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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Building the Internal, Stalked by Shadows

According to Taoist theory, we are searching for three profound realizations that will transform us to take us back to our natural "Unity" : we will discuss here one of these three realizations.

During the creation of the individual, according to Taoist theory, the "gate of life" (ming men) is the first point in space that the human being will occupy.

Upon the meeting of the jing (essence) of the parents, and through the presence of a spark of the Universal Spirit (yuan shen), there is creation of a new living being.

From this "gate of life", the axes of existence are created: first the "high - low" axis (chong), then the "front - rear" axle (ren and du) and finally the horizontal division of the belt (dai).

The projection of this "gate of life" on the front of our body is the center of our lower "elixir field" (dan tien), a few inches below the navel.

This center is a gift of our humanity, a rapport to earth, to our manifestation and it constitutes the ability to vitalize our body by the force of the Yang that energizes our mind / body.

Like it or not, whether one is aware of it or not, 
this center is there,  perfectly developed and available.

If you put your attention on it, without superhuman efforts, the sensation of this center is available to all, at every moment.Just being aware of this center of cinnabar enables a multiplication of the vitality of the body, of our being's energy, a realization of our true way of functioning, often blocked by sick behaviors.

This center is perfect from the beginning of our lives and will remain perfectly opened until our death. On the other hand, by conscious attention to it, it is possible to understand and realize this perfection.

The awareness of the perfection of the bottom center, by direct experience of internal alchemy, gives what is called "the achievement of water and fire" (kan - li): there are 9 steps to work on, the first being conscious breathing with a sensation of this center (embryonic respiration).

This is a precise job that is prepared as a fine dining dish, where technique must be learned with details and in a precise order.

Within a serene and full of love family atmosphere, the second center, the heart, may develop.

This middle center, contrary to the bottom one, is not formed without internal and external actions.

It will depend on the love that we will be given and the ability to perceive that love: it is possible not to feel the positive emotions around us if certain other emotions overwhelm us (fear, anger ...).

Our relationship with our emotions and our balance in our relationship 
with others will depend on this middle center.

If the bottom center determines our basic operation, the fluidity of our physiological functioning, the middle center will be responsible for our emotional life.

In the case that we have an emotional center handicapped by a heavy family history or a bad perception of emotions due to heavy childish emotions, it must be built with an introspection of our internal functioning.

This is the basis of our character and of our ability to establish rapport to one another.

The third center in the sphere of of the unknown for us, the spirit being in our hearts, it is the rapport to our realization, to the infinite and mysterious.

This center does not really exist if it is not built, it has the name "Purple Palace".

Our goal is to build this center, which gives us a taste of the infinite, but also a connection with the mysterious, before returning to earth.

In the "Magic Annals of the Slayers of Demons," an old story about Zhong Kui describes the practice as a race: the luminous goal in front of us and death that is never that far behind.

It depends on the awareness of the bottom center, through the water and fire realization, but also on the balance of the parts of the mind by opening the middle center.

This center enables us to have  a clear vision of the real world 
and a glimpse of the invisible world.

This process is called "internal alchemy," the "Ling Tai" (spiritual embryo) birthing that will grow along with our worldly life, according to our practice.

This profound realization of our total nature is an important goal of the esoteric Way, but it relies directly on the core work of the body and the ability to live a decent life in the necessary alignment.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

"DO NOT ASK WHAT THE WAY CAN DO FOR YOU, ASK WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR THE TRADITION"


