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Author Topic: Relaxation Practice: Shoong  (Read 7710 times)

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Brother D

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Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« on: February 04, 2017, 04:07:02 PM »
From the Tai chi classics;

Shoong means "to relax", "to yield". In Tai chi practice, relaxation means to give yourself up completely, both mentally and physically. It means to yield: yield totally to the entire universe, to the infinite.

"True relaxation is always a dropping into ourselves, a movement toward our core and very center of self.  In addition to distorting what we can see, hear, and feel, the inability to relax and release tension will inevitably fuel the involuntary internal monologue of the mind.  As we become more enmeshed in the drama that our mind is scripting about ourselves, our ability to relate in a wholesome and relaxed manner with the current condition and circumstances of our lives becomes further distorted. ... The relaxation of tension in our bodies melts the armoring that keeps our bodies hard and inflexible.  This hardening of the tissue creates a layer of numbness that keeps our awareness of the rich web of shimmering sensations concealed and contained.  Relaxation allows the armoring to begin to soften and melt away.  The inevitable result is a much greater awareness of sensational presence and a diminution of the ongoing involuntary monologue of the mind.  Learning how to relax by surrendering the weight of the body to the pull of gravity and remaining standing at the same time significantly catalyzes the practice of mindfulness."
-  Will Johnson, Aligned, Relaxed and Resilient, 2000, p. 55



 "Song is not merely the absence of tension, but rather the absence of unnecessary tension. Song is the art of becoming aware of an inhibiting the habitual contraction of muscles due to emotional stress and poor habits of posture, breathing and movement.  ...  Active relaxation is a form of qigong in itself; it is also essential preparation for all styles of qigong.  It includes the following attributes: awareness and tranquility, effortlessness, sensitivity, warmth and rootedness."
-  Kenneth Cohen, The Way of Qigong, 1997, p 97.

Jianblade

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2017, 01:58:34 AM »
I've realized though meditation how uptight my mind is. It is nearly impossible for me to get any silence. I noticed this while driving earlier, when my playlist ran out, I found myself completely unable to enjoy the silence, as the madness of my mind wouldn't shut the fuck up. When one thinks like this compulsively, they lose touch with their true selves, and get up in thought after thought after though.

Brother D

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2017, 05:19:03 PM »
I also find trying to stay in that place is difficult sometimes, but practice is key. Mentally repeating "thinking" or counting helps, or mindfulness techniques such as body scans, a few deep breaths etc.

Carrying physical tension automatically puts you on the defensive and sets you up for a shit day, intentionally or not. I have recently started to practice Tai Chi in the morning and it helps me to not be so uptight during the day, as I feel more grounded/ centered or whatever.

Jianblade

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2017, 11:59:44 PM »
Where do you learn your tai chi?

Brother D

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2017, 11:11:28 AM »
There is a local class I go to. I am learning the Yang style short form and practice what I have learned at home when I can.

I have also studied various martial arts over the years, ( mainly Bujinkan ninjutsu, aikido, wing chun and kendo), but I really like Tai Chi. I hope to keep my joints supple and my sense of balance as I get older, plus it really goes with my dudeist ethos. The thing about shoong (sho'ong?), I thought was kinda relevant.

Jianblade

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2017, 06:15:19 PM »
Very Dude indeed. I have a book by Wong Kiew Kit on Tai Chi. He goes over the philosophy of Tai Chi, it's roots in Taoism and over all the basic styles. It has several diagrams showing the different forms and techniques. It goes over Wudang, Chen, Yang, Wu Yu Xiang and Wu Chuan Yu. My problem is, there are not any classes near me that offer Tai Chi, and learning from a book is very incomplete.

Brother D

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2017, 07:46:12 AM »
 I had Wong kiew kits'  book on shaolin 5 animals kung fu, but it's not for me. I'm only scratching the surface with Tai chi and the book I have is the Tai chi classics by waysun Liao. It gives a good description of how to cultivate chi, turn it in to useable energy and has a Chen style form too, along with essays from past masters.

I find that books can only help so much and YouTube is helpful in the sense that it can teach, but not correct mistakes, or bad form. Also, it's no substitute for a competent instructor.

If I was 20 yrs younger, I'd love to train at Wudang mountain, but Yang style has a nice flow to it. There is a local Wu Style class, but I think I will stay where I am and I'm looking forward to practicing push hands, but am still learning the basics. I don't have the same lower body strength as I used to, (driving has made me lazy),  so I can't sit in a horse stance for long, though It's a good exercise for patience, relaxation and balance.

The neighbours might wonder why I'm outside waving my arms around, but it's not for their benefit.

What about you, man? Do you practice/train in anything?
« Last Edit: February 09, 2017, 07:51:04 AM by Brother D »

BikerDude

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2017, 02:12:54 PM »
I lean toward the "letting it all out" school.
Shooting firearms has a wonderful effect on stress
Off roading.
Riding the motorcycle through the mountains.
The closest I've gotten to meditation is going to the woods for a few days.

Out here we are all his children

Brother D

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Re: Relaxation Practice: Shoong
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2017, 05:56:37 AM »
We all have our thing and whatever it is, being immersed in it, totally in the moment, does have a calming effect.

Personally, I couldn't bring myself to shoot a firearm for any reason other than absolute survival any more. I automatically associate them with death, however, disarming someone, is a useful skill but that's just like my opinion, man.

 

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