Push Hand Strategy

Postby psalchemist » Mon Jul 18, 2005 8:33 pm

Hello Kalamondin,

Thank you for providing your knowledge and experience on this.

That is a very clever method your sifu presents. It is very clear to me now, with this example.

I am not experienced in push hands and was not sure, exactly, how one might feint in TaiChi...Very clever~ Image

I think I must focus first and foremost on removing all my natural stiffness, before I will arrive at the point of considering attempting feigning false stiffness,(chuckles), but I'm sure it will be a great experiment once I am ready to try it. I will try to remember this one.

Thanks very much!

Best wishes,
Psalchemist

[This message has been edited by psalchemist (edited 07-18-2005).]

[This message has been edited by psalchemist (edited 07-18-2005).]
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Postby goto » Tue Jul 19, 2005 5:25 am

Hi Bamenwubu

I wrote last post in a hasty. My explaination on pushing words was not clear.

(However the second part of your statement does not seem to hold up to what I have been told. I could be wrong, heck I usually am wrong so it wouldn't surprise me a bit, but the way I understand PH's as I have learned it from the Yang family school is that it's not an exercise to learn about your opponent primarily, it's first function is as an exercise to learn about yourself.)

i look carefully your post .I agree with the statement "learn about yourself"
I think it is only one part in hand-pushing .To know opponent ia another part.After all, hand-pushing is a match between two people. According to The art of war by Sunzi, which was one of the most important strategic, understanding of youselves and your enemy will lead to victory. To follow , stick to opponeent is not only to learn about myselves.but also know opponent. IN my opinion, if my partner move, turn right and left, forward ,and backward ,i will also follow him ,judgeed by his action.And when he use forece or soften,i will follow him as well.For example people attack me central line with very strong penjin. AS i think, i always follow his force , decrceas with small , sometimes big circle. If i couter with too loose force,he can attack my central line easily:if i couter with too much force, it means "ding",which means only couter with a lot of force.Therefore, i should exactly know how much force i should use to neutralize his force. During these process, i knew my opponent how much force he push me, and knew myselves use how much force i couter with .Saying is much easier than practicing.It took me a lot of careful exercie to achieve the goal.Now,There is a long distance to this goal.The process consists of tinjin and jiejin.Listen your opponent's force, and couter with same force to him.I copyed this method from taichi books. In yang style books, the process is called"bu diu bu ding,". It means do not loosen too much and do not resist too much. The force i deliver to your opponent should be equal to the force my opponent delived to you. So. i think pushing-hand is not only to know myselves , but also know my opponent.



(To that end when we push hands we at first co-operate with each other completely. We push gently and slowly, helping each other to know where we are stiff today, where we are loose today and give each other time to loosen the stiffness and loosen the loose even more. After we have become more aware of ourselves we ramp it up a notch and begin to be a tad more unforgiving to each other, but still not enough to knock anyone down or throw anyone out of the match. We work more on allowing the other person to become aware of the point where he lost control of himself and learn to correct it than we do to simply be able to toss each other around.)

I appreciate the method your mentioned above. It is very useful and practice ,which can improve sensitivity and correct uncessary shortcomings
However,I found hand-pushig you mentioned is a training exercise .Therefore, the purpose of this method is not to win or lose, but to learn about yourseves and your opponent,to find your stiffness .But I cousulted some taichi books.Especially at the era of yangluchan,who was first generation of yangfamily, push-hand was invoved in blood, fighting, wresting, and kicking.Yangluchan's sons and grand sons were also well know for their subtle skill.They could also throw the people away easily, sometimes, will hurt people with blood seriously.According to these materials,i think, in old times,the main function of hand pushing is to fight against people.Yangluchan, and his son should live on their martial skills, they can't be defeated.Each time when they pushing hand with people, they must win instead of.lose. As a result, they become more powerful and famouse. Now,however,people did not have a lot of oppontunities to combat ,and only practice taichi for health and relaxation.Hand-pushing is less competitive than before. I think, in fact,hand-pushing is a competitive contest for the purpose of defeating opponent.However,we can also practice as a exercise to develop body, meet friends,without any intenion to wining or losing.