We will live a beautiful life, filled with diverse and varied experiences. 
But what will we leave in this world, at the end of our Incarnation?
The chance we had to experience a Tradition of Spiritual Evolution is also the the chance to know what to bequeath to the World: by example and continuity.
It is often useless to talk about the Way to try to convince others, but the example that you incarnate in your daily life will persuade others without saying anything. 
Thus, by respecting the concepts of Practice you are the showcase of the Way in your life, you are at the origin of the construction of the world of tomorrow.
By following the notions of the Way, empathic and in the World, you show others that there is a different way of living one's life, of behaving according to the Values of Humanity, more than of the questionable values of our dying World.
This example which you incarnate, which produces the Future of our History, will give envy to others: they may laugh a little or criticise but they will always end up being intrigued and interested.
The continuity of The Daoist Tradition which gently approaches its Fifth millennium, comes from the example followed by intrigued people who wanted to live better.
Know with reality the depth of the Way, the interest of this Knowledge of the human in its environment and see how vital it is in our Corrupted World.
We are useful for the world of tomorrow and our "lost time" in which we train is a little in the Light in the Darkness of the Collective Unconsciousness.
Know yourself, understand the world and discover others with all the facets of the Daoist Tradition ... so Tomorrow will go in the right direction!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The Fighting Arts in the Way

Often enough in  Gong Fu or Tai Ji Quan classes we talk about fighting, personal defense, we learn to respond to possible attacks ... But is it really that necessary?

Today the probabilities are not so high, unless we are ask for it, that we have to apply all these techniques in such conditions.

There is no need to fight, to collect self-defense techniques to achieve an evolution and to feel better in one's life. 

Depending on individual needs, be more present in one's actions and succeeding in fighting against stress are sufficient.

There are many techniques, teachings and a multitude of spiritual ways that can meet these expectations.

One way or another, all paths lead to the same thing: feeling better, closer to one's real self, being a better person and sharing this relaxed state with other people.

But in this case, there is no need to seek fighting arts: to practice them, violence must be understood in a practical and real manner. If we study any form of combat without being clear about what we do, without really knowing the thrust of the teaching we follow, staying in a nebulous position for years, we just lose time.

With urban life we meet hundreds of people every day, and although some are just silhouettes for us, it is necessary to have a better understanding of the relationship with the others. One facet of it, and we can see that every day, is the possibility of confrontation. This relationship can go from a simple exchange of looks to a real violent conflict: of course it is exaggerated!

Even in this exaggeration, we can realize just how often it is difficult to say what we think, we don't want to disturb, we are afraid ... The fear of the other is as unfounded than the need to practice martial arts.

The two-person training, in martial disciplines, allows for once to go after a contact with the other, directly through the body, as less intellectually as possible. Through a better physical understanding of the other person, trough a better feeling of the center and the axis of the body, we understand ourself a little better. This relationship to the other in the exercise allows to feel more than to think, it is par excellence an honest relationship.

I often have people telling me about their practice in clubs, which are often "sport" clubs, where the whole teaching implied to come once to five times a week to dress up, to bow in fornt of portraits of old masters that they don't know, to lock themselves in a ritual which is  far from everyday life, and then return to their life. A majority of these people got no benefit from these sometimes long years of practice.

First, we have to learn what practice really is: 

It is a work that is done alone, only for ourself, 
and where the teacher has little significance.

Besides, a bad teacher who passes a corrupt practice, can bring us the desired results if we practice honestly.

The moment our practice is the most important is never a peaceful moment: if we need Qi Gong it is because we need energy, and because we are rarely in a quiet state of mind. The moments when meditation, when the meditative state, are most needed, are moments of breakdown. Once again, the fighting arts give us the best example: the only times we have to use what we know to defend ourself, we are rarely ready, and almost never in the right mindset.

If the practice is a ritual, separated from everyday life, it is unlikely that it can be useful.

The first thing that keeps from using the knowledge of our practice is fear. The best way to go against fear is to confront it in a gradual yet regular manner: the fighting arts are one of the healthiest ways to do so.

How many people feel this need to drive fast, to throw themselves in the sheer drop only attach to a spring, to drink or eat too much, to have all these behaviors which are kind of a way to defy death? In this challenge is the need to cross swords with fear, a bit like when watching horror movies or reading scaring stories.

The primordial energy of the body, which in chinese medicine comes from the kidneys, is related to fear. If the general energy of the body is weak, we feel afraid of all things, we sleep poorly, we have trouble digesting food...

