Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Four Levels of Attainment in Taijiquan

I would like to share this with you guys. Got it from the book Beyond Taijiquan - by Wong Choon Ching. Attainment can be classified into: 1) Hao Shou (good hand) 2) Qiang shou (Strong hand) 3) Kao Shou (Skilled hand) and 4) Miao shou (Wonder hand). What are the differences between the above?

When a punch is executed by an opponent... (I quote verbatim from the book):
All of them should be able to intercept the punch with their yi. But, the hao shou intercepts the punch after it is launched, the qiang shou does it just after it is thrown out. The gao shou senses it the moment it is launched, while the maio shou senses it before it is launched.

After sensing the punch:
The hao shou connects the punch with a heavy touch, being an act of the bones and muscles, which leaves an undesirable effect of alerting the opponent. The qiang shou's connecting is lighter while that of gao shou and miao shou is more insubstantial, being an act of the yi-qi energy. The moment the punch is connected at the hair level, their yi penetrates into the very bones of the opponent, the skill of adhering and following comes into play to sense the opponent's intentions and to keep his movements under control. The composed minds and dong jing (understanding one's jing or energy and the ability to act or react aptly in accordance with the yin-yang principle) reflexes of gao shou and miao shou enable them to do just the right thing intuitively. They can effectively hit their opponent the moment the latter moves to attack. If the opponent's punch is on the way, they will tap it and lead it into emptiness.

Note: above text in italics are my own addition.

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