Fall asleep, and wake up – the genius of Grandmaster William CC Chen
Grandmaster William CC Chen was my first teacher in Taijiquan. He was also a inner door student of Professor.Cheng Man Ching and lived with him as a child. William was very good at pointing out things that we already knew how to do in terms of our bodies organization, and the sequencing of various actions simultaneously. One of the most important things that I learned from him was the concept of “fall asleep, wake up”. This principle has permeated everything that I have ever done since because it always results in upgrading the action . It pays special attention to the fact that the quality of the mind affects the quality of the body . When you de-energize the mind , you de-energize the body on multiple levels at one time without much else in the way of consideration. The result is a larger range of motion between de-energization and energization of the mind and spirit. It also causes the spine to open up as the foot is pressing ,triggering, a Jin in a very relaxed and easy fashion . The falling asleep helps to detach the ego and the strength, allowing one to naturally sink and load their Jin. It is something that I weave into pretty much any exercise I do because it always ends up creating a better result . The classics say “if you concentrate on the Chi, it will stagnate, but if your mind is on the Shen then the Chi will naturally flow ” . I have observed this to be true, which reinforces the faith in the concept . This is part of the genius of William’s teaching, and it is very sad that he has just retired at the age of 89 years.