Qian Gua Shi Xing

  1. 靑龍轉身 – Green dragon turns body
  2. 靑龍縮尾 – Green dragon contracts tail
  3. 黑虎出洞 – Black tiger exits cave
  4. 獅子張嘴 – Lion opens mouth

Poem of pushing hands

The poem of pushing hands (打手歌)

By Wang Zong Yue (王宗岳)

Ward off (peng), Stroke (lü), Press (ji), and Push (an) must be taken seriously.

Upper and lower coordinate, and the opponent finds it difficult to enter.

Let the opponent attack with great force; use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds.

Attract to emptiness and discharge;
Adhere (Zhan), connect (Lian), stick (Nian), follow (sui);
not resisting, not letting go.

Sentence by sentence

棚履挤按须认真,上下相随人难进

Péng lǚ jǐ àn xū rènzhēn, shàngxià xiāng suí rén nán jìn.

Ward off (peng), Stroke (lü), Press (ji), and Push (an) must be taken seriously.

Upper and lower coordinate, and the opponent finds it difficult to enter.

任他巨力来打,牵动四两拨千斤。

Rèn tā jù lì lái dǎ wǒ, qiāndòng sì liǎng bō qiān jīn.

Let the opponent attack with great force; use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds.

引进落空合即出,沾连粘1随不丢顶。

Yǐnjìn luòkōng hé jí chū, zhān lián nián suí bù diū dǐng.

Attract to emptiness and discharge; adhere (zhan), connect (lian), stick (nian), follow (sui);
no
t resisting, not letting go.

1 The character (nian) is often seen in publications which has identical meaning to 粘

Essentials of the practice of the form and push-hands

Essentials of the practise of the form and pushing hands (走架打手行工要言)

By Li Yi Yu (李亦畬)

People of old said: “being able to attract to emptiness, you can use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds. Not being able to attract to emptiness, you cannot use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds”. The words are simple, but the meaning is complete. The beginner cannot understand it. Here I add some words to explain it. If someone is ambitious to learn this art, he can find some way to enter it and every day he will have some improvement.

If you want to attract to emptiness and deflect a thousand pounds, you must first know yourself and others. If you want to know yourself and others, you must give up yourself and follow others. To give up yourself and follow others, you must first have the correct timing and position. To obtain the correct timing and position, you must first make your body one unit. To make the body one unit, you must first eliminate hollows and protuberances. To make the whole body without breaks or holes, you must first have the shen [spirit] and qi [vital life energy] excited and expanded. If you want the shen and qi activated and expanded, you must first raise the spirit. If you want to raise your spirit, you cannot be unfocused. For the shen to not be unfocused, you must first have the shen and qi gather and penetrate the bones. For the shen and qi to penetrate the bones, you must first strengthen both thighs and loosen both shoulders and let the qi sink down.

The jin [refined force] raises from the feet, changes in the legs, is stored in the chest, moved in the shoulders and commanded in the waist. The upper part connects to both arms and the lower part follows the legs. It changes inside. To gather is to close and to release is to open. If it is quiet, it is completely still. Still means to close. In closing there is opening. If it is moving, everything moves. Moving is opening. In opening there is closing. When the body is touched it revolves freely. There is no place that does not have power. Then you can attract to emptiness and use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds.

Practicing the Form every day is the gong fu of knowing yourself. When you start to practice, first ask yourself, “Did my whole body follow the above principles or not?” If one little place did not follow them, then correct it immediately. Therefore, in practicing the form we want slowness not speed.

Push hands is the gong fu of knowing others. As for movement and stillness, although it is to know others, you must still ask yourself. If you arrange yourself well, when others touch you, you don’t move a hair. Follow the opportunity and meet his force and let him fall naturally outward. If you feel someplace in your body that is powerless, it is double-weighted and unchanging. You must seek the defect in yin and yang, opening and closing. Know yourself and know others: in one hundred battles you will win one hundred times.

Sentence by sentence

昔人云:“能引进落空,便能四两拨千斤; 不能引进落空,不能四两拨千斤”。

Xī rén yún:“Néng yǐnjìn luòkōng, biàn néng sì liǎng bō qiān jīn; bùnéng yǐnjìn luòkōng, bùnéng sì liǎng bō qiān jīn”.

People of old said: “being able to attract to emptiness, you can use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds. Not being able to attract to emptiness, you cannot use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds”.

语甚概括,初学未由领悟,予加数语以解之,俾有志斯技者,得所从入,庶日进有功矣。

Yǔ shén gàikuò, chūxué wèi yóu lǐngwù, yǔ jiā shù yǔ yǐ jiě zhī, bǐ yǒuzhì sī jì zhě, de suǒ cóng rù, shù rì jìn yǒu gōng yǐ.

