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In the Confucius scholar tradition, meditation is focused on humanity and virtue, with the aim of self-enlightenment.
For example, specialized food and drinks are used in some medical and Daoist forms, whereas massage and body manipulation are sometimes used in martial arts forms.
Traditionally, knowledge about qigong was passed from adept master to student in elite unbroken lineages, typically with secretive and esoteric traditions of training and oral transmission, Starting in the late 1940s and the 1950s, the mainland Chinese government tried to integrate disparate qigong approaches into one coherent system, with the intention of establishing a firm scientific basis for qigong practice.
Research concerning qigong has been conducted for a wide range of medical conditions, including hypertension, pain, and cancer treatment.On account of the political climate at the time, the emphasis of qigong practices shifted away from traditional philosophy and cultivation, and increasingly focused health benefits, medicine and martial arts applications, and a scientific perspective.Since a 1999 crackdown, practice of qigong in China has been restricted.Qigong practices were brought to the public beginning in the 1950s, when the Communist Party institutionalized and began research into traditional Chinese medicine.Although the practice of qigong was prohibited during the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s, it was once again allowed after 1976.