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太極學疑義問答十三摘要 教授黃性賢作答

1)
:太極拳道是否應分門派?
:太極拳道學是一大完整之大學問,為歷代先賢先聖窮畢生智慧精心研究而成,其理奧妙無窮,包含崇高哲學,其動作循合科學,蓋哲理乃科學之靈魂。祖師創此拳道旨在促使人類健康,祛病延年,防老防身之運動閥門,以達到濟世活人,益壽延年,修身養性,治國平天下之大精神。太極拳道不為私人武術技擊與顯露武功好鬥風氣。傳授此道者應知其理,通達其道,任何人無法脫胎改變其理。架子任何人可改創,其原理不可失真。其修煉拳架外形雖各有異,惟其理則一。為此不宜有門派之分,弘揚斯道,促進光大世界,使人類心身健康則幸。

2)
: 練太極拳道如何才能達到準確?
:太極拳準確差異關係殊大。應以王宗岳宗師所言:立身須“中正安舒”四字為准。行架三不離:一不離鬆、二不離圓、三不離養字行架慎思察覺,否則易患有其形而無其實。倘若花樣迷惑他人,則誤己事小,誤人事大。要達到準確,一舉一動要合乎太極學原則與内涵,遵循方法正確修煉,尤須名師指導功架及多方面研究探討,循序漸進,實事求是。除此,學習者本身之條件亦有關係,學者除應具備堅定信心不折不撓意志與高度興趣外,生活安定環境正常,抱定決心,恆學恆練徹悟其理,由内體表達於外,則達到標準。一般人多求速成重外形外練,斷斷續續或半途而廢,一知半解后再求正確,則比初學者更難。有人將太極拳含糊其意,視做四肢運動的體操或舞蹈,有其名而無其實。人體是一小太極,可比一部完整機器,如有一個零件不合標準,則影響整體活動不靈。拳祖曰:“道為本,技為末,不學吾道者非吾徒也。”因此,做人方面需誠實無欺,言行不背正義真理,多注意心性涵養道技兼修,心正技進漸入正軌之道,養吾浩然之氣也。

3)
: 太極拳架相異,其理是否相同?
:祖師創此拳道,世代流傳外形雖異,而今有二十四式、有三十七式、六十四步、七十二步、一百零八步、一百二十四式等。架又分長架、短架、大架、中架、小架、高架、低架、快動式、慢動等等。書是人寫的,拳架套路外型亦是人編的,其實功架能夠符合原理才是重要,其外形相異原理則一。歷代奇人異士,名家宗師相傳,無一不視太極拳拳論與十要為準則,應不斷研練,隨時檢討為達實踐,拳由有形練到無形,有手練到無手,有力練到無力,不鬆練到全鬆。修養方面從有我修到無我的境界,捨己從人,全身是手,手非手,所謂技達到,風吹荷葉不倒翁,道進到益壽延年不老春。行動外形準確不易,内意循理氣相通,天人合一即上下中合,左右内合,所謂形易得,法難精。因學者行動時,功架竅難守,巧難生。拳祖真人故說:“一通百通,千門百派萬法歸宗。”

4)
: 太極拳多練或少練好?
:太極拳道要求合乎中庸之道,練要得法。如果不得其法與徒手體操何異?事倍而功半勞多益少。故不在多練或少練,在得其法否?每一動作保持中定為本,動有程序,中規中矩,由上而下,由下而上,皆中開中合,原則不變。曲中求直,直中帶蓄,恆學恆練悟其理通其竅,練到生巧,不化自化之境界。故不在多練或少練,關係在得法與否才是最重要。

