Let's break it down into component parts. Train the insides to be connected. Manage the up-down ground-gravity that's always applying. Make any external force part of the system that you control. Any disagreements so far? I know, it's a simplification and there's a lot more. But as you start to go down the path below of applying value statements to a specific slice of an approach to train a very specific things - and then seem to broaden that perspective into how you're going to then apply the entirety of the skillset in the realm of sparring and fighting, seems specious to me at best and lacks credibility. If I train a sensitivity skill drill where I close my eyes to better feel what's happening around me, does that somehow mean that in a fight I will keep my eyes closed? In a contest?
There not the same thing. I'm saying training to connect the centers or training to retain the center are two different approaches, not steps or stages along the same path. So what I am discussing as solo practice retains the same value down the path toward push hands, sparring etc. For that reason it is not the same as me saying you would spar with eyes closed and then open them. Its a different paradigm of movement internal to external.
Ah, but I think where we're going to have to agree to disagree is around the common understanding of some of the interpretations of just what you're describing above. I have some papers and testimonials and personal experiences too at this point, and like you said, I'm sure everyone is happy doing their thing. But if I look just academically at what you describe above - you're saying that the internal action required isn't as important as the external frame managing things? (Tibetan wheel example) I don't think that's what you're saying but can you see how it comes across that way (and thus creates a false impression)? If it is what you're saying, then I'd argue your understanding of what's actually being advocated (that you keep bringing up and arguing against) may be a tad off . .
As for papers and testimonials: I know there are different approaches. It is one of the issues I cited years ago here when the argument was being made that all internals fit into a certain paradigm. There are many disagreements regarding approaches in solo training, when and how to introduce things, what is more important, what should be stressed and when, big...disagreements on practical applied use of that training.
My example of the prayer wheel: I threw that out there to make an obvious example of external movement of something that had greater structure than the force acting upon it. I NEVER...meant, said, or alluded to..." the internal action required not being as important as the external frame."
Where did you get that from? In fact I discussed the internal management of moving oneself:
from internal to the external
..internals without or with movement; you can move inside or inside to outside, in a such a way that it doesn't expose your center, and anyone touching you, becomes part of you as ....you move. And it can be done without exposing your center to them but having theirs exposed to yours."
So, what I actually did say has nothing to do with your reading of it as "the internal not being as important as the external." Your going to have to explain how you understood it Budd, I'm lost to where you got your idea from. Do you really think ...that I think...that external movement is the requirement? Really?
Your overall response to this idea I am stating that retaining your center FROM connecting to their center was to state ..to me.... "That works out great until you meet someone who can actually get into your
center." Which is why
I responded as to my own personal success and other big dogs vetting of the same model. I suppose you meant it works out fine until a practitioner (anyone) meets someone who outclasses them and -not me personally. So.....all good. Lets stick to the topic.
In keeping with that
The important part is how a practitioner is organizing his system internally and how that is being used with his system externally to manage load. Carrying weight on a point on the body; arm shoulder chest etc., and supporting it by creating a ground connection is not the same as "dealing" with the same load on a given point by "receiving it...at all. The requirement is there-but not the need. The ability to make change, eliminates the moment of force alighting, The method to enact change, is internal. External movement will not cover it and will in fact many times mask the failure of poor connection.
The differences are easy to understand and not complex. Lets assume we agree on the internal management;
1. One way is to allow external force into the practitioners body and they manage the additional force load with.... the forces being managed already in the practitioners body.
2. The other way is to not
allow external force into the practitioners body and yet still do so with... the forces being managed already in the practitioners body.
The key issue for our purposes here is that in both models the body is supporting the load internally. one allows it to enter and be manipulated, the other has it always reside on the surface and has it manipulated. You..think this means external movement requirements. I am stating there is every bit as much internal work going on in that scenario.
In the end though it is important to realize that you can affect and take someone's center, without ever attaching yourself to theirs or revealing yours.
There are some direct teachings on this in DR and why it is too be avoided. there are even some interesting drawings floating around on the web. Other teachings exist in Koryu; discussing never receiving power from someones weapon. Something which is desperately important were you to consider facing large weapons with a sword or short sword. Other teachings exist in Taiji, where their power may never alight on your body. An interesting example of which is the famous myth of the Tai chi saint who held a bird in his hand and it couldn't fly away from his ability to neutralize it's lift.
Anyone who can do what I am talking about can easily allow force to alight on them and deal with it going through them and neutralizing or adding to their forces in a myriad of ways. Not everyone who has the skill to neutralize and generate forces in them has attained the level of having those forces reside ever present on the surface and know how to manipulate those forces while they reside on the surface. The means to do this can and are displayed with almost no movement, to obvious movement, but the qualities of that movement must move in accord with in yo and are not...not...normal movement. It is exceedingly difficult to attain, evne slowly, much less to become second nature....at speed.
I think many keep misunderstanding the use of internal strength to connect to another's center for the simple reason that they are trying to make a kata or technique "work." The process of -having- to make a kata work means many times you have to deal with their center in otherwise unnatural constructs. Lets say you have to take the slack out of -them- and you to move them. This is not a requirement in a fight or even in push hands where the need to do something is not prevalent. You can remain neutral, and be predatory and opportunistic.
I still think you're escalating a training drill with a specific purpose in mind to a full-blown approach - which puzzles me, especially as the alternative you're giving seems to be more in the realm of a physical conditioning engine - which I agree is important, but cooperative and working with rather than in replacement of.
I think that's the whole point of forcing yourself into positions of training to failure. That's one of the most effective ways to learn and see what needs to improve. Find those people that can outclass you in specific ways and keep learning from them
I would agree partly that I think it's been more useful for people to get together, try things and out and see for themselves what works, what's available and where this kind of training can go. I'm glad you've had success getting this stuff out there and it's resonating with folks. The more exposure people get, the better.
It's not going to be conducive to the discussion to talk about each other, All I am going to say is that I will continue on this path until I meet the people you are describing who can supposedly...easily handle...the methods I am employing. As stated I was advised to keep meeting big dogs, I will continue to do so. If I get tuned I will let you know and hopefully I might get some different approaches. Rest assured when it happens, I will be all ears and having fun!!