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#295686 - 10/23/06 12:27 PM 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts!
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3116
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello:

I am looking for coherent & articulate explaination of 5 element theory as pertains specifically to Martial Arts practice, and or particular specific arts.

However I have a few basic criteria... The explaination CANNOT be cyclical. They should not be mysterious. They need to be in English! I am NOT seeking chinese cosmology in place of discussion/explaination. "...the yin/yang element of Tao which is described by the yang elements of the 5 element theory..."

Is anyone familiar with websites, arts, discussions which are comprehensible re: 5 element theory? Looking for the Adam Hsu's, Robert Smith's the Donn Draeger's & Dave Lowry's authors/practitioners/presentors of the Chinese arts....

Can anyone help point the way to understandable 5 element theory discussions/articulations specific to the martial arts?

Jeff

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#295687 - 10/23/06 01:03 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Ronin1966]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
Hi Jeff,
Are you asking how the 5 element theory relates to fighting in the martial arts?
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#295688 - 10/23/06 02:04 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Fisherman]
Sagaratoko Offline
Newbie

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 9
Loc: Florida, brevard
I wouldnt mind knowing myself

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#295689 - 10/23/06 03:41 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Ronin1966]
Reiki Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/30/02
Posts: 3400
Loc: MiddleEarth
I think you'd better answer this one Fisherman!
_________________________
Allow me to acquaint you with my friends Mr Jab and Mr Cross...

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#295690 - 10/23/06 04:23 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Reiki]
Lucid Warrior Offline
Member

Registered: 06/21/04
Posts: 213
Loc: TwinCities, MN, U.S.
Okay, I may be way off here, but I'll give you my current understanding, and I'll try and do it in relation to actual physical movement so that you can understand. In order to do this, I will need to discuss yin/yang and neutral. Also, It's easier to explain if you consider the 8 universal forces that the 5 elemental forces are a part of. For this, we look to the later heaven/post heaven pakua.



First, picture at the center of your body a point. This point is neutral. Then picture a yin/yang symbol on the front of your body. If you were to direct a (to keep things easy) muscle contraction to push, then, from the neutral point, direct an outward pushing motion through yang. If you wanted to make a pulling motion with your hand, draw in to the neutral point through yin. With me so far? Yin would be pull (draw in), yang would be push (expand outward)... all this starts from and ends at the neutral point at the center which is represented in the pakua by the circle that surrounds the yin/yang symbol (I think).

Now, for the 5 elemental forces and 3 additional universal forces, they are represented by bars of yin and yang. Each set of three bars is a mixture of yin/yang push/pull (in movement). For Kan (water, the symbol at the bottom of the pakua I linked to) it is 2 parts yin, and 1 part yang, which in movement is two parts pull and 1 part push. Try this now, extend your arm and then pull it in towards yourself, but, when you pull your arm in, fight it a little with the pushing muslces. If you pull and push, but pull more than you push, you will still pull inward. -thus, two parts pull, and 1 part push... all directed at the neutral point at the center, through yin and yang at 2 parts yin and 1 part yang.

This is where it gets more complicated, and I'm not really going to go much further into it, but, there is more than one trigram in the pakua that is two parts yin and 1 part yang. The order does make a difference, be it yin-yang-yin (water) or yang-yin-yin (wood). This is much more complicated to explain in terms of movement, so I wont even try right now. What is important for me to explain is that the pakua, no matter the order, is always neutral. If you count the number of yin bars and the number of yang bars in all 8 universal forces, they still add up to ballanced yin and yang, which is neutral, like the neutral point at the center. Because of this, if you use the energy of movement through the pakua, you creat movement without movement, because the whole pakua neutralizes the movement as ballanced. I believe tht this is a major key to an 'internal movement'. But there is so much more to it than just that, especially when consider corrisponding organs, senses, emotions..etc.. I hope I didn't screw this up. It's a difficult subject to discuss, especiall when trying to explain it in the western tounge and mind. I gave it my best shot, anyone can add or take away from anything I said.

Whatever the case, you will not be able to make use of this information without proper guidance.


Edited by Lucid Warrior (10/23/06 04:29 PM)

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#295691 - 10/24/06 08:25 AM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Lucid Warrior]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
Excellent Lucid. Thanks for taking the time to post that.
Hopefully that is what Jeff was asking about when he refered to 5 element theory.

This portion of the metaphysical side of martial arts I am not all that familiar with. I am familiar with the 5 elements as refered to in Xingyiquan, how they have creation cycles and destruction cycles, but as far as its relation with the trigrams of the bagua, I am at a loss.
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#295692 - 10/24/06 01:39 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Fisherman]
Lucid Warrior Offline
Member

Registered: 06/21/04
Posts: 213
Loc: TwinCities, MN, U.S.
Thanks Chris, the push/pull application of five elemental theory may not have been the best example, but I was hoping it would help establish a solid understanding of the mathmatical values of each element in relation to yin/yang and neutral... And with that, show application of it. I probably should avoid the more metephysical sounding explanatins, since that usually leads to misunderstanding and food for trolls. Definatetly nothing mystical here.

I don't really know about how Xingyiquan applies five elemental theory, but for any application, the pakua/bagua offers such an excelent conversion table for any element to and from yin/yang.

I'd really like to hear from you about Xingyiquan's application of five elemental theory.

In hopes of connecting what I was saying before with Xingyiquan, I photochoped the pakua to show a few different things-

Creation cycle mapped with pakua-



Controling cycle (I believe this is destructive cycle) mapped with pakua-



Elemental forces in relationship with yin/yang mapped with pakua-



I guess the original subject of the thread, (explaining 5 elemental theory in english without being to mysterious about it) is difficult. I think I may have actually made things more confusing, so from here I'll call it quits. I don't think I can offer a better explanation of martial application, unfortunately, that is beyone my abilty... but, if someone can get something out of anything I said, then I guess I did okay. I'm done.

steve

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#295693 - 10/24/06 08:24 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Lucid Warrior]
Sagaratoko Offline
Newbie

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 9
Loc: Florida, brevard
i think you did an excellent job however one thing still bothers me,
Quote:

I probably should avoid the more metephysical sounding explanatins, since that usually leads to misunderstanding and food for trolls



FOOD FOR TROLLS!? what does that all mean? im so noob!

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#295694 - 10/24/06 09:17 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Sagaratoko]
Lucid Warrior Offline
Member

Registered: 06/21/04
Posts: 213
Loc: TwinCities, MN, U.S.
Quote:

i think you did an excellent job however one thing still bothers me,
Quote:

I probably should avoid the more metephysical sounding explanatins, since that usually leads to misunderstanding and food for trolls



FOOD FOR TROLLS!? what does that all mean? im so noob!




"Do not feed the trolls" usually means to ignore the person who is 'trolling'. But Around here, sometimes it seems like a troll can confuse a lot of newcomers by mixing fact with fiction... and I don't want to give that type of trouble maker any ideas. And I certainly don't want to confuse anyone who is serious. -(Often times myslef, lol)


From wikipedia -
In Internet terminology, a troll is a person who enters an established community such as an online discussion forum and intentionally tries to cause disruption, most often in the form of posting inflammatory, off-topic, or otherwise inappropriate messages

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_troll

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#295695 - 10/24/06 11:26 PM Re: 5 Element Theory re: Martial Arts! [Re: Lucid Warrior]
Sagaratoko Offline
Newbie

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 9
Loc: Florida, brevard
thank you! that clears things up pretty well, and fortunatley is a lot more simple compared to the 5 elemental theory! lol

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