So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby Yuen-Ming on Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:18 am

Appledog wrote:Yuen-Ming would I be correct in assuming that the primary or most common kind of blockage that prevents this sinking and conversion process from occurring is contained in the shoulders? So that first you would need to sink or settle the shoulder area and just nearby it to facilitate this process? Thx


In the specific process of 氣沉丹田 “qi sinks [to the] dantian” very much only the torso is involved, so eventual “blockages” in the arms or legs are not extremely detrimental.

The mind, however, plays a fundamental role in the process because that is where most of the eventual “blockages” to this specific process may happen.

If the water is not quiet, let’s say you have strong currents or a vortex, an object will have a tough time to “sink” to the bottom.

YM
Last edited by Yuen-Ming on Thu Oct 11, 2018 5:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby Yuen-Ming on Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:24 am

windwalker wrote:As JW might say or point out.

What combat effectiveness can one gain by doing this, that is shown or done by others who are effective in combative sports or noted for combative skills using these methods.

With out this context, one could be describing any or most qi gong practices....not having to act or be effective within it.


Actually, the way I see it, 氣沉丹田 “qi sinks to dantian” does not have much to do with combat or effectiveness.

This is just a basic building block on which one transforms the body, it is far far away from “combat”. As a matter of fact, “Qi sinks to dantian” is also a prerogative of many meditation and cultivation schools, just a basic practice which is then implemented in a way or another THRU further curriculum. Some go in the martial direction others don’t.

So it is quite impossibile, in my opinion, to judge its “combat effectiveness” because when one is at that stage he is a long way before even starting to really fight :)

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Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby windwalker on Tue Oct 16, 2018 2:01 am

In light of Ben's passing

Image
https://rumsoakedfist.org/viewtopic.php ... decdbfd237

thought some might be interested in one of his noted students Martian Inn. Happened to meet him many yrs ago as a teenager..
It would be many yrs later that I would find taiji or maybe it found me..


Image
La Honda, California 1983. Left to right: Martin Inn, Ben Lo, Alice and Robert Smith.



The concept of core strength is really incorrect from the point of view of Chinese medicine. Think about this: what happens when you get really stressed and tensed up? Muscles get tense. Having tense muscles all the time, you are practicing your freak-out state, your sympathetic mode, your flight or fight response. Every time you practice muscular tension, you are practicing the flight or fight response.


What does T’ai Chi do differently? It directs us not to use muscles. We try to relax the muscles. Why is this do difficult? Because the instinctive response, particularly to stress and to the outside world, is to tense up rather than to relax. When you have a stress response, you have a strong pulse right above the navel. That’s your inability to sink the chi to below the navel to the dan tien.

And a strong pulse here means that all of your internal organs are out of balance, they’re struggling to keep a balance, but it’s an off-balance dynamic.

Therefore, when you do your T’ai Chi the first thing I’d like you to do, is to think about sinking your chi to your dan tien.

Every movement in the form allows you to practice that sinking aspect. Super important. From squatting single whip to the kicks, whatever, you’re still sinking your chi. And when you do your push hands, that’s a verification of whether you are relaxed or not.

This process of sinking the chi may easily be disrupted by your everyday life. Doing the form is a constant reminder to your body to sink that chi. Just to go through movements has no meaning whatsoever, unless you can sink the chi.

To do this, you have to relax your muscles. Very difficult—because of the external forces impinging upon you to keep your defenses up. Rather than to release.

When you do your T’ai Chi, you’re trying to sink your chi to dan tien, you’re trying to harmonize your internal organs through the movements. By doing that, you’re also raising your immune system. You sleep well, you eat well, and things are happy.

But, if something is out of phase, then the domino effect will affect every internal organ. So you don’t just fix one thing, you fix many things simultaneously, and this goes for even the fact that if you receive an external injury - that will affect the meridians which will affect the internal organs which will affect all the other internal organs. And of course the most difficult thing to do is to control the mind.

http://www.iritaichi.org/posts.html

a little more perspective

February 25, 2015

THE IMPORTANCE OF THE TAN TIEN IN T’AI CHI AND CHINESE MEDICINE
One of the most important phrases from the T’ai Chi Classics is, “Sink chi to tan t’ien”.

We talk a lot about the tan t’ien in the martial arts and Chinese Medicine, but little is known of it. The first mention of the tan t’ien is in chapter 8 of the Nan Ching, the Han Dynasty classic of Chinese medicine. It talks about the “space between the kidneys that vibrates”. It didn’t call it the tan t’ien but was later given that name by the Taoist, who were the scientist in ancient China.

There are three tan t’iens. The upper tan t’ien is located between the eye brows and is referred to as the “spiritual tan t’ien”. The second tan t’ien is located in the chest between the nipples and is considered to deal with the emotions.

The third tan t’ien is the lower tan t’ien, which is located in the area below the navel and is considered to be the “true tan t’ien”. The true tan t’ien is linked to the kidneys, the brain, the adrenals and the immune system.