The words are simple, but the meaning is complete. The beginner cannot understand it. Here I add some words to explain it. If someone is ambitious to learn this art, he can find some way to enter it and every day he will have some improvement.

欲要引进落空,四两拨千斤,先要知己知彼。

Yù yào yǐnjìn luòkōng, sì liǎng bō qiān jīn, xiān yào zhījǐzhībǐ.

If you want to attract to emptiness and deflect a thousand pounds, you must first know yourself and others.

欲要知己知彼,先要舍己从人。

Yù yào zhījǐzhībǐ, xiān yào shě jǐ cóng rén.

If you want to know yourself and others, you must give up yourself and follow others.

欲要舍己从人,先要得机得势。

Yù yào shě jǐ cóng rén, xiān yào dé jī déshì.

To give up yourself and follow others, you must first have the correct timing and position.

欲要得机得势,先要周身一家。

Yù yào dé jī déshì, xiān yào zhōushēn yījiā.

To obtain the correct timing and position, you must first make your body one unit.

欲要周身一家,先要周身无有缺陷。

Yù yào zhōushēn yījiā, xiān yào zhōushēn wú yǒu quēxiàn.

To make the body one unit, you must first eliminate hollows and protuberances.

欲要周身无有缺陷,先要神气鼓荡。

Yù yào zhōushēn wú yǒu quēxiàn, xiān yào shénqì gǔ dàng.

To make the whole body without breaks or holes, you must first have the shen [spirit] and qi [vital life energy] excited and expanded.

欲要神气鼓荡,先要提起精神。

Yù yào shénqì gǔ dàng, xiān yào tíqǐ jīngshén.

If you want the shen and qi activated and expanded, you must first raise the spirit.

欲要提起精神,先要神不外散。

Yù yào tíqǐ jīngshén, xiān yào shén bù wài sàn.

If you want to raise your spirit, you cannot be unfocused.

欲要神不外散,先要神气收敛入骨。

Yù yào shén bù wài sàn, xiān yào shénqì shōuliǎn rùgǔ.

For the shen to not be unfocused, you must first have the shen and qi gather and penetrate the bones.

欲要神气收敛入骨,先要两股前节有力,两肩松开,气向下沉。

Yù yào shénqì shōuliǎn rùgǔ, xiān yào liǎng gǔ qián jié yǒulì.

For the shen and qi to penetrate the bones, you must first strengthen both thighs and loosen both shoulders and let the qi sink down.

劲起于脚根,变换在腿,含蓄在胸,运动在两肩,主宰在腰,上与两膊相系,下与两腿相随,劲由内换。

Jìn qǐ yú jiǎogēn, biànhuàn zài tuǐ, hánxù zài xiōng, yùndòng zài liǎng jiān, zhǔzǎi zài yāo, shàng yǔ liǎng bo xiāng xì, xià yǔ liǎng tuǐ xiāng suí, jìn yóu nèi huàn.

The jin [refined force] raises from the feet, changes in the legs, is stored in the chest, moved in the shoulders and commanded in the waist. The upper part connects to both arms and the lower part follows the legs. It changes inside.

收便是合,放即是开。静则俱静,静是合,合中寓开。

Shōu biàn shì hé, fàng jí shì kāi. Jìng zé jù jìng, jìng shì hé, hé zhōng yù kāi.

To gather is to close and to release is to open. If it is quiet, it is completely still. Still means to close. In closing there is opening.

动则俱动,动是开,开中寓合。

Dòng zé jù dòng, dòng shì kāi, kāi zhōng yù hé.

If it is moving, everything moves. Moving is opening. In opening there is closing.

触之则旋转自如,无不得力,才能引进落空,四两拨千斤。

Chù zhī zé xuánzhuǎn zìrú, wú bù dé lì, cáinéng yǐnjìn luòkōng, sì liǎng bō qiān jīn.

When the body is touched it revolves freely. There is no place that does not have power. Then you can attract to emptiness and use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds.

平日走架是知己工夫。

Píngrì zǒu jià shì zhījǐ gōngfū.

Practising the Form every day is the gong fu of knowing yourself

一动势问先问自已周身合上数项杏? 少有不合,即速改换。

Yīdòng shì wèn xiān wèn zìyǐ zhōushēn hé shàng shù xiàng xìng? Shǎo yǒu bùhé, jí sù gǎihuàn.

