View this email in your browser
Hi <<First Name>>, 

A reminder to join our Thursday Meditation and Chat this evening 7-8pm Pacific Time. Zoom info is included below.

Do you know what the five levels of Taijiquan skills are? In Chen village, the five levels are described as the ratio of yin and yang cultivated in a practitioner's body:
  • 1st level: 10% yin, 90% yang
  • 2nd level: 20% yin, 80% yang
  • 3rd level: 30% yin, 70% yang
  • 4th level: 40% yin, 60% yang
  • 5th level: 50% yin, 50% yang
But what does this all mean? Yin yang primarily refers to the distinction of softness versus hardness in this context, which really means sensitivity/flexibility versus stiffness.

GM Chen Xiaowang wrote an article on the distinction of these five levels - what each level means in terms of body alignment and structure, movement characteristics, qi flow, and push hand skills. The original writing in Chinese, plus the English translation (very good IMO), and the translator's commentary are compiled into a book, properly titled The Five Levels of Taijiquan

GM Chen Xiaowang likes to talk about 'deviations', instead of using the term mistakes and errors in practice. He likens the growth of taijiquan skills to a zigzag or pendular shaped path, with deviations and course-corrections (see chart below). That is not new, but the interesting part is this: at level 1 (fun and quick growth) and level 2 (slow progress and long plateau), and the early stage of level 3, there are possibilities of deviating so far away from the path (i.e., true taijiquan) that you can't get back without a good teacher; however at level 4 and level 5, you do not need a teach any more. 

[Source: Chen, Xiaowang. 2012. The Five Levels of Taijiquan. Singing Dragon.]

For those who are serious about cultivating taijiquan skills, I do recommend this book. It should not be the only book you read, nor the bible, but it does provide valuable insights and guidance, in a very succinct fashion but with useful specifics. 

Thursday Meditation (7-7:30pm) and Chats (7:30-8pm) US Pacific Time
Zoom link: 
Meeting ID: 842 2183 7967
Passcode: 202101   

Zoom door will open at 6:55pm and we will start our meditation promptly at 7:05pm. If anyone has any request for a specific guided meditation, please bring it up before we start, or let me know via email before 6:55pm. 

🙋 Have a question or topic you'd like the group to discuss? Saw an article you'd like to share? Submit any time here:
Enjoy the sun!
My new course, Introduction to (Chen Style) Taijiquan, is open for registration. You can find out more about the course here and email me with questions.
Copyright © 2021 Moving Stillness, All rights reserved.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp