Weakness with a Twist: A blog about internal martial arts, theatricality and Daoist ritual emptiness
Watch the Video: A Cultural History of Tai Chi
Buy the Book: Possible Origins, A Cultural History of Chinese Martial Arts, Theater and Religion, By Scott Park Phillips. Amazon Kindle ($9.99), Paperback ($18.95)
I enjoyed this article and the pictures from Time Out Hong Kong. Behind the scenes: A look at the Sichuan art of face-changing.
It is about Bian Lian (Changing Face), which is the actual title of the film The King of Masks. This trailer has some lame sentimental narration and music, but it's a great movie and you can watch the whole thing on Youtube.
I wrote a book and I'm working on the next two books now. This work involves a lot of reading. It also involves a lot of working on my laptop computer. How do I do all this and still have the greatest Kung Fu on earth? The answer is I practice all the time, even in my sleep.
To help you get there, I'm recommending these two awesome products. One of them is new and unusual, the other is very common.
This thing below is fantastic.Read More
I added a new book review category called Chinese Religion in Practice--Defining the Subject. If you haven't bought books from my recommended reading list yet, you are missing out! Read my entire list and you will be one of the top ten most informed Chinese martial arts history and culture experts in the world. I've decided to embrace my identity as the greatest salesman of all time. Also my book recommendations are awesome.
I do product reviews a few times a year when I find something good. Martial artist's need good shoes.
I require shoes to have these two qualities:
- Zero-drop. That means they are level, they don't have any raised heal. I don't want a heal messing with my balance or my structure.
- Large Toe Box. Space for my toes to spread or curl.
A subject I've been wanting to address is one of the universal problems humans have. The two biggest problems humans have are that we walk on two feet and we use our arms to carry things. These two problems lead to walking on "sticks" and "disconnecting" the arms from the liquid mass of the torso, respectively. The problem I want to address today is a smaller threat to human de-evolution, yet it is no less universal.Read More
Check out these amazing paintings from around 1590 in the Boxer Codex. They are in the public domain so let's share them a lot. I've been studying this period and the commercial, smuggling, and pirate culture of the South China Sea for my forthcoming book on Tai Chi. Douglas Wile in his book The Lost Tai Chi Classics, pointed to the literati (shi) influence of that era, but the merchant influence appears to be equally important. The combination of these two groups shaped the way theater, and thus martial arts, was produced and disseminated. The 1590s saw an explosion in travel related booksRead More
Here is some amazing fieldwork by Steven Frost, who hopefully will be presenting the whole film at this year's International Daoist Studies Conference in Paris (May 17-19, 2017). His website has a few articles and some images too. http://stevenqfrost.net/main.html
This intimate 80-minute portrait film explores the life of eighth-generation household Daoist Li Manshan (b.1946), leader of a group of ritual specialists in the poor countryside of Yanggao county in north Shanxi, China.
A film by Stephen Jones; edited by Michele Banal, with funding from the ANR Shifu project (Paris Nanterre).
The film complements Stephen Jones' new book "Daoist priests of the Li family: ritual life in village China" (Three Pines, 2016).
Obviously they don't allow embedding, perhaps that is so that they can monitor comments. But you can click the link to watch it on Vimeo. Very cool, neat music, can't wait to read the book and meet the author in Paris at the next Daoist Studies International Conference.