Best Regards
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Postby cheefatt taichi » Tue Jul 19, 2005 7:02 am

[quote] I cousulted some taichi books.Especially at the era of yangluchan,who was first generation of yangfamily, push-hand was invoved in blood, fighting, wresting, and kicking [unquote].

Allow me to add in some of my thoughts. Push hand (tuishao) was originally called Hitting hand(dashao). Its purpose maintained unchanged until today, what had changed is the degree of concentration and progress. Its primary objective is to develop tingjin and then how to use tingjin to apply techniques. We do that too in modern push hand but we kind of stop here. The next stage is to add-in fajin to each technique and really push your opponent far away. Then one will move into hitting with shortjin where the concept of `fung diu pi ta' (hit whenever there is disconnection) applies. In modern day push hands most of us also neglected the concept of fighting in push hand. We mistakenly take `push' as an end, everyone is engrossed in how to push the opponent away and totally neglected the purpose of defence and fajin. This is very evidence in push hand competition where opponent often try to catch each other's wrist...imaging if it is a real fight, that fist will surely land on the unguarded face.

Even at the initial stage push hand must be approached like a combat drill. This way we will not created bad habit that will be hard to change later.
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Postby goto » Wed Jul 20, 2005 3:07 pm

Hello
Cheefatt

Your explaination about the pushing hand is correct
Allowing me to add in some materials from taichi books

I think 'fung diu pi ta" is "Feng diu bi da".And the statement of "Feng diu bi da " only belongs to yang style taichi." Feng"'s meaning is to meet with."Diu" means:can't stick to people.(It is vevy difficult to explain diu in english and chinese. The explaination is only mine,not official.).bi's meaning is should or must. Da is fajin ,to strike or push away or throw away.
There is anothe explaination of diu: when people was too looss to defend by foreare without any jin inside , opponent can attack you easily. Some people call it your are in the state of diu.
The basic meaning of feng diu bi da is that when pushing hand with people,
people sense opponent that one point his body was in the state of "diu".People should apply fajin immediately on the point where there is a diu .

Disconneting is one kine of "diu".But connecting with opponent, people will also be in the state of diu.

I think one of the fuction in tinjin is to avoid our own "diu " and sense " diu" of the opponent.

Best
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Postby Bamenwubu » Wed Jul 20, 2005 3:21 pm

