Integral Tai Chi

Integral Tai Chi (CK10) is a series of exercises, relaxation technique and meditation that combine Yoga, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, and meditation into a self-healing system that integrates body, mind and spirit. This comprehensive approach involves a series of 10 body movement postures each designed to increase balance, awareness, endurance, flexibility, flow, concentration, energy and spiritual transformation.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Integral Taichi Introduction


The Ten Divinities of Heaven and Earth

CK 10 is the acronym for Can Khon Thap Linh (The Ten Divinities of Heaven and Earth). It is also known as Integral Tai Chi (ITC), and comprises a set of ten holistic exercise movements taught by Master Ce Hang Truong (Hang Cheng). The ten movements or forms are:
  1. Can (Chien -- Heaven)
  2. Toad
  3. Ox
  4. Crane
  5. Dragon
  6. Phoenix
  7. Tiger
  8. Butterfly
  9. Tortoise
  10. Khon (Kun -- Earth).
Each form is associated with a chakra (energy centers) located in front of and along the human spine, starting with the base chakra at the end of the tail bone, and ending at the crown chraka at the top of the head. Each movement is designed to transmute the energy at various chakras to bring health benefits as well as spiritual/mental transformation.

The Seven Main Chakras (Energy Centers)
CK 10 exercises start with warm up movements including yoga stretching, to be followed by the ten forms that generate energy along the chakras, and ended with the corpse pose and meditation. The corpse pose is essential as the way to store the energy generated through the exercises. Finally sitting meditation transforms the energy.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Earth (Khon) posture 10

EARTH (Khon)

This form is the last movement of the ten forms. It represents the Earth and is negative in its nature. This form allows the energy (chi) that has been exercised through other forms to be circulated up and down the spine.


  • Engaging the world with honesty (Tiến thân chân thật)
  • Retreating with no unfinished matters (Thoái thân liễu nghiệp)

Essential points

  • The earth correlates with the first exercise, the Heaven
  • This exercise is very gentle movement, total awareness of body movement
  • The principle of earth is yin or negative polarity

Points of attention

  • Mind focuses at the center point of the imaginary globe between the two hands
  • Back kept straight and vertical throughout the movement
  • Body: slowly move back and forth with head at the same level, not moving up and down. Imagine as if one is sitting on a chair shifting forward and backward.
  • Arms remain relaxed; do not tense up when drawing close to the body.

butterfly posture 8


The butterfly exercises the brow chakra (chakra 6 or commonly known as the third eye) and it is negative in its nature. The butterfly resides in a garden full of flowers, representing the spiritual universe that only has truth and beauty. Practicing this form allows one to see the spiritual world inside ourselves.


  • Expose the blind spots (Phơi trần điểm mù)
  • Let go of biases (Buông xả chấp truớc)
  • Widen one's view (Mở rộng tầm nhìn)
  • Change one's paradigm (Đổi vũ trụ quan)

Essential points

  • The earthy desires and spiritual freedom represent the image of the butterfly (small body and large wings)
  • Strongest point is where the body and wings connected.

Points of attention

  1. Balancing position: Neck must be aligned with the back, eyes looking down on the ground
  2. Folding position: Arms should form a straight line parallel to the shoulders, not slanting backward

tiger posture 7


Tiger exercise the throat chakra (chakra 5), and is positive in its nature. The tiger roams the deep jungle of human knowledge and masters all views, from extreme ones to those commonly accepted as permament truths. Practicing this form promotes creativity and the ability to think thoroughly without obstacles.


  • Change one's paradigm -- Return to the middle way (Đổi vũ trụ quan -- Hợp nhất trung đạo)
  • Comprehend the extreme views -- Return to the middle way (Thấu suốt đoạn kiến -- Hợp nhất trung đạo)
  • Comprehend the unchanging views -- Return to the middle way (Thấu suốt thuờng kiến -- Hợp nhất trung đạo)
  • Return to the source without obstacles (Qui nguyên vô ngại)

Essential points

  • Imitate the quickness, constant moving and fearlessness of the tiger.

Points of attention

  1. Clap the hands forcefully, a clapping sound should be made
  2. Forward Bent: Keep back straight, bend at the hip; arms form a straight line parallel with the shoulders, not slanted backward.
  3. Side Bent: Neck must be aligned with the back, arms straight forward, elbows straight and beside the ears. Tuck in your stomach and aim to rest it on your thighs.
  4. Backward Slant: tilt the back and the front leg as a unit slightly backwards, elbows pointing to the sides, arms are not straight.

phoenix posture 6


The phoenix also exercises the heart chakra (chakra 4) and is negative in its nature. The phoenix can fly across the universe and it can be at any place without being harmed by the heat of the sun or the coldness of the moon. The phoenix represents boundless selfless love.


  • Without mind, without mind (Phi tâm phi tâm)
  • Seeking the dharma from above, help others below (Thuợng cầu hạ hóa)
Note the Chinese characters Phi (without) and Tâm (heart/mind) together form the word Bi, which means compassion or selfless love.

Essential points

  • The phoenix exercise counterbalances the dragon.
  • The phoenix symbolizes Yin, the negative polarity in the universe.

Points of attention

  1. Feet spread two shoulder-widths apart
  2. Shoulders: line of shoulders is almost parallel with the line connecting of two heels, only the head turns.
  3. Hands and fingers relaxed.
  4. Arms, legs, shoulders and body are in a flat plane.

turtle posture 9

dragon posture 5


The dragon exercises the heart chakra (chakra 4) and is positive in its nature. While the phoenix represents the utmost negative polarity, the dragon is the utmost positive one. The dragon flies up Mount Tu Di (which represents our karmic self -- the accumulation of generations of karma) and destroys it to clear the way to allow the transformation of a self-centered nature into compassion and other-centered being.


  • The dragon's mantra is silence, signifying the need to remain silence and introspective to transform our karmic self into a selfless boundless love.

Essential points

  • This form imitates the twisting and flying movement of a dragon.
  • The dragon symbolizes Yang, the positive polarity, one of the two primal forces of nature.

Points of attention

  1. Both palms are kept together at all time throughout this exercise.
  2. Both knees are bent and kept together.
  3. Body remains flat and does not lean forward when bending to the left and to the right.
  4. Hip and lower back: twisting of the hip and lower back is the most critical movement in this exercise.
  5. Flying motion: upper elbow must point straight up
  6. Inhale on movements when hands are either to the right side or up. Exhale on movements when hands are to the left side.