Postby Anderzander » Sun Jul 06, 2003 12:57 am

Hi Guys Image

I'd like to have a go at talking about Qi.

I can only talk from what I have experienced though - I get a bit lost in your excellent analysis of the Chinese. Sorry! I studied Hanyu for 2 years at University and then met my wife to be - who was cantonese - so it was back to the drawing board! - and I have ashamedly let the hanyu slip away.

anyway - onto the subject!

Like water through a hose, Qi has two components - flow and pressure.

Relaxation increases the flow and attention increases the pressure.

Tension is like squeezing the hose, it may increase the pressure in some cases, but usually it just stifles the flow.

Attention is like boiling a kettle - if you want the pressure to increase you have to keep the heat on. If you keep turning it on and off it won't boil. The mind is the same - the attention needs to be constant.

Wushuer - can you see how your exercise works in this framework? - you are forcing the muscles to release - either by shaking them loose - or holding positions where tensions fall away as the body seeks to maintain its position. Plus the increase in sensation caused by those movements absorbs the attention........

Let me use a text by Li I Yu - as it's the most direct description of what to do to generate chi kung I've come across...I've reversed the order and isolated it from the part of the sequence that is push hands orientated.

'Strengthen the thighs and loosen the two shoulders (let the chi sink)'

basically relax - this is the opening and improving of the flow. For 'let the chi sink' a beginner would not go wrong from thinking of it that as the body relaxes the centre of gravity lowers.

'Chi and Shen penetrate the body’s bones'

again - having relaxed draw you attention into the body. I know we could get into semantics about it saying chi and shen and not yi - but the technique is to absorb your attention into the body. Don’t think about it or reflect on it - just pay attention, be absorbed in feeling.

'Have the Shen not unfocused (pay attention)'

as I said above about paying attention - but also 'not unfocused' means don't let your concentration slip. It’s keeping the heat on for the kettle to boil. The moment the hob is turned off - the energy starts to dissipate.

'Have the Shen and Chi excited and expanded'

this is where the water is boiling. When you have the flow and the pressure has built up to a high level - the body fills up. It’s like water pushing through a coiled up hose, the hose whips and the kinks pushed out by the force of the water.

Louis - if this is the quote you gave in Chinese, about the drum...then on my experience of this I would offer another interpretation - namely full like a drum - the skin of a drum is taught and when struck the pressure inside increase - that’s how the body feels when the shen and chi are excited and expanded.

'Make the whole body without breaks or protuberances'

This is the refinement. There will be deep-rooted tensions that the overflowing of energy will take a lot of time to overcome - these will take the form of being breaks in the flow - or areas where the hose swells out of shape because the flow is blocked.

'Then the body will be one unit.'

The tai chi body - the chi kung body. Peng is a measure of chi kung. When you have all of the above - it is called a small return.

That’s where I got to.

Medium return is knowing how to use the body - Big return is what could be called the diamond body or perhaps Buddha mind.

I hope that helps! - there is more to say about it's use - but it's development must be the first topic I feel!.


ps I have just started to put together my first web page - I'd love you guys to look. I would love to feature some of what you say as articles on there if you would be agreeable. Have a look: - use the circles to navigate and in some instances to mail me.

[This message has been edited by Anderzander (edited 07-05-2003).]

[This message has been edited by Anderzander (edited 07-05-2003).]

[This message has been edited by Anderzander (edited 07-05-2003).]
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Postby psalchemist » Sun Jul 06, 2003 7:02 pm

Greetings Ander Zander,

I enjoyed browsing your website, very nice. I was hoping you might be able to expand on the theme of BINDING (energy?)(article 7). I am a relatively new student to Taijiquan so almost anything you could provide on the matter would probably be of great service to me.

Thanks in advance,

P.S. I just can't resist asking...Is there any reason why you omit the 'Chuan'/fist(quan)?...purely curious.
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Postby Anderzander » Sun Jul 06, 2003 7:46 pm


Thankyou for your kind words about my site.