In the animal kingdom, deep into the heart of one given species, there are the peaceful ones and the fearful ones. When you look closer, the fearful ones are often those who are sick, injured, easy preys for potential predators. They are not better nor worse than the others, they are just in a moment of weakness and they know it's dangerous. Few animals remain in this state, either because they heal and become strong again, or because they get killed by a predator.

In humans, it is not uncommon for this condition to persist, to become a way of life. We have no predators, or at least this is what we often believe. Someone who is always afraid will be a victim at work, in relationships with abusive people, perhaps even in the couple relationship. We are not talking about panic here, but this little anxiety which is pointless and prevents us from expressing ourself honestly about our feelings and wishes.

This is obviously not by beating people up that we will feel better, but through fighting arts we can more easily assert our personality, develop our place in the world.

This can be achieved in many ways, and all of them are good. But if instead of choosing the steep path, full of traps, that we will take by crawling, we could choose a sunny glade that we will walk across with the head up, why would we do without it?

Meditation is a difficult practice, and still so simple. It takes two things to meditate correctly:  a practical and sufficient concentration ability to do this practice. Concentration is not necessarily filled with a stiff intent, but it's simply the ability to stay focused on something. It is possible to do this only with a peaceful and relaxed mind. This relaxation state is difficult to achieve when one is afraid of everyone, of everything and all the rest.

Qi Gong is an even simpler practice than meditation, but still so complicated. The body has to be relaxed, breathing has to be refined, emotions have to be calmed and energy has to flow freely. The first manifestation of fear is a tension in the body, a speeded up breathing rythm, an unceasing production of ideas and it is quite clear that energy cannot flow in a tensed body. Once again, we can not practice properly if we are scared.

The martial arts simply ask to be here and now, to accept the training, and to be honest in their daily practice. The ancient practice of chinese fighting arts include many exercises for mind and body, two-person exercises, methods for the training and the usage of the breath. Few exercises are physically tough, yet we clearly feel the work.

In my view, to have a real access to Qi Gong or meditation, one needs a physical practice that will help to strengthen the body and calm the mind. It is not necessary, but it is a priceless shortcut. Many physical practices meet this expectation, but to my knowledge, none does it as well as fighting arts.

It is really important to forget the idea that fighting arts are a workout session with a warm up, a codified routine practice, a little sparring at the end, and perhaps pus-ups or abs-gluts workout to finish. It is not a Gym Club!

The practice is to be learnt with the teacher and is achieved by yourself.

Every week, every month, we face a little problem: a detail on coordination, on a physical exercise, on our connection with our body...

Everyday this relationship can go further in our intimacy to ourself, to realize how much we underestimate what we really are. Within months, if we practice daily, our body changes. In a few years, we come closer to the person we really are.

The Taoist Way of Chinese internal arts is not the best way nor the worst, it is the way I know. This road leads to a transformation on people who practice, and that, quickly and every time. So I think it's a good way, a teaching of value, anchored with deep roots.

In a world where everyone knows a little of everything about everything, where the teachings are like fast-food, where horizontal knowledge has no depth, we have to look deeper into one thing. We have to renounce patchwork practices , chakra taichi, and bring a fusion between our way and our life.

Practice, action is the Way, whereas intellectual knowledge is just one more obstacle to the liberation of the mind. We should not learn more things, read more books, attend more conferences, we just have to put some effort, some discipline and to start working.

A majority of the beginner's practices are things he already knows, and most of the time he will let you know. But if the beginner knows intellectually these practices, he has not worked on them so far, so they are of no use to him.

Think for one second about all the wonderful practices that you have met in your researches, how much do you practice every day?

Do you see what I mean?

Before sitting still to merge our soul with the stars, to make our mind travel in the subtle spheres, before connecting the power of our body with universal energies, to exchange our breath with the earth elements, to emit energy to treat diseases, we must first be able to stand still without thinking too much.

Before thinking about meditation, to the wonders of Qi Gong, we have to work. This is rarely the funniest thing, except for those who have sought for a long time and who understand that.

Again, and according to the teachings of my school, the easiest way is first to go through the fighting arts which will work on presence and fear, in order to move on to the rest after. Before touching all the subtle things, it is good to have a healthy body and a calm mind.

