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Cameron Verrills, Palm Beach

 Sent: Wednesday, 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 surroundings.


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????)

With Ric
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 enough action.

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 it off.

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!



© 2000-2012 Ric Lum