5)
: 練拳架快對或架慢對?
:天地運行有一定的軌道與勻稱適中之規律。太極道學本宇宙大自然之原理無快慢之分,人體亦是太極之體,違反生理自然運行無法協調一致,導致疾病叢生。練拳如快動必影響呼吸不均,氣便上喘心跳加劇,不對也。但太慢肩手關節提掛周身行氣受阻内有滯氣,如意開氣不開也不對。行功、行架、行氣在精、氣、神、内三合,心、意、體内外綜合。肌肉鬆開由上至下以自然程序而定準確。快有對或不對,慢亦然,觀其行功程度而定,所以不能快不能慢,練至全身鬆透便自然均勻,内外相合則無快慢之分,達到上行雲下流水,綿綿不斷,不動手不斷意,自然而然内外相合,上下一致,如此地步則知無快慢之分也。

6)
: 太極拳架高低之要求如何為準?
:盤架子無高低之分,總是四平為原則。呼吸和動作自然配合俾内外平均,進退轉動立身平准,不偏不倚,前進後退,左右開合要平衡,進要後勁,腳底膝彎,起寸許,内動進退由下而上到中合,由肩、肋、腰、胯、鬆下,意氣不宜上,會合中樞,即丹田(臍下寸許),肩、寸、肋、腰、膝、腳、足、腕要節節鬆沉貼地不動,腳底平穩才算四平八穩,控制得宜皆有膝彎自行調整則高低開合自然適宜。以心意導引全身肌肉鬆開,節節節胳鬆開貫串,立身中正自然安舒。要領悟意養太極原理分佈全身,則了解四平八穩原則,高低自然合度無須強求。

7)
: 左右上下,虛實如何分清?
:人體之肌肉骨骼與神經組織是有系統之構造,行架以用心意鬆沉為最。以中心推動重身為要,定靜鬆沉微主,必須綿綿不斷,不可患忽斷之弊,以内運達外動,轉運而產生内勁,久之自然均勻。左右一虛一實,以上下虛實來説,則左上實左下則虛;右上實則右下虛,每個動作皆包含交叉内變與重身交換之作用,合乎人體交叉神經之配合。因此内勁運轉,最重要虛實分清,動步不動身虛實則分清,動身不動手手則被動也。如果動步有動身,即虛實不分清,動身有動手則肩手牽挂欠放鬆,必須以心意為主動,上下相隨,左右相輔,磨轉心不轉周身一家,輕靈圓滑,一呼一吸,一開一合,如長江大海一動無處不動,惟動有以意氣運身,動有程序,似逐波長流自然之態。

8)
: 太極拳體用基本練法是什麽?
:如鬆身五法裏是循太極拳最基本之原理,要精神集中,否則神氣渙散,無法收到内練之效。要做到三不動,即頭、手、腳底不動。動則意在先,意帶氣動,動步身不動。轉動腰胯為先,手隨腰胯而動。所謂命意源頭在腰間。要窮理以盡性,拳理通則拳架通,拳理不通拳架亦不通。内體通外體,能通則無所不通。拳祖說:“體用修成”。能鬆透則千變萬化能捨己從人,忘我無我之境界而達全身是手手非手。體用方法不能融會貫通,不明鬆身五法内是太極原理基本之重要性,捨本求末,一無所成,何言體用?

9)
: 鬆腹,垂臀其意何在?
:鬆腹關係殊大,腹部是丹田蓄氣之庫,氣沉丹田是以心運氣于丹田,然後便能轉運全身,若氣聽于丹田而不運是為滯氣,謂之“脹”,故氣下沉後稍停即轉運則不滯留腹遂鬆柔,久之而有彈性,使氣行遍全身,内氣可斂入脊骨。十三勢歌云:“腹内鬆淨氣騰然”,切不宜氣積腹部,久之則腹部凸出。 垂臀,垂臀者即於每一動作中,臀應鬆垂下不可突出,亦不可凹閭,一般教與學者多忽略這要點。鬆腹與垂臀相輔相成,兩者缺一不可否則根浮腰硬,身體失去中心。控制重身達到中定。練有得法可驗上腹部近丹田處,用手指按之急放。必有彈性之感覺。臀收如棉花也。

