Breath Classic Energy Meditation Mindset Philosophy principle qigong Taoism

The Twelve Methods of Yin Xian Fa

The main purpose of Yin Xian Fa is to repair the body, regulate the mind, restore the original breath and ultimately reverse and replenish the slow expenditure of pre-natal through the aging process. 

还原法 Huan Yuan Fa 
Restoring Methods

Huan Yuan literal translates as “Returning to the Origin.” These are methods to quiet and collect the mind and regulate the body, breath, and mind. In alchemical terms, this stage could be likened to cleaning out your attic or basement in preparation to build the laboratory. The next stage, Bu Lou Fa, involves repairing the fixtures and finally Zhu Ji Fa will see through the completion of one’s internal laboratory.

第一法 收心静坐 Shouxin Jingzuo
The First Method: Sitting and Collecting the Mind

第二法 调身安体 Tiao Shen An Ti
The Second Method: Regulating the Body

第三法 无视返听 Wu Shi Wu Ting
The Third Method: See Nothing, Hear Nothing

第四法 收视返听 Shoushi Fan Ting
The Fourth Method: Watching and Listening

第五法 调整凡息 Tiaozheng Fan Xi
The Fifth Method: Regulating the Breath

第六法 调心安神 Tiao Xin An Shen
The Sixth Method: Regulating the Heart/Mind

第七法 调养真息 Tiaoyang Zhen Xi
The Seventh Method: Restoring the Original Breath

补漏法 Bu Lou Fa 
Tonifying Methods

Methods for mending leakage. At this stage the cultivator learns to seal the three lower Yin doors (三阴) and seven upper Yang windows (七窍). The Hun (魂) resides in the Liver without leaking out the eyes, Jing (精) resides in the Kidneys without leaking out the ears, Shen (神) resides in the heart without leaking out the mouth, Po (魄) resides in the Lungs without leaking out the nose, and Yi (意) resides in the Spleen without leaking out the pores.

第八法 修无漏身 Xiu Wu Lou Shen
The Eighth Method: Mending all Leakage

第九法 内视返听 Nei Guan Fan Ting
The Ninth Method: Internal Gazing

筑基法 Zhu Ji Fa 
Foundation Methods

The cessation of ego (识神) and birth of the real consciousness (真神). 

第十法 凝神寂照 Ning Shen Jizhao
The Tenth Method: Crystallizing the Spirit

第十一法 听息随息 Ting Xi Sui Xi
The Eleventh Method: Follow the Original Breath

第十二法 养心沐浴 Yang Xin Muyu
The Twelfth Method: Nourishing the Original Spirit

引仙法共十二法 Yin Xian Fa Gong Shi’er Fa The Twelve Methods of Yin Xian Fa

Classic Philosophy principle qigong

Balancing Yin and Yang

Within the image of Water comes forth fulfillment.

Within the image of Fire creation is completed.

Heaven and Earth are then in their proper positions,

Returning to the Source is then assured.

The Sexual Teachings of the Jade Dragon: Taoist Methods for Male Sexual Revitalization
by Hsi Lai
ISBN 0892819634

Classic Martial Art Philosophy principle pushhands

The five essentials for victory

Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory: (1) He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight. (2) He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces. (3) He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks. (4) He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared. (5) He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.

Hence the saying: If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.

Sun Tzu Chapter 3: Attach by Stratagem Translated by Lionel Giles

Classic Philosophy Taoism Zen

The ego is a monkey

The ego is a monkey catapulting through the jungle: Totally fascinated by the realm of the senses, it swings from one desire to the next, one conflict to the next, one self-centered idea to the next. If you threaten it, it actually fears for its life. Let this monkey go. Let the senses go. Let desires go. Let conflicts go. Let ideas go. Let the fiction of life and death go. Just remain in the center, watching. And then forget that you are there.

Hua Hu Ching X

Breath Classic Energy principle qigong

The Jade Tablet

To circulate the qi (xing qi)
Swallow it so that it will gather
If it is gathered, it will expand into spirit (shen)
When it expands, it will drop.
When it drops, it will become stable.
When it is stable, it will be solid.
When it is solid, it will sprout.
When it sprouts, it will grow.
When it grows, it will return.
When it returns, it will be heavenly.
The heavenly is revealed in the rising of qi;
The earthly is revealed in the sinking of qi.
Follow this and you will live (Shun zi sheng).
Oppose it, and you will die (Ni zi si).