Goto,
I had actually responded earlier, but then thought better of my response and removed it until I had some time to think this through more clearly. My post rambled a bit, as I wasn't really clear on what I was trying to say.
That's the "disregard this post" above.
I have thought about the practice of push hands, and I seem to have come to some of the same conclusions that you and Chee have, that pushing hands is really not the same today that it must have been 100 years ago, maybe even fifty years ago, and the problem we're having is that we're comparing apples to oranges here.
I have only trained the Yang style push hands as a training drill to this point, there is no "real" combat involved and the way I understood it there isn't going to be. Others obviously view PH's as a competition in and of itself but that is not how I see it.
To that end I feel that thinking of PH's as a drill to increase listening, sticking, adhering, following skills and to get to know yourself (ie; knowing how to stand correctly and having that tested by being pushed against, only one example) is only the first step on the way. There are certainly more steps after that point that I have not seen. I was speaking from my current perspective on PH's, not about the entire lexicon involved, and so my responses are from the perspective of apples, yours are from oranges. Still, they are not so far apart as we have seen.
As in form practice you first begin by copying the movements of your teacher, at this time you have no real concept of what you're eventually shooting for. Do you? You are mimicking what your instructor does, putting your hands in roughly the same location, moving your feet roughly at the saem time and generally in the same direction. But there is no understanding at this point of proper frame, proper rooting, the Ten Essentials are not present in your form. No matter how closely you mimick the movements your instructor makes the basis is not there for true understanding of the form or its movements yet.
After some time you begin to understand that there is a reason that the left hand goes here, the right here goes there, and you begin to make more proper form movements. However at this time you still have no understanding of co-ordinating upper and lower, so while you are moving slowly into the Ten Essentials you are only exhibiting one or maybe two of them.
Time goes on, you learn more correctly, you begin to exhibit a greater and greater proportion of the Essentials in your form work until you reach the point where you have incorporated all Ten Essentials and it can be said that you are truly doing TCC, or at least doing a real TCC hand form.
Such will be the case with PH's training. You have to start somewhere, we all do, and that somewhere may be different for everyone.
One of my biggest problems is that I had some prior experience with PH's, but it turns out my training was less genuine than I had been lead to believe. I had sunshine blown up my heiny by someone who supposedly knew what he was talking about, and for quite a while, but that turned out to be a waste of time.
It really doesn't matter, the important thing is that I was misinformed. I wasted a LOT of my time, not to mention money, taking training that was not worth the time of day I spent on it, but now I am on the right path with someone who does know.
It took me quite some time to understand that but now I can move forward.
I imagine this happens to a lot of people in TCC as there is no TCC police force to ensure that all instructors are qualified or honorable. Anyone can hang up a shingle, skilled or not, honest or not, and claim to know and teach TCC, whether they do or not.
Caveat Emptor applies here.
Anyway...
It took me a while to get over my belief in a flawed system and begin to understand that what my current instructor was giving me was pure gold. Now that I have begun to train with an instructor who demonstrably knows his stuff, perhaps I'm a tad too overenthusiastic and blow the trumpets a bit too much about it.
If I have, I apologize now to everyone I have offended by doing so.
However, perhaps you can understand when I say that to feel the transfer of energy between my feet, up my legs, one knee pushing back against the other in a controlled fashion, my center under my control, my lower body rooted, my waist turning freely, my upper body relaxed and pliable, my whole self under my control...
To really, truly know these things at last after a long time THINKING I did...
Well, it's quite a rush. Sometimes I get carried away and gush a tad too loud and long about it.
Sorry. I'll try to stick to the program and not gush anymore.

I agree, wholeheartedly, with both you and Chee that the practice of PH's is going through a redefinement in the TCC world, not just in Yang style but in all disciplines.
It seems to be taking on a life of it's own, outside the realm of a training exercise. It has moved into "competition mode" and is now an end in and of itself in some places.
PH's tournaments are becoming more and more popular. I see them taking the same place as tournaments for things like Karate. They offer a way to test your skills without the danger of being really hurt. They offer some competition, a good way to score coup, a feather in your cap if you win.
I don't know if this was the original intent, but it is what is happening now.
I, however, still only see PH's from the perspective of a training exercise. I haven't infused a higher meaning to PH's. I only think of it as an effective way to train skills that I will require when I move into the realm of free style sparring, which is a tad more like "real" fighting than PH's can be.
Even there, I view sparring as only the next step to learning more skill towards the end of self defense. Maybe more advanced, hands on skills than form work or PH's but still only a practice method to achieve those skills, not as a way to score points in a competition or count coup against my partners or others who I may train with.
I say "train", and I mean that. I don't consider my training partners as "opponents" I view them as "partners". We are working together, not fighting each other.
The fighting may come later, with someone who is temporarily, or permanently, insane and is attacking me or others who it is my bounden duty to defend. I don't "fight" my training partners, I train with them.
The dynamic is entirely different. Do you see this?
So I guess I needed to clarify my position. I am not viewing this part of TCC training, PH's, as a "win or lose" proposition. I view it strictly as a training method to be practiced with diligence and due care for everyone's safety, with the goal in mind of increasing our skills in self defense for a time when we may really need them. I do NOT view PH's as something I can either win or lose. I always win. Whenever I learn something new or increase my skill of something I may allready understand THAT is the true definition to me of "winning".
THIS is how I see the practice of PH's, and TCC in general, other will see things entirely differently. Neither will be incorrect, just different.