10)
: 真正太極精神所在是什麽?
:明師開導指點一樣,但學習者因心態各異,故其成就有別。真正太極拳道不止練其形,亦要通達其理。 爲人處世一舉一動都合乎道理,學到、練到、悟到,把太極真理融化到人生之每個細節裏:不爭名求利,不為私心著想,一生中全心全意虔誠奉獻太極道學,發揚祖師精神,使全世界人類身心健康才是真正太極精神所在。

11)
: 研練太極學,每天應練多少套架子?
: 練架行動應符中庸之道,練要得法。有人說,每天早晚練架子十套,每套架子二十五分鐘。只求量徒耗力洩氣,與真正太極真理相反,這只能多流汗,而達減肥作用,對内體内功内臟運動毫無裨益。余先師鄭曼青遺著有說:“余每晨行功行氣三十七勢,一套架子只費七分鐘。”多練或少練貴在得法為宜。一般學者隨余肯遵循余自修十年心得和經驗的方法,每天早晚公餘肯花五分鐘時間以一式分化兩動熟練,每步分爲二式或三式耐心細心來自修,無一不成功之理也。

12)
: 有人練了數十年太極拳,爲何根底仍然不穩?
: 許多人練太極拳因不得其法,故練數十年仍以無所成。習太極拳者,應向道學求知,然後求理、法、功,先通宇宙與人生之道理,以氣行功當明其法。虛心恆修,久之必漸厚根底、得其法、通其理、守其竅、生其巧。生根與内勁看不見是不能教的,得其法者根底與功勁是練出來的。練拳行功時周身節節貫串,絲毫沒有間斷,不為空間所制,全身透空,不使彼能牽動于我。虛靜輕靈,猶如深山之蛇,首尾相顧,擊首者尾應,擊中背者首尾具應。隨心所欲,修練能得成就然後謂之輕靈。譬如二百斤鐵棒,懷巨力者可將之提起,惟以百斤之鐵鏈,雖有巨力不能提起。節節貫串鬆透猶此意也。 學習太極拳道者應命陰陽在拳架與推手上之妙用。陰陽即是太極,太極代表宇宙,宇宙包羅萬象。練拳行功,功架内含整體,内、外、上、下、左、右、前、後皆不離虛實,動靜無間,所謂陰不離陽,陽不離陰。陽動陰也動,陰動陽也動。練拳行功要懂此理。心身並練,道技兼修;道為陰技為陽,陽是陰極所生,鬆靜下沉為陰,是守化爲基本,不可用自力強取。靜如泰山穩固,不變應以萬變之理。拳祖說“道題爲本,技用末事也!”所以先學到捨己從人,方得隨心所欲。攻守兩字,先得法練到虛靜,然後守必固、攻必取,皆從自然,而能得者為上乘。推手練到不丟不頂,不離不抗。推手程度則先判功架鬆沉,可得貼切然後產生化勁、蓄勁,到了不化自化,不發自發之境界。 今日世界科技發達,物質文明日趨進步,生活緊張,商業競爭,精神欠安寧,所以多患都市通病。太極拳這古老的運動,普遍受國際人士所喜愛,練太極拳是那麽普及大衆化,並沒有什麽秘訣,平等公開,人人可練。但練習者患拳弊殊多。有幾個原則習拳者應遵循:(一)要尊師重道;(二)爲人誠實無欺;(三)練功架應慎思察覺;(四)要按部就班,不可求多求速成;(五)要虛心恆練;(六)要肯照上述自修法。選擇名師指導,千金易得,名師難求,有了名師,練習要合方法,如此沒有不成功之理也。

13)
: 練武者重武德尤須尊師重道嗎?
: 現今世風日下人心不古,仁義道德漸淪沒。昔日練武者崇尚武德,尤重尊師重道。但今非昔比,多少學子羽毛未豐便欲高飛,為求自己名利卻忘了恩師費盡心思栽培,甚至違背良心欺師滅祖,既不明尊師重道,更不懂飲水思源。不通理不明做人原則何能立身處世?何以心安理得?騙得了一時騙不了永久。爲此維護師道以正人心。凡是同道,人人有責,應以此為共同目標,培養學員德育仁心以正人心,共衛師道。

