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JIANG HU: 

Gung Fu's Hidden Way of Life   The term Jianghu is linked to cultures other than those pertaining to martial arts in Wuxia stories only. It is also applied to societies where there is no law and order. This is a time of Jiang Hu

Know What you Know Now

July 4, 2017

Knowing What You Know Now (not later):

When one is doing their own particular interpretation of the martial techniques, tricks and skills they have been taught over a period of many years an art can take on unwieldy  proportions. This is due to that lone person being the only one who can really understand what is transpiring as they demonstrate their skills. After all, it is THEIR version of the art or arts of which they have a working knowledge of and can demonstrate upon request. A grand compendium of all the things they value in the combative and martial arts sense. I mean the entire picture. Health, defense, spirituality and more. I have found that most martial artists cannot or do not realize the true depth of their acquired knowledge. Learning happens over many years, keeping track of it all is quite difficult. Accessing it can even be harder. Being spontaneous in it's execution can be challenging. Being spot on with the RIGHT response to an attack is also quite trying for some people to pull off. So how the hell does a man find and realize (actualize) his so called "content"? Well, you don't do it by following rote forms or by putting yourself up for judgement by others. You do it by learning to let go. To simply, purely move as the human body is meant to move. Muevete Mijo! Open up the valves and let the kung fu flow out! This is not something for just any martial artist to try. This is advanced stuff. You must have several years minimum in some type of martial art to do this. It is that part of advanced training where "chiseling away" excess data occurs and the re-valuing of the material for more than you first perceived it to be.

Begin with general motion. Just go out into an empty space and float. Move and turn, try being light as a feather. Sink and root, grind the foot slightly and become heavy as a boulder. Articulate the hands as though the air is a liquid thick, feel the air as it moves about your hands and fingers. Raise and lower your torso via the legs and knees. Move the arms about in circles of various directions and planes. Experiment with movement. Do not have an agenda, do not attempt to give meaning to your motion. Just stop that martial madness for a while and simply, mindlessly move. Be quiet in your head, this is about movement, it is not about thinking. Slow up, move naturally, but push yourself a little bit past comfort. Breath each breath with full awareness as to how important each and every breath really is (try skipping a few, you see quickly what I mean). Now add tension and relaxation cycles into the mix. Tense certain muscles for a short duration - then relax those same muscles completely as possible. These tension cycles should smoothly be matched in your breathing patterns, all natural, all in harmony (all things in the same unified timing(s). Every action, look, breath and sound must come into unity along with the full participation of your entire body. This is generic movement and this can be your vehicle to discovering the treasures that are locked up and hidden away within yourself. Self realization is critical. This is a way to know yourself and to find out what yourself knows.

Once you are comfortable with MOVING - moving as you, moving from the energies from the inside to the outside you might add a planned movement. This might be from a kata, a situational or something you just put together. But you should try to incorporate it into your non-planned generic flow training phase. So, add just a dash of planned motion. Insert it as you wish into your open flow of movement. In a few days, add another short planned set of motions into the mix. Now there will be two short sets that you can add anywhere you want into the flow of motion that is already  naturally occurring. Keep this up until you have perhaps four or five planned sets of motion you can interject into any type of unplanned movement exercise. Let these sets be catalysts to free up other movement bases. If they surface in your practice, let them flow in and out, do not try to remember them. We are creating spontaneity and tapping into our treasure house of martial abilities. Trying to escape that trap of remembering by simply doing. Remember to forget, because if you try to remember, you'll forget. Let it all go, break the nucleus and let yourself reform a new, better nucleus through your efforts.

If you eventually incorporate weapons into your free flow of action do so slowly and follow the cycle again. This is your personal Tai Chi - made for you, by you. And why not? After 20 years of training I think you have earned that right to flow & go as you wish. To interpret the art as you see fit. By the creation of the free form movement habit you will insult no clan, system or master. You will see your past training coming to surface at last. Allow it, impede nothing that comes to you during this time. Accept what comes and learn. This is about living in the awakened state. Perform your free flow pyrrhic dance outdoors, indoors, winter or summer. If do a daily Tai Chi Form then let this replace it for a few of those days. Let the integration of the two practices begin! By now you should be seeing the material in your head coming forth, your familiarity of movement should be more refined. Stay relaxed, this is discovery and exploration, not fighting. Breathe as you go, aware and ready, slow and steady. There you are!

Thank You all!

Tarim Kim / July 2017

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