Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Use Mind Not Use Strength

[Path to Mastery 4/7/10 – Wk30 D3 (Str 9.12.09)(Ph2 11.15.09)]

Continuing our Tai-Chi Journey:

‘Use Mind Not Use Strength’ has depth the more you chew on it.  According to the Koreans: what’s good will produce more juice (flavor) the more you chew on it, unlike gum.  This is definitely one of them!

The importance of this becomes most apparent when you either do pushing hands or you practice your jing (power generation) with another person.  When you are about to do Fa-Jing (explosive energy), you imagine your force going through the other person first.  You feel them getting lighter and you follow through that feeling of lightness, and to your surprise you see them flying.  The entire time, your muscles feel relaxed and you feel like you are doing the form.  This is what makes Tai-Chi fun, and this is what makes Tai-Chi mysterious.  It makes sense that the mind affects your own body, but when the mind starts influencing things outside of your body, that just adds to the wow factor.

‘Use Mind Not Use Strength’ is important to practice when you are just training by yourself, however.  It is easy to use strength and tense when you are practicing with someone else in the beginning.  When you practice by yourself, you get to feel what it feels like just by yourself.  This is important because when you are with someone else, it should feel like you are still just by yourself.  If you have never just practiced by yourself, then you won’t know what it is like to be just by yourself. 

You practice ‘Use Mind Not Use Strength’ by leading the move with your mind first.  You don’t just do the move, but you visualize the move before you do it, and then you let the energy go first, and then you let the body follow the sensation of the energy.  Pretty soon your body goes where your mind goes.  Since you guide with your mind and let your body follow the sensation of energy, your body stays relaxed. 

Try this trick.  Imagine there is a balloon underneath your arm and it is lifting up your arm.  You will feel as if your arm is being lifted, and you will be very relaxed.  Try just lifting your arm.  You will notice that as long as your attention is on your arm, it tenses, but the moment you follow the sensation of a bubble underneath your arm lifting your arm, your arm becomes more relaxed.  This is a phenomenon of ‘Use Mind Not Use Strength’.  You don’t use your body, you use your mind to create a sensation of energy, such as an energy ball underneath your arm, and then let your body be moved by that sensation. 

Have fun playing with ‘Use Mind Not Use Strength’!  

History of Tai-Chi Journey up to this point:
Before the blog opened to the public, we covered the single person part of the system.
1. Chi-Gong (Taoist Longevity, White Crane Chi-Gong); 2. Standing Meditation
3. Stepping Mediation; 4. 7 Basics; 5. Basic Form; 6. 30 Form; 7. 108 Form
8. 4 Type Pushing Hands

Interactive training after we went public with the blog. 
1. 8 Type Pushing Hands (Covered from 2/2 ~ 2/11); 2. San-Shou (Covered from 2/12 ~ 2/15)
3. Ba-Gua.(Covering from 2/16 ~ 2/19); 4. Weapons (Covered on 2/23)
5. Healing System (Covered on 2/24)

Non-Structured System:
1.Introduction (Covered 2/25); 2. Free moving – conditioning (Covered 2/26); 3.Free hand pushing hand (Covered 3/1); 4.Free hand (2 person drills and multiple person drills) (Covered 3/2); 5.Free hand weapon (2 person drills and multiple person drills) (Covered 3/3)

Detailed Instructions:
1.Principles (Covered 3/4)
2.Principle of Principles (Covered 3/5)
3.Principles of Upper Body #1~5 (Covered 3/8 – 3/15)
4.Principles Governing Lower Body #1~5 (Covered 3/16 – 3/22)
5. Principle Governing the Whole Body: (Covered 3/23)
6. Principles Governing Movement #1~5 (Covered 3/24 – 3/31)
7. Principles Governing Relaxation – General Concept (Covered 4/1)
   1) Mind Body Release Relax (Covered 4/6)
   2) Use Mind Not Use Strength (Covered 4/7)
   3) Internal External Mutually Integrate
   4) Dropping the Weight (Weight Underneath)
   5) Extension
   6) Chi Sink Dan-Tien

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