The Secrets Of Our Kung Fu

One day my big apprentice brother told me a story.  He said that our sifu once did a demonstration at a festival where many people were gathered to watch.  After performing the demonstration, our sifu addressed the crowd, and began to describe our kung fu in great detail, even revealing the most esoteric secrets of … Continue reading The Secrets Of Our Kung Fu

Tai Chi For Kids?

Tai chi trains and refines natural movement, which on the surface may seem like a paradox. Why would natural movement need to be trained? In actuality, natural movement gets covered up by unnatural habits, which have to be untrained in order to allow natural movement to emerge and flourish. Kids already know how to move naturally, … Continue reading Tai Chi For Kids?

Monkey Sensei

True story.  One day I was in a park doing tai chi with a friend and a fellow approached.  After watching for a while he said, in a British accent, "Hello Mr. Guru".  I said hi back, and asked him his name.  He said "Philip Michael.  You don't need to tell me your name, though, … Continue reading Monkey Sensei

Preserve Or Adapt?

Which is the mark of a good teacher? To teach exactly the way he was taught? Or to adapt his teaching to this day, to this student or group of students before him? Which is the mark of perfection? Stasis, or evolution?

When the Teacher is Ready, the Student Will Appear

Undoubtedly you have heard this put the other way.  Yet the coming together of student and teacher is as much a gift to the teacher as to the student. Any art pursued becomes an integrated process of learning and teaching, of communicating and re-communicating.  You cannot master anything without becoming a teacher. In your own … Continue reading When the Teacher is Ready, the Student Will Appear

Masters, Pupils, and Peers

“First train with masters and pupils, eventually train with peers.” Interpretation: This saying invokes the context of tai chi, but can be applied to other fields as well. It means that when you first start training, the distinction between master and pupil is relevant and important. You begin as a pupil learning from a master, … Continue reading Masters, Pupils, and Peers