Kung Hei Fat Choy! Welcome to the year of the Fire Rooster. If you’re looking for some tips to survive in this alternative reality we seem to have entered, then Scott P Phillips has a Fire Rooster survival guide. In short: get organised.
I’d also like to kick off the Chinese new year by directing you to this excellent interview ‘It’s not what you think: what serious martial artists want you to know about tai chi‘,with Chen Huixian,a Chen villiage Taiji practitioner who has moved to the US and is teaching there. It’s good to see Taiji from the source reaching a wider audience.
Also make sure you take the opportunity to read the excellent talk by Paul Bowman on ‘Taoism in bits‘ about the transplanting of ideas around Taoism and martial arts from East to West.
I often wonder to myself if the concept of ‘styles’ in Taiji has reached a kind of end point. These days, with the floodgates to information wide open, thanks to the Internet, everybody has access to everything. Silk reeling exercises are no longer the secret teachings belonging to the Chen family. Zhan Zhuang standing meditation is no longer the preserve of Yi Quan practitioners. Fast stepping patterns are no longer the speciality of XingYi and Bagua, and slow movement no longer belongs to the Yang family. These days you’re as likely to see a Yang style practitioner doing silk reeling exercises as a Chen practitioner standing in Yi Quan postures for extended periods.
It’s like it has come full circle, and there is just Taijiquan again.