The box is everywhere, its all around us. Its how we think, what we see and how we control the world in which we live. From infancy what is real has been defined by our teachers, ingrained in us, from the abc’s to the 123′s. The box is the conceptual world in which we live, our beliefs, our bias and even our science.
Yi Chuan is an experiential learning methodology. It suggests that what can be directly experienced is more true than anything that can be spoken, written or expressed in a two dimensional way. It suggests that conceptual knowledge’s true value is in leading to understandings that can be experienced as true and that such experiences are the fountainhead of true knowledge, the source of infinite ‘effations’ about the ineffable.
Standing in Yi Chuan’s fundamental practice, arms encircled, attempting to be present in the moment, the conceptual mind jumps around like a rabid monkey with attention deficit disorder. How can just standing there be so difficult, bring so much discomfort and be so very painful? Has it been five minutes or five hours? What the hell am I doing? Why am I doing this?
Yi Chuan practice draws the energy of awareness into present time, into the NOW. Straightening the spine, tucking the tailbone, gripping the ground with the toes, suspending the head, rounding the kua, clearing the chest, extending the Yi, sinking, stretching, relaxing, extending, contracting, wrapping, loosening, up, down, left, right, in, out and everything in between, the practice of Yi Chuan requires full awareness on what is going on right NOW.
The technology of Yi Chuan is in creatively applying visualizations and imagery to movement patterns in order to illicit distinct changes in the way those patterns feel. Progressively, changes in feeling induce a change in state. Through methodical testing and feedback the practitioner can activate that state directly by recalling its feeling. Like leaving the boat behind once crossing the river Yi Chuan practice then becomes about applying awareness, intent and presence to manifest change.
By building knowledge through direct experience it’s possible to break out of the box, to let go of the endless beliefs, opinions and hearsay that can obscure real understanding. Yi Chuan provides a framework, guideposts and feedback tools to help the practitioner see what those pearls of wisdom are actually pointing to, a way to experience that knowledge within oneself.