My interest in beginning Yuan-Chi Tai-Chi came from a desire to connect with my dan tian; to move from a central place. The standing weight shift element is highly applicable for my work as a hands-on practitioner (remedial massage, Feldenkrais), in how I move myself around the treatment table – having the force come all the way through, up from the ground, with my arms carried as an extension of what’s happening below rather than generating the power from up top. I feel lucky to have chanced upon this group in the park;
Sifu Ric Lum sharing wisdom cultivated from a long lineage via an apprentice style teaching, meeting each person where they’re at with a perceptive task to stimulate them to learn for themselves. I enjoy the clarity of precision in orientation/detail within the flow of collective energy that carries you along. Worth waking up early for, of a Saturday morning!
Sat, 13 Nov 2021 13:16:36
Sifu, Dan and I. Following in the dance had a very gentle quality to it; like a ripple wouldn’t be made in water / air. And a quietness. Perhaps from less people / energies around? Maybe this is what’s on offer when practising by oneself… Being primed for lightness in ‘standing such that you wouldn’t even feel your feet on the ground’ enabled the desired responsiveness of taking steps in “Neither Assist Nor Resist” to flow through to my feet. Drawing up in Sifu’s easiest style afterwards had a quality of clarity and lightness to it.
Reflections from Following:
Follow ME initially had me thinking it was about syncing in to attune to the instructor that I was following in the repeating movement….meditative and clear, in harmony. Tuesday’s session however had solo repeating and that revealed something different. Following the intrinsic timing of how each motion unfolded, recognizing relationships that exist within it through repetition and the space of ‘not doing’ in between.
Today’s dance accelerated massively at the end as the three first timers arrived, unsure as to whether they were ‘late’ / supposed to follow along; I feel that should be incorporated in the welcome email, explaining this will be occurring before the beginner class…I also feel their ‘initiation’ got a bit wordy / philosophical. I found myself wondering if Sifu was losing them in the larger concepts. An aspect that I appreciated in my first introduction was the absence of explicitness of the spiritual underpinnings. Of course that’s probably more reflective of my own bias, being a kinesthetic ‘doer’ who has less patience for words…perhaps it was speaking to something he could perceive in what drew them to Tai Chi and responded accordingly.
Closing your eyes whilst continuing to focus on the base of Sifu’s thumbs and following that, continued on as an energetic signal that led me even whilst he was engaging in discussion – the pulse/pull was still present in my hands and I allowed that to continue until it found it’s conclusion.
‘Follow me’ following that, just was; nothing to comment on, being fully there.
The lightness of a gentle breeze and palpable tingling throughout. The Chi was flowing and a lady or two passing by came to examine the A-frame/flyer; I feel this was directly interlinked.
Intrigued by the initial starting arrangement and observed that we converged towards a more ‘symmetrical’ configuration. Gleaning different details along the way from those in my field of vision. Abdominal contents active come the conclusion.
Dance Report 11/12/21
Open horizon expansive in front, power from behind.
Poise in the potential of holding the ball out of which the next moment arises. Second iteration allows me to see the shape whilst the first was a discovery of what might arise next. Highlighting our different cadences and how to suspend time and re-sync. Surprisingly calm (for being positioned right at the front), inner quiet, uncluttered vista.
Dance Report 27/11/21
Shift in positions and weather highlighting all I don’t know (that I rely on everyone else!) Out of sync and now aware of how much the orientation is to the left (left hanging!) Rain gear is cumbersome to move it, restricting the lifting of a leg through the seat of my pants. Cold hands…is there a reason no one was wearing gloves?
Some places with heat but many more distractions with the weather, rearrangements, tangling my feet.