David you have used a lot of words to say almost nothing at all. You do not have to be an illusionist to employ the techniques that I have suggested - many employ the subtle 'unseen' communication and suggestion that are used in shows without knowing. My own research into the subject has shown that is nothing more than the manipulation of the mind. My path of reasoning logically tells me to research everything regarding a subject rather than just the evidence that backs my opinion up. If there are people who are able to produce the same result I can, but better I would want to know how they are doing it. People like Derren Brown are producing better and more consistent results then any Chi person. I would feel obligated to understand their methods before I started to teach this stuff.

As someone who spent the best of 4 years becoming qualified within the field of Shiatsu 5 element theory and TCM were heavily featured in my course. I do not use an ounce of tcm in my treatments nowadays OR in my tai chi. I have yet to meet anyone whom can explain something using TCM that is of practical use within the martial arts that I can not explain without using any mention of 5 element theory. Having trained with someone of the so called leading experts in applied 5 element theory I've yet to see anything that convinces of its need to be used as a model of observation within the arts - nothing.

As I said you can only judge someones internal skill by crossing hands with them and when you do you very quickly see the results. I have nothing more to say on the subject.
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Gavin King
www.SHIKON.COM
Follow me on twitter @taichigav