“When the uncarved block shatters it becomes vessels”
( the break down of Tai-Chi into yin/yang is symbolised by this line)
Subject: grabbing my back
On Saturday you instructed us to face you and follow you in ‘All-Pervading Ultimate Manifests’.
When you raised your arms,
I felt as though I was being pulled onto my heels.
I felt as though someone was pulling me with two hands on my waist. This was a little disconcerting.
I felt a bit odd as I could see that everyone else was raising their hands.
I did not feel like raising my hands. But it was alright.
I still don’t understand exactly what happened.
I guess I don’t need to.
Sent: Wednesday, May 11, 2005 3:42 PM
Not much, but something for diary.
During class I have felt that my progress has slowed, however in day to day life I feel a stronger sense of routine.
Last Tuesday after class Ric asked if I felt I had exercised, to which I replied no. However, the next day I felt the muscles at the top of my legs had been worked out.
Subject: RE: diary update
Since beginning Tai Chi practice with Ric,
1. distinctly easier to get out of bed in the morning
2. when exercising heart rate increases without the feeling of strain that I would normally experience when I push myself
3. have effortlessly reduced my intake of coffee from 3-4 (won’t admit 5)cups, to one a day
Sent: Tuesday, December 07, 2004 10:50 AM
I really appreciated Brenda making herself available to teach me this morning – it was good (I felt very buoyant and a bit waltzy).
last Saturday: I forgot large parts of what I had learned, only realising once I had skipped them.
My elbows/the outside of my arms felt cool (when we raised our arms toward each other).
I had another big laughing fit. You helped me, by showing me the exact point of weakness in my left leg (ie my hip). You put your right hand on my left shoulder, I felt myself turn (as previously) except this time around a specific point – the left part of my hip.
Hi Ric, today:
I could see fine lines running the outline of your right hand – all of them within a distance of about 1cm. Your right wrist ballooned and retracted very briefly, as though you were a liquid. (I feel as though I imagined this).
The circles were not restricted to the ground today; they were in the air, all different sizes and in each direction I faced.
Ok, here is my effort at describing Saturday.
You put left hand on my right shoulder, and then my eyes were shut. Eyes closed I felt myself turn to the left. I thought maybe I just felt like I was turning, so I opened my eyes to check and sure enough I had turned. I did not feel like I was going to fall over. At one point I felt like you were actually pushing my right shoulder firmly with a flat palm and another that you had one finger strumming a muscle in my neck (right side-that was a very strange feeling). Then I didn’t seem to be going anywhere anymore.
Although in fact you had not physically pushed me or strummed my neck muscle.
First class I felt free, in contrast with feeling like each movement, actually each ounce of flesh should take its place in a grid, which I felt practising with previous teachers. So far, I can remember what you teach me and practise at home. In previous classes, I could never remember enough to practise.
At different classes I have seen patches in the grass – once, as though a droplet of water had fallen into a pool, creating circular ripples…. and quite often, under the tree a wash, like gentle waves….
Another class, I had pain – running like a seam on the outside of my left leg (my leg has always been a bit wonky). Maybe this weakness was brought to the surface by the learning. The days following that class I felt like a furnace, and was particularly hungry…. the very next class, I felt a swelling of emotion…like sadness with a sprinkling of crankiness…like a little kid…. I actually had no reason (emotionally) to feel this way –even so, it was hard not to cry. This seemed like a message to take a break from my responsibilities.
Emotionally, Tai Chi definitely helps. Under similar pressure, minus Tai Chi, it is likely I would have a cold…insomnia or chuck a big wobbly at whoever decided to cross me, so this is positive.
At one point practising the form, when you were two metres behind my right shoulder, it seemed like you listened to me and then guided my movement; I think you could shift my already moving self, the same as pushing someone who is already off balance.
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