The Wu Style of Tai Chi Chuan


The Wu Style of Tai Chi Chuan – Tinn Chan Lee


FOREWORD

 

T'ai Chi Ch'uan is an ancient Chinese art of self-defense. In the old days only noblemen could learn the art; it has been practiced in China for one thousand years.

Primarily, it is a philosophy of physical, mental and spiritual dimensions, based on the teachings of Lao Tzu of the Chou Dynasty, and was first developed by a Taoist saint.

It is a system of meditative exercise which prevents and heals ailments through revitalizing and rejuvenating the vital organs of the body if practiced regularly and accurately.

It is a series of continuous rhythmic steps that give the body healthful and harmonious movement. It is a nonstop slow exercise which takes twenty minutes or longer to perform. In fact, the slower the performance, the greater the benefits are.

The important principle of the art is relaxation, which encourages meditation. T'ai Chi Ch'uan encourages meditation in motion while it circulates the life fluid through the body. It is conducive to longevity. There are documentary evidences that some practitioners of this art have lived to a very old age.

The author of this book, Mr. Tinn Chan Lee, is a teacher of great experi¬ence, and an unassuming gentleman. Sickly as a young man, he took up T'ai Chi Ch'uan thirty-three years ago, first under Master Liu and then, in 1937, under Master Wu in Hong Kong. This great art has not only restored him to excellent health and youthful vigor, but has also given him a tranquillity of mind and spirit in a world where men constantly live under tremendous stresses of life.

Tien-Tse Chang, M.A., PhD., Litt.D. (Leiden) Professor and Senior Specialist, East-West Center, University of Hawaii, 1966.

 

PREFACE

 

When I was a young boy, I was weak and sickly. I asked my uncle to teach me the external style of Kung Fu. It did not help my weak condition; in fact, Kung Fu made me weaker because it took too much of my energy. I asked my father what to do and he suggested that I change to an internal style of Kung Fu like Tai Chi Ch'uan. The only problem with this was that a good teacher was hard to find. Since the internal style of Kung Fu is so complex and comprehensive, you must find a qualified teacher or you will end up on the wrong path.

After having studied and practiced Tai Chi Ch'uan for so many years, I have realized that I know very little about the depths of this great art. However, my mental and physical health have improved and 1 have achieved an inner peace.

Since Tai Chi Ch'uan has benefited me throughout my life, I would like to pass on my limited knowledge to my fellow Americans and also to those who are interested in the internal style of Kung Fu.

 

Tinn Chan Lee

 

CONTENTS

 

FOREWORD        7

PREFACE 8

APPLICATION TO THE SCHOOL OF WU KAM CHIN          9

1.   INTRODUCTION      11

AN EXPLANATION OF THE TEN FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES 13

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE TAI CHI CH'UAN MASTERS      15

PHILOSOPHICAL FOUNDATIONS      17

 

2.   THE SEVEN BASIC STANCES        18

PRINCIPLES FOR THE CULTIVATION OF CHI          19

DURATION OF THE STATIC MEDITATIVE EXERCISES       19

PARALLEL STANCE       20

SITTING STANCE           21

BOW STANCE     22

HORSE STANCE 23

TREADING STANCE      24

HALF-SPLIT LEG STANCE        25

SINGLE FOOT STANCE 26

THE POSTURES OF TAI CHI CH'UAN 27

 

3.   THE FORMAL EXERCISE OF TAI CHI CH'UAN   30

PRINCIPLES OF BREATHING   30