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T'ai Chi Classics

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An essential guide for T'ai Chi practitioners of all levels--with an overview of basic principles and commentary on three classic internal martial arts texts According to Master Liao, the great power of T'ai Chi cannot be realized without knowing its inner meaning. T'ai Chi Classics presents the inner meaning and techniques of T'ai Chi movements through translations of thre An essential guide for T'ai Chi practitioners of all levels--with an overview of basic principles and commentary on three classic internal martial arts texts According to Master Liao, the great power of T'ai Chi cannot be realized without knowing its inner meaning. T'ai Chi Classics presents the inner meaning and techniques of T'ai Chi movements through translations of three core classics of T'ai Chi, often considered the T'ai Chi Bible. The texts are introduced by three chapters explaining how to increase inner energy (ch'i), transform it into inner power (jing), and project this inner power outward to repel an opponent without physical contact. Master Liao also provides a description of the entire sequence of T'ai Chi movements, illustrated by his own line drawings.


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An essential guide for T'ai Chi practitioners of all levels--with an overview of basic principles and commentary on three classic internal martial arts texts According to Master Liao, the great power of T'ai Chi cannot be realized without knowing its inner meaning. T'ai Chi Classics presents the inner meaning and techniques of T'ai Chi movements through translations of thre An essential guide for T'ai Chi practitioners of all levels--with an overview of basic principles and commentary on three classic internal martial arts texts According to Master Liao, the great power of T'ai Chi cannot be realized without knowing its inner meaning. T'ai Chi Classics presents the inner meaning and techniques of T'ai Chi movements through translations of three core classics of T'ai Chi, often considered the T'ai Chi Bible. The texts are introduced by three chapters explaining how to increase inner energy (ch'i), transform it into inner power (jing), and project this inner power outward to repel an opponent without physical contact. Master Liao also provides a description of the entire sequence of T'ai Chi movements, illustrated by his own line drawings.

30 review for T'ai Chi Classics

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bernie Gourley

    This book conveys the teachings of three tai chi masters of old: Chang San-feng, Wong Chung-yua, and Wu Yu-hsiang. However, those masters’ treatises take up only a small portion of the book. That’s not a criticism. No doubt the treatises were cryptic and sparse, and so they are presented with commentary embedded rather than as literal translations. The treatises discuss the concepts that each of the masters thought was essential to the art, and the author conveys these complex and ethereal ideas This book conveys the teachings of three tai chi masters of old: Chang San-feng, Wong Chung-yua, and Wu Yu-hsiang. However, those masters’ treatises take up only a small portion of the book. That’s not a criticism. No doubt the treatises were cryptic and sparse, and so they are presented with commentary embedded rather than as literal translations. The treatises discuss the concepts that each of the masters thought was essential to the art, and the author conveys these complex and ethereal ideas in a way that is as understandable as possible. Before presenting the three treatises in chapters four through six, the author offers a three chapter background on essential concepts for the tai chi student to understand. Chapter 1 presents historical background on tai chi and differentiates temple style from the family styles of tai chi, as well as giving insight into the philosophical underpinnings of the art. The second chapter offers a primer on chi, the life-force energy that is at the conceptual heart of tai chi. Chapter 3 describes jing and the means by which chi is expanded and transferred. After the three treatise chapters, there is a final chapter that is intended to take the book from theory to practice. Most of the final chapter is a step-by-step description of a tai chi form, and consists of line drawings of the positions with bullet point descriptions of the movements. However, the chapter begins with some lists of key philosophical concepts as well as clarifying ideas about movement fundamentals. There are line drawings throughout the book, not only to show physical positions in the practice but also diagrams to help convey the difficult concepts discussed throughout the book as well as Chinese calligraphy characters. Besides the calligraphy, these graphics are crude, looking as one might expect in a notebook. I don’t think the crude form of the graphics is a problem, and the notebook effect it creates may be an intentional aesthetic. As I don’t believe one can learn a martial art or other system of movement from a book, the fact that the graphics don’t offer much detail isn’t a problem. I found the book to be thought-provoking and would recommend it for students of tai chi and qi gong.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Nick

