Monday Morning Tai Chi Training Tip #332
Tai Chi Birds
When you are a student of wonder, lessons are everywhere. Most afternoons, I sit on the top of an outbuilding, read, write, and enjoy the complete privacy of my back yard. I usually go about the same time in the afternoon.
There is a group of Stellar Jays that live in the woods that surround my house. Usually 2, or up to 6, show up for their treat – peanuts in the shell. I place the peanuts on a railing and the Jays fly in, grab a peanut or two and fly off to eat some and hide the rest. Now here is the point.
When picking up the peanuts, they are vulnerable to attack from above by hawks, eagles, and ravens. I have observed that if the Jays see shadows from above, they get ready to take off by squatting down to load up the legs for the push off to get them airborne. It is so Tai Chi like – loading up the legs and Kua (hip joint area).
There is a famous story of Yang Lushan (originator of the Yang Style of Tai Chi Chuan). There was a bird standing on his open palm and he could feel the bird start to load up his legs so Master Yang would yield the palm at just the right time so the bird didn’t have anything to push off against. This was an demonstration of the skills at push hands that Yang possessed.
So, the moral of the story is you don’t need a master teacher to learn valuable lessons from. Just stay open and aware.
Starting Monday, September 13, we will begin our close examination of the Yang Style 108. We will progress slowly and steadily as we did with the 54 Form. We will work on the Long Form on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10 to 11. Saturdays, during the same time period, we will practice the 34, 54 and 108.
On the same days we will explore our Tai Chi Qigong from 9 to 10. All classes in Chetzemoka Park. In case of rain or drizzle, we will work in the gazebo. As always, there is no charge. Just show up.