This is why the fighting arts are so important in our teaching, it is our tool to go and look for further things, the door opening to new horizons. That's all, but this requires honesty in practice. If we speak about fighting arts, we must understand violence. It is not possible in a practice based on rituals, a social relationship and the concern of other people's opinion. It is impossible to have belts, to compete or to dress up. We just have to relax and share with the others a simple yet hard training, and to do a daily training for ourself.

Martial arts are not really for fighting, the fighting methods based on rituals, and all these fake warrior practices allow to unwind, to have fun, or even to get stuck in a stupid violence, and they surely have their place too. 

But they will rarely be of a substantial help in the discovery of ourself and in the evolution of breathing, meditative and spiritual practices. It is just a choice.

In our Tradition, we say that we need to cultivate 2 topics for actual self defense :

- Mind Intent : to Go or not Go
- Impact Power : Really Hitting Hard

And if you have time, all the rest : Speed, Stamina, Stepping....

But the Martial Arts mostly teach the rest :)

Saturday, March 4, 2017

I thought it was going to be a Beautiful Day

Our mind (mental) continually bases itself on beliefs that if finds reassuring.

This information is stored in memory and becomes the basis of what we think we know. To form itself the ego assimilates what is perceived like a neurotic eater. Everything is taken, stolen from the world, to become "his" or "her."

By appropriating itself what is seen, somehow, the ego builds himself comfortable limits by eliminating "what is not known" and what is a source of anxiety.

Thus, a new experience, when it is possible, will be likened to another that we already have in memory. What is new, different or too far from what we know, will be transformed to be acceptable. This phenomenon, invisible and concealed, is of an incredible finesse that makes it difficult to consciously experience.

The practice is often paved by attempts of news, direct experience, that can enable us to get our head out of our prejudices, to see things differently.

From our childhood, we record information that shape our ego. This "box" will become "what we believe." Environment, education and our genetics define this "character". With all this, we lay the ground for the prejudices that allow the ego to take over the world.

Reality, "what is", is interpreted by our perception and becomes "what appears to be." We perceive, this is matched with our personal database, the ego takes it over, and it is stored in a familiar form so as not to disturb the stability of our character. So we do not see a tree, a sunset or our companion, but just a reminiscence of what is already in memory. No novelty, therefore we get bored, so we start thinking.

If we try to explain to someone what we believe we perceived it often becomes "what we tell (ourselves)"... and then a deep divide creates itself over the initial perception.

What was already interpreted by our mental assimilation suffers another ego interpretation through the regurgitation: it is the photocopy syndrome, the more copies, the further away from the original the copy is.

When referencing to what we have in stock (memories and beliefs), and not to what we see, we cut ourselves off from reality. Moreover, by this habit of always referring to the known, we get to the culmination of prejudice: the guesstimation.

Knowing "what we believe" we offer the world a few sorted possibilities based on the acceptable things we deign to perceive. We project so much about the universe that we perceive only what strengthens us mentally, what flatters our ego.

We put in this jumble our moods, our hopes, our brooding and all this "obscures the light."

We can summarize by saying that the source of all this pathological functioning is Fear.

This operation will spread to the world and especially to others. Thus, we expect from our relationships and from our exchanges that everything goes in the direction of our ego. If this is not the case, we will filter the collected information enough to keep only what reinforces our sweet madness.

We also have the ability to avoid certain situations, more or less consciously, in order not to perceive what bothers us.

The Practice tends to eliminate prejudices, in order to perceive clearly. It will go in the opposite direction of everything that has been listed.

We will discover "presence" and confront us with our fear, if we can bear it, to wake up a little and go from a viscous unconsciousness to a light version of it.

In this state of "waking", we will have, through the teaching, moments of clear perceptions that will be a new basis for the beginning of the rest of our lives.

Traditionally, we start with ourselves. We will look beyond what we believe and we will try to know ourselves. This encounter with our mental functioning and our dissociation with it, will be a first approach.

Then, through specific exercises in a gradual evolution, we will go towards a liberation of perception.

