Sunday, January 21, 2018

Sensing Ourselves

“Proprioception is, literally, how we “sense ourselves.” There are three main sources of input into our proprioceptive system. One of them, kinesthesia, is the feeling of movement derived from all skeletal and muscular structures. Kinesthesia also includes the feeling of pain, our orientations in space, the passage of time, and rhythm. A second source, visceral feedback, consists of the miscellaneous impressions from our internal organ. Labyrinthine or vestibular feedback? The feeling of balance as related to our position in space is provided by the chochlea, and organ of the inner ear. The physiological term “proprioception” refers to the ability to evaluate, and respond to stimuli sensed by the proprioceptives, actual nerves imbedded in our tissues (muscles, joints and tendons). These cells constantly communicate with the brain, orienting the body to its movement, position, and tone. It is our sixth sense. The other five senses provide information about the outer world. Proprioception provides information about the inner world, which we alone inhabit. Physicist David Bohm used the term “proprioceptive intelligence” to describe an optimal state of self-sensing, self-correcting, and self-organizing awareness? allowing for coherent participation in life through the integral functioning of all modes of intelligence.”
- Risa Kaparo, Awakening Somatic Intelligence, 2012, p.25

"Awareness is the function of isolating "new" sensory-motor phenomena in order to learn to recognize and control them. It is only through the exclusionary function of awareness that the involuntary is made voluntary, the unknown made known, and the never-done the doable. Awareness serves as a probe, recruiting new material for the repertoire of voluntary consciousness. The upshot of this is somatic learning begins by focusing awareness of the unknown. This active functioning identifies traits of the unknown that can be associated with traits already known in one's conscious repertoire. Through the process the unknown becomes known by the voluntary consciousness. In a word, the unlearned becomes learned."
- Thomas Hanna

Body-Mind, Somaesthetics, Somatics: Quotations, Bibliography, Resources

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Reducing Carbohydrate Eating

Personal Goal: I have found that if I eat under 100 grams of carbohydrates each day, and under 1,500 calories, I can keep my blood sugar at between 130 and 160. 

Here are some ideas I use for reducing the amount of carbohydrate grams in my daily eating:

Choose non-starchy green vegetables.  Reduce or avoid starchy vegetable foods like potatoes, rice, corn, beets, peas, etc.

Significantly reduce or eliminate eating breads, cookies, cakes, doughnuts, pastries.  Avoid processed grains. 

Keep a daily food log journal.  Increase your awareness and track exactly what you do eat and when; and, correlate it with blood sugar testing results. 

Use a calorie, fat, and carbohydrate counter information book.  I use The NutriBase Complete Book of Foot Counts (2001) which for 40,000 food products provides information on serving size, calories grams, protein grams, carbohydrate grams, sodium grams, fiber grams, fat grams, and cholesterol grams.  Also, I can easily find food information on the Internet.  Also, read food labels carefully.  Learn what foods have higher carbohydrates, and a higher glycemic index. 
Stop drinking sugary drinks or fruit juices.  Use non-sugar sweeteners sometimes.  Avoid sugars and sweets like candy. 

Choose low carbohydrate “snacks” (small portions) like nuts, cheese, or fruits
Avoid high fat and salty foods because they add calories and result in binging, e.g., potato chips, bagel chips, pizza.

Drink plenty of water each day.  Stay hydrated! 

Reduce or eliminate drinking whole milk, shakes, lattes.  Some dairy products can be high in carbs. 

Eat some high-quality protein at each meal. 

Eat foods with a lower glycemic index

Choose baked or broiled foods, and reduce fried foods. 

Limit portions, reduce total caloric intake, and use restraint in eating.  Stay under 1,500 calories each day until I weight 225 pounds. 

Develop strategies and tactics for following a healthy eating pattern for a Type 2 diabetic. 

Consult with my doctor, dietitian, and related health professionals. 

Develop a personal dietary program that I can stick to, maintain, and not diverge from for long term benefit. 

Don’t smoke marihuana [legal in Washington State] because it typically results in more hunger and overeating, not exercising, elevated blood sugar, and some loss of self-control in sticking with your eating program.  You just don’t care about dieting when you are in a euphoric mood. 

Be aware of the potential negative complications of reducing carbohydrate intake for a diabetic, e.g., ketosis.  There are medical cautions about severe carbohydrate reduction, and increased eating of fats and proteins.  Strive for balance, be sensible, and research this topic.  However, I must do what I need to do to get my blood sugar to range from 130 to 160, and my body weight down 20 pounds to 225 pounds. 