500 B.C. inscription on a jade tablet
Ken Cohen The Essential Qigong Training Guide

p. 7

Classic Meditation Philosophy principle qigong Taoism

The Racehorse and the Nag

by Liu I-Ming

A racehorse, a swift runner, can travel hundreds of miles in a day. A nag, ambling along, takes ten days to cover the same distance. Although one is fast and one is slow, yet what they achieve is the same.

What I realize as I observe this is the Tao of the relative speed of effective work.

Generally speaking, people are sharp or dull by nature, greater or lesser in strength. If people who are dull by nature want to emulate those who are sharp by nature, or those of little strength want to emulate those of great strength, they will be unable to keep up, and will injure themselves by the strain.

Therefore a complete sage said that those who are born knowing are the best, those who know by learning are the next, and those who learn the hard way are next after that. When it come to knowledge it self, however, that is one. Some may carry it out swiftly, some may carry it out forcibly. When it comes to the achievement, however, that is one. Among these three kinds of people, it may be difficult for some and easy for others, slow for some and fast for others, but all are able to know the Tao and attain the Tao.

The only trouble is when people have no will. Without will, not only is it impossible to act on the Tao, it is impossible even to know it. If you have the will, study it widely, question it closely, ponder it carefully, understand it clearly, carry it out earnestly; multiply the efforts of the ordinary person a hundredfold, and you can actually master this Tao. Even if you are ignorant you will become enlightened, even if you are weak you will become strong – no one who has done this has ever failed to reach the realm of profound attainment of self-realization.

Nevertheless, there are many Taoists in the world who cannot with true heart regard the essence of life as most important. They talk about the virtue of the Tao, but in their hearts they are criminals and gangster. They want their imaginings of the Tao, and the want their greedy ambitions too. They are easily angered and unreceptive.

The intellectuals among them depend on their ability to memorize a few “spiritual” sayings, and think they have the Way. Consequently they disregard others and will not seek enlightened teachers or visit capable friends, thus mistaking the road ahead.

The dull ones do not know to investigate principles, and do not distinguish the false from the true. Having studied some “side-door” practices, playing around on twisted byways, they also think they have the Way, and will not go to high illuminations for verification, thus holding to their routines all their lives, tapped in unbreakable fixations.

People like these types do not really think about the matter of essence and life as the single most important thing in the world, and the cultivation and maintenance of essence and life to be the single most difficult thing in world. How can this be easily known, or easily accomplished?

This is why those who study Taoism may be as numourus as hairs on a cow, but those who accomplish the Way are as rare as unicorn horns.

If you are a strong person who can be so utterly aloof of all things as to step straight into the Way, like steel forged a hundred times, with an unrelenting will to visit enlightened teachers respectfully and to investigate true principles thoroughly, then it does not matter wheter you are sharp or dull by nature – eventually you will emerge on the Way, and will definitely not have wasted your years.

Awakening to the Tao
by Liu I-Ming translated by Thomas Cleary
ISBN: 159030344X
p. 77-79

Classic Energy Martial Art principle pushhands taiji

Tai Chi Chuan Tao

Poem of Zhang Xiumu

Lai (Zhide)´s Tai-chi is the principle of Quan,
A single line runs through Heaven, Man and Earth.

Noumenon of Tai-chi is the innate Qi,
Dividing yin and yang form postnatal body.

Strategy to opponent attrack is magic number one (unitary Qi),
Flowing Qi comes from the centre cavity.

Training way is the practice of the innate Bei Si Kuo,
Tao triggers creation and transformation, changes unlimited.

Reference: Tai Chi Chuan Tao

Classic Martial Art Mindset principle taiji

What is the 10 essentials of tai chi chuan?

Following are the Ten Essentials of Tai Chi Chuan Orally transmitted by Yang Chengfu Recorded by Chen Weiming Translated by Jerry Karin

