Someone recently asked me if the tool known as Sign Chi Do is biblical. This brief article explains what it is.
Sign Chi Do does not have its basis in the Bible. After all, the inventor of it does not give any biblical basis for why she invented the practice. Therefore, one can easily conclude the practice is not biblical. Despite this easy conclusion, it would be good to briefly evaluate what it’s about to justify why it is not the most beneficial thing to do.
In order to give the best evaluation on Sign Chi Do, one must know what it is. One finds this by looking at the “FAQ” section of Sign Chi Do. Under the question “What is Sign Chi Do”, we see the following:
Sign Chi Do is the perfect tool to decrease stress and help focus on positive thought. It incorporates sign gestures with music, movement and intention. Unlike, other forms of meditative centering practices where one is taught to empty the mind in a silent, wordless contemplative process, Sign Chi Do does just the opposite. You are encouraged to focus on a word or affirmation and become one with that word by expressing it in sign gesture using your entire body. This first step of attaching the sign gesture to the word begins the process of integrating that word into your being. The brain recognizes different deeper meanings of the word simply by you drawing it in the space surrounding your body resulting in what is called concordance. You hear the word sung, your body expresses it in sign gesture, your brain sees the picture or the posture of the word in action and immediately chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin are released to mimic or ‘concord’ to the meaning your brain attached to the word. You begin to feel calm or empowered or joyful or peaceful and the result is immediate!
This leads us to talk about posture. Your posture in Sign chi do is determined by the attitude of the word being expressed. For example, if you sign the word ‘serenity’, your body takes on the posture of showing calmness by moving the hands gently downward in front of your body to show that your innermost being is settled down and serene. On the other hand, if you sign the word ‘healthy’, your body takes on the posture of showing strength emanating from the center of your chest with the muscles engaged in what looks like a boxers pose. It is this connection between the attitude of the word and the posture of the body that deepens the experience of Sign Chi Do.
Medical research is beginning to show physical and psychological benefits of practicing Sign Chi Do. It’s primary effect is in its ability to quiet the inner chatter, keeping an inner stillness in the midst of chaos and thus being more resilient and present. Secondary effects include protecting the body against the effects of stress, enhancing memory, improving balance and giving you an overall enhanced sense of wellbeing.
While it is good that Sign Chi Do places an emphasis on filling the mind instead of emptying it (as unbiblical movements such as Tai Chi, Yoga, and even some of today’s modern evangelical “Christian” music do in their practices of emptying the mind), Sign Chi Do is more in alignment with the Word-Faith heresythan it is biblical Christianity. Like Word-Faith, Sign Chi Do places an emphasis on bringing something to reality. While Word-Faith emphasizes words (i.e., speaking something into existence), Sign Chi Do tries to “speak it” (if you will) into reality by incorporating a combination of words and movements. One can say that this is closely related to another unbiblical movement known as mindfulness.
The Bible clearly states Christians are called to walk in good works (Ephesians 2:10; 5:22-6:9; Colossians 3:18-4:6). As good-intentioned as Sign Chi Do may be, it is not in alignment with biblical Christianity. There are better things a born-again Christian can do than engage in Sign Chi Do. These include but are not limited to walking in good works, proclaiming the Gospel of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Matthew 28:18-20; Luke 24:36-49), and serving one’s neighbor (Matthew 22:37-40). For those reasons, I would not engage in Sign Chi Do. Instead, I would engage in reading God’s Word to find out more about what a born-again Christian must do.