By Athos Antoniades
Athos explains how the practice of Kenpo Taiji, Tai Chi and Chi Kung enables us to move in an integrated and connected manner not only in fighting but in all aspects of life.
Excellent health and fighting ability are a by-product of the true essence of the Tai Chi, Wuji and Chi Kung taught in our system. The true aim is to subdue the ego and allow the light of consciousness to transcend the person allowing the soul to take over and lead us through life. Our thinking will be from a state of conscious presence and not our logical thinking brain often referred to as the Ego. We will use the physical to gain the internal and the internal will then direct the physical. We will be guided by our Higher Self, intelligence which will filter through to our conceptual mind and give us fresh ideas, artistic ability and so on.
Consciousness will no longer be trapped in useless thoughts, emotions and perception but will awaken to awareness to what is happening here and now, being the space for the present moment. It is the emptiness waiting to take the life form of what is happening in our current situation.
We will deal with any situation arising in the here and now, by responding out of our conscious presence, a spiritual awareness, and not a logical mind. To do this we must gain internal stillness which we achieve in Kenpo Taiji through practicing Tai Chi, Wuji, Chi Kung and various training methods. Internal stillness is the crux to the whole system as it is consciousness (spirit, Tao, God, etc.) which manifests into any form whether it be physical, thought, emotion or perception.
We gain internal stillness by being sung (lose, heavy, relaxed) centering our energy down to the Dan Tien which is our energy centre and also becoming physically centered by placing our weight on the centre of gravity point on the feet, which is just forward of our heels. We will then be perfectly balanced. As we centre ourselves in this way we will unite with the universe, which is balance itself.
Maintaining our central equilibrium (Balance) is very important in the martial arts as it will ensure that we are not too Yin and cowering in fear or too Yang and anxiously aggressive. We will stay calm in all circumstances like any wild animal, if attacked we would be violently aggressive on the outside, but calm within.
Our mind will always be free from concept, including the concept of non-violence, therefore if the situation requires it, sudden violence will become a spontaneous subconscious reflex action. We will never resist the situation but adapt accordingly, as any resistance will cut us off from ‘being’, the only true place of power. Resistance is a weakness and fear masquerading as strength.
Moving from a point of stillness will further enhance our fighting efficiency as it enables the body to move in an integrated and connected manner maximising power and speed, therefore greatly improving our fighting ability. Accepting, surrendering and adapting to any situation we find ourselves in, enables us to stay present, therefore allowing the light of consciousness to transcend the person and guide us to maximum efficiency, not only in the Martial Arts, but in all aspects of life.