I'd like to take this opportunity to share some things that I hold as a very deep and firm foundation of my practice. If you have any experience in training Tai Chi Chuan you may love or hate what I'm about to say.
My entire practice is based on balancing yin and yang, and constantly seeking that balance in myself and others. What allows me to use what I do as a tool for balance is polarizing the thing I'm practicing or doing. In other words my Tai Chi Chuan practice is Yin, my Kung Fu practice is Yang, my Shaolin Chi Kung practice is yang, my Daoist Chi Kung practice is Yin. When I lift weights or practice calisthenics it's Yang, when I practice Yoga, stretching ect. it's Yin. I believe you get the picture. The distinction must be pure and at a drastic extent, only in this way can the thing have the greatest "power" to tip the scales.
Yin and Yang must be viewed in this way! Yin is healing, fortifying, it is potential, it is saving, keeping, holding and planning. Yang is destructive, expanding, it is moving, spending, giving and releasing. If we apply Yin and Yang equally there's no longer an ability to adapt. For an example if we destroy as much as we build there will still be nothing. Yet if we build more than we destroy then there in lies a step toward progress, toward true balance.
There are many different schools of thought on balancing Yin and Yang within the practice of Tai Chi Chuan. What makes Tai Chi Chuan the supreme ultimate fist in our practice is not that it is both Yin and Yang, but that it strives to play the Yin roll completely to balance all Yang. By practicing a refinement of Yang, seeking to achieve Yin completely, the practice becomes endless. The Yin potential that you develop grants you the health and foundation for freedom to do as you wish. The relaxation gained in the practice will help you have more energy to deal with what ever comes at you.
Another way to put it is that Yang is all around us, in our food, in our circumstances, in our hardships, our relationships, and in conflict the violence is always there. Simply by living life we are inching closer to death. Tai Chi Chuan is the practice of saving up and replenishing our reserves, to fortify ourselves. In time, Yin must turn to Yang, potential must turn to action. Yin isn't the entire picture but Yin forms the foundation for Yang and Yang forms the foundation for Yin. Without interplay or movement between the two there will not be balance. If there is no Yin to use, Yang ceases to exist. If there is no Yang to take the Yin there the Yin will stay until it dies. So do little to accomplish much. Polarize your Tai Chi practice by focusing on the Yin and you will build ample energy for your entire life!
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Daniel R. Hyde
Licensed Massage Therapist
OIF, OEF Veteran
U.S. Marine Corps
Kwan Ying Do Kung Fu
Tai Chi Chuan
Tui Na, Chinese Massage
Shiatsu, Japanese Massage