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Wahnam Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow Set: 10 Questions to Grandmaster Wong

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  • Wahnam Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow Set: 10 Questions to Grandmaster Wong

    Dear all,

    In order to prepare for the upcoming courses, Sifu offers to answer 10 Questions on the Wahnam Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow Set.

    Best regards,

    Roland

    PS: Some interesting points were given here:
    http://wongkiewkit.com/forum/showthread.php?t=10532
    Last edited by Andrew; 14 May 2013, 11:29 AM. Reason: Typo
    "From formless to form, from form to formless"

    26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
    Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

    Website: www.enerqi.ch

  • #2
    Amazing :-)

    Dear Shaolin Wahnam Family,

    I want to first thank Sifu for always being so generous. That makes me really happy and makes me a better student. :-)

    Second, I want to thank Roland Sifu for starting this amazing thread.

    So, here comes my question:

    Whenever I practice Cloud Hands (in any set), I feel that if one masters just that, he could be able to encounter any attack. Could that be possible? If so, what would make Cloud Hands so effective? Would you kindly explain where are they coming from (History & Background) and why did they evolve the way they did?

    I apologize in advance if I did too many questions just about the Cloud Hands but I have been willing to make these questions for a long time... :-)

    With Love, Respect and Shaolin Salute,

    Santiago

    Comment


    • #3
      Dear Santiago,

      Very interesting questions indeed!
      "From formless to form, from form to formless"

      26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
      Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

      Website: www.enerqi.ch

      Comment


      • #4
        Dear Sigung,

        What are the advantages and disadvantages of selecting the Wahnam Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow Set over the Yang 108 pattern set as specialist set for a Special Intensive Combined Taijiquan/Shaolinquan course in Malaysia?

        Thank you Sigung for yet another outstanding Q&A series. It hasn't started yet but I know its going to be outstanding!

        Thank you Sisook Roland for facilitating this thread. The courses in Switzerland look amazing! Happy days ahead for my Swiss brothers and sisters.

        All the best to the Wahnam family.

        Kevin

        Comment


        • #5
          Dear Sifu,

          Both the Cloud Hands and the Grasping Sporrow's Tail are legacies of great past Masters.

          Could you please elaborate more about those two legacies in termes of applications in daily life and combat, energy-force training and mind-spirituality cultivation aspects?

          Many thanks, Sifu in advance for answering our questions.

          Best regards,

          Roland
          "From formless to form, from form to formless"

          26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
          Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

          Website: www.enerqi.ch

          Comment


          • #6
            Dear Sigung

            Our Wahnam version of the set contains two additional patterns (Elbow Strike and Shoulder Strike) in order to include all of the 13 Techniques of Tai Chi Chuan.

            • Sigung, where do these 13 Techniques come from?
            • How can they help us to deepen our Tai Chi Chuan practice?
            • Can any Tai Chi Chuan pattern be classified into these 13 fundamental movements?
              (For example "White Snake Shoots Venom" or "White Crane Flaps Wings" when used as a kicking technique.)


            Thank you Sigung and Sifu for this wonderful opportunity to ask questions about this beautiful set.
            I am looking very much forward to the Wahnam Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow course on August 26, 2013 in Bern.

            Best regards
            Andrea
            Enjoy some Wahnam Tai Chi Chuan & Qi Gong!

            Evening Classes in Zürich
            Weekend Classes in other Swiss locations


            Website: www.taichichuan-wahnam.ch
            Facebook: www.facebook.com/Taichichuan.Wahnam.ch
            Google+ :
            https://plus.google.com/+TaiChiChuanQigongWahnamZürich/

            Comment


            • #7
              Deutschsprachige | German Speakers

              For the German speakers who do not feel confident formulating their question in English, there is a German thread now, where they can post them:

              Für alle deutschsprachigen, die eine Frage stellen möchten, gibt es die Möglichkeit diese auf Deutsch hier zu posten:

              http://wongkiewkit.com/forum/showthread.php?t=11301
              Enjoy some Wahnam Tai Chi Chuan & Qi Gong!

