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Old 06-16-2005, 05:20 AM   #83
wendyrowe
Dojo: Aikidog Aikikai
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 199
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Ack... forget it. I found it in "The Essence of Aikido". John Stevens just mistranslated it because he picked the wrong words out of the possible translations (and it looks like one of them was inverted either in the original or by Stevens). On page 33 of the book is "The Eight Powers", which are also called "The Eight Powers" in Chinese, but also they're called "The Four Polarities"...

Perhaps more helpfully would be this translation from the Chinese:

Motion-Stillness
Powerful-Relaxed
Contraction-Extension
Hard-Soft
...
Thanks for the pointer; I hadn't realized when I read it that this was what you were referring to. My main text when reading the T'ai Chi Classics is Waysun Liao's translation, and although I haven't seen a reference in it to "The Four Polarities" -- maybe I missed it -- it translates the eight powers as ward off power (pong jing), push power (on jing), rollback power (lui jing), press power (ji jing), roll-pull power (tsai jing), split power (leh jing), elbow power (dzo jing) and lean forward power (kao jing). It has italicized translations from the Classics that are more verbose but seem to describe the polarities you listed above, just not as succinctly.

So it sounds like the four powers I'd asked about that are listed in several qigong training videos I've used and in books including Y.K. Chen's TAI CHI CH'UAN: ITS EFFECTS & PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS as main qigong powers/movements (peng lu chi an) correspond with four of these eight from the Classics (pong jing, lui jing, ji jing, on jing), which in turn seem to correspond with the Eight Powers you listed.

I'm looking forward to seeing the movie, but I have to wait til I get to a Windows computer since my Linux machine is unable to see that particular wmv video (let's hear it for standardization ... someday). The Yang long form as taught by T. T. Liang is what I study, incidentally.
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