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Stage 1, Week 5 and 6

First attempt to Blog, ever.

Got off to a great start on the course. Only trouble was trying to figure out rolling the hips. I've had prior TaiJi training and previous training seemed to be getting in the way of understanding what Sifu meant by rolling the hips. Finally had to give up on trying to "figure it out" and trust that with lots of practice my body would lead me in the right direction as in past training. Lessons 2-4 went well. I've done enough internal alchemy and Taiji and standing meditation work to have felt some of the energy that is described, but fortunately not so much that old training got in the way. So, I think those lessons went well.

I can feel the Yin and Yang areas of the body. Until I started this training, I had only felt the Yin areas and only the condense feeling. I can now feel Condense and Expand and I'm making pretty good progress on Absorb & Project. Condense and Expand seem pretty natural at this point and seem to come whenever 13 points and structure fall into place. They seem to be happening off and on, all day long. Even when not trying. As I'm sitting and typing this, I can feel all the yin and yang surfaces. Finished the Bitter Pill a little bit ago. The Bitter Pill has got to be the greatest thing since sliced bread. I guess I can't assume this stuff works the same for everybody, but my sense is you can't do the Bitter Pill too much. I'm very early in this stuff, but it seems like the Bitter Pill is like the the battery that makes it all work.

Absorb and Project are also coming, but seem a little more fleeting. Sometimes very strong. Other times less so. Seem to have less control over them. I sense it has to do more with Intent than Condense and Expand. It's like the intent drives it, but if you think to hard or try to hard, it just disappears.

Lately, I've fallen behind a little. But I'm working to try to catch up.

Overall, it seems like the more I practice, the more the body teaches me what to do. I try to practice at least twice a day, but 3 times is better. I'm lucky, I can set my own work schedule, as I work from home. So, I'll try to practice twice for longer periods during the morning and night and then as many shorter practice sessions during the day as possible. I've found that the more often you expose the body (body and mind) to internal work the more it starts helping you learn. It won't tell you what to do necessarily, but it will begin to tell you if you're doing it right or wrong. You'll just begin to be able to feel if things are right.

My motto has become practice early and often. Good luck to all. Hopefully, if I'm offbase on anything here, or if I'm indulging in "meditating or following" or "getting too creative", Sifu will comment. Good luck to all.