The Han Dynasty Chinese medical practitioners believed that the true tan t’ien was like a map of an inverted head where the nose was represented by the navel, the eyes to the side at ST25, and the brain in the lower abdomen at CV3. Because of these associations, the tan t’ien is further linked to ones longevety, the bones and the building of blood, and ones sexuality and libido.



The first mention of the tan t’ien is in chapter 8 of the Nan Ching, the Han Dynasty classic of Chinese medicine. It talks about the “space between the kidneys that vibrates”. It didn’t call it the tan t’ien but was later given that name by the Taoist, who were the scientist in ancient China.


Interesting to note,,for the learned readers here does this correspond to your understanding of the name ?
Last edited by windwalker on Tue Oct 16, 2018 2:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby Trick on Tue Oct 16, 2018 2:41 am

windwalker wrote:


The concept of core strength is really incorrect from the point of view of Chinese medicine. Think about this: what happens when you get really stressed and tensed up? Muscles get tense. Having tense muscles all the time, you are practicing your freak-out state, your sympathetic mode, your flight or fight response. Every time you practice muscular tension, you are practicing the flight or fight response.


What does T’ai Chi do differently? It directs us not to use muscles. We try to relax the muscles. Why is this do difficult? Because the instinctive response, particularly to stress and to the outside world, is to tense up rather than to relax. When you have a stress response, you have a strong pulse right above the navel. That’s your inability to sink the chi to below the navel to the dan tien.

And a strong pulse here means that all of your internal organs are out of balance, they’re struggling to keep a balance, but it’s an off-balance dynamic.

Therefore, when you do your T’ai Chi the first thing I’d like you to do, is to think about sinking your chi to your dan tien.

Every movement in the form allows you to practice that sinking aspect. Super important. From squatting single whip to the kicks, whatever, you’re still sinking your chi. And when you do your push hands, that’s a verification of whether you are relaxed or not.

This process of sinking the chi may easily be disrupted by your everyday life. Doing the form is a constant reminder to your body to sink that chi. Just to go through movements has no meaning whatsoever, unless you can sink the chi.

To do this, you have to relax your muscles. Very difficult—because of the external forces impinging upon you to keep your defenses up. Rather than to release.

When you do your T’ai Chi, you’re trying to sink your chi to dan tien, you’re trying to harmonize your internal organs through the movements. By doing that, you’re also raising your immune system. You sleep well, you eat well, and things are happy.

But, if something is out of phase, then the domino effect will affect every internal organ. So you don’t just fix one thing, you fix many things simultaneously, and this goes for even the fact that if you receive an external injury - that will affect the meridians which will affect the internal organs which will affect all the other internal organs. And of course the most difficult thing to do is to control the mind.


It sound as the first thing he want us to do is relax. I read this quote as he’s saying -relax properly while going throu the Taiji form and Qi will sink by itself. Kind of what the OP also suggest ?
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Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby LaoDan on Fri Oct 19, 2018 1:24 pm

I view the “sink the qi” talk as too vague for most students to benefit from, especially since it seems to only be a part of the picture.

If just talking about Taijiquan as a qigong exercise for energy cultivation, then the phrase seems to only be talking about the part of the picture that descends down the front of the body. If the dantien is viewed like a battery, then this is perhaps the charging part (the “putting money in the bank” part, as some other teachers express it). But I view the charged battery as producing a current that both travels down the front AND up the back in a cycle to and from the “battery”. In energetic terms this is when the tongue connects the Ren Mai and Du Mai (任脈 conception and 督脈 governing meridians) for the microcosmic circulation of energy. This is the yin + yang (plus the “battery” of the dantien) rather than just the yin part.

If one practice TJQ as a martial art then one should utilizes complementary physical properties that we try to manifest (which complement the energetic cycle). Just imagining the energetic cycle (or just one half of it) often does not produce the complementary physical actions, and to me this would be a problem when trying to use TJQ martially. To illustrate, try the following:
Touch your palms and fingers together in front of you with the fingers pointing up (as if praying). One hand will represent the front of the torso and the other hand the back. Without letting the hands slide past each other, let one hand sink (the front) and the other hand raise (the back).
The “front” hand then represents “sinking the qi” while the “back” hand represents issuing from the spine (or the mingmen) or, stated another way, energy rising to the crown of the head.

The quality that this has on the torso should always be present in TJQ, unless your style uses the “dragon’s back” energy wave when issuing, or some other specialized method. The energy issuing (or projecting) from the spine “lifts” the back, and the sinking down the front corresponds to a concave chest to absorb down the front (suction in the sternum and dantien). To me all of these actions should go together, and just talking about sinking energy down the front is too incomplete.
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Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby oragami_itto on Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:06 am

Taijiquan beginning by Yang Chen fu
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"This principle is very obvious and requires no further elaboration."
-Yang Cheng Fu
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Re: So, so tired of all of the "sink the qi" talk....

Postby Bao on Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:00 am

Lol! I woke up all too early this morning and just had to write more about this subject. Tried to re-think some things and express it in a better, more practical way. The result was another article on almost 2000 words. Hope everything makes more sense this time. ;D

https://taichithoughts.wordpress.com/20 ... e-outside/
Last edited by Bao on Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
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