Tai-Chi Classics

Explanation of Tai-Chi-Chuan

一   举   动   周   身   俱   要   轻   灵   尤   须   贯   力
When you move, your entire body must be light, nimble and flexible; particularly important, is that, the force you apply, must be connected and continuous.

气   宜   鼓   荡   神   宜   内   敛
Qi should move, with unforeseen force, like an acoustic wave, vibrating from a drum; Shen should be inside, collected and kept within.

毋   使   有   凸   凹   处   毋   使   有   断   续   处
When moving be smooth and don't break continuity.

其   根   在   脚   发   于   腿   主   宰   于   腰   形   于   手   指
It (force) is rooted at the feet, generated in the legs, governed in the waist and manifested at the fingers.

由   脚   而   腿   而   腰   总   须   完   整   一   气   向   前   退   后   乃   得   机   得   势
The feet, legs and waist must be integrated, when moving forward or backward. 
This is how you develop your timing and generate force.

有   不   得   机   得   势   处   身   便   散   乱   其   病   必   于   腰   腿   求   之
Without correct timing while generating force; 
your body will not function properly;
the source of this disfunction, must be sought in the legs and waist.

上   下   前   后   左   右   皆   然
Up or down, front or back as well as right or left, are all correct.

凡   此   皆   是   意   不   在   外   面
All of this, however is Yi (Mind/Will) and does not exist externally.

有   上   即   有   下   有   前   即   有   后   有   左   即   有   右
There is up, the same as there is down; 
there is straight ahead, the same as there is behind;
there is left, the same as there is right.

如   意   要   向   上   即   寓   下   意
If your Yi needs to go upward; it contains downward at the same time.

若   将   物   掀   起   而   加   以   挫   之   之   力   斯   其   根   自   断   乃   坏   之   速   而   无   疑
When dealing with other people, if you want to lift up, you should push down;
then their root will naturally break; and be ruined quickly and beyond doubt.

周   身   节   节   贯   串   无   令   有   丝   毫   间   断   耳
Empty and solid need to be distinguished clearly; one place naturally has both; everywhere has both. The entire body must be connected on both sides, without the slightest break.

长   拳   者   如   长   江   大   海   滔   滔   不   绝   也
Chang Quan (Taiji Quan) is like a river or sea; powerful and unceasingly flowing.

十   三   势   者   掤   捋   挤   按   采   挒   肘   靠   此   八   卦   也
In the thirteen principles Ward off, Rollback, Press, Push, Roll-Pull, Split, Elbow-strike
Shoulder-strike represent Bagua (the Eight Trigrams).

进   步   退   步   右   顾   左   昐   中   定   此   五   行   也
Forward-step, Back step, Right-turn, Left-turn, and Centered-stability 
represent Wuxing (the Five Elements).

掤   捋   挤   按   即   坎   离   震   兑   四   正   方   也
Ward-off is ☵ Kan, Rollback is ☲ Li, Press is ☳ Zhen and Push is ☱ Dui ; together they make the four cardinal directions of the Post-Heaven Bagua.


采   挒   肘   靠   即   乾   坤   艮   巽   四  斜   角   也
Grasp is ☰ Qian, Split is ☷ Kun, Elbow-strike is ☶ Gen and Shoulder-strike is ☴ Xun; together they make
the four diagonal directions in the Post-Heaven Bagua.

进   退   顾   盼   定   即   金   木   水   火   土   也
Forward-step, Back step, Right-turn, Left-turn and Centered-stability are Metal, Wood, Water, Fire and Earth.


Originally writen by Zhang Sanfeng, translated by German B. Aguila, with examination and aproval by Professor Teng YingBo.