Practise Qigong for one day

Practise Qigong for one day,
One Will receive a day’s benefit.

If one stops practicing Qigong for one day,
It will be equivalent to losing one hundred days’ benefits.

If one stops practicing for one hundred days,
One get no benefit through all his life.
Life Will become an empty dream.

Theory of essence Qi and spirit

Basic contents of theory of essence, Qi and spirit
Essence, Qi and spirit is substance basis and basic elements consisting and sustaining life activity. It is commonly said that there is three kinds of treasure in the heaven, which is sun, moon and star, three kinds of treasure in the earth, which is water, fire and wind, three kinds of treasure in the body, which is essence, Qi and sprit. The theory of essence, Qi and spirit, which study the relation of essence, Qi and spirit with the life activity play an important role in the health Qi Gong.

Essence
Essence is the basic substance of body structure and it is the basis of substance sustaining all kinds of functional activity and general name of varieties of nutrients. It is different in the conception from the aspect of narrow meaning and extensive meaning. Essence is commonly essential substance for reproduction in its narrow meaning and it is a vague reference to all essential substance including Qi, blood, normal body fluid and nutrients taken from the food in the aspect of extensive meaning. Its conception also has the difference of the congenital essence and the postnatal essence. The former is essential substance for reproduction and origin of life originated from parent and the latter is nutrient substance transforming from water and cereals. The congenital and postnatal essences complement each other and the former depends on the successive breeding and cultivation of postnatal essence to take physiological effect. The latter also depend on the energy assistance of congenital essence to make generations on.

Qi
Qi is nutrient substance of which immerse and nurture the body and motive power of which push about the life activity. There are two kinds of Qi, which are comparatively congenital Qi and postnatal Qi. Congenital Qi is also called archaeus, which is the most basic and important Qi as well as motive power of life activity. Although it comes from the congenital Qi of parent, but it can help the growth and development of human body as well as warm and stimulate the physiological function of Zang Fu and meridians only through successively being supplemented and nourished by the nutrient Qi and inhaled air. Postnatal Qi, which is transported and transformed from the nutrient Qi and inhaled air, include thoracic Qi, nutrient Qi and Wei Qi. Choracic Qi, which only comes out of the respiratory tract and be in charge of respiration and utter but also passes through the blood vessel to propel and regulate the pulsation of heart and stores in the Dantian by way of descending action of lung, is combined of nutrient Qi transformed from the spleen and stomach with nature air inhaled from the lung. Nutrient Qi, which runs in the vessels with abundant nutrient, is mainly the essential part of water and cereals transported and transformed from the spleen and stomach with the function of nurturing and producing blood. Wei Qi is transported and transformed from the essential part of water and cereals. Its main function is to regulate the open and close of muscle and viscus, discharge of sweat, and sustain the stable temperature along with guarding the outer part of body and the invasion of exogenous pathogen and warming the Zang and Fu, the outer part and skin and hair etc.

Spirit
Spirit is the appearance of thinking and consciousness as well as internal Zang Fu essence. It has the same substance basis as it arises from the essence and Qi. Spirit embodies its function depending on the existence of Qi and body. Man’s normal life activity depends on the normal activity of spirit from the whole body to brain, from five sense organs and seven facial orifices to meridians, Qi and blood, essence, body normal fluid and limbs activity. There is narration in the ancient books that patient with spirit will live well and patient without spirit will die. It is thus evident that spirit is very important in life activity. Spirit can be divided into congenital spirit and postnatal spirit. That organic integration of male essence and female essence result from the birth of life is called congenital spirit, which can dominate the life activity without the governing of the mind, consciousness and thinking. Postnatal spirit eventually means the function of brain including mind, consciousness and thinking. It is the image of surroundings in the brain and dominates all the psychological activity as well as behaviour of body, in the meantime, it can affect the harmony and balance of all the physiological function. Based on the congenital spirit, postnatal spirit is also nurtured by the postnatal essence and Qi. In order to bring into the inherent action of congenital full play one should suppress the postnatal spirit and guard the former.