Eveyone is entitled to their opinion on this or any other subject, and that includes me. This is my opinion. No one else needs to agree.
Right or wrong, it's merely my understanding and not some kind of cosmic guideline and was never intended to be.

Cheers,
Bob

[This message has been edited by Bamenwubu (edited 07-20-2005).]
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Postby Yuri Snisarenko » Wed Jul 20, 2005 6:23 pm

Greetings All

Very interesting discussion about pushing hands strategies.

Chee, Goto thanks for the explanations of 'Feng diu bi da'. I would be grateful if you put this phrase in Chinese here.

I was thinking of the phrase for awhile and came to the conclusion that the most turbid point for me here is DA or fajin. Do you know any good info in the net or in books about the stages of the development of fajin in Yang style (in Chenese)? What was fajin, for example, for YCF is a quite high stage of it. One cannot apply such fajing in the early stages of his/her practice of tuishou. And I suppose students mast have a kind of convention about what they use 'instead' of real fajin in the beginning of the tuishou training and must have a conception how to move further.

I would be grateful for any useful references.



[This message has been edited by Yuri Snisarenko (edited 07-20-2005).]
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Postby shugdenla » Wed Jul 20, 2005 11:02 pm

We can all be fooled by polite tuishou but as some said, it involves peng lu ji an etc with application. Today we do not do any of that stuff so how can we pretend we do!! Obviously it is easy.

We push and pull but nothing else and this is good because that is all many want to do.
If we want greater skill, we must search ourselves. Much of what we do will not stand to any challenge, if we really want that kind of expertise.
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Postby Bamenwubu » Thu Jul 21, 2005 2:14 am

Shug,
"Polite pushing"?
I don't know if I'd call it that, exactly, but you do have a good point in one way.
We use measured applications of energy, carefully controlled movements, we are considerate of each others limitations though we do push them in order for us to become familiar with and work through them. Firstly though, when we practice "politely" the main goal is that no one gets seriously hurt.
This is the only golden rule in my practice sessions.

In case you missed that, let me be clear:
No one gets seriously hurt. Ever.

If this is what it takes to be labeled as "polite" while doing push hands training, then I'm a total advocate of "polite pushing".

I was under the impression that we were discussing push hands, not combat. My group views push hands practice as just that, pushing hands to practice our skills. The name does not in any way imply breaking each others bones. It's "pushing hands" practice not "breaking bones" practice.
If you are using push hands as a training tool, for training purposes only, which is the only way I can view it since it's all I use it for, then a certain amount of "politeness" seems called for.
No?
Since I feel certain that you aren't really advocating a free for all brawl to test our skills against each other in combat, it leaves me to wonder what you would consider as acceptable "impolite pushing"...?
Our practice can and sometimes does involve engaging each other to the end of a form, such as Roll Back. However, once our partner is locked and down, there doesn't appear to be a real reason to break his arm to test whether or not we now understand Roll Back. He doesn't have to have torn ligaments either. The mere fact that his center was compromised, offset and finally controlled by his partner really should be enough information for any training purposes required of either of them.
I have heard of, and participated in, free style sparring. This practice is a tad less, to use your terminology, "polite". However it still involved limits.
Now, I have not participated in Yang family sparring, so I have no knowledge of this systems practices in that discipline. However, I feel certain that if such a practice is used in this transmission it will still be "polite" in that I would have to imagine one of the main goals is that no one gets seriously hurt.
I would imagine you would go through a lot of training partners if you weren't "polite" in your practice practices.
But...
That's just me. I'm a pretty "polite" guy like that.