Ok - I feel a bit in danger of nighjacking the thread, so I'll be brief if thats ok!.


"Tightly adhere and add energy to your position, the energy increases and supports in two directions."

Basically increase peng at the point of contact - and concentrate into their centre (adhere). Turn the waist slightly to rotate the arm a little, this works like a gear.

Imagine his arm is a cog and so is yours - if you are tightly attached then as you rotate (outwards) it will move him outwards, no matter which way his arm is rotating or even if it isn't.

By rotating, sticking very tightly and having your arm focused into his body (onto his centre of gravity) - you will be turning him off enough to stop him making you lean back if the pressure of contact is high.

The two directions are the rotation against his arm - and forwards into his centre.

Hope that helps!.

ps - no reason not to put quan after taiji.
pps - perhaps we should start another thread if we want to talk about this more?

[This message has been edited by Anderzander (edited 07-06-2003).]
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Postby DavidJ » Mon Jul 07, 2003 8:52 pm

Hi Stevie,

I like what you said about flow and pressure.

Whether it's chi or water or electricity flowing, the less resistance the more current you get.



David J
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Postby psalchemist » Mon Sep 01, 2003 9:58 pm

This is something I heard recently and was wondering if it had any relevance to the references of gases...and chi

Neon is in the air we breathe...

When a strong flow of electricity is applied to the gas it emits a bright red glow. When the same process occurs with another gas such as helium it produces a glow of a different color.

Just a comment.
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Postby psalchemist » Mon Sep 01, 2003 10:42 pm

Greetings DavidJ, All,

When you first initiated this topic board entitled 'chi', although highly intrigued by the substance of the subject, was unable to express any comments or queries due to a lack of technical knowledge and experience.

I have of course heard various points of ideology in my Taijiquan classes, but there are certainly many levels to understanding acquired knowledge.

Now, however, I am permeated with many new thoughts, various new pieces of information and have undergone several tangible experiences of late.

I am seeking to clarify and classify certain aspects I have come across. I am surely confused on some points, and perhaps merging different ideas together...I'll try to convey what I know and let others judge and correct any notions in which I am mistaken.

I have an almost constantly 'raised chi', and some sort of 'flow' to the hands.

Could someone explain the difference between chi-jin-jing-and grounding?

In sinking the chi to the tan tien with mind intent I feel a weight gain in the lower abdominal area, however this does not seem to releive the raised chi effect. Do these work independantly from one another?

Recently I have become more aware of the feeling of the chi in the head. Someone was describing a temporary 'suntan' type of result on the surface of the skin. Lately I've only to think 'chi to the head' or 'raise the chi' for the sensation to develop immediately, accompanied by a 'suntan' result in my cheeks and ears, while the usual pressure, tingling, buzzing feeling persists as usual in the head which always seems to pair the 'raised chi state'.

Mind intent seems to amplify these effects.

I find to raise one's chi, personally, that it is unnecessary to put oneself in any type of proper stance or position. It is more a matter of mind intent. This leads me to question it's use in the art of Taijiquan. Actually, this kind of proves to me(although I have been told many times) that raised chi indeed has little place in Taijiquan, or more precisely the physical state. It's good for meditation, though.

Conversely, connecting seems to be the 'right method' to seek for physical exteriorization/manifestation such as Taijiquan. This connection, from what I understand so far IS dependant on physical posture, in a very specific and precise manner. Without correct posture(essentials) there is no way to exploit the full potential of physical power. ex) if the elbows are not set just right, it will be next to impossible to connect...

A good mind control and kinesthetic sense could provide a certain amount of 'extra' flow to add to the already natural flow (which must exist in all at all times), however it does seem to be of secondary importance to physical alignment.

The 'raised chi definitely reminds me of that 'electro magnetic sphere' one can find in a science laboratory. The one that raises the hair straight up when it comes in contact with it's counter-probe. A chi/hair raising experience.

