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June 1999 - Editor's Notebook


Liu Jishun brings some important insight into what is going on inside the body during practice. He speaks of the separation of muscle and bone and Yi and qi and Tai Chi breathing. His thoughts are interesting and challenging. Coming from Wu/Hao tradition, they are significant.
Some of these issues are different from what many people are doing and others may find it hard to understand.
One of the problems with understanding these internal practices is that there is a new vocabulary to understand. It is not just the vocabulary translated from Chinese, but the vocabulary of your own body and sensations.
Some people may immediately recognize what he means by the separation of muscle and bone because that is the feeling that they have developed through their personal practice.
Liu has very good credentials and we are fortunate that he is willing to discuss these subtleties, which are hard to express in any language.

Silk reeling energy (chan si jin) is one of the fundamental methods of Tai Chi Chuan practice and is most clearly expressed in the Chen style.
Chen Zheng Lei has collaborated in an article in this issue that helps describe what it is and how it is useful for both health and self-defense.
Chen is one of the top Chen stylists in China. The article was translated by De Ru, who many will know as Shawn Liu, or Liu Xing Yang.

Ted Mancuso has studied the martial arts for many years and gives valuable insights into a sequence of movements common to the TaiChi Chuan system that he feels exemplifies the system as a whole. He is able to relate these movements to basic principles and explain how the movements exemplify them.

David F. Dolbear has studied Northern Wu Style in Beijing and he writes in this article about some of the basic principles and techniques that he has learned from his teacher there, Liu Chang Jiang. Liu is traditionalist and has definite ideas about teaching.

Michael P Milburn, of Ontario, Canada, writes an interesting article about qi and how it relates of Western science. He is able to relate it to health and martial arts. He is biophysicist with many years of experience in Oriental haling arts. He is the author of the forthcoming book, “The Tao of Health and Healing.”

Tam Cheuk-Ying of Montreal, Canada, writes about three areas: the bubbling well points, the correct way to place the heel and toe, and sinking qi to the dantian. Tam studied in Hong Kong before emigrating. His article is a sharing of ideas that is welcome.

Dr Paul Lam of Sydney, Australia has an interesting article about Tai Chi sword and various techniques for holding and using the sword.

Xue Nai-Yin of New Zealand writes about training form and push hands and some of the important considerations.

Eo Omwake, a regular contributor, writes about the spiritual value of TaiChi Chuan and explores some of the spiritual roots in Taoist philosophy.

It is sad to report the death of Stanley Israel, a veteran Tai Chi player who was one of Cheng Man ch’ing’s original students in New York City.
I saw him numerous times at various events at A Taste of China and at Tai Chi Farm. Mostly, he was very quite and observing. I didn’t know much about him. But the testimonials in this issue give a good idea of his skills and dedication.

During an interview with Zhang Luping, who was very good at push hands, Luping said that he had done push hands with Stanley Israel and that he was really impressed with his high level skill.


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