Chinese characters: Guang Ping Yang Tai Ji

Members' Journal

2000 Guang Ping Tai Ji Conference

by Jen Kano (October 28, 2000)

It was my privilege and pleasure to attend the annual Guang Ping Conference this year, and I want to thank all the members of the Cape Cod Club for sponsoring my attendance.

It was a very action-packed weekend and I took notes furiously in the hope that it would help me remember it all when I got back to the Cape. There were two workshops on Friday evening ending at 9:00, and on Saturday, warm-ups started at 6 am and the last lecture ended at 9:30 PM with breaks only for meals. On Sunday, we were back at warm-ups at 6:30 am.

For me (and hopefully for you as I share what I learned), the most valuable sessions were those that emphasized rooting and developing/using the Chi (there were several), applications of some of the moves, and knee safety. While very little time was spent on how you do the actual forms, I did recognize a couple of errors in my set and how to correct them.

Saturday evening, there was an interesting round-table discussion on Guang Ping and the various "flavors" that it seems to be available in. The three major variations recognized were the Kuo variation, the Chiang variation (ours), and the Peter Kwok variation. There was discussion on the commonalties amongst the "flavors," known changes that have been made since the passing of Master Kuo in each, the effects on judging at tournaments, and the long term implications for Guang Ping as a whole. No conclusions were reached, but I lot of valuable information was exchanged.

The highlight of the weekend for me was finally getting to meet Fu Tung Cheng of Y.C. Chaing's Wen Wu School. He is a wonderful easy-going person, an excellent teacher, and his insights into our form truly inspiring. His Chi exercises were easy to do and the results palpable. I found myself smiling through both of his sessions and feeling very privileged that we have such a person in our "branch" of the Guang Ping family. On Sunday I got a chance to speak to him one-on-one for about an hour by skipping one of the scheduled sessions, and it was worth every minute.

I found myself thinking about my experiences all the way home during my grueling 7 plus hour trip (don't ask). I have much to digest, many new insights to work with, and exercises and moves to work on. I realize more strongly than ever that we are never truly "done" learning Tai Ji. There is always something more to work on, new insights to be found, and greater benefits to be realized. I think of it not as an endless burden or an overwhelming task, but as a joyful process like reading a good book that you wish would never end.

Thank you again my Tai Ji friends for sending me, it has been a gift of infinite value.

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