Link to the article…
George Wood is the head instructor of Zong Wu Men Internal Fighting Arts, based in Northern Virginia. He teaches the martial arts of Baguazhang and Xingyiquan.
Totally great. Glad that “science” finally approves of what people have known for 10,000 years. Integrating relaxation into your practice is a different matter…
I personally think that relaxation by itself (relaxation meditation, or relaxation massage) is only really good done very infrequently. Relaxation, like meditation, or like exercise, or life, should be an active process. Then you learn something about your state…you become a participant in the state of your body.
For people interested, look into a nice Autogenic Programming or Progressive Relaxation recordings, or Eckhart Tolle’s first book – The Power of Now. All of the exercises from Power of Now are in the “Power of Now: Essential Teachings” book, if you’re short for time or want to just get right to it.
I never really cared for Yoga. I always thought it was better to learn how to be in a peaceful state when in motion. It just seems more util to be able to relax in a situation rather than in a quiet room on a pillow. Maybe a balance of both is good though.
Nick, I agree. Here’s a TED presentation by Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi (author of _Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience_) who quantified the concept and studied it in a more scientific manner. It seems to be one of the higher goals of Xingyi written about by the older and accomplished practitioners (Robert Smith’s _Hsing-I_ has a section discussing it at the end of the book – “Advise from the Masters”), the flowing of movement unconsciously with personal identity disappearing in that moment.
Definitely worth watching:
I am glad about what he is doing. So many people see mtriaal arts as either just a display for sport or needless violence, and I am glad someone is bringing it back as a lifestyle that brings attention and focus to a person’s health and just getting to know themselves. I wish I had been able to study under him when I was younger, I would likely have learned a lot of things it has taken me this long figure out. Give Dr. Yang my best.
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