So what is your suggestion for an alternative to training the skills of tui shou, but less politely?
You mention the energies, Peng, Lu, An, etc, etc, with applications. Why does the practice of these energies have to require "impoliteness" to be real?
Because training in the polite manner we've been using in my group, we have advanced our skills in these energies and their applications exponentially beyond what we did when we trained them quite a bit less politely but much less accurately.
We're standing more firmly, our waists are looser, our upper bodies are more flexible. We can follow better, stick more correctly, adhere more accurately and we are beginning to know our opponent but not let him know us in a way never before understood.
So if this "politeness" is returning us all these benefits, and no one's had much more than a few good bruises to show for it, I'm all for staying polite.

Cheers,
Bob



[This message has been edited by Bamenwubu (edited 07-20-2005).]
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Postby cheefatt taichi » Thu Jul 21, 2005 2:16 am

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">
What was fajin, for example, for YCF is a quite high stage of it. One cannot apply such fajing in the early stages of his/her practice of tuishou. And I suppose students mast have a kind of convention about what they use 'instead' of real fajin in the beginning of the tuishou training and must have a conception how to move further.
</font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Hi Yuri,

Fajin is an ability which takes time and practise to understand. Many words will make you more confuse what it is and is not. One closest example of fajin is when sneezing. When about to sneeze you will obviously `fang song' and then when the energy burst your body will explode in a sudden tense and jerk. It is not advisable to do fajin at the beginning or imtermedia of PH. One needs to be very `song' to be able to start practising fajin. At the physical side fajin is exactly the same with the normal way of applying Jin in the taiji 13 Jin, which is power rooted at the feet, controlled by waist, travel thru back and manifest in hands only that it is done faster and in smaller movement. Both these two aspects required one to have superior `song' quality. The inner aspects are the same too i.e Yi first, Chi second and Jin will followed and again done in a more exertive and alert manner. It will come if you invest time exploring it bit by bit. Starts with mild and slow fajin to get the posture right and work on from there. Train until every inch of your movement can fajin and your PH skills will be at a different level.

Happy training.
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Postby goto » Thu Jul 21, 2005 3:27 am

Hello

(To that end I feel that thinking of PH's as a drill to increase listening, sticking, adhering, following skills and to get to know yourself (ie; knowing how to stand correctly and having that tested by being pushed against, only one example) is only the first step on the way. There are certainly more steps after that point that I have not seen. I was speaking from my current perspective on PH's, not about the entire lexicon involved, and so my responses are from the perspective of apples, yours are from oranges. Still, they are not so far apart as we have seen.)

The method you mention is listenning , sticking, adhering, followoing.That is right.And It is very useful and practical. But in my opinion it is only one part of the training exercise for the hand-pushing.Like boxing.When two one fight in the match, the objective is to win and defeat oppponent.But.outside the ring,they take part in a lot of exercise,such as punching the heavy bag. or sparing with somebody.They practice these drills not to win or loss,but for a purpose to develop themseves,to know their own defects, to learn about themseves.From my perspective, the hand-pushing you mentioned is a training exercis/drill especially for hand-pushing which is ourside the ring.And hand-pushing i metioned is inside the ring. Perhaps i misunderstand your statement.

"As in form practice you first begin by copying the movements of your teacher, at this time you have no real concept of what you're eventually shooting for. Do you? You are mimicking what your instructor does, putting your hands in roughly the same location, moving your feet roughly at the saem time and generally in the same direction. But there is no understanding at this point of proper frame, proper rooting, the Ten Essentials are not present in your form. No matter how closely you mimick the movements your instructor makes the basis is not there for true understanding of the form or its movements yet."

