<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">I think the imagery of “drawing silk” is unique, and makes important reference to a tactile phenomenon crucial to maintaining a connection, “without separating or severing” and other key aspects of individual and partner practice.</font>
If I read what you say and put myself into my practice it brings to mind the sensation of attracting someone to emptiness. Where you get your opponent to follow you whilst under your control. You have broken their root and they must follow you to move.
This is extremely delicate and the image of drawing silk apt. If you speed up you will break the connection, slow down and they could regain their root.
This is well described in this reference as 'Zhan' - http://www.taiji-bg.com/articles/taijiquan/t76.htm
I would say the body is strung together (chousi) but it is using yi not jin. You are creating emptiness to draw the person out.
However, does the phrase not state 'Mobilise the jin like pulling silk from a cocoon'? This is describing the act of working with jin.
There are a two possibilities here: you are mobilising your own jin or you are mobilising your opponents jin.
Only the second would fit with the sensation of 'attracting to emptiness', (which I presume to be the subject of “Whatever amount the opponent advances, draw his advance in that same amount.”).
The line however does not seem to be meant in this context to me.
It seems to be dealing with mobilising your own jin. Which when being trained is done delicately. When the force is accentuated then we have what has become my classic image of the 'Chen' method of spiralling lines of force' and describing it as Silk reeling Jin.
From this position Louis it would appear the distinction is perhaps your own? The phrase in isolation of it's sentance describes the feeling, metaphorically, that you have identified.....
but is perhaps not, even in Yang style, it's native definition???
how does that sound out?
[This message has been edited by Anderzander (edited 03-05-2006).]