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Taijiquan Styles

Their aspects; internal & external *an exposition*

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#17 Taomeow

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 12:15 PM

i heard a slightly different version. that yang luchan was a slave owned by the chen family and was the guy that was used in the demonstrations , or the guy who got practiced on by granddaddy chen. then when granddaddy chen passed on, grandma chen gave yang his freedom.


Hard to tell, if you talk to Yang people some of them will tell you none of it ever happened and the Chens are impostors. :D too bad they don't fight it out in open combat. My taiji teacher who is also a researcher is of the opinion that all five major styles derive from Chen, but one of my taoist instructors in China who is a Yang stylist and also a researcher vehemently denies it! Since I have the greatest respect for both, I make a point of holding no opinion in this respect... :)

>^..^<


#18 zerostao

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 12:21 PM

Hard to tell true dat, i never believe anything i hear anyways. half of what i see.
too bad they don't fight it out in open combat. :ph34r:
hope they would let us baguazhangers watch.
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#19 Harmonious Emptiness

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 12:38 PM

HE, are you talking from experience applying silk reeling to fighting or is it all theoretical?

Take a look at Steve's post up the page. I'd take it to heart. :)


Well, mind you, I learned how to fight long before learning and practicing any Chen silk reeling, so perhaps it won't make someone a fighter, though I think they would experience the same thing I have, which is that I can more easily, quickly, and effectively put my legs and hips into a push or pull.

Edited by Harmonious Emptiness, 20 August 2012 - 12:38 PM.


#20 rainbowvein

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 12:54 PM

I would say all are good for energetic development, coordination, balance, well being, many health benefits, and heightened awareness. None are good for enlightenment (whatever that means). While Taijiquan methods often incorporate meditation methods and many of the training methods do greatly improve mind-body integration and awareness, if you want to pursue spiritual development you're better off following that path (Daoist meditation, Buddhist methods, Vedanta, etc..). And finally, none are good at teaching you how to fight unless: 1) you are fortunate enough to find an exceptional teacher, and 2) several like-minded training partners, and 3) you are willing to commit a decade or two to dedicated and consistent training. I've been involved in full contact fighting for a very long time and there are precious few folks that train primarily in Taijiquan that can really make it work when it counts.

Curious to hear from other long term taijiquan folks (also with an excellent teacher and excellent training) on the topic of spiritual development in, or alongside, one's taijiquan practice.

One of my concerns about studing IMA with a martial focus is the karma issue - i.e., how many folks have been hurt/maimed by one's lineage?

#21 Taomeow

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 01:31 PM

Curious to hear from other long term taijiquan folks (also with an excellent teacher and excellent training) on the topic of spiritual development in, or alongside, one's taijiquan practice.

One of my concerns about studing IMA with a martial focus is the karma issue - i.e., how many folks have been hurt/maimed by one's lineage?



Not a concern. Taiji is primarily defensive. Shaolin monks took up MA because they were pestered by bandits. Chen village folks, for the same reason. Self-defense is a karmic neutral, and defending your loved ones is a karmic merit. :)
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#22 Harmonious Emptiness

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 01:33 PM

oooh, dare we get into a debate about the spiritual potential of Tai Chi Quan?

I'll tally my opinion up, that even silk reeling can feel a bit too counter-humanitarian so I generally do it before chi gong and meditation if doing them all in the same space of time, this way I leave in a more "open" spirit. I think if it's done this way, then it can certainly be used as a vehicle for mindfulness practice, but still wouldn't expect this alone to reveal the mysteries. I'm sure many a Buddhist monk would take issue with practicing martial arts, but maybe focus fighting against ignorance or delusion somehow instead? I don't even really picture an opponent, but it still feels pretty unwelcoming and combative. This is necessary though sometimes for us world-dwellers...

I'm not a long-term practitioner, but I think this ought to be considered for a somewhat balanced discussion.

#23 mYTHmAKER

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 02:16 PM

Curious to hear from other long term taijiquan folks (also with an excellent teacher and excellent training) on the topic of spiritual development in, or alongside, one's taijiquan practice.

One of my concerns about studing IMA with a martial focus is the karma issue - i.e., how many folks have been hurt/maimed by one's lineage?


In lieu of spiritual development i prefer becoming more in line with tao. A lot of taiji is counter intuitive so one lets go of preconceived ways of reacting/ movement. What is counter intuitive is closer to tao. One learns to move naturally, to let go of muscle and other tension - this in turn frees patterns/ psychological issues stuck in the body. Since taiji is studied one works through glitches in movement i.e if one moves quickly awareness of various areas are skipped over.
One is aware of total body movement - what each part - arm leg- how they relate to each other at all times - this increase awareness of ones self and others - being able to be in the present.

It is usually not taught to hurt others in the internal arts.
I have seen my teacher refuse to teach someone because of his attitude. Most teachers acess a students charachter and go from there.
I have heard of those who would go to a bar to pick a fight in order to practice their fighting skills.
There will always be people like this in the world.
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#24 steve

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 02:53 PM

I have seen my teacher refuse to teach someone because of his attitude. Most teachers acess a students charachter and go from there.
I have heard of those who would go to a bar to pick a fight in order to practice their fighting skills.
There will always be people like this in the world.

Interestingly, my teacher is much more discriminating about who he teaches the meditation to than who he teaches the martial arts to. To him, the meditation is more precious, more effective, takes you much further in any martial practice, and offers more potential for trouble than the martial training.

