Monday, September 27, 2010

Some GroundPath Stuff : Journal Notes #6

Notes from my April 2000 Zhan Zhuang Training Journal. I train with The School of Cultivation and Practice which practices Wujifa zhan zhuang. (My current reflections are added in italics.)

* The more relaxed, the more pure the groundpath.
(My assumption then appears to have been a "path" is a line, a pipe, a conduit. The "imagine a feeling" thing. In recent classes we practiced a similar yet different exercise. And the feeling is soooo completely different, nothing linear, tubular or imagined. But I might draw it the same way. It's tricky to convey the feeling in words or pictures.)

* What is "pre-path"? Pre-path is where 'A' adjusts to receive incoming force. This is a demonstration of the saying, "The yi leads the chi" - intention directs the energy.

* Intention is the key and is the more subtle and misunderstood point to the novice.
(I still consider myself a novice in this area.... I still don't feel confident that I've got a clear grasp on the feeling or various feelings of intention. It's like, whatever I can feel or do understand, I feel like I'm only touching the tip of the iceberg. This is an area I continue exploring and discovering.)
(Gosh, when I think about how much I've relaxed and let go since those days... I wonder if that kind of exercise did anything more than stroke my ego into believing I was actually developing "groundpath". I mean, that was before Rolfing, before some major breakthroughs, before so much that came later... Surely, I must have been playing with so much tension... Sure, it all looks good on paper and may sound impressive, but really it's kinda funny looking back and thinking that this exercise could have developed anything at all.... )


A note on the time period of this journal entry...

In the mid-1990s I was reading and experimenting with material discussed in Mike Sigman's on-line newsletter
Internal Strength: A Practical Approach to Internal Strength and Qi. I was reading the U.S. T'ai Chi Magazine where he was a regular contributor in the early 1990s. (August 1991 - February 1993 issues.) I was also reading the U.K. Tai Chi Chuan Magazine which featured an interview with him; Mike Sigman, Internal Artist.

Unfortunately, I never actually met him nor attended one of his seminars. I have viewed his
How to Do: Internal Strength video.

Further reading:
Introductory article explaining this "Journal Notes" series: Zhan Zhuang Training Journal
Previous article in this series: This Is A Feeling Art: Journal Notes #5
Next article in this series: The Keys To Something: Journal Notes #7


  1. I've been able to see Mr Sigman a few times over the years. If you ever get a chance you should go. I know he did aikido seminar a number of months back. Anyway I really enjoy your willingness to share you note and honesty here with us.

  2. Thanks for the postings, Mike.. It's really cool seeing the growth from then until now. I've seen some as your schoolmate since 2003, but it's cool to see what was going on at SoCaP prior to that, and what you've been thinking about since back then:)

  3. Hey Freedom!
    You nailed it! "Thinking"! I did a lot of thinking then. I think you'll agree, I only started making progress when I started Feeling !

    I can only imagine where I'd be had I been on the Feeling Train ten years ago. Dare I say, maybe more like our elder brother?

    Like we say, you are where you are and that's where you start...

    Glad you're enjoying these old notes.