Dave Dahms

Do What You Claim 1

by Dave Dahms on 2008/08/05

Another observation I made is that pretty much everyone who has been doing taiji for sometime can tell you how taiji is supposed to be done and in most cases the things they say I don’t think are wrong but the problem I think is because everyone thinks that they are doing the concepts they talk about and that is why they are not doing them. They just think they are instead of looking at what is really going on and what is really going on is that they are not doing what they say they are doing. They are just fighting.

I think taiji should be as easy to learn as anything else because in other things you see the difference between you and an expert very easily. In taiji you see the difference between beginner and expert. In push hands so many people claim to be experts but they won’t push with you. If someone were to claim to be an expert hockey player and they can’t even skate everyone would know right away they are a fraud.

Basically Master Chen I have been thinking a lot and the more I think the more everything fits into my logic, and my logic is based off of what I see and to be true and in short the way I see it is almost everything is backwards.

Another thing is that everything not just taiji seems to be that you allow each thing to do its part and that is how something greater can be achieved.
I remember on the mountain you said the manager was worried about November and you told her that if she took care of today everything would take care of itself. It always seems that if you want something then you have do the opposite. Like if you want something to take no thought then you have to give it a lot of thinking first.

Master Chen this email is my thoughts on taiji and other things you have taught me and the reason I am sending this is because I think I am right and now that I think that I can only see how I am right so the true purpose of this email is to find out where I am wrong so any response will be apprieciated, and please hold nothing back.

First in practicing pushhands I realized what I do is nothing like the form or anything close to that. In fact what I do is  more like the opposite. The way I  saw this was if I stop in the middle of pushing with John or trying a move and then with him away I recreate the same feeling and intent I had when i was pushing him it is as if I don’t even know how to move. What happens is that my whole body is actually going upwards and even my heels the only things that are not going anywhere are my feet and the spot I was touching him.

This reminded me of how you say that it is about how fast your feet are. When I push my feet are as slow as possible. So in reality all my effort just comes back to me and my opponent does the same thing so it is who is stronger and we are both rediculously weak. I thought up an analagy.
A rocket ship needs a tremendous amount of force to move because what is pushes on moves so easily, pushing on air a rocket ship has to move enough air until the amount of air pushing it is so great that the rocket moves but a gun is much more effient because of the material and the structure. It is natures way that everything finds the easiest path. So the gun is made so that the easiest place the explosion has to go is through the barrel and the only thing in the way is the bullet. The air moves so easily that is why rocket has so much trouble moving. So I realized if you want to move then you need something that won’t budge and if you don’t want to move you need something to move.This concept seems to me as the same thing as laying the tracks. The form is a restriction and until it is no longer a restriction we can’t use it, and  the truth, is the way i see it is, that the form or proper way to move is actually freedom and that the way I move right now is the restriction. Horizontal movement versus vertical movement. The best way to move is a straight line because it transfers instantly. But we are not straight lines however Hong said seek the straight through the curve so it can be done.

… Next is rotation and spirals. In any of the stances of the circles the weight on the feet is mostly caused by the torso and if your torso moves the weight will change. Therefore if your torso is truly rotating then the centre is not moving and you don’t shift so the weight should remain the same. And if your weight never changes and you are pushing hands, the opponent’s moves must be having no effect.

Also a rotation keeps the centre intact and a true centre is just a straight line but rotation is not enough you need another direction and that movement is downward. This creates a spiral. All the spiral does is move everything in such a way so that the straight line in the centre moves and remains a straight line.

Using the torso as an example. If your torso were to be rotating and moving downward or spiraling then any force that hits it will only be moving with it. This is because when a force comes in contact with a rotation the rotation is always moving 90 degrees to that force and in physics I learned that every force is made up of component forces. These components are just forces in different directions that when you add them up they are really only in one direction.

However there is no 90 degree component in any force. And the downward movement we do is also 90 degrees so if you move down as much as you rotate then the result is you are moving at a 45 degree angle with depth to the push. And there is so much talk about 45 degrees in Practical Method taiji. So if all body parts moved this way then they would all actually moving in straight lines.

Master Chen this email is my thoughts on taiji and other things you have taught me and Read more