June 21, 2006 12:31 PM
Subject: Repulse Monkey Feelings
As I get closer to performing the “Repulse
Monkey” sequence a little more correctly (little
while to go yet); it is really reinforcing the
correct alignment of my waist and entire spinal
column, especially up to 'holding the cross' and
through to the end. If I am not straight my
lower back feels overextended. As well, I feel a
constriction through my neck & shoulder.
Also when Ric talks of...."neither assist, nor
resist, but persist”.....the straightness seems
to allow some reflection (complete calmness in
me) and has started to give me a lot more sleep.
Further, the ‘turn-in’ allows me to sink into
the weighted leg. A by-product has been
increased suppleness in my shoulders thus making
the posture more enjoyable & insightful. [I have
had injuries in that region before.] Also the
upper neck and sacral areas seem to be connected
to one another.
Update on Push Hands
/two person training
As my feeling of the qi has become a little
more layered [with small amounts of depth], I
have come to the realization that two person
training for most individuals is a waste of
time, as it is generally merely application of
brute force (“I push-you push”).
Physical force is just too shallow, too
stop/start, and too easy to read.
To truly be movement of a subtle texture our
internal calmness must overcome or control the
pervasive influence of the external
Sent: Wednesday, January 25, 2006 5:18 PM
Subject: A brief memoir
I began Tai Chi Chuan because I had a spinal
problem and needed something to help me in a
holistic way. I started in 1998. The classes
were at Narrabeen, Dee Why and Glebe. I studied
up until June 2005 in the same class.
The experiences were most enjoyable especially
when the energy of my classmates and instructor
where positive and we were all keen to work
together to grow with our Tai Chi Chuan.
Some of the results from the previous training
included increased physical & mental stamina,
stronger will, ability to know others and
hopefully for others to know me, internal
stillness (sung), invest in loss, two person
training was excellent
I also found out about how hard it is to become
an instructor (patience with a student’s
learning ability , poor instruction methods ,
ego, timing , respect for student’s ability ,
humbleness , creativity , direction , good
energy.) These are some words that did not
always seem to be thought about in the last
class I attended.
I pondered because my
instructor was changing things that he thought
worked better; he is not a master. It seemed to
stop/start and had way too much Qigong; we
didn't flow like other students in the same
school but trained under different instructors.
No instruction in the Thirteen Postures or their
meanings, no 'strategy discussions' from the
Thirteen Postures. Also the instructor spoke of
Tai Chi Chuan as a great way of looking after
oneself, unfortunately he could not disseminate
his technique to the class, which caused great
angst to the students on occasions. Which caused
the instructor to question what is wrong with
his students (personally I felt you would look
at your instruction method maybe a little????)
I've trained with Ric since June 2005
The benefits that I’ve gained so far are that I
am starting to practise Tai Chi Chuan form, I
feel as though open/close are within my grasp ,
don't overextend , laughter helps and have mind
like a child’s. The only drawback for me (my
uncouth side ) is that we haven't commenced two
person training as I guess those forms allow me
not to have to go to a Gym and when done
properly the internal feeling is very humbling,
but Patience is a virtue they say.
Comparison of Old to Ric;
With Ric I have a much better Flow and feel of
my energy, internally my organs feel softer and
I feel as though I am moving forward. No stop /
start. Leave your ego at the door when training
with Ric. Ric is able to simplify or I find Ric
is able to intricate. That is very helpful as
you move along the winding river.
Before I was with Ric you
could feel the egos in the room, not letting go.
Getting too far ahead of themselves until the
students had an understanding of a pattern or
technique that they were learning caused
consternation among most students and
instructor. Any discussion of Qi or energy was
frowned upon, Too much qigong caused everyone to
have a lot of hollow points throughout their
form, no continuation of Flow. Too much talk not
What is Tai Chi Chuan????
Tai Chi Chuan is like a sassy woman. Once you
have discovered her and she has touched you with
her spirit, you have a lot of trouble breaking
Advice for Newcomers
Turn up for class, respect your instructor and
fellow students, listen and look, expect nothing
and you won't be disappointed. The key is to
'laugh at oneself': it's not that important!