Application of the theory of essence, Qi and spirit in the health Qi Gong
Essence, Qi and spirit are the whole body among which can use, promote and transform each other just as the life-cultivation practicers said: accumulating spirit produces Qi, accumulating Qi produces essence, refining essence transforms into Qi, refining Qi transforms into spirit. The exercise of health Qi Gong plays a markedly promoting role in the mutual sprouting and transforming among the essence, Qi and spirit.

How to exercise the essence, Qi and spirit with the health Qi Gong, different Gong has different methods. Most of them implement that through dredging the meridians, regulating respiration and nourishing and cherishing the spirit step by step including mind concentration, inward contemplation and specific exercise and regulation of breathing of some meridians, acupoints three Dan Tian in the upper, middle and lower part of human body, especially the lower Dan Tian of which is centered between the kidneys and acupoints such as Tan Zhong, Lao Gong and Yong Quan etc. Mind concentration on abdominal Dan Tian, of which is centered on the umbilicus, mainly exercises the spirit and Qi. Except for exercising the spirit and Qi, mind concentration on Ming Men, Guan Yuan and Hui Yin mainly exercises the essence. The exercise of mind concentration on Lao Gong and Yong Quan is more helpful to induce the ascending of clearing Qi and the descending of dirty Qi. As Dan Tian, which is centered on the umbilicus, and kidneys are closely related with the Zang Fu and meridians, it decides their specific position and important action.

The health Qi Gong enhances the Qi Hua of human body by way of exercising the respiration for cultivation, which means the motion and change of Qi, and it thinks highly of life-cultivation and regulating respiration. With strong vigor, Qi is flowed and filled in the whole body. The motion of Qi including ascending-descending and coming-in and going-out is called activity of Qi. It can endlessly flow in the Zang Fu, meridians, limbs and all orifices to sustain, promote, arouse, coordinate and balance the physiological function of human body only when the activity of Qi is unblocked. The body is healthy with the smoothly movement of Qi activity. The pathological state such as Qi stagnation, abnormal rising of Qi, Qi sinking, Qi stasis, Qi depression and Qi-stagnant dysuria etc will ensue under the condition of disorder of Qi activity. As soon as the Qi activity stops, the life activity will end as well. So the Qi is the primary substance sustaining the life activity of human body. How does the health Qi Gong cultivate the life and regulate the breath? Firstly, it can arouse and invigorate the primary Qi by ways of daoyin, running Qi and kneading; secondly, it can enhance the Qihua function and improve the circulation of Qi and blood by ways of varieties of regulating mind, regulating breath and exercising the body.

Nurturing of mind is especially paid attention in the exercise of the health Qi Gong of which constantly regards the body and mind with the same origin, life and existence as the two important elements. It advocates cultivation of body and mind together and thinks that man can live a long life only when he makes the body and the mind together. The cultivation of body and mind together means that one should stress the nurture of body along with the regulation of mind in the practice of the health Qi Gong. Besides the body health, together with the happy mind, one still should make the body and the mind develop in the balanced state. To nurture the body to sustain the life and cultivate the mind. To keep the mind to settle the mind and cultivate the character. Exercising like the above-mentioned methods in a long run can cultivate and mould the noble integrity and achieve the aim of cultivating one’s heart with full essence, abundant Qi and harmony mind.

Reference:
The Health Qi Gong and theory of essence, Qi and spirit Chinese Health Qigong Association

Three Immortals Cultivation of the Ling Bao Bi Fa

Ling Bao (灵宝) translates as “Spiritual Treasure.” The Ling Bao Bi Fa outlines the San Xian Gong, “Three Immortals Cultivation,” for completing the Ling Bao and thus becoming a Zhen Ren (真人) or Real Human Being. San Xian Gong consists of thee stages: Ren Xian Gong (人仙功) Human Immortal Cultivation, Di Xian Gong (地仙功) Earthly Immortal Cultivation, and Tian Xian Gong (天仙功) Heavenly Immortal Cultivation.