    It's not really possible to teach yourself Tai Chi without a teacher. So everyone says, and such has been my experience. Even videos haven't been that helpful. But this book is as good as it gets -- it has both theory and detailed diagrams and instructions on the form. I would highly recommend it as a supplement to actually finding a teacher. It's not really possible to teach yourself Tai Chi without a teacher. So everyone says, and such has been my experience. Even videos haven't been that helpful. But this book is as good as it gets -- it has both theory and detailed diagrams and instructions on the form. I would highly recommend it as a supplement to actually finding a teacher.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Johnny

    its really special to have a translation of these short texts. the translation is good. the introductory chapters and the commentary are useful and interesting, but need to be filtered for irrelevant information and personal biases of the author. while accurate, the commentary is only a single interpretation. the content of the original text is very powerful and multi-dimensional.

  4. 4 out of 5

    John Sharp

    This is a very good book. I have been practicing Tai Chi for about a year and a half and this really helped me to understand the breathing better and the philosophy of Tai Chi itself.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Dolores

    Slowly poking through this book for my Tai Chi class. Very esoteric!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    An introduction to the principles and forms of t’ai chi. The experience of the author gives this text credibility. I would have a harder time understanding the book without also practicing t’ai chi (as limited as my practice is).

  7. 4 out of 5

    Joanne McKinnon

    Much needed The movements described in the last chapter can calm the chaos. Knowing the movements but not how the whole body, including the mind, are involved, is not true to the practice. So the preceding chapters clarify the true beauty of T’ai Chi.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Serenity Wynter

    spirit Full of history and philosophy . The diagrams need a lot of work. There should be practice exercises for the meditation

  9. 4 out of 5

    Malini Chaudhri

    I love this book. It is a treasury of knowledge. To be read time and again.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Stacholy

    enjoy it again and again

  11. 5 out of 5

    Anita Walsh

    This book is both how-to and philosophy. As such, it is a reference more than a 'read'. I have read it, mostly, except for every exercise, which are mostly familiar, but will go back and re-read the essays from far back in time. What it gave me is a sense that T'ai Chi has not changed, and each movement is important; especially the 'how' of it. This book is both how-to and philosophy. As such, it is a reference more than a 'read'. I have read it, mostly, except for every exercise, which are mostly familiar, but will go back and re-read the essays from far back in time. What it gave me is a sense that T'ai Chi has not changed, and each movement is important; especially the 'how' of it.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Wise Fool

    This is more than just a manual on tai chi. It's about the philosophy and energy practice of the art. It's one you will continue to return to. I'd say it is applicable to all internal arts found the world over. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did! This is more than just a manual on tai chi. It's about the philosophy and energy practice of the art. It's one you will continue to return to. I'd say it is applicable to all internal arts found the world over. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

  13. 5 out of 5

    William Light

    This book is so far very enlightening. I started studying T'ai Chi several years ago and have recently returned to practicing. This is a very good read to help one understand the more internal aspects of the grand ultimate. This book is so far very enlightening. I started studying T'ai Chi several years ago and have recently returned to practicing. This is a very good read to help one understand the more internal aspects of the grand ultimate.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jim Bouchard

    Every serious student of martial arts must read this book. This is not a manual in "tai chi chuan." This is the theory and philosophy upon which tai chi chuan and other Chinese arts is based. Every serious student of martial arts must read this book. This is not a manual in "tai chi chuan." This is the theory and philosophy upon which tai chi chuan and other Chinese arts is based.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Greg Knollmeyer

    Poorly interpreted.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Mary Follis

    Nook edition

  17. 4 out of 5

    Colleen

    Great companion text to study and practice of Tai Chi. The historical and philosophical chapter is very good/connective for a western audience. Reading it again for homeschool in 2008.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mills College Library

    613.7148 L69397 2000

  19. 5 out of 5

    John

  20. 4 out of 5

    Hannibal Wolong

  21. 4 out of 5

    M C

  22. 5 out of 5

    David

  23. 4 out of 5

    Elvis Zambrano

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Shell

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ernesto

  26. 5 out of 5

    Test Test

  27. 4 out of 5

    Stuart Johnston

  28. 5 out of 5

    Foxthyme

  29. 5 out of 5

    MichaelCaesar Lao

  30. 4 out of 5

    Will Thomas

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