Question: Why does such a device raise the hair? Why does it not ground through the feet and go into the ground instead? Or does it do both at the same time?

I guess I'm still pondering that upward/downward connection, but am wondering how this fits in with Taijiquan theory. Are grounding/connecting, chi flow throughout the body and raised chi different entities? If so how do they all work together. Any differentiation would be quite helpful to me at this point.

Best regards,
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Postby psalchemist » Wed Sep 10, 2003 7:41 pm

Hello all,

I have been preoccupied of late with the review of various aspects of certain knowledge I have received recently and eternities ago.

I have reached a junction of several colliding theories of somewhat unidentifiable vehicles, which I seek now to confirm and develop.

Also, I am presently reaping the rewards of a few ponderings and thought to share these results.

However, let me make clear, that I am in noway certain that these fruits are in fact unpossessed of worms.

I am in no manner a qualified authority on any of these matters. These are simply some deductions, or 'always-open-to-change-conclusions', which I have gleaned through my own personal interpretations of many new elements provided me by other sources.

Hence possibly misinterpreted, incorrectly fused, and most definitely tinged with my own solipsistic views on these gatherings of input.

Please feel free to comment, contradict, add your opinions, views, facts of point. I welcome all feedback to expand upon these ideas.

What is the difference between external art and internal art?

Please allow me the attempt at conveying what I have come to learn as the difference between internal martial art and external martial art.
This , I find, is more easily explained using the theory of

Power= Accelleration x Mass.

It has been quite a helpful tool indeed.

I will provide a foundation for internal art by contrasting the basis for external art.

Many(most) martial arts are based upon external power. External, physical, corporal power. They are called external arts due to their externally propelled nature. Kung fu, tae kwon do, karate, etc. fall into the category of external martial art. Taijiquan is an internal art.

In the true physical sense, external art applies the formula Power=Accelleration x Mass in a very literal physical, external sense.

Weight,size,muscles(mass) x speed,momentum, velocity(accelleration) generates power for an external martial artist.

The structure of the external martial arts movement provides the basis for efficient functionning of the physical body. It is of course necessary to 'throw' one's weight 'into' the punch in a threaded manner, to obtain potency behind the manifestation.

Size,stregnth,speed and threaded movement structure are the basis for external art.

In my unproffessional opinion, threading is the only commonality between internal and external martial arts. I draw the line there, if others wish to stretch it, by all means, feel free to do so.

Delivery of power is dependant upon correct physical posture/alignment/threading structure.

But this, in itself,is not the key to Taijiquan's internal arts, it is only the beginning of it's source of power, not it's final outcome.

The threaded structure is used with different purpose and and substantially different meaning. The external body becomes the vessel for a greater power.

Internal arts eliminates the importance of size,stregnth and speed of physical momentum and delves more deeply intoperfecting structure and posture and utilizes other sources available only at internal levels.

My two earlier postings in this topic are indicative of the ideas I am pursuing in the complexity of internal arts.
Gases, such as helium, neon, other...
and electro-magnetic energy flow being the main points.

Meridians(I think) are the power lines/tubes which conduct the gas flow and the electric flow. I am unable, from lack of knowledge of these 'lines'to guess whether they are one in the same, or seperate entities which join together. Meridians, accupuncture points and the air we breathe all being connected somehow.. The distinctions ellude me.

Distinctions aside, however, internal arts does employ the same theory of Power= Accelleration x Mass, but in a different manner. Generating power internally is accomplished through specific internal methods.

We all breathe air. Quiessence provides a good method of oxygenating the body. Oxygennation is one primary source of gathering chi.

The breathing should provide the proper oxygenation for the movement in a co-ordinated and co-operative way. Breathe in upon opening and out upon closing(so I understand).

The air carries many gases. Chi is perhaps a type of gas we breathe. I think I have read somewhere that Chi is in the air we breathe. The quantity of chi is dependant upon the quality and quantity of oxygenation within the body.