“There are twelve programs of training that should be practiced in sequence. They are the following: [1] introducing yin and yang to each other, [2] gathering and disseminating fire and water, [3] mating the dragon and the tiger, [4] heating and refining the medicines of the pill, [5] ejecting the golden sparks from behind the navel, [6] returning the jade elixir to the tan tiens, using the jade elixir to refine the body, [7] returning the golden elixir to the tan tiens, using the golden elixir to refine the body, [8] moving the refined vapor to the primordial regions, [9] internal observation and exchanging the mundane for the sacred, and [10] transcendence and emanating in different forms.”


–Eva Wong, Teachings of Immortals Chung and Lu

人仙功  Ren Xian Gong
Human Immortal Cultivation

Ren Xian Gong transforms Jing into Qi (炼精化气)

第一 匹配阴阳 Pipei Yin Yang
The First Step: Merging Yin and Yang

第二 聚散水火 Ju San Shui Huo
The Second Step: Gathering and Distributing Water and Fire

第三 交媾龙虎 Jiaogou Long Hu
The Third Step: Dragon and Tiger Mating

第四 烧炼丹药 Shao Lian Dan Yao
The Fourth Step: Forging the Elixir

地仙功  Di Xian Gong
Earthly Immortal Cultivation

Di Xian Gong transforms Qi into Shen (炼气化神)

第五 肘后飞金晶 Zhou Hou Fei Jin Pin
The Fifth Step: The Flight of Golden Sparks

第六 玉液还丹 Yu Ye Huan Dan
The Sixth Step: The Jade Liquid Elixer

第七 金液还丹 Jin Ye Huan Dan
The Seventh Step: The Golden Liquid Elixer

天仙功  Tian Xian Gong
Heavenly Immortal Cultivation

Tian Xian Gong transforms Shen to the void (炼神还虚)

第八 朝元炼气 Chao Yuan Lian Qi
The Eighth Step: Facing the Origin

第九 内观交换 Nei Guan Jiaohuan
The Ninth Step: Internal Illumination

第十 超脱分形 Chaotuo Fen Xing
The Tenth Step: Physical Transcendence

Reference:
灵宝毕法•三仙功 Ling Bao Bi Fa : San Xian Gong Three Immortals Cultivation of the Ling Bao Bi Fa thetaobums.com

Links:
Brief Introduction to Ling Bao Bi Fa longmenpai.blogspot.com

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

Reference:
引仙法共十二法 Yin Xian Fa Gong Shi’er Fa The Twelve Methods of Yin Xian Fa thetaobums.com

Martial aspects of yiquan and its fighting application

Internal “Intention” for Health and Self-Defense

By Fukui Yang as told to Bob Feldman

A Short History of Yiquan and My Family’s Relationship to this Martial Art
Yiquan is a relatively new Chinese martial art created by the great master Wang Xiangzhai. Master Wang was the last and favorite student of the Xingyiquan master Guo Yunshen. After Guo died, Wang, although he was very young, was already a formidable fighter. He spent more than ten years traveling throughout China meeting other masters and improving his skill. Even as a teenager, Master Wang was already an excellent martial artist who rarely lost a challenge. After spending time at the Shaolin Temple as well as with numerous other masters, Wang incorporated many Buddhist and Daoist principles directly into his practice.

Master Wang originally came from Shen County, Hebei Province, and later moved to Tianjin City which was at that time a crossroads for many Chinese martial artists. In Tianjin there had developed a unique open exchange of ideas and techniques within the martial arts community in the early years of this century, common in the rest of China. My maternal great uncles Zhai Yuwen and Zhai Yongwen became students of Master Wang as their father, my great-great uncle, Zhai Xujin, was friendly with him. Master Zhai and Master Wang were from the same county in Hebei and had much in common. Our family’s traditional martial arts, however, were predominantly Xingyiquan and Baguazhang, as taught by Master Zhang Zhaodong, who had also introduced Master Wang to my family. My great uncles, however, always had a healthy respect for Yiquan and its fighting capabilities, although it was not their predominant system.

