Origin of Tai Chi: 6. Playing the Pipa

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Originally the name referred to the use of the move for defense. In Chinese the “pipa bone,” is the shoulder-blade. By using this waving movement while holding your opponent’s wrist and elbow you can control his shoulder-blade and so move him away.

But now the name has a more poetic interpretation. It means you should feel both hands related together while they are moving, just as though you were plucking a pipe stringed instrument.

Close Reading:

Level 1: Paraphrasing- State in your own words the meaning of each sentence.

This move was first named as a way to protect yourself. In Chinese, your shoulder-blade is called the pipa bone. When you grab and hold onto another person’s wrist and elbow, you can use their shoulder-bone to move them away.

Currently the name of this move has a more beautiful meaning. When both of your hands lift up you can feel how they move together, like playing a long narrow stringed instrument.

Level 2: Explicating-

  1. State the main point.
    • This Tai Chi move will help you feel the energy of your hands lifting together.
  2. In other words….
    • When you feel your body move insequence you are beginning to feel your energy move.
  3. For example…
    • When your energy flows into your hands your can move them softly together- smooth as silk. You can feel beauty.

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