“The current national standard for recommended daily intake for carbohydrates is 130 grams/day. Anything below that can be considered a reduced-carbohydrate diet, although Americans typically eat two to three times that amount in a day. The benefits of carbohydrate reduction seem to be continuous; as carbohydrates are reduced, health benefits usually increase. However, for those addressing health concerns such as diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome, and abnormal lipids, there is usually a threshold effect. In other words, dietary carbohydrates don’t have to be eliminated, just lowered to the point that an individual is able to achieve his or her health goals.”
- Reducing Carbohydrates: A Key to Better Health

Diabetes and Caloric Restriction

Friday, January 19, 2018

Dao De Jing by Laozi, Chapter 12

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

Chapter 12

"The five colors combined
the human eye will blind;
The five notes in one sound
the human ear confound;
The five tastes when they blend
the human mouth offend.

Racing and hunting will human hearts turn mad,
Treasures high-prized make human conduct bad.

The sage attends to the inner and not to the outer.
He abandons the latter and chooses the former."
- Translated by Paul Carus, 1913, Chapter 12 

"The meaning of the verses quoted in Chapter 12 carries out the principle enunciated in Chapter 11. The utility of things, as well as the worth of life, is attained not by having everything in completion and in fullness, but by selecting some parts and omitting others, by moderation and by discrete elimination. Together, all the colors blind you, while a discrete selection will make a picture. Together, all the notes just make noise, while a few of them in proper succession make a melody. Together, all the tastes mixed together are offensive, but a choice of them is pleasant. Such is Lao-Tzu's method of teaching that the form of things is more important that the substance. The phrase 'he attends to the inner and not to the outer: reads in a literal translation 'acts on the stomach, not acts on the eye'. The outer and the inner are called in Chapter 38 the flower and the fruit, the former being more show, while the latter is the true import of life."
- Paul Carus, 1913

The Teachings of Lao-Tzu: The Tao Te Ching. Translation, commentary, and notes by Paul Carus, 1913. New York, St. Martin's Press, 2000. ISBN: 0312261098.  D.T. Suzuki worked and studied with Paul Carus around 1905 in Illinois, and translated together the Tao Te Ching.   

"The five colors cause man's eyes to be blinded.
The five tones cause man's ears to be deafened.
The five flavors cause man's palate to be cloyed.
Racing about on horseback and hunting cause man's mind to be maddened.
Hard to obtain merchandise cause mankind to do wrong,
So the Sage concerns himself with the abdomen and not the eyes.
Therefore, he rejects the one and chooses the other."
- Cheng Man-ch'ing, 1981, Chapter 12

"Color's five hues from the eyes their sight will take;
Music's five notes the ears as deaf can make;
The flavors five deprive the mouth of taste;
The chariot course, and the wild hunting waste
Make mad the mind;
And objects rare and strange,
Sought for,
Men's conduct will to evil change.
Therefore the sage seeks to satisfy the craving of the belly,
and not the insatiable longing of the eyes.
He puts from him the latter, and prefers to seek the former."
-   Translated by James Legge, 1891, Chapter 12  

"The five colors
blind our eyes.
The five notes
deafen our ears.
The five flavors
dull our taste.

Racing, chasing, hunting,
drives people crazy.
Trying to get rich
ties people in knots.

So the wise soul
watches with the inner
not with the outward eye,
letting that go,
keeping this."
-  Translation by Ursula K. Le Guin, 2009, Chapter 12  

"An excess of light blinds the human eye; an excess of noise ruins the ear; an excess of condiments deadens the taste.
The effect of too much horse racing and hunting is bad, and the lure of hidden treasure tempts one to do evil.
Therefore the wise man attends to the inner significance of things and does not concern himself with outward appearances.
Therefore he ignores matter and seeks the spirit."
-  Translated by Dwight Goddard and Henri Borel, 1919, Chapter 12 

"The fives colours confuse the eye,
The fives sounds dull the ear,
The five tastes spoil the palate.
Excess of hunting and chasing
Makes minds go mad.
Products that are hard to get
Impede their owner's movements.
Therefore the Sage
Considers the belly not the eye.
Truly, “he rejects that but takes this”."
-  Translated by Arthur Waley, 1934, Chapter 12 

