Resistance

Postby gene » Fri Sep 10, 2004 4:45 pm

David/B.L.:

Thank you for the thoughtful post. I very much like your description of "resistance" as "inability to change," and will carry this into my next push hands session. Do you have any thoughts on the mindset for locating your partner's center? Example: Assume your partner is in wardoff right, in a right bow stance. Your hands are on his forearm. If you apply "an" to his forearm, you have located the core but are unlikely to move him with just that technique, because your force dissipates into his rear leg. Options would include: (1) Changing the direction of the push, so that it moves to his weak line (perpendicular to the shoulders and feet), or (2) Changing the push to a pull (as the Classics instruct), so that his root is broken forward. Obviously, it is difficult if not impossible to discuss this in writing as it is a tactile/sensing issue, but to the extent we can, how do you you approach the question of locating the center (and using it)?

Gene
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Postby bamboo leaf » Fri Sep 10, 2004 6:20 pm

(These words seem to be too complicated for my understanding. I think I've grasped your main idea but am not sure. Are you trying "to push" right to opponent's center [line] only?)

no the center that I speak of is the center of their mental balance point. Once you find this point, you either cause it to move by using your intent or they move sensing that you found it. in either case you follow and add to there movement.

(Thank you for the thoughtful post. I very much like your description of "resistance" as "inability to change," and will carry this into my next push hands session. Do you have any thoughts on the mindset for locating your partner's center? Example: Assume your partner is in wardoff right, in a right bow stance. Your hands are on his forearm. If you apply "an" to his forearm, you have located the core but are unlikely to move him with just that technique, because your force dissipates into his rear leg. Options would include: (1) Changing the direction of the push, so that it moves to his weak line (perpendicular to the shoulders and feet), or (2) Changing the push to a pull (as the Classics instruct), so that his root is broken forward. Obviously, it is difficult if not impossible to discuss this in writing as it is a tactile/sensing issue, but to the extent we can, how do you you approach the question of locating the center (and using it)?)

using your example at the first touch if he can not change or does not really feel it, then you get what I call an echo effect. That is a point that responds to either the intent or pressure and attempt to stabilize its self by the use of force. if your ting is very good, you can detect the smallest echo. if not then it becomes a little harder. it is the use of the mind over the body that we must train.

the touch must be light and agile, the phrase ( you know him but he dose not know you) come s to mind. If your touch is so heavy that he can dissipate it though his leg then it means 3 things.

1. he did not change at the point of contact, an advanced player would be able to use this very easily
2. you did not change, your intent to push allows him to use it.
3. you are still thinking in terms of moving the body, it is the mind that you must lead.

attract to emptiness, or lead him to emptiness is at the core of my own training. This means that there is no point that can not change. Some problems are that some may not change inside or not be able to allow the whole body to change.

Resistance occurs in the mind, manifested in the body. push hands is a good way to check and work with this.

In the other post on mind intent or YI, this is what is used to probe. At first touch and later before the touch.

[

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Postby bamboo leaf » Fri Sep 10, 2004 7:13 pm

From the post on mind intent.

(Never give an opponent an opportunity to guard and attack, or put yourself in the position of having to guard and attack.)

the idea of transformation/change in the present

(It’s clear to me that the “empty mind” of Chinese metaphysics is not a state of absence, or vacuity. Rather, it is a yielding and an openness that allows all things to enter without physical or psychological resistance. All sensory input can just flow and the body can react instinctively)

This is from the post on mind intention. It really says quite nicely Image what I have been alluding to. When you can do this even if your partner get thrown out more often then not there will be laughter it feels very light and natural. Not forced and tense.


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Postby chris » Fri Sep 10, 2004 8:25 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by bamboo leaf:
<B>There seems to be some confusion on what resistance is, these are my views.
It’s the inability to change. Some one who can change really well offers no place to apply force or pressure to.</B></font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I have never met anyone unable to change. I have met many people unwilling to move. These are very different.

The easiest ones to lead, are those who consistently change in order to avoid moving! IMO.
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Postby bamboo leaf » Fri Sep 10, 2004 8:39 pm

(have never met anyone unable to change. I have met many people unwilling to move. These are very different.)

Yes they are.

I would say that you probbly have met people unable to change. When I use the word change it should mean to move in accordance with the other, not by ones self as you seem to be talking about.

So even if they move they still may not be able to change, and if they don’t understand what change is they may not have really changed when they moved.

Leading is the result of not being able to change, either ones intent or ones use of force. If you can change there is nothing to lead. Image

david

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Postby Yury Snisarenko » Sat Sep 11, 2004 6:45 am

<<The easiest ones to lead, are those who consistently change >> Chris, this is good point.

