Daoist Principles in Practice
Develop Inner Power & Harmony
of Mind, Energy & Body
The great purpose of Taiji
is life's purpose itself - Internal Evolution. All are born with this purpose but most quickly forget why they are here. Enmeshed in the physical world their life merely serves the body's survival. The physical and social edifices of society, intended as forms within which humanity may evolve, become prisons. While many dream of escape, few find the practical path to freedom.
True Taiji training begins with the physical, then centres itself within the 3 levels of the Deep Mind, while aspiring towards the Beyond and the final realisation of freedom from those 3 worlds of human existence.
Concerned with body positioning, balance, weight, speed, contracting and relaxing the muscles, calming the disturbed emotions and quieting the thinking mind.
External Practice - Internal Preparation
Based within the Deep Mind Energy Sphere. The 3 internal levels - internal body, energy and mind - can be named: Earth, Man and Heaven; Etheric, Astral and Celestial; or Jing, Qi and Shen. Each of the 3 major levels has 3 minor levels giving 9 sublevels (9 clouds within the Deep Mind).
Taiji as Moving Art (Gongfu)
trains intention, awareness & intelligence, within lower-dantien (body/etheric) energies.
Moving Art (Gongfu)
Taiji as Energy Art (Qigong)
trains intention, awareness & intelligence, within middle-dantian (deep-emotional) energies.
Energy Art (Qigong)
Taiji as Spiritual Art (Neigong)
trains intention, awareness & intelligence, within upper-dantian (celestial) energies & beyond.
Spiritual Art (Neigong)
True Taiji training begins with the physical, then centres itself within the 3 levels of the Deep Mind, while aspiring towards the Beyond and the final realisation of freedom from those 3 worlds of human existence. Ideally this aspiration towards the Beyond (which admits the first ray of light from the Divine Self) exists from the first moments of training, but if not then true training will gradually align the inner motives and intentions, hidden within the Deep Mind of all people, towards the Beyond, inducing this aspiration to appear. Without that aspiration the results of the training will be subverted by the ego - which has a presence on each of the 3 internal levels. True Taiji training methods change and evolve as each person reaches out for, connects with, merges into, then finally fully and naturally expresses the Beyond back into the 3 worlds of human existence. At this advanced stage, all methods disappear and life itself becomes the highest training ground.
The Beyond (Dao)
- Cheng Manqing 37-move Short Form
- Yang Chengfu 108-move Long Form
- Huang Xingxian Fast Form
- 8 basic Fixed Pattern Pushing-Hands
- 8 advanced Fixed Pattern Pushing-Hands.
Class includes 15min guided meditation.
Our aim is the gentle path of internal refinement.
There is only one true Taiji, one set of principles. Human deviation gave rise to family styles (Yang, Wu, Chen etc) which each has strengths and weaknesses. Their strengths are where they follow the principles and their weaknesses are where they deviate from the principles.
We emphasize the waist movement (twisting wave) of the Chen Style, the advancing (issuing transverse wave) power of the Yang Style, the borrowing of partners force (neutralising vertical pressure wave) of the Wu style. We follow my teachers advice: "Go back to the first principles before the styles diverged."
True Taiji Practice
is not limited. It is open to all spheres of life while remaining centred on the refinement of inner spiritual essence. Taiji (Tai Chi), the Supreme Ultimate, is in practice what the 'Dao de Jing' (Tao Te Ching) expresses in principle. These principles remain universal throughout the known worlds, undiminished by their common reduction to intellectual ideas, emotional values, or religious rules, by the various races of the Earth. The universal principles and the method for bringing ourselves into harmony with them could be called the worldwideway, but are really beyond any name. True Taiji is an evolving connection to that worldwideway.
Individual conscious perfection
- exists in potential as a spark within every human being. There is a pressure from within and without to develop this possibility. The forces maintaining the universe are complex and the reasons for many things in life unclear. Why do some struggle to realise their inner potential while others dissipate it through a life of ignorance, weakness and neglect? For those who sadly allow this spark to fade there is little individual hope, though their life and death still contribute to the general evolution of humankind. For those who actively choose inner growth there appears the question of the 'Path' or 'Way'.
Myriad methods exist
but only one Way. That is the internal path which steadily unfolds as a person delves deeper into their own inner world. That world is deceptive, sometimes dangerous, as the Mind perceives the inner world through its own self-created web of illusion - even delusion. Without true directions and a guide, people will almost certainly go astray. Only a fool would feel capable of guiding others on this individual internal path. It is obligation to those beyond me, not choice, which is behind what is offered here.
True Taiji Transmission.
The further back in time we look, the more obscure the history of Taiji becomes. Yet from the study of this past, two things become clear. Firstly, that the inner essence of Taiji flows down from genuine teachers to sincere pupils in unbroken chains. Secondly, that each teacher must devise his or her own training system to express and pass on this impersonal inner teaching. The teaching must evolve outwardly or die inwardly...more
You may meet 3 types of Taiji.
There is genuine traditional Taiji where students progress through a long serious training, which produces true inner evolution, a deep well being and some ability at self-defense based on internal refinement rather than external strength and speed. The sublime experience of the past great practitioners is passed down, which requires effort from both students and teachers. The teachers have themselves been through such long training previously, with their own genuine teachers.
Secondly there is "healing" Taiji where people practice lightly to feel outwardly better and recover from the pressure of work and daily life. Like modern 'Yoga", there is some external value in this but it does not lead to internal refinement.
Thirdly you may also see "gymnastic" Taiji where all esoteric training is scorned and either beautiful "wushu" postures, or rough fighting movements are trained, perhaps with silk uniforms, sometimes for competition. This Taiji was officially promoted over the last 60-70 years but perhaps has lost the refined subtlety of the original art.
These last 2 methods are typically taught merely as a means of making a living. The lightly trained instructors, easily create new movements and systems which propogate their own simple ideas. These methods may increase attachment to and identification with the body (consolidating the ego). This is a long way from the great purpose of the deep and subtle art of true Taiji.
I suggest you think twice before investing your time in these last 2 - ask yourself what is really important in your life, then stay true to that and make your choice.
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