"Five excessive colors make people blind;
five excessive sounds make people deaf;
five excessive flavors rob people's taste;
racing and hunting make people mad;
and rare goods make people steal.
Thus a Sage ruler took care of people's basic-needs (stomachs),
not their excessive-desires (luxuries).
Thus he eliminated desires and supplied needs."
-  Translated by Tang Zi-Chang, Chapter 12 

"Los cinco colores ciegan el ojo.
Las cinco notas ensordecen el oído.
Los cinco sabores empalagan el paladar.
La carrera y la caza enloquecen la mente.
Los objetos preciosos tientan al hombre a hacer el mal.
Por eso, el Sabio cuida del vientre, y no del ojo.
Prefiere lo que está dentro a lo que está afuera."
-  Translated into Spanish by Alfonso Colodrón from the English translation by
    John C. H. Wu, 1993, Tao Te Ching, Capítulo 12  

"wu se ling ren mu mang.
wu yin ling ren er long.
wu we ling ren kou shuang.
chi cheng tian lie, ling ren xin fa kuang.
nan de zhi huo, ling ren xing fang.
shi yi sheng ren wei fu bu wei mu.
gu qu bi qu ci."
-  Hanyu Pinyin Romanization, Daodejing, Chapter 12

  "Iridescent colours cause blindness.
 Beautiful music causes deafness.
 Delicious food causes loss of taste.
 Racing and hunting cause madness.
 Rare goods tempt people to rob and steal.
 Therefore the sage only wants to feed the people rather than to dazzle them.
 That's why he goes for the former and turns down the latter."
 -  Translated by Jiyu Ren, 1985, Chapter 12 

"The five colours blind the eyes of men.
The five tones deafen their ears.
The five flavours vitiate their palates.
Galloping and hunting induce derangement of the mind.
Objects that are difficult of attainment lead them to incur obstacles or injury.
Thus the Sage cares for his inner self, and not for that which his eye can see;
for which reason he discards the latter and preserves the former."
- Translated by Frederic Henry Balfour, 1884, Chapter 12

A typical webpage created by Mike Garofalo for each one of the 81 Chapters (Verses, Sections) of the Tao Te Ching (Daodejing) by Lao Tzu (Laozi) includes 25 different English language translations or interpolations for that Chapter, 5 Spanish language translations for that Chapter, the Chinese characters for that Chapter, the Wade-Giles and Hanyu Pinyin transliterations (Romanization) of the Mandarin Chinese words for that Chapter, and 2 German and 1 French translation of that Chapter.  Each webpage for each one of the 81 Chapters of the Tao Te Ching includes extensive indexing by key words, phrases, and terms for that Chapter in English, Spanish, and the Wade-Giles Romanization.  Each webpage on a Chapter of the Daodejing includes recommended reading in books and websites, a detailed bibliography, some commentary, research leads, translation sources, a Google Translate drop down menu, and other resources for that Chapter. 


Chapter 12, Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu.  Complied by Mike Garofalo.  

Chapter and Thematic Index (Concordance) to the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

English Language Daodejing Translators' Source Index

Spanish Language Daodejing Translators' Source Index

Ripening Peaches: Taoist Studies and Practices

Taoism: A Selected Reading List     

A Daoist Druid's Final Journey  

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Wisdom Within Our Flesh

"The human body is not an instrument to be used, but a realm of one's being to be experienced, explored, enriched and, thereby, educated."
-  Thomas Hanna

"There is deep wisdom within our very flesh,  if we can only come to our senses and feel it."
 -  Elizabeth A. Behnke

"He who feels it, knows it more."-  Bob Marley  

 "The hand is the cutting edge of the mind."
-  Jacob Bronowski

'The Heavenly Level is the function of feeling."
-  Cheng Man-ch'ing

"No matter how closely we look, it is difficult to find a mental act that can take place without the support of some physical function."
-  Moshe Feldenkrais  

"I would have touched it like a child
But knew my finger could but have touched
Cold stone and water.   I grew wild,
Even accusing heaven because
It had set down among its laws:
Nothing that we love over-much
Is ponderable to our touch."
-  W. B. Yeats  

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Benefits of Walking

"It engages your buttocks with the world
It modestly reduces fat
It improves glycemic control, especially after meals
It improves triglyceride levels and lowers blood pressure, especially after meals
It might help you live longer if you do it briskly
It is well tolerated by people with arthritis
It is good for your brain
It reduces stress
It boosts immune function
It helps prevent falls in the elderly
It gives you a chance to think
It can be a kind of meditation
It is in your blood, in your genes
It enables recognition of the felt presence of immediate experience."
-  Mark Sisson, Reasons to Walk this Year, 2014