When you start to practice, first ask yourself, “Did my whole body follow the above principles or not?” If one little place did not follow them, then correct it immediately.

走架所以要慢不要快,打手是知人功夫,动静固是知人,仍是问己。

Zǒu jià suǒyǐ yào màn bùyào kuài, dǎshǒu shì zhīrén gōngfu, dòngjìng gù shì zhīrén, réng shì wèn jǐ.

Therefore, in practising the form we want slowness not speed. Push hands is the gong fu of knowing others. As for movement and stillness, although it is to know others, you must still ask yourself.

自己安排得好,人一挨我,我不动彼丝毫,趁势而入,接定彼劲,彼自跌出。

Zìjǐ ānpái dé hǎo, rén yī āi wǒ, wǒ bù dòng bǐ sīháo, chènshì ér rù, jiē dìng bǐ jìn, bǐ zì diē chū.

If you arrange yourself well, when others touch you, you don’t move a hair. Follow the opportunity and meet his force and let him fall naturally outward.

如自己有不得力处,便是双重未化,要于阴阳开合中求之。

Rú zìjǐ yǒu bù dé lì chù, biàn shì shuāngzhòng wèi huà, yào yú yīnyáng kāi hé zhōng qiú zhī.

If you feel someplace in your body that is powerless, it is double-weighted and unchanging. You must seek the defect in yin and yang, opening and closing.

所谓“知己知彼,百战百胜”也。

Suǒwèi “zhījǐzhībǐ, bǎi zhàn bǎishèng” yě.

Know yourself and know others: in one hundred battles you will win one hundred times.

Power / force in Taiji Quan

Unless you are suspended in the air (as in the jumping kick which most people does not do today btw) power has 3 sources:

1. Downward power which traditionally be referred to as heavenly qi (天气) – for a simplified understanding we can think about it as gravity.

2. Upward power (trad, earth qi – 地气) which simplistically can be thought of as normal power in newtonian terms a.ka. ground power.

3. Circulating power (trad. human qi – 人气) which is generated from body movement mediating the first two powers and giving them specific direction but also adding the result from circulation/spiraling e.g. dan tian movement.

When these three forms of qi are moving naturally and unobstructed we enjoy health and and important prerequisite to express internal power.

Another vital prerequisite for internal power are the 6 harmonies. For power to be able to be expressed without getting stuck somewhere and be optimally generated, the 6 harmonies must be established and present. The result of this is whole body power (zheng ti jin) which in Sun style is the preferred word and synonymous with internal power. This whole body power have 8 basic expressions (peng, lü, ji, an, cai, lie, zhou, kao).

The characteristics of Peng (ward off) is like a boat pushing water to the side or like a rotating ball redirecting the oncoming force.

Lü (stroke or roll back) is smoothly following and redirecting where the redirection can be down as in the stroke in the lan zha yi movements after bao hu tui shan or sideways as the stroke in 4 powers pushing hands.

Ji (press) is a a kind of closing power used in setting up for a discharge or pull down etc. and unbalances the opponent.

The characteristics of An (push) is a discharging force expressed in e.g. lan zha yi, bao hu tui shan and lou xi au bu.

 

Wu xing pao (五行炮)

0. San Ti San Ti
1. Diao Shou, Shangbu Piquan Sanjiaobu zhanshou Pi Quan
2. Hua Jian Zuan Quan (shunbu) Tui bu Tuo
3. Huanbu Yaozi Ru Lin Ya shou qie bozi
4. Tui bu jie shou, Raohuanbu Piquan Che bu shang jie, jin bu Ru Lin
5. Tuibu Benquan (aobu), Jinbu Bengquan (shunbu) Chebu piquan (shunbu)
6. Shangbu bengquan (shunbu) Chebu piquan (shunbu)
7. Bingbu Bengquan (aobu) Chebu piquan (shunbu)
8. Jin bu Sa bang Tuibu jie shou (shunbu)

Wu Hua Pao (五花炮对练)

A makes a pad step and moves in with either Zuan Quan or Diao Shou B slides back slightly
A press B’s elbow and pulls back left fist B meets A’s wrist to protect the lower ribs
A strikes with a Zuan Quan towards B’s nose B steps back and catches A’s wrist (Tuo)
A releases himself from B with a Heng Quan and moves in with Aubu Beng Quan B slides back and blocks down with either elbow or lower arm
A follow up with Jin Ji Dan Sao Bang (back hand strike) B slides back and meets A’s hand
B now takes A’s place and resume from the beginning – this is shifting sides back and forth. Alternatively A continues again from the beginning until there is no more space and only then will the roles change.