Another student of my great grand Uncle, Zhao Daoxin, also began to study with Master Wang and became one of his most accomplished disciples. He later followed Wang to Shanghai where he trained the resistance during the war years but, because of his association with the Guomingdang Nationalist party, was subsequently imprisoned by the Communists, only to be released after the Cultural Revolution. Master Zhao was quite well known in his own right throughout China. He was both educated and had won the 1936 All-China Full Contact Championship in Nanjing. This competition attracted representative competitors for many martial art styles all over China. It was a famous “Leitai” competition and was subsequently banned because of the numerous deaths that occurred during these fights.

After being released from prison and his reunion with my great uncles, Master Zhao agreed to teach Yiquan to both my older brother and myself. He also taught us the system that he created, Xinghuizhang, or “Spirit Meeting Palm” in which he combined Yiquan mind training with the spiralic postures of Taijiquan and Baguazhang, and the explosive movements of Xingyiquan, the “mother system” of Yiquan.

As a child I met Master Wang Xiangzhai on numerous occasions, as he spent his final years in Tianjin. I was finally given a chance to study Yiquan with his closest students in my late teens and early twenties, after I finished my university education at the Tianjin Sports Institute, and studied Yiquan for over 8 years in Tianjin with Master Zhao and several other first generation students of Master Wang.

What is Yiquan?
Yiquan can be translated as “intention” or “will” boxing. It is, according to some, the distillation of the “essence” of “Xingyiquan” and other Neijia, or internal martial arts. The core of Yiquan is standing meditation, practiced in a variety of postures, with the goal of merging one’s intention, and internal energy, with the physical power required for martial arts. If in one’s practice one only concentrates on intention, or “Yi,” but not upon energy, or “Qi,” the effects of practicing postures are weak and empty. If there is only energy practice, but no intention, one cannot apply or utilize this energy efficiently for fighting or for healing. Therefore, in order to succeed, one must practice both intention and energy in order to use Yiquan effectively as a martial art.

Master Wang had developed his unique philosophy after studying martial arts and Chinese medicine and was of opinion that one cannot see or feel energy, only the effects of it. If one attempts to focus upon feeling or moving the energy, it is very easy to have mental delusions and misinterpret somatic feelings as being the energy itself. This is perhaps the case historically with many uneducated martial artists who were not capable of explaining their own internal feelings.
In his later years, Wang Xiangzhi made an extensive study of traditional Chinese Medicine, as well as of anatomy and physiology. After the Second World War and the Communist Revolution, he began to work in a traditional hospital, and turned his attention to healing. Master Wang felt that one can feel the effects of Qi or energy, such as an increased vitality, or developing the ability to perform “fali,” that is, the emission of explosive force during fighting, or use the energy for healing. With further refinement as one’s practice advances, the energy increases within the internal organs and within the meridians. The blood circulation is also heightened, which enables us to react faster to challenging physical situations. This internal energy circulating within the organs and the meridians is called “Shen” or “Heart Spirit.”

While it is beyond the scope of this article to present an in-depth discussion of the concepts of Traditional Chinese Medicine and qigong practice, it should be noted that many current Yiquan students outside of China are taught solely to utilize standing meditation to increase their internal energy. By practicing the standing postures alone, they are not practicing the complete system of Yiquan, and it is difficult to use this energy for fighting.

While practicing the standing postures is excellent for health, it is unfortunate that some Yiquan teachers are either unfamiliar with the complete system of Yiquan or purposely withhold its martial aspects. Such teachers give their students the impression that their standing meditation will, in and of itself, enhance their fighting ability. Usually these students must study other martial arts in order to substitute for their inability to use Yiquan for fighting. While this is especially true for the majority of Western practitioners of Yiquan, in China it is still very possible to find qualified teachers and study the complete system, particularly in Beijing, Tianjin, and in Hebei Province. Personally, I am not familiar with the extent that authentic Yiquan as a fighting system is taught in other parts of China, such as Shanghai or Hong Kong, although Master Wang had some good students who moved there.

