meet lots of interesting people, or if you like, write a long diatribe slandering the instructors.

Wellness Coach Amy said...

So glad I didn't waste my time in this, was researching before signing up. I thought it would be a nice retreat weekend. I already do qigong and not need the CE's. He sounds like a bully and that doesn't go with Qigong. No cold floors or going without breaks for me!

Ilsa Wood said...

I just signed up for this workshop before doing any research, excited about what it has to offer... Now I've read all of this, and know that I can't get my money back. Part of me wants to just go for my own personal experience/perspective... I know I can just leave if I need to... But I really do need fresh air and breaks. I'm a human being, after all!

Beverly Kune said...

Don't fret, Ilsa. You will get a lot of value at the workshop. As with anything there will be things you will discard as not for you, but also many things that have the potential to be invaluable, and even life-changing if you stay open to them. The most important thing is to stay open to what is offered. You will never be forced to do anything that you don't wish to, and there are tons of people who leave feeling lots better than they did before going.

Sydney Bridges said...

I just completed this workshop in Lynnwood Washington and did not experience any if the things you are speaking of. It was a group of about 300 , we had plenty of room, there was carpet, the temperature was fine, we had plenty of breaks, people were able to leave to go to the bathroom as needed, we broker for lunch by 1:30 every day, e when he spoke of God I felt hat he was still being inclusive, he even said that while he spoke of God we were encouraged to substitute our own higher power/creator. Of course he sells stuff, that's how the workshop can be so inexpensive. The guy is entitled to make money. Perhaps things have changed over the years. One person was escorted out for being disruptive, they were back the next day though.

Biff Hooper said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Biff Hooper said...

I attended the Qi Revolution workshop in Tucson Arizona two years ago. There were about 500 people in attendance. I was very surprised to learn that almost everyone there was a massage therapist, and their purpose for being there was to receive continuing education units. Without the draw of offering CEU's, there would be no Qi Revolution workshop because there simply would not be enough people to hold a workshop. Undoubtedly this is probably the cheapest way for massage therapists to receive these continuing education units. I cannot, for one second, believe that any of these massage therapists would otherwise have come to learn Qi gong. I am convinced that I was one of the very few who were there out of a genuine desire to learn more about Qi gong.

As a serious student of the Law of Attraction, I believe that we all have within ourselves an inner guide which communicates to us through emotion, and that our emotions are the most telling indicator as to whether or not something is genuine, false, good, true, phony, etc. For the most part I did not have a good feeling about the Qi revolution seminar while I was there. My inner guide was communicating to me, through emotion, that something was "off" about it.

On the positive side, I found the lectures on nutrition to be interesting, but I was very disappointed to find out that the only way to get his smoothie recipes was to buy his book on smoothie recipes. The other positive thing about the seminar was the free form Qi gong movement instruction. The other forms of Chi gong he taught in the seminar, I found to be awkward and not very beneficial to me. All in all it was a somewhat disjointed collection of Qi gong techniques.

Among my other concerns about the seminar are the following:

1) There were far too many people there to conduct any type of truly meaningful Qi gong instruction.

2) The fact that Jeff Primack and one of his assistants were wearing formal Qi gong uniforms was just over-the-top. Even though Jeff refers to himself as a Qi gong "practitioner" rather than a Qi gong "Master", nonetheless, the formal uniform communicates an authoritarian sense that he is the Master and everyone is of a lesser status. My inner guidance system was telling me that this was phony and purely a marketing ploy.

3) The books, CDs, DVDs, and other materials were unreasonably expensive. I did get his main book however, but only because I knew two people who were working there and they got me the book for less than half price.

4) The nine breath method I found to be a complicated and useless technique. I don't know why anyone would want to practice that. All it did for me was get me hyperventilated.

5) The one single thing that bothered me more than anything was the fact that they offered instructor training to the people who were there, many for their very first exposure to any kind of Qi gong. The instructor training was to begin in about two weeks from the end of the seminar and would last about a week long if I remember correctly. Now seriously, how does anybody train to be an instructor of any discipline that they have just been introduced to? Instructors, in my way of looking at things, are people who have practiced a discipline and developed a proficiency in that discipline and therefore have the moral authority, the knowledge, and the experience to teach that discipline. Jeff's way isn't a credible way to develop instructors in my opinion.

In summary, the Qi Revolution fell short of anything that I would want to incorporate into my private beliefs or practices of meditation, Qi gong or nutrition. It may appeal to the inexperienced among us who are overwhelmed with it all, and as long as Jeff Primack can keep offering those Continuing Education Units, he should be able to stay in business.

I continue to utilize Lee Holden for my Qi gong instruction, and Anthony William (the Medical Medium) for all things dealing with healing through food and nutrition.

Cheers All,