This ability to perceive is incredibly pleasant, the benefits are numerous, for example, the disappearance of boredom and the ability to continuously discover what is already know...

After this groundwork, we are surprised to see that there is something else than we: the World. After having developed this ability of self-discovery, we will apply it to "this that is not us."

We have a series of exercises that will enable us to perceive the world and others with this acquired freedom. Exchanges with others, our ability to communicate and respect the world will change because of these practices.

In an opening where I do not take my mental mind as a reference, in this release of a new perception every second, all of my practice will "crystallize" to get a coherence.

It is tedious and unrealistic to believe that a spontaneous work without structure can free the mind. In most cases, those who work without a teacher only manage to reinforce their already suffering ego.

How can we reduce the power of the mind if we can not even rely on tradition and alleviate the organ of thought?

Some speak of a fear of being manipulated, but in reality, it is often just Fear

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Si Xiang : The four aspects of the spiritual path


Training of the four spiritual aspects is a traditional method of explaining the Kan-Li Accomplishment, one of the three stages of Taoist spiritual enlightenment.

The four aspects are :

Initiation Purification Rebirth Accomplishment

Training implies the presence of  Nei Gong (internal training) or a « Weapons Path » (a serious combat practice, not ritual) as part of any practitioner's practice.

This training comes after working on Nei Dan (Internal Alchemy), the final stage of developing the qualities of the mind.

In the reality of training, it is often more practical to incorporate everything at once, time being a pressing factor.

The stage of the Shadow Warrior


This is the moment of becoming aware of the Way or of a need to follow a path.  A contact, or meeting, anything could potentially generate this need to go further, to understand one's life.

But having realized the need, few among us will go on to practice: we are stuck in our prejudices and our habits, our confidence and the size of our ego.

It is the start of a battle, a fight between your desire to go through with it and the refusal to become a « student », to accept learning. 

We are going to fight against the shadows, the most restless and  heaviest aspects of our being. There are high chances of losing oneself, of staying in our comfort and our illusion of satisfaction.

This aspect of the practice is under the sign of the Black Tortoise, sign of the land and of our morbid calculations.

Only one thing can get us out of this state : passing through the Door, the start of a Way, the Initiation.

After practicing for some time, it will be possible to go further by truly committing oneself to a chosen tradition. It is not an obligation, the Way is also a path to health and a martial path which do not require an opening into the spiritual.

The purification brought by the White Tiger


The problem with our mind, is that it is restless and has long since escaped from our control: the tool has become the master and the master now takes orders from the tool.

Even the idea of the origin of all things, the Wu Ji, is stillness and the perfect availability towards creative manifestation.

To have access to this stillness, to this particular quality which is at the center of our profound nature, we must clarify and align our day to day life.

Somewhat like a device which no longer functions properly, and of which we are unable to understand the dysfunction, it is preferable to take everything apart, clean everything and put it all back in place.

We are there at the stage of dissecting our life : our actions, our thoughts and our emotions are going to have to bathe in the benevolent luminosity of our attention.

The White Tiger appears only in the face of perfection, therefore we are going to clean everything, reformat everything, study everything to head towards this perfection.

It is really written to examine oneself and to make corrections of oneself, not to become the little judge of the world around you, to give your opinion about everything and criticize others.

In destroying our habits and in observing our behavior, we clarify our life.

Immobility and tranquility will be able to transform us.

Riding the azure Dragon to be Reborn


Thanks to the preceding efforts, an availability and a tranquility set in, which will allow the energy from Heaven into our life.

This exposure to the « Way of the Heavens » will gradually transform us and allow us to dissolve the remnants of our old way of functioning.

Through this training, we will experience on a regular basis states which unify us with the Greater, that transcend our humanity.

Riding the Dragon, we move towards the Heavens, but always come back to the mundane. after having glimpsed superior states, pulled back toward the Earth by our habits and our beliefs to which we cling so much.

Incapable of renouncing my self-importance and accepting another way of seeing the world, it is impossible for me to be reborn without first dying.