I don't know what is your meaning of the statement that i copyed the momvement of my teacher. Have i mentionted something about my teacher's form or movement.I look throught all post that i have written,and i merely mentioned some advice and some theories from my teacher without mentionting any detailed movement or postures from him. The examples i have listed are only my own experierce that i have touched with strangers,not my teahers. These chinese proverbs or some advice are very common ones,which are popular in taiji and other schools of martial arts. Yes.As your say , i did not pay a lot of attention to the Ten Essentials.But that does not mean the Essentails is not important to me. In contrast,owing to it importance, like the beautifult star in the sky that i rarely reached .So when i practice taiji, i am sometimes interested at the detailed movement,even in push hand. such as how to fajin, the right steps of its exercise,and how to apply these technique to the people and how to handle some situation,which i always met with.
And At last, if the advices or proverbs from my teacher offend you, i stop and only write taichi and hand pushing themselevers.

"at this time you have no real concept of what you're eventually shooting for"

That is my problem that i always make when i write in english. Thank your for mentioning that.Some interesting posts often attracted my attention ,so i wrote something that leaves the topic.I will be more careful next.
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Postby Yuri Snisarenko » Thu Jul 21, 2005 5:58 am

Cheefatt,
thanks a lot for the clear explanation. I'll ponder on your words.
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Postby Bamenwubu » Thu Jul 21, 2005 1:26 pm

Goto,
No. I was not referring to your teacher or anything specific about you.
I can't converse very well in English, and it's my only language. Sorry for the confusion.
I was referring to the basic progression method of form training we all go through, from beginning when we don't understand the concept but are trying to learn to the end where we do real TCC form and understand the how and why of what we're doing, and making a comparison to the path we take learning push hands.
That's all.
No reference to anyone in particular or in specific, an outline only for the basis of comparison.

Yes, I believe we are comparing two different things. I speak of PH's as a training exercise to learn about myself and my future opponents. How to stand correctly not to be either offset of pushed back, how to meet incoming energy and redirect it with my entire body rather than with only disjointed local parts of it, how to guage my opponent and understand his movments before he does, how to apply the energies of peng, lu, an, li, etc, to reality. I don't speak of PH's as a battle, because unless you artificially elevate it to that level, it has no meaning as one in my opinion.
What you are all referring to seems to me to be much more along the lines of sparring rather than PH's. Sparring to me is the practice of pairing off against a training partner and actually throwing punches, making kicks, throwing elbows and shoulders at each other to simulate a more real "fight" than anything that can be done with PH's. Even stepping PH's is still PH's. No one is throwing a punch at your ribs, or kicking at your groin, or trying to stomp on your foot. You are connected at the arms, pushing against each other, moving together. There is little actual "free style" to it, it is very structured. Sparring is less structured, but still has limits.
So like I said, you guys seem to be discussing tournament PH's, I'm talking about PH's as a practice tool.
Sorry for the confusion. I don't do PH's tournaments, where everyone gets together and tries to knock each other down to see who is "best" at PH's and win a ribbon. I view it as a practice tool, and my remarks were and are geared as such.

Bob


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Postby tai1chi » Thu Jul 21, 2005 5:50 pm

Hi Bob,

fwiw, I don't think there is such a big argument here at all. No matter what, practicing with another person (cooperatively or competitively) can teach one a lot about oneself. But "oneself" should (imo) only ever be 1/2 of push hands or two-person practice.

An old teacher of mine would always get upset when students would play the "limp noodle" with him or not really exert themselves. Some of them thought that being as non-committal as possible with their movements was a way of yielding and being soft. He'd always say, "But how is your partner going to practice?"

There are always two parts to push hands, and one of them (at least) is dedicated to developing the skill of "listening", and not to oneself, but to the opponent. Of course, one "can" listen to oneself during push hands; but, imo, that type of listening is what the empty-hand form is for, and where it's developed.

I also take as a guideline the idea/l necessity to "give oneself up and follow the other." I don't think that means it's unnecessary to "know oneself"; rather, one needs to know oneself before one can sincerely give anything up. And then, it is supposed to work better if one then sincerely gives that up.