  1. Empty, lively, pushing up and energetic
    ‘Pushing up and energetic’ means the posture of the head is upright and straight and the spirit is infused into its apex. You may not use strength. To do so makes the back of the neck stiff, whereupon the chi and blood cannot circulate freely. You must have an intention which is empty, lively (or free) and natural. Without an intention which is empty, lively, pushing up and energetic, you won’t be able to raise your spirit.
  2. Hold in the chest and pull up the back
    The phrase ‘hold in the chest’ means the chest is slightly reserved inward, which causes the chi to sink to the cinnabar field (dan1 tian2). The chest must not be puffed out. If you do so then the chi is blocked in the chest region, the upper body becomes heavy and lower body light, and it will become easy for the heels to float upward. ‘Pulling up the back’ makes the chi stick to the back. If you are able to hold in the chest then you will naturally be able to pull up the back. If you can pull up the back, then you will be able to emit a strength from the spine which others cannot oppose.
  3. Relax the waist
    The waist is the commander of the whole body. Only after you are able to relax the waist will the two legs have strength and the lower body be stable. The alternation of empty and full all derive from the turning of the waist. Hence the saying: ‘The wellspring of destiny lies in the tiny interstice of the waist. Whenever there is a lack of strength in your form, you must look for it in the waist and legs.
  4. Separate empty and full
    In the art of Tai Chi Chuan, separating full and empty is the number one rule. If the whole body sits on the right leg, then the right leg is deemed ‘full’ and the left leg ’empty’. If the whole body sits on the left leg, then the left leg is deemed ‘full’ and the right leg ’empty’. Only after you are able to distinguish full and empty will turning movements be light, nimble and almost without effort; if you can’t distinguish them then your steps will be heavy and sluggish, you won’t be able to stand stably, and it will be easy for an opponent to control you.
  5. Sink the shoulders and droop the elbows
    Sinking the shoulders means the shoulders relax open and hang downward. If you can’t relax them downward, the shoulders pop up and then the chi follows and goes upward, causing the whole body to lack strength. Drooping the elbows means the elbows are relaxed downward. If the elbows are elevated then the shoulders are unable to sink. When you use this to push someone they won’t go far. It’s like the ‘cut off’ energy of external martial arts.
  6. Use Intent Rather than Force
    The taiji classics say, “this is completely a matter of using intent rather than force’. When you practice taijiquan, let the entire body relax and extend. Don’t employ even the tiniest amount of coarse strength which would cause musculo-skeletal or circulatory blockage with the result that you restrain or inhibit yourself. Only then will you be able to lightly and nimbly change and transform, circling naturally. Some wonder: if I don’t use force, how can I generate force? The net of acupuncture meridians and channels throughout the body are like the waterways on top of the earth. If the waterways are not blocked, the water circulates; if the meridians are not impeded the chi circulates. If you move the body about with stiff force, you swamp the meridians, chi and blood are impeded, movements are not nimble; all someone has to do is begin to guide you and your whole body is moved. If you use intent rather than force, wherever the intent goes, so goes the chi. In this way – because the chi and blood are flowing, circulating every day throughout the entire body, never stagnating – after a lot of practice, you will get true internal strength. That’s what the taiji classics mean by “Only by being extremely soft are you able to achieve extreme hardness.” Somebody who is really adept at taiji has arms which seem like silk wrapped around iron, immensely heavy. Someone who practices external martial arts, when he is using his force, seems very strong. But when not using force, he is very light and floating. By this we can see that his force is actually external, or superficial strength. The force used by external martial artists is especially easy to lead or deflect, hence it is not of much value.
  7. Synchronize Upper and Lower Body
    In the taiji classics ‘Synchronize Upper and Lower Body is expressed as: “With its root in the foot, emitting from the leg, governed by the waist, manifesting in the hands and fingers – from feet to legs to waist – complete everything in one impulse.” * When hands move, the waist moves and legs move, and the gaze moves along with them. Only then can we say upper and lower body are synchronized. If one part doesn’t move then it is not coordinated with the rest.
  8. Match Up Inner and Outer
    What we are practicing in taiji depends on the spirit, hence the saying: “The spirit is the general, the body his troops”. If you can raise your spirit, your movements will naturally be light and nimble, the form nothing more than empty and full, open and closed. When we say ‘open’, we don’t just mean open the arms or legs; the mental intent must open along with the limbs. When we say ‘close’, we don’t just mean close the arms or legs; the mental intent must close along with the limbs. If you can combine inner and outer into a single impulse, then they become a seamless whole.
  9. (Practice) Continuously and Without Interruption
    Strength in external martial arts is a kind of acquired, brute force, so it has a beginning and an end, times when it continues and times when it is cut off, such that when the old force is used up and new force hasn’t yet arisen, there is a moment when it is extremely easy for the person to be constrained by an opponent. In taiji, we use intent rather than force, and from beginning to end, smoothly and ceaselessly, complete a cycle and return to the beginning, circulating endlessly. That is what the taiji classics mean by “Like the Yangtze or Yellow River, endlessly flowing.” And again: “Moving strength is like unreeling silk threads”. These both refer to unifying into a single impulse*.
  10. Seek Quiescence within Movement
    External martial artists prize leaping and stopping as skill, and they do this till breath (chi) and strength are exhausted, so that after practicing they are all out of breath. In taiji we use quiescence to overcome movement, and even in movement, still have quiescence. So when you practice the form, the slower the better! When you do it slowly your breath becomes deep and long, the chi sinks to the cinnabar field (dan1 tian2) and naturally there is no deleterious constriction or enlargement of the blood vessels. If the student tries carefully he may be able to comprehend the meaning behind these words.  