              Evening Classes in Zürich
              Weekend Classes in other Swiss locations


              Website: www.taichichuan-wahnam.ch
              Facebook: www.facebook.com/Taichichuan.Wahnam.ch
              Google+ :
              https://plus.google.com/+TaiChiChuanQigongWahnamZürich/

              Comment


              • #8
                Dear Sifu,

                Andrea's question reminds me of the Song of Secrets for Training in the 13 Techniques.

                I'm interested to know how Sifu's understanding of this classic has changed over time and how that understanding has influenced Sifu's practice, advancement and teaching of Taijiquan, as well as all types of Kung Fu. In particular I'm interested in these two lines: "All the time pay attention to your waist, the abdomen is charge with chi and might." and "What is the aim of Tai Chi Chuan practice? Health and vitality and eternal spring."
                少林華南台灣 Shaolin Wahnam Taiwan

                Facebook

                "Then how could chi kung overcome diseases where the cause is unknown or when there is no cure? The question is actually incorrect. The expressions "the cause is unknown" and "there is no cure" are applicable only in the Western medical paradigm. The expressions no longer hold true in the chi kung paradigm. In the chi kung paradigm the cause is known, and there is a cure."

                -Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit

                Comment


                • #9
                  Dear Sifu,

                  In our early days of the Shaolin Kung Fu and Taijiquan Set training development you thought us the breath control as an effective way to train chi, force and speed. I found this teachings amazing.

                  In recent times this teachings in Taijiquan quite obviously but also in Kung Fu became less focussed. My guess is it's because of the magical introduction into the flow-method. I have found this teaching marvellous.

                  At the combined Kung Fu/Taijiquan course in Bern you would mention if I am correct that this development aims for the mind level in our martial arts development meaning using mind to direct chi in orded to move the body. Also you would mention shortly that this development would lead into the cosmic mode where the cosmic breathing will activated. So there is no specific need for breath control this way.

                  Could you please elaborate more on the flow-method, coresponding with the mind level of training a martial art and the connection of it to the Cosmic breathing?

                  Many thanks in advance Sifu for answering.

                  Roland
                  "From formless to form, from form to formless"

                  26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
                  Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

                  Website: www.enerqi.ch

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Great question, Roland!!!

                    I have a "lower level" question:

                    Dear Sifu,

                    Could you please compare and contrast the sets "White Crane Flaps Wings" and "Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow" and elaborate a little on where each set fits in to the wonderful Art of Wahnam Taijiquan?

                    Many thanks!!!
                    Jeffrey Segal

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Great questions so far!

                      I just have a little appendix to Jeffrey Siheng's question:

                      Dear Sifu, why is the Cloud Hands Grasp Sparrow set not included in our standard syllabus?

                      Thank you in advance!

                      Best wishes,
                      o\

                      Leo
                      Sifu Leonard Lackinger

                      Wahnam Wien Logo

                      Shaolin Wahnam Wien
                      Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung
                      Southern Shaolin Kung Fu
                      Wahnam Tai Chi Chuan

                      Shaolin Wahnam Wien on facebook
                      Shaolin Wahnam Wien on YouTube

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Dear Uncle Jeff,

                        Thanks for the lovely laugh:-). I am very much looking forward to read Sifu's answer to your interesting question as well
                        "From formless to form, from form to formless"

                        26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
                        Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

                        Website: www.enerqi.ch

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          It is the first time I try to participate in a 10 Questions Thread and maybe is my question a little bit silly. So I apologize from the beginning if it is like this.

                          Dear Sigung,

                          as a beginner in our school I don't know much of the Program of advances Students but I read here in the forum and in the Website that advanced Kung fu Students shall make a decision about their specializations, i.e. choose an animal spirit/set to manifest in their kung fu. If I understood well some sets and patterns can manifest the animal spirit better than others. Hence somebody specialized in Dragon Force could theoretically manifest the Dragon in any pattern and more or less so with other animals (I hope I am right despite my lower understanding). On the other side is the Dragon the animal who can be manifest as best in Tajiquan. One can think that the Dragon spirit is or should be present in a good Taijiquan practitioner. Then here my humble question:

                          I wonder if other animals can be manifested effectively by doing Taijiquan (Tiger, Crane, Monkey, etc.) and how that can affect the practitioner of a set like Cloud Hands or any other Taijiquan set in our school in terms of combat efficacy, energy development and spiritual joy.