<<I would say that you probbly have met people unable to change. When I use the word change it should mean to move in accordance with the other>> David, then this is not "to change" in general sense, it's quite special change. In my view you may remain unchanged moving in accordance with the other.

Talking about willing to change, to move… I aseptically like one story. Here it is

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2"> Zheng Manqing's story
One rainy day my teacher Yang Chengfu and I were crossing the Outer Paitu Bridge in Shanghai. A large sturdy man walking very quickly ran smack into Yang and promptly recoiled several feet onto his back. He arose and stared angrily at the quiet Yang but apparently so surprised that he had failed to move him walked away without speaking. </font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I would not be surprised if Yang Chengfu hadn't noticed that man at all. :-)))


Yuri


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Postby Audi » Sat Sep 11, 2004 10:35 pm

Greetings all,

Thanks for the responses.

Gene, Jerry, and Yuri, I may not have been clear about why I was recommending a listen. What struck me was not really any particular insights about push hands per se, but rather a seamless linking of physical principles with mental, emotional, and spiritual principles. This particular vision is not actually my vision of Taiji, but I am nonetheless greatly attached to using Taijiquan in this way.

<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2"> I also remember a spirited push hands session that you and I had several years ago, where whenever I touched you,you would give me a forceful shove and knock me backwards. I'm still not real clear on how to deal with that kind of force, but I suspect that the solution lies in the legs and waist, and the concept of relaxation/expansion and vice versa.</font>


Gene, I recently had an opportunity to explore this and came to two conclusions. First, Taijiquan is simply not the only source of martial skills. Second, blunt pushing force can indeed by countered fairly directly.

I personally do not like focusing on “resistance” or the lack thereof as a key to Taijiquan. In push hands, the relationship between “resistance” (“kang4”) and “following” (“sui2”) is only one of four different pairs that we are supposed to work on. Also, “resistance” is a contextual term; however, it is easy to forget this and try to use it as an absolute term. The force of a tidal wave, Niagara falls, or the Banzai Pipeline would hardly be thought of as manifestations of “non-resistance,” but they each result from water’s formlessness and downhill flow. If these phenomena can result from “non-resistance,” why should I be shocked about the force of a straight punch to the nose or a shove across the room? I find the concept of “resistance” too slippery as an all-inclusive term.

I have the same difficulty talking about the guy who arrives 5 minutes late every day. The path of least resistant will vary tremendously, depending on what viewpoint we take. The company’s? The supervisor’s? The department’s? The employee’s? Also, what is the context? If a newscaster is 5 minutes late to a broadcast, this is catastrophic, but sometimes an entire department can arrive late with no real effect on their output.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2"><B>no the center that I speak of is the center of their mental balance point. Once you find this point, you either cause it to move by using your intent or they move sensing that you found it. in either case you follow and add to there movement.

* * *
attract to emptiness, or lead him to emptiness is at the core of my own training. This means that there is no point that can not change. Some problems are that some may not change inside or not be able to allow the whole body to change.</B></font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

David, welcome to the board! I have a question about your approach. What do you do with someone who pushes like a slow moving tank? If they give you energy in only very small increments, there is little to “lead.” If you use only a light touch, how can you overcome simple enertia? If you insist on waiting your partner out, don’t you risk a stagnating interchange where not much takes place? I am discussing the sort of person who is the opposite of what Chris describes: someone who is not willing to move or change much at all.

Take care,
Audi
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Postby bamboo leaf » Sat Sep 11, 2004 11:47 pm

(What do you do with someone who pushes like a slow moving tank? If they give you energy in only very small increments, there is little to “lead.”)

the fact that they are pushing means that you are leading. Image, At some point they will be out of their center.


(If you use only a light touch, how can you overcome simple inertia?)

We don’t over come it, we use it. the main point is that your dealing with their mind. Their inertia has nothing to fall on if your truly empty and not bound by artificial boundaries. the boundaries of fear, or protecting some point. you invite them as guest. The body is the hand, all parts can change.


(If you insist on waiting your partner out, don’t you risk a stagnating interchange where not much takes place? )


Its not waiting, your actively searching with your intent. Not much movement maybe seen on the outside. Inside there is very much action. if one is unable to sense the intent YI and change with it then at first touch its really over. there center is moved out and you just follow.

(I am discussing the sort of person who is the opposite of what Chris describes: someone who is not willing to move or change much at all.)


Push hands the way we use it is really about developing the ability to ting, and understand what being empty is.

For people unwilling to move, you tempt them, or cause them to feel uneasy with the use of your intent coupled with your qi. This will cause their center to move before they realize it, its out, you just follow with the physical action.


