Chinese philosophy and Ba

The main objective of a Taoist yogi-intellectual-martial artist, as has been discussed, would be to unify with the primal forces (yuan) of the universe and restore the yuan qi, the "primordial qi" within his own body. To understand the thinking of a Taoist yogi at the turn of the century, one must first look at how he viewed the world.

According to classic Chinese philosophers, we as human beings are the result "of the marriage between heaven and earth." We are a microcosm, a universe in miniature, and minor model of the larger model, the macrocosm. Literati in the internal martial arts spared no effort to reconcile theories of the universal principle with specific martial practice.

The micro-macrocosm philosophy of the ancient Taoist philosophers states that we are "children of the earth." Internal alchemists believed that this was more than just philosophy, but that the practice of Taoist yoga linked them with and reflected their connection to nature. They believed that the phenomenological world, if understood, could be manipulated. As many alchemist-yogi practitioners saw it, the best avenue for understanding the phenomenon of creation was with m m

Chen De-Xi

Liu Xing-Han i X It

Wang Wen-Kuei Gao Zi-Ying iHi:

Wang Rong-Tang

Yang Kim

Si Zben

yuan

yuan qi

yuan yuan qi

Wang Bagua Swimming

In one of their first open meetings in a decade, this photo of senior Ba Gua masters was taken after the end of the Cultural Revolution in 1976. Senior Ba Gua Zhang Research Association members from left in front: Chen De-Xi, author Liu, Wang Wen-Kuei. Gao Zi-Ying, Wang Rong-Tang. Back row:Yang Kun and Si Zhen

In one of their first open meetings in a decade, this photo of senior Ba Gua masters was taken after the end of the Cultural Revolution in 1976. Senior Ba Gua Zhang Research Association members from left in front: Chen De-Xi, author Liu, Wang Wen-Kuei. Gao Zi-Ying, Wang Rong-Tang. Back row:Yang Kun and Si Zhen m m

Chen De-Xi

Liu Xing-Han i X It

Wang Wen-Kuei Gao Zi-Ying the blueprint of the universe, and the basic coding symbols of the / Ching, the trigrams.

The trigram (Diagram on page 43), as the name suggests, is a three-line drawing. The three (yin broken, or yang solid) lines are delineated as a heaven line at top, a human realm line in the middle, and an earth line at the bottom. There are eight of these that form the Ba Gua talisman. The trigrams represent the phenomenological world. The Taoists and Confucianists studied them in the same way an engineer of today's time studies formulas to construct a bridge structural support system. Just as numbers are symbols that represent the outside physical reality to the engineer, Taoist alchemists used the trigrams to develop a proto-science that they believed would uncover the secrets of life hidden by nature. In their search for these formulas, the most popular trigram interactions were the trigrams K'an

In alchemical terms, the interaction of these trigrams represented Kan's "true lead" merging with Li's "true mercury." A typical example of the importance of the trigram coding, this formula not only was allegorical of the search for the secret elixir of life in the alchemist's furnace, but was extrapolated beyond the furnace to acquire yogic and bedchamber meanings.

The symbolism of the trigrams was very important to the alchemists of ancient China. This suggests that the trigrams and the / Ching, one of the oldest books in Chinese culture and an in-depth study of trigram arrangement, may have been important to the philosophers/martial artist/yogis as they developed the martial art of Ba Gua.

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