SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
NOVEMBER 2011 PART 3

Tai Chi Chuan

Although not many people may realize it, Tai Chi Chuan is chi kung

Question 1

I am wondering where to place my Tai Chi training in my routine. I feel I need to do it in the morning with my chi kung. therefore I am sure to get it in.

— Joseph, USA

Answer

Chi kung is the art of energy. When you practice chi kung, you work on energy.

Tai Chi Chuan is chi kung. When you practice Tai Chi Chuan, you are practicing chi kung, just like when you practice Eighteen Lohan Hands, you are practicing chi kung. In other words, whether you practice Tai Chi Chuan or Eighteen Lohan Hands, you work on energy. There are two main ways of working on energy, namely to circulate energy and to build more energy.

There are eighteen exercises in Eighteen Lohan Hands. Lifting the Sky, Carrying the Moon and Pushing Mountain are three of the eighteen exercises. It doesn't matter which exercises you practice, so long as you practice them correctly, you work on energy.

There are many aspects in Tai Chi Chuan practice. You may, for example, perform a Tai Chi Chuan set, or practice stance training, or practice combat application. If you practice Tai Chi Chuan correctly, irrespective of whether you perform a set or practice stances or combat application, you circulate your energy as well as build up your energy.

However, not many people, including those who practice Tai Chi Chuan, Eighteen Lohan Hands and other forms of chi kung, understand this concept. Most of them only practice the outward forms of Tai Chi Chuan and other chi kung exercises. without circulating their energy or building up their energy. They only practice Tai Chi Chuan and other forms of chi kung as gentle physical exercise, not as chi kung.

With this understanding, your question is whether you could practice Tai Chi Chuan and Eighteen Lohan exercises together, and if so, which should be practiced first.

Question 2

Is it OK to do them both together? Does it matter which is done first?

Answer

Yes, it is alright to practice Tai Chi Chuan and Lohan Hands together. Of course, you can also practice them separately if you wish.

Irrespective of whether you practice them together or separately, it is important not to over-train. Obviously if you practice them together, the chance of over-training is higher.

It doesn't matter much whether you practice Tai Chi Chuan or Eighteen Lohan Hands first. But for many people, especially beginners, it is generally more cost-effective to practice Eighteen Lohan Hands first. Please take note that this is only a general guideline. Students can also get a lot of benefits practicing Tai Chi Chuan first, followed by Eighteen Lohan Hands.

Pushing Mountain

"Pushing Mountain", which is one of the Eighteen Lohan Hands, is chi kung

Question 3

Right now I am doing Chi Kung first, Getting into a chi kung state of mind, my favorite 3 forms Lifting the Sky, Carrying the Moon & Pushing Mountain, Chi Flow, Standing Still and finishing with face massage and brisk walk.

Answer

This is a good routine, and is sufficient for most people. You need not practice Tai Chi Chuan after this routine.

But should you wish to practice Tai Chi Chuan too, you can practice just one, not all the three, of the Lohan Hands, followed by Tai Chi Chuan, and completed with chi flow and standing still. Once a while, for a change, you may start with Tai Chi Chuan, followed by any one of the Lohan Hands, and completed with chi flow and standing still.

Generally, but not always, we have chi flow and standing still at the end. But if you like, you can have chi flow and standing still anywhere in your practice session, and you may have either or both of them more than once.

Question 4

Should I complete my Chi Kung before starting Tai Chi or can I start the Tai Chi either after the Chi Kung forms , or after Chi Flow and then finish the Chi Kung.?

Answer

It is helpful to regard the various procedures of any chi kung practice, irrespective of whether it is Tai Chi Chuan, Eighteen Lohan Hands or any other chi kung forms, as a physical mixture, and not a chemical compound.

When you make a drink like coffee with milk, which is a physical mixture and not a chemical compound, you can add sugar first, or coffee powder first, and then add boiling water and milk. Or you can add sugar at the end. You can also vary the amount of each ingredient. The important thing is that you get coffee with milk as a result, and you enjoy drinking it.

In the same way, when you practice Tai Chi Chuan, you can start with a Tai Chi Chuan set, followed by combat application and conclude with stance training. Or you can change the order in any way, like starting with stance training and concluding with combat application. You can also vary the time for each aspect of the training. The important thing is that you practice Tai Chi Chuan (and not Tai Chi dance) and you enjoy your practice.

When you practice Lohan Hands, you can start with Lifting the Sky or Carrying the Moon or chi flow or standing still, or mix them up in whatever way you like. The important thing is that you practice Lohan Hands (not just external forms) and you enjoy the practice. If you combine Tai Chi Chuan and Lohan Hands, you can also mix the various aspects of the practice in any order. You may, for example, complete your Lohan Hands before starting Tai Chi Chuan, or you can start Tai Chi Chuan in the midst of your Lohan Hands, or before or after your chi flow, or in any way you like.