The mind plays a huge role in moving the chi with intent. It must direct the gas and energy flow to the desired focal point. Concentration seems to be the major factor. One must direct the flow with the mind intent to one specific point without diffusion.

I beleive that the internal arts are exploiting these possible gases and electro-magnetic current somewhat as a neon light does, hence the ultimate importance of correct Taijiquan posture maintenance during execution of a movement. It must be precise. If the elbows are angled wrong, the wrists not sunk, the head not suspended, armpits not open, waist not relaxed etc. then this creates a bend and therefore a type of blockage within the tubeways with the result being less power, or no power.

So why does a Taijiquan practitioner move so slowly as opposed to the speedy kung fu practitioner?
Precision of movement, slowness and lack of external physical movement replace the traditional external art physical speed and muscle.
But how does this create power? We are speaking of a different method of manifesting Power= Accelleration x Mass.

Gathering techniques create permanent chi reserves through constant meaningfull practice of Taijiquan form, quiessence in breathing and connecting to gain a flow to propulse the chi which has been accumnulated either through permeation or gained by an opponent. Then through proper threaded movement, manifesting the power as Fajin.

Breathing and practice accumulate chi, the opponents chi may be used against him. Add an electric current to this through correct posture which 'connects us', use mind intent to move the chi and flow to where it should go in a proper threaded structure making sure not to cut off the flow by respecting the essential posture rules, and internal power becomes a reality. Gaining and directing energy flow becomes possible.

In essence the body has become the external tool to manifest an interal power. Fa jin is the external manifestation of internal power.

Jin, Jing and Chi are somehow different forms of energy, but I ignorant to these differences . Information on those points would be helpful for clarification.

So, with what I know I can deduce that
Internal Power=Mass(quantity of chi) x (accelleration)electric flow through connection, free to flow as efficiently as possible through unblocked pathways, creating speed) and harnessed and directed my the mind intent.

Best regards,
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Postby psalchemist » Thu Sep 11, 2003 10:28 pm

Greetings all,

I find the whole subject of Taijiquan and it's internal methods supremely fascinating and highly absorbing.

The realization that power utilized in Taijiquan is, again, a multi-level process has just fallen upon me.

Drawing upon the primary knowledge I have acquired on the understanding and terminology of the subject of energies in Taijiquan. I am perhaps better prepared to approach a couple of intrigues I have been pondering.

A threefold process???Chi, jing, jin ???

In an attempt to convey my existing comprehension as a basis for further examination, allow me to present what I perceive to be portions of this processing.

Although undoubtedly possessed of erroneous conceptions, I must begin somewhere...

1) Chi seems to be a type of 'basic RAW material' which practitioners and Masters of the internal arts 'gather' through varying methods.
2) ???
3) Jin...Hmmm
Fajin is the 'releasing' of the final, finished product resulting from the processing of the raw chi. Delivered through an explosive, focused action, using Taijiquan techniques.

Fajin is the external manifestation of the internal art, which is possibly the processing of chi.

Therefore being the external aspect, it would probably be the energy most easily witnessed and measured (mm/cm).

Demonstrations from martial arts Masters which include the pulverization of substantial matter without evidence of physical harm seems to be the perfect example of Fajin.

The one who breaks a board with his fist, but experiences damaged or even reddened knuckles would be conveying an external art method.

The practitioner who is able to by-pass the first board but break the underlying one without injury or evidence of physical, bodily contact is practicing internal martial arts.

1) Chi- gathering energy
2) ?
3) Fajin-releasing energy

This definitely leaves me with questions.

I have heard that the gathering is called 'Huangjin'(I think). Which would then change the reasoning to :

1) Huang jin- gathering chi
2) ?
3) Fa jin- releasing energy

Question... If 'Huang jin' gathers chi and fa chin releases energy. what is the processing called? ( The #2 processing factor, central entity?)
And what is the final processed energy called in Taiji terms?

