by webmaster2 on 2013/02/20

Paramount in human behavior is habit. Habit is the hidden addiction that controls every human. The human learning curve is a downward line as we age.

From the chart, one can see that as the person’s ability enhances (downward line) and he ages (horizontal line), his ability to learn is increasingly diminished. This is because the older a person gets, the more entrenched he is with his habits. The more ability he has the more habits he will develop and therefore the less chance for learning.

These are facts of life. They are not good or bad, yes or no issues. Our job is to decide what to do in view of this fact.

In learning the Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method we must first keep this in mind. We must reverse our behavior so that we can continue to learn. Of course this should not mean that we “empty our cup” in order to fill it. Knowledge that is gained cannot and should not be eradicated. We must observe our own mode of movement and check to see if we are making progress. Here is what we can do in a classroom learning scenario:

1) Ask the instructor to make corrections.
2) Ask fellow students to check forms.
3) Take photos to check our body alignment.
4) Videotape forms to evaluate again bad habits.

Originally posted on Nov 2007

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Hugo Ramiro February 23, 2013 at 11:12 am

I am happy to read this concise and accurate summary of the problem of learning. I encounter this problem everyday with myself as well as in my interactions with my patients – who are often deeply mired in unmoving habit. As humans we all have this double-edged sword.
It is actually a relief to be part of a school and system that encourages this type of behaviour – unawares habitual behaviour permeates so many other communities that at some points I have felt that there’s nothing more that can be done.
My experience has been that only the very beginners in this school reject learning from each-other, and that the overall culture is highly developed, co-operative and pragmatic. As a TaiJi brother of mine mentioned to me last summer, it is a pleasure to train with people who are intelligent about learning, and are not interested in one-upmanship and divisiveness.
Looking forward to continue to work with everyone and keeping this cauldron fired so that each of us can boil in his or her own time and work to strengthen this wonderful and cultivated lineage under our DaRen.


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