"Walking might:
Allow you to see new aspects of your local environment
Make you a bit mellower and more peaceful
Set a good example for others
Enable you to meet other people and dogs
Make for good conversations with a friend while walking
Engender more gratefulness and kindness
Lift your mood and improve your attitude
Give you time to think, reflect, or contemplate alone
Energize your body, mind, and spirit
Bring new scents and smells to your nostrils
Provide mystical experiences and epiphanies
Reduce or resolve your worries
Enjoying good memories or testing your memory
Allow you to feel and see the effects of our invisible Air
Give you more confidence in achieving your goals
Get you in better awareness of your feelings
Change your perspective
Allow you to help with neighborhood watch
Let you be alone for awhile
Make your legs feel good
Appreciate the beauty in our world
Allow you to come under the 'Spell of the Sensuous'
Provide some time for listening to music or lectures
Reduce the onset or ameliorate physical ailments or diseases."
-  Michael P. Garofalo, Ways of Walking, October 2016  

Ways of Walking Website:  Quotations, Information, Facts, Poetry, Inspiration

Benefits of Walking

Caloric Expenditures While Walking

Walking Meditation

Exercise Options for Older Persons

Aging Well

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Diabetes and Caloric Restriction

I have been dealing with the disease of diabetes since I was 52 years of age - for the last twenty years.  Vigorous daily exercise and reasonable eating from 1998 to 2016, kept my A1C around 7.2.  

Most diabetes patients die from cardio-vascular disease.  So, as the odds predicted, I had a pacemaker inserted in 6/17 and a LAD heart stent placed in 10/17.  Of course, being 72 years of age does not help with the progress of any disease.  Also, the problems and anxieties of serious heart disease resulted in a reduction of exercise.  

In the last year, while suffering from heart disease, my blood sugars were rising.  I tried three different medicines in 2017: Trulicity, Januvia, or Glipizide combined with Metaformin.    

I see my internal medicine doctor next Friday.  I am considering asking for a referral to an endocrinologist, and a change in medications.   

I have been attending, since November, the cardio rehabilitation classes three days each week, for 1.5 hours per class, at the Peace Health Hospital complex in Vancouver, WA.  The class consists of one hour of aerobics, and a half hour of weight lifting, core work, or stretching.  They offer a 1 hour lecture each Wednesday on heart health care.  Fortunately, my health insurance covers this cardio rehabilitation program - how lucky I am.  

Unquestionably, moderate exercise helps with reducing blood sugar.  Typically, after a breakfast (600 calories) and a one hour wait, my blood sugar will be at around 220.  After I finish the 1.5 hours of exercise, my blood sugar is 150.  Ideally, it would be around 110.  Exercise does help, it has few side effects like medicines, is inexpensive (e.g., my nearby LA Fitness Gym membership costs $31.00 per month).  I enjoy walking and weightlifting, and I practice Taijiquan

The most important factor in controlling diabetes is carefully choosing what you eat, and more important, what you do not eat.  Reducing caloric intake has the beneficial effect of reducing blood sugar.  Also, any overeating of high glycemic index (carbohydrate) foods increases your blood sugar.  In the past, sometimes I am inconsistent and negligent about my diet.  

My goal for January and February is too eat under 100 grams of carbohydrates per day, and around 1,500 calories per day.  My body-weight goal is 225 pounds.  For a, currently,  6'7" and 246 pound man, this is a significant caloric reduction.  

If I eat under 1,300 calories a day, my morning fasting blood sugar goes down to 135.  However, it is very hard for me to control my lust for food and eat under 1,300 calories per day.  Also, my energy level drops and fatigue sets in earlier the less I eat.  However, overall, I must strive to bring my blood sugar to proper maintenance levels.  Always Compromises!!

"The Longevity Diet: The Only Proven Way to Slow the Aging Process and Maintain Peak Vitality Through Caloric Restriction." By Brian M. Delaney, and Lisa Walford, 2010.  

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition Based Cure.  By Caldwell B. Esselstyn, M.D., 2008.  

Monday, January 15, 2018

Chen Style Taijiquan 18 Form

Chen Style of Tai Chi Chuan, 18 Movements Form

Developed by Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei

Chen Style Taijiquan 18 Form

A Hypertext Notebook by Michael P. Garofalo, M.S.  