Questions and Answers by Mas. Huang Sheng Shyan
 
1 Q: Are there different schools or sects of Tai Ji ?

Answer: Tai Ji embodies a comprehensive set of knowledge,developed and handed down by our learned predecessor with mystifying principles and profound philosophical learnings.The Tai Ji movements are scientific as the principles are based on scientific fundamentals.Our predecessors developed the art for improving human health,warding off sickness,slowing down the ageing process,achieving longevity and defending oneself.All this benefits mankind and society.Good character formation is promoted. An adherent imbibed with the Dao(or philosophy as a way of life)of Tai Ji would contribute towards proper governance of the country and universal peace.tai Ji is not a martial art meant for bragging and antagonistic purpuses.A Tai Ji exponent wouldneed to understand the principles and philosophy of Tai Ji.No one should deviate from these principles and philosohpy.The movements can be developedand modified but the principles are eternal.The external forms may differ from person to person but the principles are standart and unvarying.Because of this,there is no basis for differentiation by schools.Instead a spirit of a single family should prevail.Common interest of the art should take precedence over personal interest.An open attitude should emerge,bearing in mind the spirit of the founder and predecessors to propagate the philosophy of Tai Ji thoughoutthe world so as to improve the health of mankind.

2 Q:How should we practice Tai Ji in order to reach accuracy?

Answer: The gap between accurate and non-accurate achievement is wide.Remember the words of the old master,Wang Tsung Yueh that the body must be naturally and vertically balanced bearing in mind the principles of being relaxed,rounded and awareness of the various parts of the body.During practice of the set movements,one must be careful,concious or alert,observant and must feel where one is moving.Otherwise there is form without substance and deception to people.To achieve accuracy,the principles of Tai Ji must be followed in addition to correct methods of practising.A good master is necessary coupled with one's own constant research.The art must be learned progressively having to be on firm ground first before advancing to the next step.Personal requirements are also important.One must be determant,confident,persevering and motivated.A secure means of livelihood and having normal environment coupled with single-mindedness,constant learning and practice and clear understanding of the principles throroughly - all this will lead to achievment of accuracy.This is in contrast to those who want to learn fast,who concern themselves with the external forms and who learn to practise sporadically.These hope to learn first and be corrected later not realising that it is worse than having a new person learning from scratch.Others take the principles of Tai Ji lightly or superficially and liken the art to a common exercise,drill or dance.All this has form but no substance.One's body must be likened to a perfect machine where a wrong spare part will affect the operation of the machine.The founder of Tai Ji has said,"Achieving the Dao is important,acquiring the skill in the art is secondary;not learning my Dao,he is not my student." Therefore also important would be honesty and righteousness or a good moral character.

3 Q: There are different forms of Tai Ji?Are the principles different?

Answer: The founder created the art.But through the years,the forms of Tai Ji have differed:some have 24 basic movements while others have 37; some have 64 set movements and some have 72 while others have 108 movements or even 124.There are long sets and short sets.Movements have been large and expansive and have been small and compact.Some emphasised high postures;others opt for low ones.Some practise slowly;others practise at a faster pace.All this divergence is writter by men.What is important is that the principles remain the same.Different masters with different temperaments have been following the basic principles through the ages.They have engaged in continous research and training.They have reviewed and improved the art until the ultimate objective is achieved where form becomes formless,limbs are no more important,brute force becomes nonexistent and stiffness has given way to being fully relaxed.Character formation has advanced to the stage of "non-self" and of non-resistance so that the whole body is used and hands are no more used as hands.Youthfulness and longevity are attained.It is easy to master correct forms as the Qi and the principles of the art are internally harmonised.Harmonisation is also to be achieved between the upper,middle and lower parts and between the left and the right body.Even though difficult it is relatively easier to master correct forms compared to aquiring skill in the art.This is so as in training or practising there are a number of normally undetectable parts of the body that are difficult to keep under control from the aspects of speed,timing,rhythm and balance.Because of this,skill in the art is difficult to acquire.But then as the founder says,"Understanding one portion of the art would mean being enlightened on all portions or parts.Then all schools and sects become one."

