Graham Horwood demonstrates the Original Yang Style Taoist Tai Chi Silk Reeling form as laid out by Yang Cheng Fu. The son of Yang Cheng Fu taught Graham’s Master Chu King Hung. The Chan Shu Jian was developed in the 16/17th century.
The Chan Shu Jian ‘Silk Weaving Form’ (or silk reeling) refers to the spiralling inner or chi breathing techniques perfected by the Yang family over the centuries. Chi in its usual course flows in lines along the meridians near blood vessels and daily nourishing the muscles, tendons & body tissue. Whereas Chan Shu Jian encourages the chi to spiral into the bone as well, harmonising & storing chi in the marrow for healing or martial purposes, creating a ‘chi battery’. Hence the Tai Chi maxim that a Master has bones as hard as steel yet as if wrapped in cotton wool.
In this Original Yang Style Tai Chi Video download Graham firstly shows the general posture for Tai Chi Beginners to this method of the Yang Style.
Taoist Tai Chi relies on the internal energy of the body to enhance chi, circulate chi, build chi and store chi which in turn increases health and life potential. There are a specific set of rules which help the flow the chi and align the body with the meridians. Graham explains this simple rules clearly by starting at the feet. These simple rules must be obeyed while doing this original Yang Style Tai Chi Chan Shu Jian form and Chi King.
Chen Wang Ting was a Tai Chi Master in the middle ages. He is attributed with developing, Chan Shu Jian ‘the silk cocoon reeling’ technique. This method exploits the advantages of spiral movements. This Master was inspired to create this method after watching the young Chinese girls, who tirelessly drew the fine delicate threads from the silk worms without breaking them. He observed that the girls could effortlessly do this, only if the movements were naturally gentle, slow, controlled and continuous, using circular actions to wind the silk thread. This natural yin or feminine attribute could tirelessly perform these actions without breaking the thread.
The Tai Chi Silk Reeling form has peerless martial implications but also reinforces the chi in the meridians allowing chi to be stored in the bones. Chi is responsible for the immune system therefore this method of stimulating the marrow with chi strengthens health. Chan Shu Jian primes the waist to twist and turn, thus stimulating the kidney ‘essence’ Jing, the generative energy of an individual, transforming it into chi. This action coupled with the circular movements of the arms and legs animates the chi creating a cohesive energy sphere out of the mind and body. The Yang family greatly improved Chan Shu Jian creating a more subtle and intrinsic method as shown in this dvd. All the moves of Tai Chi are performed in this spiral ‘Chan Shu Jian’ way, after the fashion of the Tai Chi Gu, ☯.
The spiral is very much a part of cosmic law, to be found everywhere in Nature from the coil of galaxy, several light years across, right down to the humble snail which carries its own DNA code in a spiral on its shell. It is found in spiritual disciplines in all cultures such as the Celtic curls, also the Indian mystical tradition which adopted the Sanskrit word, kundalini to denote the primal yogic power, which means the ‘spiral or snake coil’ energy. There are a plethora of evolved man made spirals which increase efficiency, like the rifling of a gun barrel giving greater accuracy, the twist of flight feathers on an arrow, elliptical space orbit, the handyman’s drill bit, the builder’s screw, the Archimedes screw, the twist of a rope and so forth. The word spiral derives from same source as ‘spirit’ and ‘inspire’ etc. which means breath. Chi means breath.