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  1. Passing on achievements through "genes"

    Well, a very interesting question. There was a theory in anthropology (competing with Mendel/Darwin) way back in the day by LaPlace that more or less attributed genetic mechanisms as being transmitted by things done in life. This was generally discredited on rather obvious prima facie grounds, like if you cut off a limb your children would be born without that same limb under this idea. However, given that the interaction between such concepts as qi with DNA is just now even being thought about, let alone thoroughly investigated, there is certainly a possibility of some sort of genetic effect of high level qigong or yoga. While mainstream scientific circles may find the idea ludicrous, there has been a strain of thought of every level of esoteric mysticism throughout history that the keys to our transformation as a species lie within such practices transforming us on an evolutionary level.
  2. Taiji ~ Death Touch or Healing Hand?

    I dont pretend to know a whole lot about taiji yet, but the way I conceive of this question is that there is a yin and a yang element involved in the art as a whole. Qi is very powerful, and the means to cultivate varied and diverse. In taiji, both healing and devestating force can be cultivated from the same qi and same exercizes. I agree with what was proposed in the original post, that it is what you use it for. I also have a sort of gut feeling, that before one gains much aptitude in either healing or harming (with true use of taiji practice, not just a good natural fighter or someone born with "healing hands") you must gain that internal balance to allow you to gain the skills and know when to use them. As for the development, I have been taught that Chen Wangting created the boxing forms both to be able for his clan to protect itself, but also to heal itself (why the tuna and taoist breathing and TCM is such a prominent feature). I have no idea if this is true, and I know there is a lot of mystery and debate over the origins of taiji but I like it becuase it backs up what I think about the art.
  3. Obviously a newbie here, wondering who else studies Chen style, what lineages, where you are at, etc. I am still very green, but have found the right teacher for me. He has sort of mixed together several different teacher's methods and exercises. We do some Hun Yuan qigong from Feng Zhiquang (forgive my spelling on the names) and silk reeling from the same school. Yet we also do lao jia instead of xin jia, and are now working with a 26 form we got from Chen Youze.
  4. The Tao, Enlightement & Martial Arts

    I understand exactly what you mean. I began training in taijiquan about a year and a half ago, and only wanted some excersize and perhaps a little self defense training just in case. As it turns out, everything we do in class and are encouraged to do on our own has finding taoist elightenment as a goal. The forms themselves are type of qigong in addition to having martial applications. We seek to find perfect balance in our structure and use many excersizes to get there, many of which would be equally at home in a course of trancendental meditation or a yoga class. There is a lot more to it as well, but it gets complicated. Things like developing energy within the body and understanding it in relation to taoist philosophy. Like one whole energy, splitting into yin and yang in the physical plane, then splitting again till we have peng, lu, gi and an. Which have a role in understanding the universe, but are also physical movements that have self defense applications if done properly (internally). Hope that helps a little, just my current perspective on it.
  5. Wuji Dimension

    Some interesting responses. I am taking a taiji/qigong class, and one of our meditations is called wuji. It is a standing meditation, done in a straight alignment where we are taught to "go into the center," and put our minds into the middle dantian (energy center 3 fingers below the navel in this system). We close our eyes, and breathe directly into the belly, with the goal of completely quieting the mind. Sometimes we are encouraged to follow the "large universe" in regards to breathing/qi flow, or visualize the energy circulating. At first the posture was difficult, since my back is nowhere near straight, but now after about a year and 3/4 practice it is really starting to reap benefits. I dont know how to describe my experiences, but something definitely happens. Now, I think there are probably many ways to get there through meditation, but probably relaxing and breathing and making the mind as quiet as possible is a part of many of them. Good luck!
  6. Greeting Taobums

    Hello all, found this site on an incredibly random google search, seems very interesting. The Daodeching was one of the most influential books on my outlook on life, and I am currently studying taiji, along with some qigong and am psyched to find a community on the web of people with similar interests. Well, thats about it.