4 Q: Is it better to practise Tai Ji more frequently or less frequently?

Answer: There are no extremes in Tai JI.The essence is in the training method.If the method is not correct,it is no different from ordinary drills with a lot of time spent but relatively little achievement.So it is not a question of practising more or less frequently but practising correctly.That is,the central equilibrium must be vertically maintained.Every movement must be disciplined such that the posture is vertically balanced.The principles remain unchanged:there is straightness in a curve and vice versa.There must be constant learning and practice,understanding the principles and the less obvious points.Mastery of this will produce skill naturally.There is no question,therefore of practising too much or too little but rather of practising correctly.

5 Q: Is it correct to practise the art fast or to practise it slow?

Answer: The earth rotates at a constant and specific rate. Similary,Tai Ji should not be practised too slowly or too fast but should be practised comfortably.The human body must be moved naturally otherwise there would be weaknesses. If the practice is too fast,breathing is affected resulting in uneven respiration,breathlessness and the heart pulsating too fast.If the practice is too slow,the limbs and the joints become stiff.Qi is blocked and is locally stagnant,intent or consciousness is employed but the Qi is not flowing.Internal force and Qi must be synchronised.Internally,there is the harmony of the libido,energy,Qi and spirit while externally,the mind,consciousness(or intent)and body are also harmonised and in turn both the internal and external harmonies are synchronised.Muscles must be relaxed and all parts of the body are naturally without tension.It is not possible therefore to say practising fast is correct or practising slow is correct as this has to be based on the standard or level of achievement of the student.One must practise until the whole body is relaxed and comfortably balanced.Once there is internal and external synchronisation,then the question of slow and fast in practice is unimportant.At this stage,one gets the feeling that the upper portion of the body is like the drifting of clouds and the lower portion is like the flowing of water.Consciousness is continuous and is harmonised with movement.All parts of the body are natural and are unified.There is then no question of being fast or slow.

6 Q: Is it correct to have either high or low postures in the set movements of Tai Ji?

Answer: The art of Tai Ji does not distinguish high and low postures,but is rather based on the idea of four "balances" or equilibriums: 1 balance in the magnitude of the posture or movement such as both sides of the body must have "balanced" amount of spatial displacement when moving; 2 accuracy or precision achieved simultaneously by all parts of the body; 3 bodily balance when moving or turning; 4 steadiness particularly when moving.



External and internal balance or harmony must be cultivated where there is no slanting of the central axis of the body.when hind force is invoked,the hind knee being bend will move up or straighten slightly though the height of the body remains unchanged.This is so as consciousness(or intend) and Qi would"close"centrally instead of coming up while the bent knee is used to adjust accordingly.Consciousness is used to lead the muscles in relaxing.Joints,muscles and ligaments must then be loosened,relaxed and "thrown"open but still linked.The body is then erect and comfortable.consciosness is also used to "move"Tai Ji principles to parts of the body.Having achieved"four balances and eight steadiness,"the question of high and low postures is then answered individually.

7 Q : How can substantiality and insubstantiality be distinguished between left and right or between top and bottom parts of the body?