    Classic Form Martial Art taiji

    The key points to observe in T’ai Chi Practice

    1. Relax the neck and suspend the head from the crown point.
    2. The eyes should focus and concentrate on the direction in which the ch’i flows.
    3. Relax the chest and the back.
    4. Drop and relax the shoulders; drop and relax the elbows.
    5. The wrist should be set comfortably while the fingers stretch outward.
    6. The entire body must be vertical and balanced.
    7. The coccyx must be pulled forward and upward with the mind.
    8. Relax the waist and the juncture of the thighs and pelvis.
    9. The knees should stay between relaxed and not-relaxed.
    10. The sole of the foot should sink and attach comfortably to the ground.
    11. Clearly separate the substantial and the insubstantial.
    12. Each part of the body should be connected to every other part.
    13. The internal and external should combine together; breathing should be natural.
    14. Use the mind, not physical strength.
    15. The ch’i attaches to the spinal column and sinks into the tan t’ien
    16. Mind and internal power should connect together.
    17. Each form should be smooth and connected with no unevenness or interruption, and the entire body should be comfortable.
    18. The form should not be too fast, and it should not be too slow.
    19. Your posture should always be proportionate.
    20. The real application of the form should be hidden, not obvious.
    21. Discover calm within action and action within calm.
    22. First the body should be light; then it will become limber. When limber it should move freely. Whoever moves freely will be able to change the situation as needed.

    Waysun Liao Tai Chi Classics
    ISBN 1570627495
    p. 126-127

    Classic Martial Art Philosophy principle taiji

    The Eight Truths of T’ai Chi

    1. Do not be concerned with form. Do not be concerned with the ways in which form manifests. It is best to forget your own existence.

    2. Your entire body should be transparent and empty. Let inside and outside fuse together and become one..

    3. Learn to ignore external objects. Allow your mind to guide you and act spontaneously, in accordance with the moment.

    4. The sun sets on the western mountain. The cliff thrusts forward, suspended in space. See the ocean in its vastness and the sky in its immensity.

    5. The tiger’s roar is deep and mighty. The monkey’s cry is high and shrill.
    So should you refine your spirit, cultivating the positive and the negative.

    6. The water of spring is clear, like fine crystal. The water of the pond lies still and placid. Your mind should be as the water and your spirit like the spring.

    7. The river roars. The stormy ocean boils. Make your ch’i like these natural wonders.

    8. Seek perfection sincerely. Establish life. When you have settled the spirit, you may cultivate the ch’i.

    Translations of early Unknown Tai Chi Masters

    Waysun Liao Tai Chi Classics
    ISBN 1570627495
    p. 126

    Breath Classic Head Martial Art posture principle pushhands Shoulder Structure taiji Waist

    Song of Substance and Function

    1. Taijiquan. Thirteen postures.
    The marvel lies in the nature of qi; yin and yang.

    2. It changes into infinity and returns to the one.
    Returns to the one, taijiquan.

    3. The two primary principles (yin and yang) and four manifestations are without boundary.

    To ride the wind, the head is suspended at the crown, from above.

    4. I have words for those who can understand:
    “If the yonquan (bubbling well) has no root, or the yao (waist) has no control, life long practise will be in vain”.

    5. There is no secret about the substance and function, they interrelate.
    The only way is to let wide and flowing qi extend into the fingers.

    6. Always remain in central equilibrium during peng (ward off), lu (roll-back), ji (press), an (push), cai (pluck), lie (split), zhou (elbow strike) and kao (lean-on), and also when steeping forward, sitting backward, looking left, looking right, and staying centered.

