We're a week into the Wu Tai Chi short form instructor training in Brighton, UK, with Lineage Holder Bruce Frantzis. So far we've been completely rebuilding our forms, working on Tai Chi leg power, and exploring the meditative aspects of the art. Check it out:
On Rebuilding Your Form:
It's crazy when you come at these things, you're completely rebuilding your Tai Chi form. We're about two-thirds of the way through the form and it feels so different. When youÂ run through the whole thing one time, you get up to what we've done so far and it feels brand new, like a completely different moves. And then you get to the last thing we've done, you come around to the last move that you finished and you go back to your old form and it has a totally different feeling.
The Yin and Yang of Tai Chi:
The contrast is that the biggest thing that he took from the London trainings into the Tai Chi training was this idea. He talks about it in terms of Yin and Yang, in terms of soft and hard, or in the sitting practice, it's about how do you go deep inside the body. You find this internal space and then let go of anything you find that's stuck. But there's an interesting contrast, it's not just let go and relax and collapse because the quality of mind it takes is that you have to sort of go inside, find and hold your awareness on something and persist with this awareness. That's a stronger quality. So this is interesting, this is Yin and Yang blend of getting your mind onto something and holding it there, giving it shape and containing this feeling. But then the other side it to completely let go, completely relaxing. So that's the Yin and Yang of the dissolving process. And we've expanded that idea where he's talking about the energies in the Tai Chi form, the way we working on Tai Chi, the forming energies to the form, that balance of finding it, holding it and adding this kind of consistent, persistent meditative awareness as you do Tai Chi, is mirrored in the sort of the Yang aspects of the Tai Chi form. And then that letting go, softening, releasing, relaxing and just completely not holding on anything is there's the Yin qualities to the form, that have that same thing. So through Peng, Lu, Ji and An, each one of those from a meditative point of view can figure into how you're doing, making your Tai Chi form a true meditation practice, not just relaxation practice. So there's really great stuff there.