One of my students (at the time, now an instructor) had been practicing pushing hands for about a year. We had an active email list-serve at the time. He posted one day - "Hey guys, this shit really works! I got thrown out of the bar last night and the bouncer couldn't budge me. I just turned my waist and he was helpless!"
My response was - why in the world were you getting thrown out of a bar?
I thought it was pretty funny at the time.
Reminded me of the scene from Ang Lee's movie, Pushing Hands.
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འདི་རྨི་ལམ་ཡིན།

When I look inside and see that I am nothing, that is wisdom.
When I look outside and see that I am everything,that is love.
And between these two, my life turns.
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The mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it.
- Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

 

 


#25 zerostao

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 04:54 PM

"the meditation is more precious, more effective, takes you much further in any martial practice," i agree.
imo tajiquan can lead to enlightenment. but balance the movements and the meditation like yin and yang.
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#26 minkus

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 01:37 AM

Hey Mithstrike, i practice some Chen and very much enjoyed your post :)

#27 dwai

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 04:53 AM

Curious to hear from other long term taijiquan folks (also with an excellent teacher and excellent training) on the topic of spiritual development in, or alongside, one's taijiquan practice.
One of my concerns about studing IMA with a martial focus is the karma issue - i.e., how many folks have been hurt/maimed by one's lineage?


Imho, taiji is an excellent daoist meditation. One can stay in preparation form and become one with dao. We end up lerning all the various forms because we (unknown to us) want to be able to meet the dao in any position, any situation etc(ergo preparation form)

My teacher emphasizes meditation over martial training in taiji...though we do learn fa jin, etc. karma is non issue if we stick true to taiji....ie being wu wei. Wu wei is the state of nishkama karma so no karmic points are earnt.
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#28 Marks of Glory

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 05:47 AM

To this I would add that if you went swimming in the ocean on the East and West coasts, you could also compare the East coast to Yang and the West coast to Chen. On the East coast the waves can be large or small, depending on the weather, but they have a measure of regularity to them, all going in the same direction, you can sort out what to do with them -- swim over or dive under, and you can keep swimming uninterrupted by them. Yang style ocean. On the West coast, more often than not you can't swim uninterrupted -- it's like swimming in a giant washing machine, you can't go in a straight line, you have to jump, change direction, duck, the waves can collide on you two at a time, turn backward, now push, now pull, tumble you off your track -- they are full of surprises. That's Chen style ocean.




Hmm... Porbably metter to learn how to swim in the East Coast...


I would say all are good for energetic development, coordination, balance, well being, many health benefits, and heightened awareness. None are good for enlightenment (whatever that means). While Taijiquan methods often incorporate meditation methods and many of the training methods do greatly improve mind-body integration and awareness, if you want to pursue spiritual development you're better off following that path (Daoist meditation, Buddhist methods, Vedanta, etc..). And finally, none are good at teaching you how to fight unless: 1) you are fortunate enough to find an exceptional teacher, and 2) several like-minded training partners, and 3) you are willing to commit a decade or two to dedicated and consistent training. I've been involved in full contact fighting for a very long time and there are precious few folks that train primarily in Taijiquan that can really make it work when it counts.


I personally am seeking taijo more as a complement for spiritual practices...

I think that if you stand in Zhan Zhuan for 30 minutos or more, and when energized practice a good taiji sequence, you probably clean alot of dirt from your Aura / Energy field.

notice the word : think

Quite a few spiritual schools work with energies withou touching the body... I will search for some Videos and post it here.

Imho, taiji is an excellent daoist meditation. One can stay in preparation form and become one with dao. We end up lerning all the various forms because we (unknown to us) want to be able to meet the dao in any position, any situation etc(ergo preparation form)

My teacher emphasizes meditation over martial training in taiji...though we do learn fa jin, etc. karma is non issue if we stick true to taiji....ie being wu wei. Wu wei is the state of nishkama karma so no karmic points are earnt.


I agree with that!

I think it is important to strengthen the body so that you feel confortable in any ocasion, so that you can perceive the Dao anytime...




Ohh... about taiji..
I practice alot of still meditation, chakra visualisation, mantras in speceific parts of body, etc...
taiji is quite new to me but htis morning something amazing happened.... as I was sitting in meditation i discovered that I could concentrate on the chakras and mentaly mantralize them alot more efectively by focusing "energetic arms - hands" onto them... i never had that experience before and I guess that the taiji moving meditation helped out alot to achieve this. my actual physical arms stayed normally resting in my knees...

reminded me of that dude from dragonball - ten chi ran - who had the ability to develop 4 arms during the fight...

Edited by Marks of Glory, 21 August 2012 - 06:07 AM.


#29 Marks of Glory

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 05:50 AM

.

Edited by Marks of Glory, 21 August 2012 - 05:57 AM.


#30 Clarity

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 02:38 PM

Slightly OT but I have also found that you can take the principles of T'ai Chi and apply them to your daily life.

It's important to know when to follow, yield, sink, retreat, advance, and attack. Also, meeting overwhelming force with softness is of great value in daily life.

I once applied these principles to a conflict situation in the office and it worked like a charm!

I practice Yang style T'ai Chi. My teacher studied with Chen Man Ching, who developed a short 37-form version of the original 108 postures (or whatever the number was).

My teacher often points out differences between the styles but emphasizes the principles are the same. We focus on the form, pushing hands, and free form fighting.

#31 Taomeow

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 08:56 PM

I saw something on youtube that made me reconsider my prior statement that you can't learn fighting skills by merely watching.

]
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#32 ChiDragon

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 09:06 PM

I saw something on youtube that made me reconsider my prior statement that you can't learn fighting skills by merely watching.


No, I guess not. Cat meows are natural instinct, so is the way they use their claws to fight...... :D
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