Answer: The muscles,the skeleton and the nerves are parts of the body system.when practising the movements,the use of consciousness to sink and relax the body is most important.The centre of gravity is moved while perserving the uprightness of the central axis of the body.It is important to focus on steadiness,tranquillity,relaxation and rootedness.The movements propel the external movements in a continuous or uninterrupted fashion.Internal force is gernerated with turning movements.After a long time,the whole body is in balance.When left and right is distinguished,one is substantial and the other insubstantial along the pattern of "cross alignment".For instance,together with the distinction between top and bottom parts of the body,when the left upper part of the body is substantial,the left lower part is insubstantial and similarywhen the right upper part of the body is substantial,the right lower part is insubstantial. This pattern of cross alignment is used in shifts of the centre of gravity from one leg to the other.This is similar to the "cross-roads"of the nervous system.When moving Qi,therefore,one must separate substantial from insubstantial,move the step without moving the body or moving the body and not the hand.If in moving a step,the body also moves,then it is not separating substantial from insubstantial.If in moving the body,the hand also moves,then the shoulder and the hands are not relaxed.It is important to follow the principles of using consciousness to propel movement.The top and bottom,left and right portions of the body must be coordinated.a rounded grinding stone may move but the centre is not moving.All parts of the body become one system characterised by lightness and agility,roundness and smoothness,even respiration,alternate opening and closing like that of the sea where with movement from one part of the sea,all parts are also moved.The movements are guided by consciousness and are properly regulated like the regular movements of the waves in the sea.

8 Q: How could the movements be practised in order that they can be usefully applied?

Answer: Take the five loosening(or relaxing) exercises as an illustration.These exercises are based on Tai JI principles.During practice there must be full concentration since any distraction will nullify any effects.Bear in mind the three points of non-mobility:the head which must be locked on to the body,the hands which must not move of its own volition and the soles of the feet which must be still and rooted to the ground.Consciousness(or intend)will lead the Qi along.Steps are made without affecting or moving the body.Turning movements start from the waist and hips with hands propelled from the waist and hips in accordance with the principle that all movements originate from the waist.Principles must be understood and no movements are separated from the principles.Once you make it internally you are also "through" externally.Once you are fully relaxed,you can change according to circumstances and can therefore,neutralise an oncoming force.You would have reached that position of "non-self" where the whole body is the weapon and the hands are no more used as hands.If you are not able to usefully apply your movements then you still have not understood the basics of the five relaxing exercises.If you have not mastered the essentials,then there is no point of talking about application of the movements.

9 Q : What is the rationale for relaxing the abdomen and withdrawing the coccyx(or tailbone)?

Answer: Qi is stored in the Dan Tien as a result of using consciousness to sink the Qi to this point.From here Qi should circulate to the whole body.If Qi just remains in the Dan Tien,then the abdomon will have the sensation of being styffed.Only when Qi circulates throughout the body will the abdomen be relaxed and pliable.After a time,the abdomen will acquire some "bouncy" or"springy" effect and Qi would have been circulating to the whole body.Qi can be occluded or absorbed into the backbone.the Song of the Thirteen Postures says,"If the abdomen is thoroughly relaxed,then the Qi will rise."So do not just store the Qi in the abdomen otherwise it will simply bloat.Having coccyx withdrawn means there is no protrusion of the buttocks while making sure at the same ime that the hip joints are not"sliding"forward.This must be combined with relaxing the abdomen and both requirements must be met at the same time.Otherwise,there is no rootness while the waist is stiff resulting in vertical imbalance or disequilibrium.It is important to maintain the uprightness of the central axis of the body in order to achieve central equilibrium.A test can be made as follows to see whether all this has been done correctly all along:use one thump to press the abdomen and release the thumb suddenly.There should be a bouncing or springy effect of the abdomen.At the same time,the seat of the buttocks behind should be very soft to the touch.

10 Q : What is true spirit of Tai Ji?

Answer: Good and famous masters of Tai Ji teach the same stuff but students will learn differently.This is because students differ in natural endowment and physical make-up.The real acquisition of the art is not in just mastering the external forms but also in mastering the principles and philosophy.The learner must be a man of reason having learnt,practised and understood the art successfully.He applies those principles and philosophy to his daily life. He will not take unfair advantage or be selfish.He is wholeheartedly devoted to Tai Ji.He shares the founder's spirit of striving for mankind to be physically and mentally healthy.This would be the true Tai Ji spirit.

11Q: How many times must we practice the set movements everyday?