                          I thank you very much in advance Sigung and I apologize for my english and my lack of knowledge in the matter. I hope my question is not a big uselessness.

                          Thank you!!
                          Last edited by Davy; 21 May 2013, 02:45 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Cloud Hands Grasp Sporrow Q/A 1-Part 1

                            Here we go already:

                            Cloud Hands Grasp Sporrow Q/A 1-Part 1:

                            Question 1

                            Whenever I practice Cloud Hands (in any set), I feel that if one masters just that, he could be able to encounter any attack. Could that be possible? If so, what would make Cloud Hands so effective? Would you kindly explain where are they coming from (History & Background) and why did they evolve the way they did?

                            Santiago


                            Answer

                            You are right in your feeling. If one masters just Cloud Hands, he is able to counter any attack.

                            It was recorded that Yang Lu Chan practiced Grasping Sparrow’s Tail thousands of times every day. When he fought with other masters in his travels over China and defeated all of them, thus earning the enviable title “Yang the Invincible”, he only used Grasping Sparrow’s Tail.

                            I believe “Grasping Sparrow’s Tail” used by Yang Lu Chan was Clouds Hands. It is a metachronism, i.e. misplaced term due to time difference. The term “Grasping Sparrow’s Tail” did not exist during Yang Lu Chan’s time. It was coined later by his grandson, Yang Deng Fu, for a set of techniques comprising “peng”, “lu”, “li” and “an”, or “ward off”, “roll back”, “press forward” and “in contact”.

                            These four techniques correspond to the patterns “Immortal Waves Sleeves”, “Double Dragon Plays with Pearl”, “Push Boat According to Flow”, and “Open Window to Look at Moon” in our Wahnam Taijiquan. We also have “Black Bear Sinks Hips” in Grasping Sparrow’s Tail, which corresponds to the “cheng” technique in Yang Style Taijiquan and is found in the set in Yang Style Taijiquan but this technique is not identified.

                            In other words, in Grasping Sparrow’s Tail practiced in Yang Style Taijiquan there are five techniques, like what we practice in Wahnam Taijiquan, but the fifth technique, “cheng”, is not named. Normally only four techniques – “peng”, “lu”, “li” and “an” – are named.

                            It is recorded that “Grasping Sparrow’s Tail” evolved from “Lazy to Roll up Sleeves” in Chen Style Taijiquan, which in turn evolved from Cloud Hands. I believe that what Yang Lu Chan practiced thousands of times every day was Cloud Hands with emphasis on “Lazy to Roll up Sleeves”. It is worthy of note that what Yang Lu Chan practiced and used in defeating all challengers was not Yang Style Taijiquan but Chen Style Taijiquan.

                            I had a similar experience a few years ago when I was teaching chi kung in Lisboa, Portugal. I can’t remember how the conversation led to the topic but I was telling the class that if one had mastered Grasping Sparrow’s Tail, he could handle any attack, like what Yang Lu Chan did.

                            Someone in the class asked , “Sifu, can you show us?”

                            As usual, I answered, “Yes, of course. Is there anyone who would like to attack me?”

                            In unison, as if by prior arrangement, everyone pointed at one particular person, whom I later learned was called Manuel.

                            “You can attack me in any way you like,” I told Manuel.

                            He charged at me with a punch. I casually brushed him away.

                            “Try again,” I said.

                            Manuel attacked me a few times, and each time I brushed him away quite effortlessly using patterns from Grasping Sparrow’s Tail, focusing on rotation of my waist.

                            Later Riccardo Salvatore told me that Manuel said to him, “I don’t know what happened, but Sifu was like an axis. Each time I moved in to attack, I was spiraled away.”

                            Honestly I though Manuel was a martial art beginner, though on reflection his movements were good. I was quite surprised to learn from Riccardo Salvatore that Manuel was the top Taekwondo master in the country, was an international sparring champion himself, and also had trained Taekwondo champions. I should have suspected something special when everyone pointed at him as I asked for volunteer to attack me. I was naïve and did not pay attention at that time.

                            What I used to ward off Manuel’s attacks was actually Cloud Hands applied spontaneously, though at the time I tried to use patterns from Grasping Sparrow’s Tail.