Anyway, just my .03,
Steve James
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Postby Kalamondin » Thu Jul 21, 2005 6:12 pm

Hi Gogo,

Bob said: <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2"><B>
"As in form practice you first begin by copying the movements of your teacher, at this time you have no real concept of what you're eventually shooting for. Do you? You are mimicking what your instructor does, putting your hands in roughly the same location, moving your feet roughly at the saem time and generally in the same direction. But there is no understanding at this point of proper frame, proper rooting, the Ten Essentials are not present in your form. No matter how closely you mimick the movements your instructor makes the basis is not there for true understanding of the form or its movements yet."
</B></font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

That was a very polite response from you, and your restraint is admirable. Bob’s message might have seemed very insulting because it seemed to say that you are not very skilled and can only copy your teacher. I am sure this is not true. I don’t speak for Bob, but I think he did not intend to insult you. Your English is, of course, excellent, but there may be one part of common English speaking that is relatively new and might not yet be taught in schools around the world.

Often, when English speakers, particularly Americans, say “you” they do not really mean “you, Goto, the person.” They mean a non-specific “you” that could be plural (more than one person), or hypothetical (not real, but possibly real). You may have learned this as “one” which means “an unspecified person”, for example, “One could study tai chi to improve health.” This means any one person could (maybe, possibly, probably, but not definitely) study tai chi for health. The use of “One” (meaning a person) is less used now and considered quite formal and generally only used in academic or legal writing or by older generations. Sometimes I use it when I write, but more often I write “you” when I mean “somebody out there in the world” and not “you specifically, the individual.”

So, I think Bob was talking about the general progression of beginners studying tai chi. If you look at his paragraph above and replace “you” with “a beginning student” you may find a different meaning.

So I hope you and others who did not learn English as their first language will find this distinction helpful. I don’t want to assume that you don’t know this, but thought it might be helpful for others too. This is generally not taught in English classes (even in American schools) because it is generally considered “incorrect” or “not proper English.” However, it is widely in use in the general population and this “rule” may eventually change to reflect the way language is actually used.

One other different thing you may see is the use of the plural pronoun “they” to mean “he or she, unspecified.” For example “When you push the opponent’s center, they will be off balance,” means “When one pushes the opponent’s center, he or she will be pushed off balance.” Using “they” (plural) to refer to one person (he or she) is also technically “incorrect” but has become part of common usage and you will probably see it more.

Using the word “they” reflects a cultural change to include women more. Before, one would have said “he” to refer a non-specific person and it would have theoretically included women also. In the last few decades in some parts of the English speaking world (academia in particular), people have been trying different ways to include women in writing about people in general. They write “he or she” or they write “he” in one paragraph and “she” in the next. Someone even made a joke, a contraction of “she, he, it” (“s” apostrophe “h” apostrophe “it”) expressing general disgust with the difficulties of this new way of speaking and writing (do not use!). But the simplest way so far, has been the use of “they” which is only one word, only one syllable, and non-specific. So this word has a new meaning and can now also mean “one person, gender not specified.”

Best wishes,
Kal
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Postby bamboo leaf » Thu Jul 21, 2005 6:25 pm

(But how is your partner going to practice?)

I always tell others when pushing it doesn’t matter much what they do, only to recognize it for what it is, not what one thinks it is.

Force is force nothing wrong with using it, if that’s what one wants to do. If the other can not handle it, then they can not handle it, nothing wrong with that either.

Problems arise when force is not recognized for what it is, and not really being sung is thought of as such.

This is, what is meant by the practice of real skills and why it is important to have a clear understanding of ones practice.

Push hands teaches one to understand force in the context of taiji, once this is really grasped the shape, speed, power of the force has no meaning its all the same. Push hands can be a transition to taiji usage as some have said. I tend to view it as usage once ones skill gets to a certain level. After which the practice is still one of refining the skills that make usage possible.

Dealing with people it feels the same


[This message has been edited by bamboo leaf (edited 07-21-2005).]

[This message has been edited by bamboo leaf (edited 07-21-2005).]
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