That is the catch to riding the Dragon, that to be reborn as something else, one must first overcome this way of living.

The trouble of being reborn, is that one must die.

Accomplishment : Glory of the Vermilion Phoenix


In the case that I accept death and that my exposure to my maintained awareness is continued, due to bathing in and sensing constant energy, it will be possible to live in a new way.

Rising up from my ashes, in an availability to a balanced energy, with a water – fire balance in my body/mind, there is the Kan – Li realization .

At that point we live in a different state, permanently, but without being absent from the world.

There we are, present for our loved ones and working with others, yet conscious of the different aspects of the world unified with the way of the Heavens.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Punch

Punch!


Let's see the details that will allow to develop maximum impact.

We're talking here about "obvious" power, the raw force of a rear fist hitting linearly, from the back to the front.

It is important not to confuse the force of impact with physical force.

Often enough, a heavy puncher is pretty strongly built, but it is not necessary.
In my tradition, it is recommended to work the body structure, flexibility and coordination before attempting to work pure strength.

The whole work on the structure goes in the direction of the force of impact.

Before anything else, we have to understand the mechanics of the move before thinking about hitting something.

See details from the bottom to the top:

- The feet are rooted to the ground, the weight being on their center, the rest of the body depends on this foundation.
- The rear foot will push the weight slightly forward, initiating the move.
- The front knee bends slightly, remaining in the alignment of the toes.
- The push is passed on to the hips moving the waist, acting as the base for the connection of the shoulders and the latissimus dorsi.
- The trunk rotation will propel the striking shoulder straight forward, remaining low and connected to the latissimus dorsi.

The whole movement allows to let the arm go forward, including these details:

- No tension in the arm and forearm,
- Aligning the striking part of the fist, the wrist and the tip of the shoulder,
- Letting the elbow down and the shoulder connected to the latissimus dorsi,
- Looking at where you strike.

At the impact, the elbow must not be bent, but it should not be stretched ... the striking distance is therefore essential for a truly devastating strikes.
The fist should be held, but not tense. If the fist is really clenched tightly, it will be possible to make "brutish" strikes, but not the most subtle ones.

The fist will have more power when aligned with the opposite shoulder.

Much of the force of impact may be annihilated if we hold our breath, if we stuck our diaphragm. In addition, striking while holding the breath will make us tired much more than when striking with a relaxed breath.

We just have to strike the air first, seeking to feel, slowly and remaining relaxed ... we should not rush to train with speed (and it's not really necessary).

The more the move is direct, the less there will be "force leaks".

So, even slowly, you have to go from total immobility to a decisive move.

It is advised not to put attention on the striking hand or arm (it will create tensions), but rather on the rotation and mobilization of the back.

Once the move is loose enough, and without parasiting movements (or at least, as little as possible), we will strike stuff (rather a soft bag, but quite heavy, for example).

Traditionally, in our school, we hit a wooden post. 

We start from pushing, rubbing and then violently hitting the post. The work bag comes later.

We will see specific exercises that develop the impact force in another text (working with weights, targets, iron rings ...).

We are not talking here about the work of precision, speed or structure which will obviously determine the effectiveness of the strike.

Punching can be done with open hand...with even more efficient result !

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Practicing for one's pleasure

When you enter into a serious practice, normally as soon as the 2nd month you have too much exercises to perform. The teacher must have the means to confront you to the work you have to do in many forms. The accumulation of exercises allows to check for yourself your evolution. It is important to keep practicing all these exercises for some time.

The key is to train without searching for a logic in the exercises. At each period of one's evolution in the Way, you should be going in the direction of the exercises. You can, at times, discuss the Way and what is researched, but at other times one must know how to be in the practice, and nothing but the practice.


Quickly, you need to install in your practice an equal share of the three facets of the Way:


- A physical aspect, for the body,

 - A energetic facet that nourishes the Qi (energy),
 - A meditative component that seeks to know the Shen (spirit).