Perhaps this would be more clear:

1) Huang jin - gathering chi - opening
2) ??? - processing chi- FLOAT???
3) Fa jin - releasing chi - closing

Also, I am still trying to incorporate the idea of Jing into the process, but have no definition to work with. How is this included in the process?

Any explanations would be appreciated.

Best regards,
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Postby Audi » Sat Sep 20, 2003 12:15 am

Hi Psalchemist,

Zhang Yun wrote an interesting article contrasting "internal" and "external" arts. You might be interested in what he has to say. You can access the article at the following link:

On this page, click on the article entitled: "Neijia and Waijia."

Take care,
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Postby psalchemist » Sat Sep 20, 2003 12:39 am

Greetings Audi,

Thanks for the link.

I have quite a bit of reading ahead of me...It's always nice to receive references for the information I seek.

Best regards,

P.S. To all,

There are several ammendments I would like to make to my previous postings on "Chi"...but this will require some time, and consideration on my part before I may procede. All attempts at clarification welcome.

[This message has been edited by psalchemist (edited 09-19-2003).]
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Re: Chi

Postby ChiDragon » Thu Apr 07, 2016 4:28 pm

Greetings! Dear members and guests:

To me, this is the best thread online about the meanings of Chi. It's nice to have input from a knowledgeable bilingual person to explain it in English. However, by just using one word Chi to explain all the concepts was inadequate. The characters like 炁,气,and 氣, they all pronounced as "chee", should be used to distinguish the meaning of each with more details.

I will articulate the meanings of these characters by using the quotes from the above posts when I have more time. Thanks!
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Re: Chi

Postby ChiDragon » Thu Apr 07, 2016 9:47 pm

DavidJ wrote:Greeting Louis,

How do you define chi? What does the word translate to, etc, etc,

David J

How do we translate chi? In the west, most people have known "chi" as energy. However, in fact, there are few Chinese characters for chi. One must be careful not to be obfuscated by coming up with one definition to cover them all. If chi was translate as "energy", then all the other definitions are excluded. Thus that would be a biggest linguistic error. In order to be demystified, one must study each character and have a thorough understanding of the characters.

In the Chinese language, there are four characters representing chi of some kind; and they all pronounced as "chee".
1. - An universal substance which is comprised in all matters.
2. - A gaseous substance
3. - This character has multiple contemporary meanings.
4. - A water steam like vapor.

Now, since we know that there are four characters for chi, can we still stick with the translation for chi as "energy"?
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Re: Chi

Postby ChiDragon » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:16 pm

1. - An universal substance which is comprised in all matters.

The character consist of two radicals. The top radical is means: none, no, and doesn't exist. The four dot radical at the bottom is fire. The whole character represents that a substance has not been touched by fire. Thus it is a fundamental substance which is the basic unit constitute all matters.
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Re: Chi

Postby ChiDragon » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:30 pm

2. - A gaseous substance

It represents any gaseous substance such as air, breath, oxygen and etc. ctc.

When one breathes, the was being breathed into the lung.
When one says that the "sink chi to the dan tian", it was referring to this .
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Re: Chi

Postby ChiDragon » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:55 pm

3. - This character has multiple contemporary meanings.

This chi character consist of a and .
It is breath(air) plus rice which is vital energy. This vital energy flows in the body to let the internal organs to perform their functions. This sounds familiar with the terms in modern science:

ATP = glucose + oxygen
= rice + air

In the human body, the ATP energy was released from the glucose which was decomposed by oxygen. The ATP is the vital energy for the human to function. What is it telling us? Surprisingly, isn't that the glucose was from the rice we eat and the oxygen from the air we breathe? Indeed, how clever that the ancients had figured this out already before our time. Instead calling this vital energy as ATP but (chi). Therefore, when people were talking about chi as vital energy, they were referring to this character .
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