Wednesday, January 6, 2010

My taiji is not like all others that bear the same name.
Many use the terms and the name, but are far from what I know as taijiquan.
My taijiquan is not mine, but I make it my own through my use and introspection.

Taiji consists of eight fundamental energies, however mine has ten energies.
I will share my present formulation of the eight energies of taijiquan. Please forgive that it is not the same as the one you may know and love. It contains elements of classical taijiquan, but also contains older elements and aspects. You will note that after the first foundational energy, that each section consists of pairs of energies, each with aspects, attributes, martial technique and a poetic expression pertaining to the nature of the energy and the Bagua. One of the attributions you will note is a Guardian of the 8 directions that comes from Vedic works. I dedicate this to the Lord who may by known only by nature:

Ashttamoorti: the 8 faced
Sookshamatanu: subtle bodied
Satvika: soft natured
Paramatma: the ultimate
Jagadvyapi: pervades the universe
Sthanu: immovable
Shashvata: eternal
Sahastrapati: having a thousand forms
Ananta: infinite

10 energies of taiji
The first energy is not counted, because of what it is; it is Wuji.
And so it starts us off with the number Zero. If our eight energies are the eight directions of the compass circle, then the first energy, the energy of Zero is the undifferentiated point at the center of the circle.

0 original stillness, undifferentiated as the beginning
Lord Vishnu as undifferentiated foundation or a source without origin or end.

All of the basic 10 exist as paired energies, being reciprocal and part of each other, each set consists of two energies that exist as unified dualities.

Set A, the wave itself, unified duality of the void and full:

1 Wave swells
Mortality, the front of a wave that is like a balloon filled with energy, full.
Yama, lord of the afterlife death, what lives will die. South. Growth.

The martial technique is to ward off, to use the floating part of the wave.

The tree swells slowly up towards heaven.

2 Wave fades
Immortality, the return or fall of the wave to neutrality, void
Kubara, lord of shadows, immortal void. North. Decay.

The martial technique is to roll back, to use the falling part of the wave.

The tree falls and returns to the earth.

Set B, Fluid and Solid, unified duality of wave properties.
These are the aspects of physicality, mass and energy.
3 wave fluidity
the nature of fluidity, which is a wave transmitting or traveling through, like two magnets coming together (+ to -) or reverse.
Varuna, Lord of fluid nature. West. Softness

The martial technique is to transmit into and through using a wave, using the wave like a fluid interaction.

The wave ripples through the water, pressing along.

4 wave solidity
the nature of solidity, which is a wave arriving and impacting, like two magnets pushing apart, (- to -) or (+ to +)
Indra, Wielder of solidity: Vajra his weapon is the name of diamond. East. Hardness

The martial technique is use the wave like a solid pushing (meeting resistance) into the object. Using the wave like an object interaction.

Fire arises where energy meets resistance.

Set C, Assembly and dis-assembly, the duality of gathering and disbursing.
These are the aspects of resonance (misunderstood as creation)
and dissonance (misunderstood as destruction) .
5 wave converging
The addition of energies into a larger unity which changes the direction of the original wave
Vayu, Lord of wind. Northwest. Creation,

The martial technique is to add to a wave using another one, to pluck it like wind moving a falling leaf, controlling it.

The wind sweeps the clouds along.

6 wave disbursing
The separation of energies into divided parts, like a wave breaking into smaller parts though dissonant properties in it
Angi, lord of fire, fire disburses what it consumes. Southeast, Destruction.

The martial technique is to use the wave to break apart a wave or object, breaking, splitting, snapping, tearing twisting.

The lightning shatters the tree as the thunder roars.

Set D, Absorbing and releasing, duality of reception and emission,
These are the aspects of absorption of energy and release of energy.
7 wave containing, enveloping
A wave overtaking and capturing another wave by following it so that the original wave is led along by adding to it.
Soma, Moon, the moon receives the energy of the sun and reflects it as it's own, Northeast. Reflection (not deflection)

The martial technique is to use the wave to follow another wave and thus lead it by following it, enveloping it, using it as ones own energy.

The valley forms as the earth absorbs it, a lake forms.

8 wave releasing
a wave is released out of and into
Surya, the Sun, releases energy constantly. Southwest, Emission.

The martial technique is to release a wave, letting it separate from you, but not disbursing or breaking apart but rather issuing/launching.

The mountain arises, released by the earth.

Set E, Duality of consciousness as undifferentiated with thought as differentiated.
These are the aspects of mind being and functioning.
9 attained stillness, undifferentiated at the end
Vishnu as both foundation and return, Lord of return to undifferentiated-ness. Down. Inside part of circle. Taiji. Perception/consciousness (undivided)

The martial technique is be of neutral mind, not with intent of ones own, this allows the use of the main 8 energies.

10 reciprocity, application and manifestation as system
Brahma, Lord of focused consciousness, breath and word, the comprehension and use of information. Up... realization of. (outside part of circle) (recognition/correlation)

The martial technique is to be of an alert mind, recognizing the energy of the other through keen focus, being acutely aware of the other person.

Make of it what you will.