孙氏八卦对剑 – Sun style Ba Gua Pair Sword

甲 – Jia 乙 – Yi
起势  1.蛰龙翻身。2.天边扫月。

3.扫地搜根。4.白猿托桃。

 1.蛰龙翻身。2.天边扫月。

3.扫地搜根。4.白猿托桃。

第一节  5. 仙人背剑 6. 撩剑 7. 日月争明

8. 扫地搜根 9. 白猿托桃

 5. 白猿偷桃 6. 仙人入洞 7. 日月争明

8. 扫地搜根 9. 白猿托桃

第二节  10. 日月争明 11. 流星赶月 12. 青龙返首

13. 日月争明 14. 扫地搜根 15. 白猿托桃

 10. 白猿偷桃 11. 仙人脱壳 12. 日月争明

13. 扫地搜根 14. 白猿托桃

第三节  16. 鹞子入林 17. 抱月托桃  15. 片膀撩腕 16. 盖顶 17. 抱月托桃
第四节  18. 日月争明 19. 流星赶月 20. 青龙返首  21. 搜地回马

22. 回马磨盘 23. 抽剑 24. 青龙返首

 18. 日月争明 19. 流星赶月 20. 青龙返首  21. 搜地回马

22. 回马磨盘 23. 抽剑 24. 青龙返首

第五节  25. 白蛇伏草 26. 潜龙出水 27. 青龙探海 28. 扫地托桃  25. 仙人背剑 26. 青龙截路 27. 扫地托桃
第六节  29. 乌龙绞柱 30. 崩剑 31 抽剑返首  28. 蜻蜓点水 29.  抽剑返首
第七节  32. 黑虎出洞 33. 白蛇吐信  30. 叶里藏花
第八节  34. 片膀回马 35. 回头望月 36. 仙人钓鱼  31. 片膀回马 32. 回头望月 33. 仙人钓鱼
收式  37. 扫地托桃  34. 扫地托桃

Scientific research on Meditation

1. Zen Meditation and the brain

2. Zen Meditation and health

3. Zen Meditation and working life

Meditative group dialogue

Meditative group dialogue is meditation in communication. We question, look, and investigate together whatever comes up. It is a meeting together as free from hierarchy and roles as possible rather then a question and answer period between beginners and experienced meditators. We give each other and ourselves lots of space, lots of time, and lots of silence so that we have a good opportunity to watch our own reactions, understand our conditioning and not too easily slip into the thinking intellect or emotional drama.

One of the most important aspects of group dialogue is to listen. We listen to the words, to the silence, and to that which is beyond words and silence. Other important aspects are honesty and personal relevance. By not pretending I give myself a chance to discover my own truths and others to discover theirs. By being personally relevant, that which is seen becomes something that concerns and is for real rather than a discussion on the content of ideas and images. In order to give room for the space to be personal it is important that what is shared in the group dialogue stays in the group so that the group can be held in a spirit of trust and confidentiality.

groupdialogue-painting

Group dialogue is not therapy. We do not try to change each other or tell each other what would and should not be done. There is of course a therapeutic effect in discovering ones hindrances and seeing the clearly enough to stop being a victim of them but the purpose of group dialogue is not therapy but to listen, see and explore together.

Group dialogue is not an exchange of opinions, a debate or a discussion. By observing our own reactions, thoughts, opinions, values, prejudices, emotions etc. we can learn something about ourselves and about being human. We can share this and look into this together from a perspective of open exploration instead of trying to convince someone else about our point of of view.

Group dialogue is not primarily a sharing of experiences or stories. If those comes up and helps to shed light on what the group inquires into together there is of course no problem but can we be aware that telling of experiences and stories easily lead into a sharing of memories? Can we be here together this moment instead? Look at what is actually going on here and now? Is it possible to allow what is really present here to surface and express it? Maybe something one wrestles with right now or something your caught a glimpse on during the sitting before the dialogue that you would want to look closer at together with the others?

You can also participate in silence, watching your own reaction on what is being expressed. Your silent attention contributes to the energy level of the entire group. We can also help each other by asking questions such as “what do you mean by that?”, “can you please elaborate?” and similar. By asking questions we helt the speaker to go deeper and find hidden motives or to see it clearer. When a question is put to the group or to oneself, is it possible to give yourself a little time to be with it for a little while and not be in such a hurry to respond that the answer comes out of reactive conditioning? Do you feel attacked or challenged when someone asks such a question? If so, is it possible to observer it? What is it? Who is being attacked or challenged?

helande The essence of group dialogue is to meet and help each other to open up and reveal nuances of this wonderful and unfathomable experience of being.