Without this equal distribution between the three elements of the human being, we create an imbalance. It is obvious that when starting the practice, this imbalance is already present, which is why it is important to correct it as soon as possible, before going further. Most of the time, the pains and weaknesses of the body require a more physical start. Our mind, foggy  
and overflowing with sticky stigma for most of us, requires Shen gong exercises (work of the mind). Loss of desire and enthusiasm, unfortunately common in our soft society with a depressive tendency, demands to awaken the energy in us.

After a year of training, we must be able to introduce two phases in our time of practice: learning (which we add stuff, refine and think) and the practice itself (which is in the "feeling" without thinking). Indeed, without continuity in education, without a constant relationship with the Way and the discovery of what it is, we can regress or even forget it. Thus it is good 
to refine one's practice by always going deeper into learning.

On the other hand, it is necessary to have a phase of free action, melting into the feeling of what is best known. At first, a simple gesture that one understands is sufficient. But without this time where the focus is placed on what is sensed, forgetting the imperfections of what is known, the Way does not exist.


If the training is only an apprenticeship, you end up correcting yourself for decades without making progress on the Way. It's like inspecting one's car before a long trip, arranging the interior and checking the tire pressure for 20 years ... and in the end, not having made any trip. There are modern ways all the training time (group or individual) is based on a maniacal correction of everything that goes wrong. In neurotic focus, there is no practice, there is no evolution, it is a waste of time.


If in the illusion of practice, you get lost in the movements then the learning is not sufficiently respected and that this false practice is useless. It is possible to claim to be in the "feeling" immersed in 
astral limbo, but the truth is that one is lost in the welter of one's mind. Feeling, simple presence to the body and energy, but presence still, enables us to be in the right gesture, in the known. If one fails to do so, it is that the learning is not enough, that the work is incomplete, as one does not work in the right spirit. Under no circumstances should the "feeling" make us lose sight of the form of the movements.  On the contrary, it is an integral part of them. 

If you do not have this problem, then  you have to begin to "sort" the practice. In an effort to balance the three phases of practice, and a good time management of learning and practice, we must go further: it must be fun, we must have fun. 


Only those who plan to teach must know all the aspects of education. The practitioner only needs a path that suits him and that is in line with his needs. Learning must remain learning, however the practice, to be considered as such, must sooner or later,take  a pleasant form.Across everything that is known, with the agreement of the teacher so as to not do anything stupid, we must shape the practice in order to have fun. The qualities work, the substance, can be expressed in different forms. It is therefore possible to articulate the practice, while respecting the Way, in an expression that we like, that is pleasant.


Whether you choose one style over another (Taijiquan, Baguazhang, xingyiquan ....), whether you prefer working on the basics rather than advanced forms (simple qi gong, nei gong ...), whether we decided to do everything with the same form rather than various forms, and vice versa ... Everything is good from the point where the bases are met (this is why the approval of the teacher is important and that you must not indulge in 
selective creativity ).

"The teaching is broad enough to express the Way in pleasant forms"

It is useless to have a 
"painful" practice, the "no pain, no gain" is useless.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Enjoy Summer Outside !


Clearly, summer is characterized by heat.  Under its effects, the body functions better in general, as everything is more open and circulates better.
Be cautious to avoid restlessness and excessive movement, they result in a hyperactive and overheated system.
If we are peaceful and calm, summer will benefit us.  If we are upset and overworked, it will be harmful.

Openness and Communion With Nature

Summer is the time where we don’t have to protect ourselves from the cold.  However we must still protect ourselves from the sun because too much exposure harms the skin (skin cancers are caused by repetitive and excessive sun exposure).

“In summer, take care to regulate activities and limit strong emotions.”

Summer is a special time in the year during which we can spend time in nature with a minimum of clothing, almost none at all.  Strolls in nature, where we are lightly dressed in simple apparel, allow us to feel the forces of the earth.  We feel more in harmony with nature, and have a greater sense of belonging.