The Essential “Mind Set” Needed for Yiquan Fighting
In order to fight, one must use both intention and qi to utilize the power of the standing meditation postures, to conduct the “li” (force) outward. By engaging in standing mediation and in learning how to externalize the internal force, Wang Xiangzhai felt that Yiquan would stimulate both the circulation and the bone marrow to harden the bones and toughen the connective tissues, similar to the “Marrow Washing” which is a part of many Daoist and Buddhist practices. Yiquan does not stress the use of external techniques and applications in order to harden the body as do other systems, but rather it relies predominantly on internal meditation, push hands and fighting to harden the body and test one’s internal strength.

In order to stimulate the bone marrow and specially harden the bones, one should imagine that during both fighting and “Fali” practice, that is, the process of directing force externally outward, that the body is primarily made of bone. When one imagines this, the connective tissue, namely the muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia, will relax and not tighten. This is because tense muscles during a fight do not allow the force to be emitted efficiently. Therefore, standing meditation is utilized both to relax the mind and the soft tissues, as well as to create an environment for hardening the bone and centering our mental state.

Paradoxically, in Yiquan, one’s mental state must be both relaxed and focused simultaneously, Intention, or yi, cannot be only concentrated, as this too will lead to tightening of the soft tissues and inefficient force emission during fighting. Although to be both relaxed and focussed at the same time may seem to be paradoxical, in truth, it is not contradictory; both processes can occur simultaneously in a natural state of awareness. For example, one can be both relaxed and attentive when driving an automobile.

In addition, the postures will allow us to sink our energy and lower the center of gravity to the Dantien in order to develop a deeper root. This permits our emitted force to be conducted up from the ground through the legs, hips, waist, shoulders and upper extremities, as opposed to only from one part of the body. This greatly enhances the power and speed of “Fali.”
While the emitted force appears to be sudden and explosive to outsiders, internally one may first sense an internal drawing-in of the energy prior to its emission. This process is called “She Sen,” namely, the ability to gather energy and emit force. If one has a blockage or imbalance of the energy within the meridians or insufficient qi when one emits “Fali,” at best one’s force is minimal; at worst, this explosive stress, particularly if repeated over and over, can be stressful to the internal organs, and cause health problems later. The practice of repetitive Fali, without relaxation during standing meditation, is called “Qijieh.” Such improper repetitive Fali practice can also damage the bones, tendons, ligaments, muscles and joints.
In addition, Wang Xiangzhai felt that the movement of internal energy was intimately connected to the circulation of blood. When a practitioner “feels” or “senses” the energy circulating, the practitioner may be feeling the results of increased blood circulation; it is certainly not the actual increased circulation of energy, as energy is invisible and not something we can specifically feel, although the energy may be causing it. Wang Xiangzhai advised that during standing meditation, try to “imagine” the energy moving according to whatever internal imaging one is practicing; however, if one does feel “something,” forget about it, don’t dwell on it, let it pass.

When one has sufficient energy, one can focus the intent of the posture and emit force. This aspect of Yiquan practice is called “She Li,” during which the internal energy is accumulated for maintaining health and for fighting. While practicing She Li, one’s mind should attain a state that is relaxed and calm, confident and open during the daily practice of meditation. However, during a fight one must also bring out a “crazy” tenacious intention in order to win. This is similar to what we observe in animal fights. The difference, however, is that animals do not have higher thinking processes as do we humans, and, as humans, we must also confront our habits, fears, prohibitions and predilections during a fight. This “crazy intention” is called “She Shen.”

She Shen is often translated as the use of sound, such as in the Japanese “Kiai.” This is perhaps true in part, but it is not totally correct. She Shen rather refers to the mindset of crazy intention during which sounds may be emitted like those of an animal. The sound should be natural and spontaneous, and should, in fact be emitted from the Dantien. Regular standing meditation helps us not be become tense, not allowing our emotions to take over, thereby greatly increasing our fighting efficiency.

