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T'Ai Chi Touchstones: Yang Family Secret Transmissions

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  72 ratings  ·  9 reviews
Three generations of Yang family masters lifted the art of T’ai-chi ch’uan from a closed courtyard in the Honan Province to the status of a national treasure and made of it, like India’s yoga, a gift to the world. Yang Lu-ch’an in the nineteenth century, fllowed by his sons and their sons, have given T’ai-chi ch’uan the theoretical and practical standard which still define ...more
Paperback, 159 pages
Published June 1st 1983 by Sweet Ch'i Press
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Joel Gray
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it

Tai chi is the art of concealing hardness within softness, like a needle in cotton.

Descending means sinking the chi to the tan-tien and rising refers to the light and sensitive energy at the top of the head.

In order to avoid a stiff vertical posture, we emphasise the concept of suspension from above.

Relax the waste. The waste is the ruler of the body. If the waist is relaxed the feet will have pow
Oct 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
After having studied personally with the Yang Family for over 10 years, I can say that this book is an excellent resource for those interested in the serious study of Taijiquan. As someone who loves Taiji, yet does not read Chinese, I feel a great debt of gratitude to Mr. Wile for making these writings available in such a thoughtful and accessible form. The book contains information that will benefit beginners, as well as texts that require many years of study and practice to comprehend. I know ...more
This book is most suited for serious practitioners. However, still if you are a person like I, who is practicing moderately or studying or interested in starting to do both, this is an excellent book to expand your knowledge. The translation is excellent. It is clear, and it has the quality resonance of true classics.

This book passes along much history and workings of the Tai Chi /Taijiquan. These early works are not a step-by-step manual, but guides to the practicing student to help gain insig
Apr 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: philosophy
Not a bad little book on the various teachings of the Yang Family masters that had (at the time of the printing) never really seen print in the USA. I did gain a few insights and teaching inspirations from the book. However, I don't recommend this book as a good introduction to the art of Taijiquan (T'ai Chi Ch'uan) as much of the transmitted knowledge is for the current and long-time students of the art. ...more
Paul Read
The book that has inspired many a historian of Chinese Martial Arts, Wile begins by explaining that there are no real secrets (something echoed by later writers such as Wolfe Lowenthal) and that much of what we swallow as accepted martial arts history is in fact just the personal accounts of individuals or schools with their own specific agenda. A book you will come back to again and again. ​
Jan 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Secret transmissions?? I feel like I should whisper my review...If you are studying Tai Chi, you should definitely have this book in your library. It's a classic. You'll get a history lesson and thorough philosophical guidance. The pictures will help you with your form. You'll always go back to it as we are always relearning.
Jul 02, 2016 added it
Somewhat repeated readings are necessary to learn from the seemingly abstractness of the writings. With practise of body movement your own ideas form and can be perhaps then translated to the ideas of the ancient Chinese.
Jun 13, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kungfu
This book is appreciated more by people I know. It is a good window onto the illiterate transmissions. Poetic mnemonics. You have to have context to get the most out of it. (I'll have to remember the perfect companion I found for it...) A must for your Tai Chi Library.
Sep 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: martial-arts
A great book for anyone interested in the advanced principles of Tai-chi.
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