Tai Chi Y2D280: …And the Solstice Comes

For those of you who are looking for ‘winter solstice poems’, ‘winter solstice poem’, ‘poems for winter solstice’, ‘solstice poem’, ‘poems winter solstice’ and ‘winter solstice magic poem’, you have likely come to the right place:

There’s four poems or hymns or odes specifically for the winter solstice, and I hope you find what you’re looking for — this blog has received more visitors in the last three days looking for poetry of that nature, than it received in the last three weeks. So there you go. Hope there’s something there you like; oh, and it would be nice if some of you new visitors would leave a comment or a like or something. Thank the poet, please. 🙂

Today’s tai chi was lovely.  I did my “lie on the floor and relax” exercise before I even began. Some of the tightness that I’ve experienced in the last few days was gone; other parts of it are still releasing, but there’s a clear improvement.  I followed “LOTF&R” with the Druidic practice I’ve been developing over the last five months, and then I did my qi gong and tai chi routines.  It has a lot in common with the programming I’ve been learning of late:  a series of functions performed in a given sequence, usually repeated a given number of times before one goes on to the next line of code, errI mean, postures.

That said, there’s some issues that I’m facing.  Today, I was all over the map in the tai chi form.  On the one hand, it can be seen as me breaking away from the rigidity of performing the same postures every time.  On the other hand, it’s breaking away from the traditional postures. And I’m not sure what’s happening, really.

Let me explain:  I get to a certain point in the form, the Buddha’s Teacup, which is a single position within a larger sequence in the maneuver called Single Whip. Somewhere between the Teacup and the Outstretched Arm, I lose track of what the next set of sequences is.  And I usually go to one of two places: Underarm Punch followed by Cloud Handsor I go to Snake Creeps Down followed by Golden Pheasants.  (There is a third option, which is Elbow Release followed by Fair Lady Works the Shuttles).  So, two different (really, three different) options about where to go next after Single Whip. And I’m getting them confused or out of order. The result is that I’m going astray, and having challenges remembering where to pick up the form next.  And because of that, it’s taking me less time than usual. Except today, I may have hit upon a solution, sorta.

Today, for example, I leapt into Golden Pheasants…. but then I moved on from that into Fair Lady Works the Shuttles. This meant that I skipped the Underarm Punch / Cloud Hands / Diamond Spiral / Diagonal Single Whip sequence completely.  Ooops.  So when I got to the end of Golden Pheasants, I put in the Underarm Punch there.  Then I went straight through the traditional sequence: Underarm Punch back to Single Whip.  Except, then, through a miscalculation of some kind, I didn’t go on to the end.  I went into Golden Pheasants, which doesn’t come there!

So, in terms of structure, my tai chi ‘form’ looked something like this when considered as broad groups of movements: Opening Sequence, Tree, Golden Pheasants, Fair Lady Works Shuttles, Underarm Punch, Golden Pheasants, Underarm Punch, Fair Lady Works Shuttles, Tiger Sequence, Closing.  To give you a sense of how much the long way around this is, it’s usually more like this:  Opening Sequence, Tree, Golden Pheasants, Underarm Punch, Fair Lady Works Shuttles, Tiger Sequence, Closing.

I sort of went the wrong way around, didn’t I?

I think the big challenge is that I don’t know whether this is good or not.  I think my body has picked up on the fact that I want to lengthen my form, and it’s figured that it doesn’t have to do the harder work of slowing down if it just fusses with the timing or the frequency of certain movements. While it does add clock time, it doesn’t necessarily solve the problem of managing more careful movements.  Is it bad? It makes it harder to be a traditional teacher of a traditional set of movements, if I don’t remember the order of the movements myself.  But it also gives me more practice at given sequences.  So there’s a trade-off.  I think I should try to get back on track as far as what I do, and how I do it, and stick to the traditional outcome.  But at the same time, I also feel like I got a work-out this morning.

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