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Old 07-04-2007, 08:46 PM   #1230
Thomas Campbell
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 407
Re: Baseline skillset

Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
[snip] I.e. let's not use anything Wu Tu Nan says as credible. He was a liar and a charlatan.Yeah, well, the insistence that the Yang style used chousi jin was widespread until the late 1970's early 1980's and it's in a lot of books that way. Sometime in the 1980's someone in the Yang-style realized that if you claim only chousijin you're openly indicating that you don't have full and complete qi and jin because the full "natural" movement will always be with reeling silk, not the pulling silk. So the Yang family publicly stated that they use reeling silk, in the 1980's.

(Personally, I think that within the actual family, they always did. Originally, the Yang founder was not given permission to teach reeling silk, so the Yang style was always incomplete and only used the pulling silk).

But regardless, all of these things are always just variations of the basic ki/qi principles and the basic jin/kokyu principles. Always. The idea that somehow the Japanese arts and the Chinese arts are "different" is the sort of ignorance that continues to keep good western students in the dark.


Well, Mike, I don't know what any tales that Wu Tunan may have told about his age have to do with his point about the historical use of "chousi" referring to the unbroken internal connection in movement rather than a specific type of rotational/winding movement like chansijin. I personally find the distinction helpful, in training and in understanding taijiquan theory. Wu's remarks quoted and translated by Louis Swaim don't relate to your historical depiction of Yang taiji's attempt to distinguish itself by claiming its distinctive practice of chousijin.

I also don't think that we know what the "Yang style founder"--I'm assuming you're referring to Yang Luchan--was permitted to teach, nor to whom.

I'd prefer to focus on commonalities and distinctions of training methods in the present moment. Your illustration is useful--as you said--as a starting point. Dan talks about the twisting, and says there is more to it than the spine and arm structure and extension, a "softer yet more flexible and powerful way," intimately tied in with the breathing. Now, to me, the logical way to make progress and encourage fruitful dialogue wouldn't be to talk about where someone was a year ago on an Internet forum and changes of position--but rather follow up and ask Dan to describe in a little more detail the connection between breathing and "adding to that framework/stretched power" . . . in his view. Which is what he started to offer there, I think.

This was after all originally a thread not about conceptual theology, but about how-to--the "baseline skillset."
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