How to Learn

The way to learn internal Tai Chi is by layering and interlocking the learning material.

First you learn one thing about a learning material. Let’s say in this example you learn how to form the open palm. You start with a simple idea of how to hold an imaginary ball between your fingers.

The next layer is how to project the force through the fingers by adding one piece of information to how to hold the ball. If your intent is correct you can feel the force right away. You can even test it against a partner with static posture and constant pressure for you to check your learning.

If you can get the first two layers then the third layer with teach you how to use the imaginary ball to issue power in the manner of using Peng and An energy to do uprooting. This is not the end of the learning though. To go beyond this you need to be able to get here first.

The above way of learning is consistent with the information mentioned in Grandmaster Wei Shuren’s book to begin the learning where you know nothing to knowing something.

Then as your knowledge grows you know more and more. However, too much information can render the learning impractical. You thus have to move up another notch to where each layer comes together to become but one layer.

Then you are but doing one thing instead of many things which greatly simplifies your ability to apply the principle. This is the reason for constant training to make what is not natural to be as natural as walking and breathing.

Internal Tai Chi has many principles. Each principle has a few layers. Make each principle to become one indepth layer. Each principle works with every other principle like an interlocking puzzle. When put together the many are again but one. When you get here internal Tai Chi is simple, not complicated.

We focus the learning on things we can actually control instead of things we cannot control. You can control what you are thinking about hence we use the intent to move the body. Internal Tai Chi is simple in this sense.

Using intent requires you to visualize and sometimes use imagination to map out the exercise whether how the force should be generated, how it should it moving, where it should be aimed at, and so on.

It is not unusual for a learner to have implicit bias thinking he cannot do something before he even tries to do it. This is because some of the things that we are learning to do sounds impossible to do from a common person’s point of view. There is a reason why the training is specialized and it is because it is not easily accessible or even reasoned out by a smart and experienced practitioner so you need to know the way to learn it.

The way to learn it is by not immediately disbelieving the teaching material. Instead, suspend your belief for the time being, consider what it is you are supposed to be learning, what the details are and then do the practice. Do not overthink, do not over analyze. When you need to use your imagination to learn certain things do it. Practice what is imaginary as if it is real. Develop the feel for the imagined, then the qualia will come and you can then experienced something.

We should never have to practice blindly or indefinitely to acquire a skill. Proper learning will always inform you of the benchmark levels you should hit to know if you are on the right track.

If you feel like knowing more then a basic understanding of physics particularly classical Newtonian mechanics, kinesiology, anatomy, nature in relation to animals, insects and weather phenomenon, biomimicry, cultural knowledge and how the mind works in learning would be beneficial.