Three-Circle Stance

Practicing the Three-Circle Stance enables energy to flow from he practitioner to the ground, therefore rooting him

Question 5

I am looking to move and am looking at high rise condos. Since I do mostly my Chi Kung indoors, I was wondering if could be too high up and away from the earth's energy. Iif so what is the highest floor I should purchase a condo on?

Answer

The height of a building does not minimize the benefits from your chi kung practice. In fact the higher your condo, the purer the air is likely to be, hence the better it is for you to practice chi kung.

Ground energy may be good for certain creatures, like ants and bats, but not good for humans. You can easily feel its incompatibility if you go under-ground or inside a cave. Humans are built for cosmic energy. You feel pleasant when you go up a hill.

Chi kung philosophy is different from New Age philosophy. By the way, chi kung is not New Age; it is centuries old. Some New Age philosophy advocates walking about in the woods bare-footed so as to absorb energy from the earth. From the chi kung perspective, this is harmful.

The concept of grounding is also different. In New Age philosophy, one is grounded when he takes in energy from the earth. The concept is reverse in chi kung philosophy. Grounding means your energy flows into the ground, rooting you like when performing the Three-Circle Stance or the Horse-Riding Stance.

Question 6

Thanks, Sigung, for showing me how to improve my life. Hopefully I will see you again later this year in Malaysia.

Answer

I am glad, though not surprised, that your practice has improved your life. You will be even more amazed if you attend my Intensive Chi Kung Course or Intensive Tai Chi Chuan Course in Malaysia

Cleansing Nerves

"Cleansing Nerves" is a high-level master's skill

Question 7

Sifu, today I met with the mother of one of my senior students because she had a car accident and had an injury to her sternum. She had considerable bruising to the chest and each breath was painful. I opened some points and generally pulled the tight, stagnant chi from her chest area and she immediately felt better.

She had been apprehensive meeting me since I am Caucasian and she didn't know what I would do and if there would be pain involved. As our meeting came to a close, she was overjoyed with gratitude for the release of her pain.

All I could think of was that my Sifu taught me this wonderful art with his beautiful and generous heart and I had simply allowed his guidance to flow through me to her. A thousand thank you's Sifu for giving me this wonderful gift. Watching the difference in Mrs. Lam's condition within a couple of minutes was a miracle in front of my face.

— Sifu Jean Lie, Chief Instructor of Shaolin Wahnam Canada

Answer

While what you did for Mrs Lam was indeed miraculous, it was only a small aspect of your wide and deep healing abilities. You probably know this, but it is worthwhile to point it out to you so that you can, if and when you wish to, more readily use your abilities to save more lives and relieve more sufferings, especially regarding what many call in-curable diseases. This will be a fitting complement to the noble work Kay is doing.

It is funny when we think of it. Many people think of saving the world when they don't have the abilities though they have good intentions. Some actually need help themselves. But there are many instructors and senior practitioners in our school who have these abilities but are not doing it for some legitimate reasons.

Many of them are honestly not confident of their own healing abilities yet -- they do not want to be charlatans, though of course being charlatans is definitely not the case. Some, like you, have other priorities, like devoting to Kay, your children and grandchildren, which of course must take preference.

I am not complaining; I am only making an observation. I am actually quite happy with the situation as it is. Later this month (October 2011) I shall conduct a Chi Kung Healing course where I shall share with deserving students the philosophy, techniques and skills that have enabled me to save lives and relieve a lot of suffering. I am looking happily to this course as it will produce many healers who will, if and when they wish, help many people overcome so-called incurable diseases.

Question 8

In "Cleansing Nerves" I felt a pulsation on my baihui, and then chi traveling down my spine to cleanse the nerves. What breathing methods should I do or should I direct the chi to make the effect stronger?

— Juno, Spain

Answer

Cleansing nerves is a master's skill. If a master, who is lucky enough to learn the technique and acquire the skill, spends three years to have the result you have, he will be very happy.

You have the result in just one day! You have the same result in just one day whereas a master would need three years, because I transmitted the skill to you directly, but the master would have to develop the skill gradually on his own. What more do you want?

Just follow my instructions. Don't try to be smarter than me. The method I have transmitted to you is already excellent. Don't try to improve it. If you try to regulate your breathing or direct your chi, you will mess things up. You will head for complicated deviations. In fact, earlier I specifically told you not to worry about your breathing, and not to think of anything.

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