Answer: The important principle is moderation.The practising technique must be correct in the first place.Some people say you must practise the whole set of movements ten times a day with one set lasting about 25 minutes.This only focuses on quantity and is wasting Qi and energy.It is contrary to the basic principles of Tai Ji succeeding in only making you sweat and reducing weight.It is not beneficial to the development of the internal force,internal organs or gererally the body internally.Grandmaster Cheng Man Ching has said,"I practise the mobilisation of the internal force and Qi using the 37 basic movements every day.One set of movements lasts only 7 minutes." Practising too much or too little is subject to whether it is practised correctly or not. Utilising my experience and following my practising technique,students are encouraged to practise every morning and evening using about 5 minutes to practise a particular movement or posture(dividing each of them into 2 parts)over and over again.Those studens who do so are likely to succeed.

12 Q: Some students have been learning and practising Tai Ji for several years and are yet unstable.Why is this so?

Answer: A lot of students are using wrong learning and practising technique.Students must start with understanding the Dao of philosophy,then the principles,then using the correct method and finally putting in the effort.He must understand the relationship of man and his surroundings or the universe and use the method of Qi to practice.He must be humble and persistent in his practice.Slowly,rootedness will result and the method of practising be understood.Understand the principles and be aware of the less obvious and unnoticeable aspects in slowing acquiring skill.Being rooted and having internal force can never be observed externally.They can be accomplished through correct method.In practising the movement and developing the internal force,the joints of the body must be loosened and yet linked.The whole body is relaxed and is not easily pushed over by an opponent.Substantiality is distinguished from insubstantiality.Aim to be flexible and pliable like a snake whose tail will come in to help if you attack the head,or vice versa or whose tail and head will assist when the centre is attacked.Be responsive to consciousness(or intent),then tranquillity and pliability can be achieved.It is easier to lift off a 200 katies iron rod than to lift up a 100 katies iron chain.This illustrates the principles of throroughly relaxed joints.Students must also understand the application of yin and yang in the movements and push hand exercises.Yin and yang principles are in Tai Ji which encompasses the universe:all movements whether divided according to upper and lower body,right and left,front and back,internal and external must not deviate from the principles of substantiality and insubstantiality.Moving and stillness alternate continously:Yin does not depart from Yang and vice versa.When Yang moves,Yin also moves and vice versa.This principle must be understood when practising the set movements. The body and the character is trained together as is the acquisition of the Dao and the art.Dao is likened to yin while the art or skill is the yang.Yang is evolved from yin at yin's completion.Being relaxed,stillness and being rooted become yin comonents.Neutralisation of force forms the basic foundation where no strength is used.Stillness is like that of the mountain.No change is seen but it is capable of a lot of changes.The founder has said,"Dao is the basis,art is the consequential".One must therefore acquire Dao by learning not to resist,for only then will the body learn to be obedient.In attacking and defending,one must understand the method,then acquire insubstantiality and quietude.Only then will the defence be solid.Attacking will also be successful as one is naturally comfortable.In pushing hands exercise,one must learn to achieve non-resistance and stickiness.Having achieved stickiness,then one can achieve the ability to neutralise force.With adequate reserves,the neutrasising ability is applied with an involuntary exertion of internal force.

13 Q: How should a student relate to his teacher?

Answer: In the present day,science is very advanced affecting all aspects of human endeavour day by day.This gives rise to stress and keen competition in business having a telling effect on the spirit.This is a common malady.This is why Tai Ji an ancient art,is popular and a common practice.It has no secrets.It is equitable to all as it discriminates against no student.But students often commit errors in practising the art.Students should bear in mind the following pointers:

1. Respect the teacher and accept the philosophy or Dao of the art;
2. Be honest and do not take unfair advantage;
3. Be conscientious and serious,think,observe and feel or being aware during practice;
4. Progress step by step;
5. Be humble and practice constantly; and
6. follow all the principles mentioned earlier when practising by themselves.

Singapore Thai-Chi Society
 
As the Society is a non-profit organization, a minimum charge is levied on the members to defray the essential expenses such as the utility bills.
 

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