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About OldDog

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  1. Qigong or taichi?

    That's a tough question. But what Everything points out is really true. Taiji is really a qigong ... But not exclusively a qigong. After practicing taiji for a number of years, I took up a qigong practice and it greatly helped my taiji. And I suppose the reverse is true ... taiji can really benefit qigong. As a general recommendation, I would suggest taiji over qigong for a couple of reasons. First, taiji is not only about developing energy, which it does very well, but also about maintaining energy connection while moving. In addition, taiji also develops your ability to sense/receive energy, as well as direct energy. It involves developing intent. These things are true iff you can find a good traditional instructor. A side affect of a good taiji class can be a social one. Many taiji groups are little communities with a family like composition. They are usually a mixed group with practitioners of different levels of ability. Cooperation and support from the group can be a very happy and health encouraging thing. Of course, I am clearly speaking from a taiji bias. So, take it with a grain of salt. That said, you are probably more likely to find a taiji group than a qigong group. Either way, it is really important to have hands on instruction to guide and correct your gongfu.
  2. What are you listening to?

    Ok, one thing led to another and this came up ...
  3. Well, there's another point where we differ. My martial experience began 40 years ago and included a pretty fair amount of Daoist philosophical and cosmological training that included all the things you mention and Yijing. So, to me it's all part of a continuum. My Taijichuan training was deeply rooted in these concepts as well. So, I am not without some understanding. It just does not match up with yours. Noting wrong with that. Like I said, everyone receives the teaching differently. Happy trails!
  4. @vonkrankenhaus Sorry, man. I am not without some taiji training. But what you say does not match with my experience. But then, everyone receives the instruction differently. Just sharing my impressions.
  5. I feel strongly both ways. When Harmen talks about a line being out of balance, I hear that as the dynamic of yin-yang, for lack of a better set of terms. Apech's point ( ... that by combining yin and yang in pairs you get four types of lines. ) is how I originally learned to understand yin-yang and seems to fit Harmen's notion of line balance. But balance is a tricky concept. It suggests the midpoint at being balanced and stable, which may or may not be the case. Apech's view allows for range of balance point, if you will, that supports the notion of a continuum of movement within a line. So, that to say that a line is unbalanced or unstable is a recognition that the movement is ready to revert. ... that the compelementary as aspect is nascent. I don't see any conflict at all. And it is not necessary to explicitly cite yin-yang for it to be applicable.
  6. Might be worth a look. I am not particularly interested in astrology but would be interested to see how they approach it. I am largely interested in the mechanics of change ... the dynamics of the trigrams and hexagrams. I have long believed that the transformations in the hexagrams is important and suspected that other disciplines could map onto the hexagrams and use the transformations as a guide to understanding the discipline. I know that is a bit out there ... and I have been slapped back a couple of times for that view ... but it persists in the back of my mind. Thanks, I'll continue to watch.
  7. I am convinced that understanding the movement is important, as you point out. And I like the focus on the trigrams. It seems understanding is best developed from basic elements up ... lines, trigrams, hexagram ... yin-yang, heaven-earth, stabilit-instability ... trigrams, upper-lower, inner-outer ... then on to hexagram. So I am interested in your next lesson ... presumably about the line positions. A thought crossed my mind as I was listening to the discussion on stable-unstable lines in the example of the trigrams. The qualities of those trigrams brought to mind people that I know that exhibit those qualities as part of their personality-makeup. Is there any tradition for using trigrams or hexagrams to describe the makeup of people or places? Don't know why that might be important. Just a thought.
  8. What are you listening to?

    Sunday morning jazz ... ... still on about piano.
  9. Well. This particular lesson in your series leaves me dumbfounded. I will probably have to listen to it a few more times, as well as review some earlier lessons. The consequences of this lesson are telling me I did not fully appreciate earlier lessons. So, I will review. One of the things I find as troubling is that, in your discussion of changing lines and balance, there seems to be an element of judgement that I am not grasping. I never thought of trigrams as having positive or negative qualities ... just qualities. That seems judgemental, which would suggest relative to some point of view. But I think I am beginning to see the point about relative yin-ness or yang-ness quality of lines and their stability ... or balance as you call it. I have to do some more study on this. I do appreciate the consistency of your explanations of the trigrams. There is a certain cohesivness to your approach that I find compelling. Thanks!
  10. Favorite Daoist Quote

    And so it is with us. We need teaching. But there is a point beyond which teaching cannot provide for us. Only direct experience can give us the final dimensions we need. That means learning from nature, and learning from ourselves. - Deng Ming-Dao, Everyday Tao
  11. What are you listening to?

    On solo piano ... No secret I like jazz ... but especially piano jazz. And there is none better than Bill Evans. I offer this in response to rideforever's post. There is not a familiar tune in this piece and I chose it so that the chords and modals could speak for themselves without recalling a particular melody. Bill Evans is worth investigating.
  12. What are you listening to?

    I see what you mean. It is a bit dark/somber but not quite unpleasantly so. Seemed to me almost eastern European ethnic to me. It's well known some chords and modals evoke darker emotions. I often use music to set or complement a mood ... often to raise my feelings. Probably would not choose something like this. Interesting though.
  13. What are you listening to?

    Being it's the weekend of the 4th and all, though a little Americana would be good.
  14. What are you listening to?

    So saddened to hear of Joao Gilberto's passing. This album is one of my most treasured. So many great songs. Adeus meu amigo
  15. Everyone post some favorite quotes!

    Cut out doors and windows in the house (-wall), From their not-being (empty space) arises the utility of the house. Therefore by the existence of things we profit. And by the non-existence of things we are served. - Laotse Ch11