    7. Neutralizing without neutralizing, yielding without yielding.
    Sit back before you move forward.

    8. When the body is like a cloud, the whole body functions as the hands.
    The hands are not [only] the hands.

    9. The mind must always remain aware.

    The Song of Substance translated by Wee Kee Jin
    Taijiquan Wuwei: A Natural Process
    ISBN 9780473097813

    p. 123

    Classic Energy Foot Head Martial Art pushhands taiji Waist

    The sixteen steeps of transferring power

    1. Root and twist the foot, allowing power to travel up the leg.
    2. Let the power spring upward at the knee.
    3. Allow the power to move freely in any direction at the waist.
    4. Drive the power upward through the back.
    5. Let the power penetrate to the crown point at the top of the head.
    6. From the crown point, mingle the power with your chi and circulate it through the entire body.
    7. Drive the power to the palm.
    8. Push the power to the fingertips.
    9. Condense the power into the bone marrow throughout the entire body.
    10. Merge the power with the spirit, making them one.
    11. Listen with your mind at the ear, almost as if condensing slightly.
    12. Concentrate at the area of your nose.
    13. Breathe to the lungs.
    14. Control the mouth, carefully regulating the breathing.
    15. Spread the power to the entire body.
    16. Push the power to the ends of body hairs.

    Tai Chi Classics
    by Waysun Liao

    ISBN 1570627495
    p. 83

    Classic Energy posture principle Shoulder Structure taiji

    Songs of the eight postures

    Attributed to T’an Meng-hsien
    (as researched by Lee N. Scheele)

    The Song of Peng

    What is the meaning of Peng energy?
    It is like the water supporting a moving boat.
    First sink the ch’i to the tan-t’ien,
    then hold the head as if suspended from above.
    The entire body is filled with springlike energy,
    opening and closing in a very quick moment. 
    Even if the opponent uses a thousand pounds of force,
    he can be uprooted and made to float without difficulty.

    The Song of Lu

    What is the meaning of Lu energy?
    Entice the opponent toward you by allowing him to advance, 
    lightly and nimbly follow his incoming force
    without disconnecting and without resisting. 
    When his force reaches its farthest extent,
    it will naturally become empty. 
    The opponent can then be let go or countered at will.
    Maintain your central equilibrium 
    and your opponent cannot gain an advantage.

    The Song of Chi

    What is the meaning of Chi energy? 
    There are two aspects to its functional use: 
    The direct way is to go to meet the opponent 
    and attach gently in one movement. 
    The indirect way is to use the reaction force
    like the rebound of a ball bouncing off a wall, or 
    a coin thrown on a drumhead, 
    bouncing off with a ringing sound.

    The Song of An

    What is the meaning of An energy? 
    When applied it is like flowing water.
    The substantial is concealed in the insubstantial. 
    When the flow is swift it is difficult to resist. 
    Coming to a high place, it swells and fills the place up;
    meeting a hollow it dives downward. 
    The waves rise and fall, 
    finding a hole they will surely surge in.

    The Song of Ts’ai

    What is the meaning of Ts’ai energy? 
    It is like the weight attached to the beam of a balance scale. 
    Give free play to the opponent’s force 
    no matter how heavy or light,
    you will know how heavy or light it is after weighing it. 
    To push or pull requires only four ounces, 
    one thousand pounds can also be balanced. 
    If you ask what the principle is, 
    the answer is the function of the lever.

    The Song of Lieh

    What is the meaning of Lieh energy? 
    It revolves like a spinning disc.
    If something is thrown onto it, 
    it will immediately be cast more than ten feet away. 
    Have you not seen a whirlpool form in a swift flowing stream? 
    The waves roll in spiraling currents. 
    If a falling leaf drops into it, 
    it will suddenly sink from sight.

    The Song of Chou

    What is the meaning of Chou energy? 
    Its method relates to the Five Elements. 
    Yin and Yang are divided above and below. 
    Emptiness and substantiality must be clearly distinguished. 
    Joined in unbroken continuity, 
    the opponent cannot resist the posture.
    Its explosive pounding is especially fearsome. 
    When one has mastered the six kinds of energy, 
    the applications become unlimited.

    The Song of K’ao

    What is the meaning of K’ao energy? 
    Its method is divided into the shoulder and back technique. 
    In Diagonal Flying Posture use shoulder, 
    but within the shoulder technique 
    there is also some use of the back. 
    Once you have the opportunity and can take advantage of the posture,
    the technique explodes like pounding a pestle. 
    Carefully maintain your own center of gravity. 
    Those who lose it will have no achievement.

