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How to Grasp the Bird's Tail If You Don't Speak Chinese: Meaning and Metaphor in T'AI Chi (Englisch) Taschenbuch – April 2000

4.7 von 5 Sternen 3 Kundenrezensionen

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Synopsis

This text reveals the mystery, imagery, and poetic ambiguity in the Chinese language. Much in the names in of Taiji movements is lost in the English translation. This book asks the reader to consider the Chinese character, which conveys much of the inner essence of Taiji.

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Format: Taschenbuch
It's sometimes difficult to understand why certain names have been used for some movements. To explain using just plain definitions and lecture would have been just plain boring. The author's approach is instead playful and enjoyable. A book of serious information, but presented with a wonderful sense of humor and in the spirit of tai chi.
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Format: Taschenbuch
It is not absolutely necessary to understand the origins and meanings of the movement names in taijiquan. But it sure is fun! This book scratches an itch. It informs without boring. It is added insight for the student of taijiquan, but it tickles as it goes down.
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Format: Taschenbuch
This great book gives a lot of valuable background information about the meaning of the Taiji movements. It adds much to taijiquan lessons thanks to its light-hearted look. Much too often taijiquan practitioners do not exactly know what the movements mean they practice. Diving into a Chinese dictionary is not easy either. My Chinese teacher explained a lot, but language often was some sort of a barrier. Thanks to Jane Schorre's book this barrier has gone. Further the book contains beautiful calligraphy by Marget Chang in a large size. I like the structure of the book; left side calligraphy, right side explanation. This book is a must for every taijiquan practitioner no matter the style.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.6 von 5 Sternen 9 Rezensionen
3 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Great, as far as it goes 3. Dezember 2005
Von Jerry Larsoni - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
This is a beautiful little book, definitely an artistic success, and a pleasure to read. I also partly agree with the premise, which is that it's better for the tai chi learner to know the Chinese names of the movements, not just their English translations. I still use the book sometimes, and enjoy it. It does, to some extent, fill a need.

However-- I have to disagree that there is deep meaning in the movements at all, let alone in the Chinese names as opposed to the English translations. This is a martial art; or if it's not really a martial art anymore as it's frequently taught, it still has martial origins. The movements aren't mystical clues a la Dan Brown; they're punches, kicks, throws, blocks, etc. They don't have MEANING, they have PURPOSE. Furthermore, the names for the movements are often misleading, uninformative, or open to interpretation. Chen taiji stylists say "six sealing, four closing"; Yang taiji people say "like sealing, like closing", or shorten the whole thing to "apparently closing". The two phrases sound very similar in Mandarin; they're written with different characters, but the martial artists who originally came up with the names were illiterate, so we don't really know what they had in mind. I'm inclined to think it means six parts sealing, four parts closing, except I don't really understand what the difference is between the two verbs in the first place.

Some names are dull and descriptive, like "turn body and chop with fist"; some are fanciful, like White Goose (Crane, Stork, whatever) Spreads Wings, Step Back and Repulse Monkey, or like Needle at Sea Bottom--an other example of an ambiguous name. Does that name just describe the movement, which kind of looks like trying to pick up a small object while wading in the ocean; or does it have something to do with attacking the Sea Bottom (perineum)? Or is it both?

Well, this author thinks that the meanings of the movements are to be discovered, not in the martial purposes of the movements, or in trying to guess what the originators had in mind, but in her own free-floating New Age imagination. She also doesn't seem to be aware that there are other taiji styles besides Yang. Well, Yang style is the most popular, and having the characters and the pinyin for the common Yang style movements all in one place is useful, and the book is very pretty; but the completely unrestricted flights of fancy about what the movements "mean" are much worse than useless, imho, and the narrow, New Agey perspective on the nature of tai chi is very misleading.

Enjoy it for what it's worth, just don't limit yourself to this.
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Understanding names of Taiji postures 24. Juni 2013
Von Steven L. - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Very readable book about the Chinese names of certain Taiji postures. This book can enlighten one's understanding of the names and possible interpretations that the language offers. Valuable resource for instructors of Taiji.
5.0 von 5 Sternen Five Stars 10. März 2015
Von Jose Martins - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Great purchase with fast delivering!
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Increase your knowledge of taijiquan and enjoy it! 15. Februar 1999
Von Ein Kunde - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
It is not absolutely necessary to understand the origins and meanings of the movement names in taijiquan. But it sure is fun! This book scratches an itch. It informs without boring. It is added insight for the student of taijiquan, but it tickles as it goes down.
9 von 9 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A must for Taiji students and teachers alike 26. Januar 2001
Von CS - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
As a teacher of Taiji I often find my beginners classes full of people who have no other Martial Arts experience nor even take any other form of exercise - making the teaching of the complex movements and concepts of Taiji quite a challenge! One of my teaching tricks has been to have the pupils come up for their own descriptive names for the movements which, while useful and indeed entertaining, does result in some of the flavor and meaning being lost. This book, with it's breakdown and explanation of the elements of the Chinese characters, will allow teachers and pupils alike to understand the meanings of the names and their inferred movement concepts while still allowing the reader to use his/her creative imagination to reach a deeper level of understanding and retention. And as if that's not enough, it's an entertaining read. A winner!
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