Usually other people can easily detect our strengths and our weaknesses, the good things about us and the not-so-good things. We ourselves aren't aware of these problems, so they become a part of our temperament or habit or character. How can we remove these rigidities? What hinders our progress?

We form rigidities and blockages sometimes because we lack the good habit of being aware of what we are doing everyday. Confucius told us it would be good for us three times a day to be aware of what we are doing. Doing so helps us strengthen up our quality in our actions and thoughts.

The most important thing to help us to change our rigidity is admitting we have it; then we can probably have a chance to find it out; when we find it out, we should try to think about it and correct it everyday. By working with it in this way, after several weeks or maybe more, we will have developed a better habit.

The problem is when other people tell us about our rigidity or bad habit, we usually either won't admit them or we won't totally admit them because of our dignity or our face. So, if we want to change our rigidity or bad habit, it would be good to try to listen to other people and it would be good for us to reexamine the procedure we are using to try to correct our bad habit. If we do something like this consistently for several weeks and months, then a new habit would be established and we will have a better way to go through our life.

So it is very important to realize our own problems. The most important thing to realizing our own problem is we should develop a power close to enlightenment. If we have that power, we will totally open up and understand everything and so we will be able to become a superior man. That power can also help us to learn our own wisdom or mind of humbleness.

The ancients talked about studying. By this they meant being a gentlemen (jyun dz) or a sage. In other words, they were talking about becoming a person. To be enlightened means there is something from within ourself that lights us up because we know what is real. This is a kind of self-combustion. To change things (your rigidity or habit), you need to see it. If you can't see it, you can't change it.

To change things in your gung fu practice, you need a certain base and then you can adjust your moves. This takes a long time of adjusting until you can balance within gung fu. To make progress in gung fu you need to feel pain so you can correct your movement. It's like what happened to King Lear: he never realized it was his only his third daughter who really loved him until he was betrayed by other people, including his relatives. You need to be beaten deeply by others physically or mentally in order to try to restructure yourself and to promote yourself. If you are not made to be aware of things through pain, you will have no change to adjust and your gung fu will just stay at one level. The fear of pain is more painful than the pain itself. You need to be beaten up or have a big failure before you have the power to get up again.

Using a wu swo wei (not to think but remain balance) method is for those with big ability. Using synergy is another way, but it takes even more power! A wicked person is not so strong and tough, so once they are beaten by other people, they seem like other people.

Chi Kung Culture Society of TAIPEI