For Tai Chi Chuan students, especially beginners, it is an exciting time because so much more information is becoming available.It is also a confusing and frustrating time, because Tai Chi seems much more complex than learning a form. Twenty years ago, people would have learned a form and then thought that they had learned Tai Chi.This issue illustrates this since for a beginning student or even an intermediate one some of the articles will be hard to fathom.
The article on developing inner strength from the interview with Ye Xiao Long is important but not easy to understand.
Even the article by Dr. Mei Ying Sheng is relatively complex and may conflict with what many people are currently practicing.
But just as people have to work through the difficulty of learning a new form, they can work through the difficulty of understanding the subtleties of Tai Chi.
The truth is that learning something like Tai Chi is not like an interstate freeway. There are many twists and hairpins turns.
In his article, Luke Chan describes such a process in which he had to start over several times and was able to incorporate different approaches into what he does now.
This kind of process tests one’s dedication but in the long run enriches the learning process.
Perhaps the article about the skill of Yang Cheng-fu and his ability to move with an opponent holding the other end of a string provides us with a metaphor for practice. We have to hold on and move nimbly amid the tensions and interruptions of practice and have the will to not let it break or go slack.