Take care of Fatigue

An excess of heat makes energy rise up, into our heads.  We can feel easily overwhelmed by our enthusiasm, and at risk of ‘spreading ourselves too thin’.  This tendency towards dispersion can dissolve our vitality, leaving us feeling fatigued.
To avoid this fatigue, we must treat summer heat with respect and make efforts to regulate our temperature during this period.
We must conduct ourselves similarly with regard to the emotions and the internal heat they can generate.  The heat will feel oppressive if we are worked up or bothered by strong emotions.

“A good diet, the right breathing exercises, 
and a moderate level of physical activity will allow us to best cope with the heat of summer.”

In summer, we must take care of our heart and circulatory system.  We can fast for a few days, or stop drinking for a few hours, hold our breath for a few minutes…but we cannot stop the beating of our heart.
The heat is not an ally for our hearts, for it oppresses and fatigues.
Summer is the period when our cardiovascular functions are most stressed and our circulatory system is most stimulated by environmental heat.
We must ‘tidy’ up our heart, be selective in our efforts and not tire the body out for no reason.
Caution – inactivity and apathy wear on the heart just as much as over activity. 

Take Care of Your Heart!

In summer, when we are at rest, the heat allows our circulating blood to be more fluid and flow easier, because all the blood vessels are more dilated.
However, if we are too worked up, there is too much pressure on this system, leading to over-exhaustion, especially for the heart.
We must be active but not overly so.  If we have plans to carry out made in the spring, we must not allow ourselves to get sidetracked by tiring distractions.  We do what we have committed to, without adding fluff to it.
We often have trouble feeling alive, and often need to be busy enough to avoid boredom.
Enthusiasm can lead us to undertaking too many things because of the illusion we have that putting the pedal to the metal is how to live fully.
When we are engaging in physical activity, we must hydrate much more than often, and eating lighter than usual.

Blockages and Heaviness

If we are not in good shape, summer heat leaves us with blockages and heaviness inside.  These are the result of all the physical tensions and inactivity that accumulate over the year.  This heaviness, the blockages and tiredness paralyze us and must be dissolved; summer is the perfect time to eliminate them with a daily practice.
In order to circulate what is stagnant - whether it be the blood, the energy, or the breath – one must practice simple activities, such as taking a walk three or four times a day, swimming regularly, or going for a jog at an easy pace.
In a week or two, the chosen moderate physical activity will help with restoring good health, as it aligns with the rhythm of the season.

Gaining without disturbing

“Summer: the season where one takes their time.  Fall: the season for man and nature to travel together.  Winter: the season where we count the days.  Spring: the season of illusions; nature is rejuvenated and we believe the same happens to us.”  Aristotle

This is the paradox of summer: we must do without overdoing.  The balance is tricky to grasp for those who are not in tune with the energy of the seasons.
The strength of summer is such that we only have to channel the enthusiasm and natural energy of the season to realize our goals, rather than getting all worked up.
In order to do this, we must have already made concrete plans in the spring in order to follow them through clearly in the summer.
One of the secrets for acting well here is to understand the balance between work and rest.  This truth applies to the entire year, but it is most important during the hot months where the body is already feeling excess.

Take advantage of the heat, but at a slower pace

The heat has an automatic effect on the circulation.  Take advantage on the proper functioning of our systems by not overdoing it.
Avoid bustling about all day.  Rather, do the minimum essential.  Engage in light physical activity, eat lightly and stay protected from the heat.
Summer is also the time for holidays, where relaxation reigns.
We take advantage of the heat by letting our bodies unwind a bit.
Accepting to do nothing is not easy, as most of us feel extreme guilt whenever we are inactive.
We often feel the need to define ourselves by our activity or how much we bustle about…
Doing a lot gives the impression of being, and it satisfied the ego and mind.  However, it is also possible to just take life as it comes, watching it go by.
This is not an excuse for laziness, rather an appeal to just being without the need to hustle.

Rediscovering the ‘Simple’

Summer allows us to feel the joy for life and of having a body more easily.  We are more aware of our perceptions.
The natural relaxation that accompanies summer allows us to contemplate the world around us, to accept life and commit to living simply.
It is a great thing to have access to our senses of breathing, watching, living.


“Summer is a good time to contemplate the joy of being alive.”