Have been reading some of the post for some time a very informative and interesting site.
i hope to learn and share my own thoughts, Thanks for the welcome
david
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Postby bamboo leaf » Sun Sep 12, 2004 12:00 am

(If you take the idea of the body as a non-solid mass of vibrating energy or posit that it has a field of chi, then the portion where my energy overlaps with my opponent’s is the intersection of mutual understanding, and it differs for each person involved. This overlap is where I read my opponent’s intention. If I can make myself empty by dissolving my own chi blockages (which are often areas of physical and psychological tension), then there is no place the opponent cannot enter. The intersection is large and I can read lots of things about him.

If he is stiff and blocked, then the intersection of me with him seems quite small from his perspective and he can’t understand me very well.

A chi blockage is an area of fullness. I just learned that emptiness isn’t about removing anything, it’s about making it fluid, an absence of tension. The more I am able to empty myself of resistance, expectation, whatever, the more my opponent’s energy can come in.


The more that comes in, the more I can understand.)


This is from the thread on intention. It very much describes how and what we also work with in a much better way then my small writing can illustrate.

The question then becomes one of how to really cultivate this in ones practice.
The easy and difficult answer is to stop trying to push, with the body and really use the mind.

It’s a very hard shift to make for most people, even with people who have made it as guides its very, very hard, the work of many yrs. truly it is very different.

david
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Postby Yury Snisarenko » Sun Sep 12, 2004 5:47 am

Audi, actually when I talked about push hands I kept in mind the correlation between taiji (especially taiji tuishou)and daily life and vise-versa. It's just so natural. And all examples about push hands were intended to illustrate general matters. I think sometimes better to use not direct words. The best words I like to listen when people try to explain me something are metaphors and parables.

Take care,

Yuri


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Postby Yury Snisarenko » Mon Sep 13, 2004 7:14 am

BL,

<<the fact that they are pushing means that you are leading>> I like the phrase, it's 'nice shot'.

I see your approach and guess what school you are familiar with. In my view it's one of good, deep approaches. Probably it's deeper than mine.

But I have some doubts about << At some point they will be out of their center >> - if person has some push hands (or any other MA) experience he usually can keep his/her mental/physical balance quite stable while pushing or pressing or staying still. (This is what I meant under "remain unchanged")

At one moment I realized that I have most trouble with physically strong partners/opponents who haven't very profound experience in tuishou. I think many of us who tried to push out of home school encountered with this. "Why so?" Because there are not many (if not say 'any') thoughts/intentions that happen in their minds during match. They usually have only one intention – th swift balanced push, the turn and immediately the next push. Their speed, instincts and physical force ar what I try to deal with. This is the difference of my approach.

Take care,

Yuri


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Postby bamboo leaf » Mon Sep 13, 2004 8:09 pm

(a forceful shove and knock me backwards. I'm still not real clear on how to deal with that kind of force.)

all parts can move. Image its not that one can not be pushed its that there is nothing to push againts.

Seek emptiness as you have started to, and really relax (sung) more. if you follow this your practice will start to move from one based on body to one based on mind. a little differnt.

Yuire,

I have met with people who push in the manor you describe. For me they don’t present much of a problem, at lest this has been my small experiences.

yes, our apporches seem to be a little differnt.
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Postby bamboo leaf » Tue Sep 14, 2004 5:31 am

http://www.geocities.com/tukylam/song

(If you are truly song, then when you opponent throws a punch, delivers a kick, or gives you a push, you will be able to ward off easily, instead of being knocked over. This is because all your joints are loosened, and your internal strength is always present where your mind is through good coordination of the whole body. You are so relaxed that you can feel the next move of you opponent once your arms are in contact with theirs. You will be able to follow – neither resist nor run away – but neutralize and counter-attack at the same time.
I often demonstrate to my students how to loosen to get out of difficult situations. When one of my senior students gives me a push, I loosen my waist while at the same time my arms stick to his and let him push. He can push in as deep as he likes. My looseness makes it hard for him to keep his balance. Advancing or retreating seems difficult for him. I can do a roll-back or a push to finish off the demonstration.)

A good article that outlines much of what I have said and experienced. Also as he has noted many people really feel that they have passed this step when in fact they really have not. It’s the long work of many yrs.
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Postby Graham » Tue Sep 14, 2004 8:39 am

To return to the radio show for a moment: He says "the traditional way is Chi Sao, which means push hands"

Chi Sao is in fact 'sticky hands' a traditional sparring method from Wing Chun, not Tai Chi.

Edit: Just read the transcript, which has written "Tui sou" - but it certainly sounded like "Chi Shou" when he said it!

That makes me suspicious of his knowledge Image



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Postby Yury Snisarenko » Tue Sep 14, 2004 9:43 am

Graham, maybe he just really doesn't know tuishou drills...:-))) probably he grew up from Win Chun tradition, or maybe he just practice free style of push hands.

BL, thank you for the link. The nice site.



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