                            (Part 2 follows)
                            "From formless to form, from form to formless"

                            26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
                            Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

                            Website: www.enerqi.ch

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Cloud Hands Grasp Sporrow Q/A 1-Part 2

                              Cloud Hands Grasp Sporrow Q/A 1-Part 2

                              (Continued from Part 1)

                              Why was I so effective in using Cloud Hands to encounter Manuel’s attacks? The following were the reasons:

                              1. I had much experience in sparring and actual fighting, and therefore was perfectly relaxed when facing an opponent.
                              2. I had good stances, effective waist rotation, good timing and spacing, and good judgment.
                              3. I had high-level skills, much internal force, and wide understanding of combat application.
                              4. I understood the combat applications of Cloud Hands and could apply them effectively in actual combat.

                              With this background, we can answer with some insight what make Cloud Hands so effective in encountering any attack. There are two main reasons as follows.

                              1. Cloud Hands is very versatile, and can be adjusted to defend against or counter any attack.
                              2. Waist rotation is an integral aspect of Cloud Hands, and with waist rotation an exponent can deflect an opponent’s force.

                              Although the two reasons are true, and are expressed clearly, most people will still not understand why Cloud Hands are so effective in encountering any attack. They do not understand because they do not know how to adjust Cloud Hands for the purpose of defending or countering. They do not know because they lack a wide understanding of combat application.

                              On the other hand, even when they have a wide understanding of combat application, if a technique is not versatile, they will be unable to use the technique to meet any attack. For example, as a Mirror Hand is not versatile they will be unable to use it to defend against a kick, a throw or a chin-na attack.

                              However, understanding and practice are different. Even if an exponent has a wide understanding of combat application, and Cloud Hands is versatile, he may not be able to use it against any attack if he lacks skills and internal force. In other words, he may theoretically know the applications of Cloud Hands against any attack, but he lacks the skills and force to use them effectively in practice.

                              Hence, having high-level skills, much internal force, and wide understanding of combat application, which is the third reason mentioned above in my experience with Manuel, is a requirement to use Cloud Hands effectively against any attack. Another requirement is to understand the application of Cloud Hands and to use them effectively in actual combat, which was the fourth reason.

                              The third and the fourth reasons are complementary. One may have a wide understanding of other combat applications, but if he does not understand the combat applications of Cloud Hands he may not be able to use it effectively against any attack. On the other hand, he may know the combat applications of Cloud Hands, but does not have a wide understanding of other combat applications, he may be unable to adjust Cloud Hands to encounter attacks that are outside the norm.

                              An exponent may have internal force, but if an opponent’s force is more powerful, the exponent may not succeed in applying his defence or counter. Cloud Hands has a built-in mechanism to offset this setback, namely waist rotation. By rotating his waist the exponent can deflect a stronger force of the opponent. Indeed, in my encounter with Manuel, I used waist rotation extensively, not because I did not have sufficient force but because it was an integral aspect of Cloud Hands and very effective in deflecting an opponent’s force.

                              Nevertheless, the two requirements alone as stated in the third and fourth reasons above may not be sufficient. The exponent must also have good stances, effective waist rotation, good timing and spacing, and good judgment, as stated in the second reason above.

                              As I have mentioned elsewhere, looking back at my many sparring sessions and actual fights, I believe a main reason why I could remain undefeated was because of my good stances. Those of you who have seen me demonstrating combat application would have noticed the importance of good stances. I could fell opponents bigger than me, for example, because I had good stances. I could keep Boxers at bay despite their fast jabs because of my good stances.

                              Waist rotation is innate in Cloud Hands but you must be able to implement it efficiently. Good timing and spacing, and good judgment are of course crucial. You may know the combat applications of Cloud Hands against any attack very well, but if your timing or spacing is poor, or your judgment wrong, you will still be defeated.

                              (Part 3 follows)
                              "From formless to form, from form to formless"

                              26.08.17-28.08.17: Qi Gong Festival with 6 courses in Bern:
                              Qiflow-Triple Stretch Method-12 Sinewmetamorphisis-Bone Marrow Cleansing-Zen Mind in Qi Gong

                              Website: www.enerqi.ch

                              Comment

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