Real fights are usually intense and short in duration. There is little or no time to think of what techniques to utilize. Wang Xiangzhai felt that techniques in and of themselves are not useful in fighting. Rather, fighting applications should be spontaneous and natural and should appear when needed. The “techniques” of Yiquan are therefore infinite variations of natural movements found within the postures. Wang Xiangzhai often said, “The best technique is no technique.” Different postures allow us to open different types of energy. Realistically, however, we need only practice several postures to fight efficiently and naturally, if one has good yi and qi. This is because we are all different in our strengths and weaknesses.

Master Fukui Yang began his practice of internal martial arts at the age of 6 and his practice of external martial arts at the age of 8, under the guidance of his grandfather and great uncles. Master Yang and his brother began their study of Yiquan and the related martial arts of Xinguizhang and Loshuenquan under the tutelage of Masters Zhao Daoxin, Chu Jenhe and Master Zhang Entong, all first generation students of Master Wang Xiangzhai. Master Yang is the Director of Heath Mind Martial Arts (Xinyi Wushu Guan), in New York City.

Reference:
KUNGFU QIGONG – July/August 2001 MARTIAL ASPECTS OF YIQUAN AND ITS FIGHTING APPLICATION xinyiwuguan.com

Links:
Fukui Yang on youtube.com

Soaring Crane

Soaring Crane Qigong forms 1-5

Soaring Crane Qi Gong, also referred to as China Soaring Crane Qi Gong, or Crane Style Qi Gong, was developed in more recent years by qi gong master Zhao Jing Xiang, drawing upon information from other qi gong masters, ancient Taoist practices, and the movements of the crane, known for its peaceful and long life. Since 1980 this specific qi gong practice has been taught to millions of Chinese and has gained the support of the Chinese government. It is a very comprehensive system of practices very cleverly composed to deal with all of the major meridians and many of the significant acupoints to affect all parts of the body.

Soaring Crane Qi Gong consists basically of two parts: The Five Routines, and Standing Meditation. The Five Routines practice consists of a series of relatively simple physical movements accompanied by mental visualizations (focus on the flow of energy, or qi). This practice, when done properly, requires 25 to 30 minutes to complete. It clears various meridians, opens up some specific points, and facilitates the cultivation, flow and balancing of qi in the body.

Standing Meditation, usually taken up only after The Five Routines has been learned, done well and consistently for some time, consists of initially standing in a particular position, as loose and relaxed as possible, to allow for the flow of qi freely in the body. Often referred to as The Wise Doctor, this is a very powerful self-healing practice wherein the qi flows to those areas where there exists an imbalance or blockage of qi (resulting in disease). Through continued practice, the qi will persistently flow to problem areas until the imbalance or blockage has been repaired, thereby restoring health. This action of the qi may result in spontaneous movements of the body during the meditation. This meditation is generally practiced for about 30 minutes.

Reference (text only): www.soaringcraneqigong.com

Links:
China Soaring Crane Qigong (cscq) cscq.webs.com

Litterature:
Chinese Soaring Crane Qigong by Zhao, Jin Xiang (pdf)
Soaring crane qigong
  Chin-Hsiang Chao 1991
Chinese Soaring Crane Qigong Study Aids qi.org

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.

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

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.

Reference:
Tai Chi Classics
by Waysun Liao

ISBN 1570627495
p. 83

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.

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

p. 216-18

Four Character Secret Transmission

Spread. To spread means that we mobilize our chi spread it over our opponents energy and prevent him from moving.

Cover. To cover means that we use our chi to cover our opponents thrust.

Check. To check means that we use chi to check our opponents thrust, ascertain his aim and evade it.

Swallow. To swallow means that we use chi to swallow everything and neutralize.

These four character transmission represents what has no form and no sound. Without the ability to interpret energy and training to the highest perfection, they cannot be understood. We are speaking here exclusively of chi. Only if one correctly cultivates the chi and does not damage it, can one project it to the limbs. The effect of this on the limbs cannot be described in words.

(attributed to Wu Yü-hsiang)

Reference:
Tai Chi Touchstones: Yang Family Secret Transmissions by Douglas Wile
Sweet Chi Press, April 1989
ISBN: 091205901X

Page: 27