I am teaching a new workshop this Friday 5-7 PM in Berkeley, California at Soja Martial Arts.
I wrote some great promo-copy for the workshop (see the bottom of this post) which is attracting mind exploding sell-out attendance. So I thought I would give readers a little more insight into what I'm going to teach.
How I developed this new material
In that last few years I figured out how the Daoist meditation practice called the Golden Elixir (jindan) is connected to Internal Martial Arts. The golden elixir practice develops something called the Immortal Egg. This egg is a real thing. It is a re-ordering of perception-action. In simple terms, it is a different (some would say primal) way of initiating movement. The result of working with this idea/practice has profoundly changed my martial arts.
The first big change was the ability to create the illusion that I was moving one way, when I was actually moving in a different way. In simple terms, people automatically try to read my intent, but if my intent is habitually not in my own body, people usually mis-read it. This creates an illusion of power. I categorize this practice as emptiness, because it is the result of practicing moving/fighting/dancing exclusively with intent outside my body.
The second big change was the ability to counter-balance all incoming forces. This is what the Classics mean when they say "never go force against force." It creates the counter-intuitive illusion of unstoppable force. Once I understood this, my mind exploded because I realized that the Waltz was a more direct way to learn these skills (and that became another workshop I teach). This revelation forced me to start over from the beginning and re-learn all the martial arts I have learned over the last 40 years.
Those two big changes then revealed something completely un-expected, which is the subject of this workshop. In simple terms, following these new rules-of-movement changed my physical body. It forced me to reverse all the power organization in my body. In the last few years I have turned my body inside out! I started developing protocols of strength training by combining Daoyin with Circus training and then testing and refining them with my martial arts students. There are basically two types of active resistance tests, fast and slow. Slow tests are tests for the continuity of illusion. Fast tests are tests of whole-body unity. This fantastic feed-back loop led to a complete reconceptualization of how my body is organized. The beauty of it is that it makes everything simpler.
I began to see the basic training of Chinese Opera-Circus basics with new eyes. Much of the New Circus movement came out of the technology of Chinese Opera (via Lu Yi at the San Francisco Circus Center, among others) which was originally saturated with Daoist meditation techniques including the Golden Elixir. In the early Twentieth Century these types of techniques were considered "banned religion" and went underground. (They were nearly lost during a century of mass murder).
The material I am teaching Friday is how to develop a reverse-power body. This class is dedicated to strength training and conditioning. You will sweat and burn. This approach can heal a lot of old injuries and make you better looking. I will also attempt to transmit an understanding of how all the pieces of internal martial arts fit together, and overview of the process that allowed me to created this self-testing feed-back-loop--so you can develop one too.
Pure Internal Strength (neigong) uses true acro-circus conditioning with complete hollow-body training to create the illusion of unstoppable martial power. Jettison all that fluffy flowy stuff and reclaim your inner demon. Triple the power, triple the integration. Scott Park Phillips teaches Pure Internal Martial Arts — he combines Daoist golden elixir with martial skills and dance—pure emptiness then becomes the stage for the effective use of the spatial imagination. Clear and precise movement knowledge guaranteed to blow your mind.