A magazine of martial and movement arts, with a focus on the internal style of Tai Chi Chuan
by Christopher Dow
Most practitioners of the martial arts fall into the beginner to intermediate levels, while some rise even higher in their respective arts, from skillfulness to mastery. And then there are those rarities: prodigies who reach the absolute pinnacle of achievement and beyond.
So it is, also, with martial arts literature. Martial arts authors, from the mediocre to the pedestrian to the competent if not gifted, abound—I'm speaking here about the quality of the literature, not the martial expertise of the authors. It seems as if many martial artists who have reached a certain level of competency want to write a book or two on their art. It's almost like a rite of passage, and no wonder, for writing about a martial art forces the author to examine, re-examine, and more deeply examine the art in question, thereby lending a further learning experience to one's study that can be quite enlightening. I am guilty of this, myself. I think my books are pretty good, but I recognize that there are numerous authors whose experience, depth of understanding, and ability to communicate the ideas and principles underlying their arts far outshine mine. They are like the guiding stars of the heavens.
Until now, I have largely confined my reviews in Taijitu Magazine to authors and their original books, but I also have recognized the efforts of several authors who have been notable translators into English of works on Tai Chi and other martial arts. Yang Jwing-Ming. Douglas Wile, and Stuart Olson, among others, come readily to mind. But no matter how luminous the efforts of these translators, they can’t hold a candle to Paul Brennan, one of those guiding stars within Tai Chi literature. Welcome to Brennan Translations, where, since February 2011, Brennan has been posting translations of Chinese martial arts books and manuals.
Let a lens magnify your Tai Chi.
In Tai Chi, the mind is the most powerful weapon.
A look at the background and functioning of this timeless martial art.
The tai chi symbol holds many secrets.
Tai Chi has many common analogs, such as riding a bicycle.