    Reference: Songs Of The Eight Postures

    Classic pushhands taiji

    Li Yi Yu’s Five Character Formula

    When the heart is not quiet, one may not concentrate. Lifting the hands, moving forward, backward, left, and right, will lack focused direction. Therefore, the heart must be quiet. From the moment one initiates motion, its not determined by the self. You must quiet the heart and understand with your body. Your movements follow those of your opponent. Follow bending with extending. Do not let go nor resist. Bending and extending are not determined by you. When the opponent is strong I am also strong. When the opponent is weak I am still strong. My intent always arrives first. You must pay attention at all times. Wherever there is contact, there is a focus of concentration. In the midst of not letting go nor resisting you must gather information and proceed from there. After a long period of practice, you will be able to use this information physically. This is completely dependent upon the use of intent and not on force (jing). Eventually, the opponent is controlled by me, I am not controlled by others.

    The Body is Agile
    If the body is sluggish, one cannot advance and retreat as desired. Therefore, the body should be agile. When moving the hands, one most not be dull. If I feel the opponents power has touched my skin, my intent has already penetrated his bones. The hands support and all is unified in a single qi. If the left is heavy it becomes empty and my right hand has already struck. If the right is heavy the it becomes empty and my left has already struck. The is like a wheel. The entire body most coordinate its individual movements. If there is any part that does not move in concert with all others, the body will be in chaos and powerless. The root of the problem is found in waist and legs. First, the heart follows the body. Follow the opponent and not the self. Later, the body follows the heart while still following the opponent. If one move without following the opponent, movement will be sluggish. If movement follows the opponent, it will be alive. If one follows the opponent, one’s hands will be sensitive and the opponent’s power may be judged exactly. The distance of the opponent’s attack will not be miscalculated even by a hairs breath. Moving forward and backward, advancing and retreating will be appropriate. The longer you practice, the more refined you technique will become.

    The Qi is Stored
    If the qi is dispersed and not stored within, the body will easily lapse into chaos. The qi should be held in the spine. The breath should be smooth and fill the entire body. Inhalation is closing and storing, and exhalation is opening and releasing. During inhalation one naturally rises and holds the opponent up. During exhalation one naturally sinks and knocks the opponent away. This involves the intent leading the qi and not the strength leading the qi.

    The Force (Jing) is Complete
    The force of the entire body is trained into a unified whole. Substantial and insubstantial are clearly differentiated. When issuing force, there must be a root. The force rises from the heel, is controlled by the waist, and manifests in the fingers. It issues from the spine. One must also raise all of one’s spirit. Just as the opponent is about to issue force but has not, my force has already intercepted the opponent’s. I must not issue my force earlier or later. Even if you feel as if you skin is on fire or you are struck by a flood, you most not become the least bit perturbed. Seek the straight in the curved; first store the release; only then can you achieve consistent results. This is called borrowing the opponent’s force to use against him, or using four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds.

    The Spirit is Concentrated
    After allowing the first four requirements, it all comes down to concentrating the spirit. When the spirit is concentrated, then the one qi is stimulated and forged. The essence and qi are returned to the spirit and the qi is active and expansive. The essence and spirit are concentrated. Opening and closing regulated. Insubstantial and substantial are clearly defined. When the left is empty the right is full. When the right is full the left is empty. Insubstantial (empty) does not mean completely without power. Substantial (full) does not mean completely tight. The value of the spirit is concentration. The critical locations are the center of the chest and the waist. Its movements and use is not external. Borrow force from others. The qi issues from the spine. The qi sinks downward; it is pulled in from the shoulders into the spine and concentrated in the waist. When the qi moves downward from above, it is called closing. From the waist the qi moves up the spine and enters the arms. It is issued in the fingers. When the qi moves upward from below it is called opening. Closing is withdrawing. Opening is releasing. To understand opening and closing is to know yin and yang. At this level, power and skill improve daily. Slowly, you will come to the state where you can act at will.

    A Study of Taijiquan
    by Sun Lutang, Translated by Tim Cartmell
    ISBN 1556434626

    p. 216-18

    Classic Energy Martial Art principle pushhands taiji

    Chan Lien Tieh Sui Pu Tiu pu Ting

    This refers to the sticking aspect or adherence in Tai Chi Chuan. Chan and lien are vertical adhering movements, lifting from above and supporting from below, respectively. Tieh is adherence in the horizontal motion, sui is adherence from the rear. Pu tiu pu ting means neither to lose the adherence nor to resist.

    Reference: T’Ai Chi Ch’Uan Ta Wen, Questions and Answers on T’Ai Chi Boxing Chen Wei-Ming ( Benjamin Pang Jeng Lo & Robert W. Smith ) North Atlantic Books 1985
    ISBN: 0938190776

    p. 57