Bibliography, Links, Resources, Research, Notes, Quotations, Key Ideas, List of Movements, Instructions, Videos, History, Principles

Sunday, January 14, 2018

January Gardening Chores

I now live in in Vancouver, Washington, USDA Zone 8b.  The best listings of garden chores I have read for Vancouver are the following:

Tsugawa Nursery, Woodland, Washington - Garden Tips for January

January Gardening To Do List

Vancouver, Washington, Zip Code: 98662.  Zone 8b, 15F-20F Low, Average First Frost October 21-31.  Average Last Frost: April 1-10.  Ecoregion 3a: Columbia/Vancouver Basin.  Palmer Drought Index: Extremely Moist.  

From 1998-2016 we lived in Red Bluff, California
From 1946-1998, I lived in East Los Angeles, California

January Gardening Chores
Red Bluff, North Sacramento Valley, California, USA
USDA Zone 9 

Typical (Average/Normal) Seasonal Weather for Our Area Normally, in January, we have high daytime temperatures of 54ºF, low nighttime temperatures of 37ºF, and get 4.2 inches of rain.

Red Bluff Gardening Notebooks of Karen and Mike Garofalo

January - Quotations, Poems, Lore   Compiled by Mike Garofalo.  

January Gardening Activities and Chores in Red Bluff 
USDA Zone 9

Pruning leafless trees and shrubs.
Adding compost, ashes and fertilizer to the vegetable and flower gardens.
Taking cuttings from dormant figs, grapes, and other shrubs.
Spraying dormant fruit and other trees.
Weeding and mowing where needed.
Burning piles of gardening cuttings.
Planting bare root trees and shrubs.
Fixing wood and metal fences.
Placing cold sensitive potted plants in protected areas outdoors or indoors.
Sharpening and oiling garden tools.
Protect tender plants from frosts.
Checking for and repairing any leaks in sheds.
The soil is usually too wet and cold for much garden digging.
Indoor activities: sorting seeds, planning, reading, writing, etc.
Caring for indoor plants.
Weeding the winter garden.
Watering potted plants as needed.
Adding Ironite and other soil supplements.
Fertilizing under trees and shrubs.
Keeping tools and equipment out of the rain and moisture.
Browsing seed and garden catalogs.
Reading gardening, botany, and agricultural books.
Planning garden improvements for the new year.
Fixing any leaking roofs or rain gutters.
Keep a journal.  Write a poem.
Take a slow walk in the garden.  

January Gardening Chores and Tips for Other U.S.A. Zones

Oak Hill January Tips - Georgia

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Books about Taoism by Ray Grigg

The Tao of Being.  By Ray Grigg.  Green Dragon Publishing Group, 1988.  204 pages.  ISBN: 978-0893341152. 

The Sage's Way: Teachings and Commentaries.  By Ray Grigg.  Trafford Pub., 2004.  172 pages.  ISBN: 978-1412021685.

The Tao of Zen.  By Ray Grigg.  Boston, Charles E. Tuttle, Inc., 1994.  Book Sales, 1999.  Notes, 357 pages.  ISBN: 0785811257.  VSCL. 

The New Lao Tzu: A Contemporary Tao Te Ching.  By Ray Grigg.  Tuttle, 1995.  187 pages.  ISBN: 978-0804830348. 

Taoism: A Bibliography  By Mike Garofalo.  

"Ray Grigg is the author of six internationally sold books on Taoism and Zen, The Tao of Relationships, The Tao of Being, The Tao of Sailing, Zen Brushpoems, The Tao of Zen, The New Lao Tzu and has been a serious student of Eastern Philosophy for more than 45 years.

Prior to writing professionally since 1985, he was a teacher in senior secondary schools of British Columbia, teaching principally English and English literary history but also designing and teaching courses in fine arts, cultural history and comparative world religions.

Besides writing books, he contributes a weekly environmental column, Shades of Green, to a Vancouver Island newspaper and also interviews for a local TV channel. He is a former director on the Advisory Council for The Centre For Studies in Religion and Society at the University of Victoria in British Columbia. He continues to give occasional presentations and workshops on Taoism and Zen. His latest interest, following travel, photography, Eastern philosophy, design and sailing, is kayaking.

He lives with his wife, a classical musician, in a self-built home on ten acres of forested land on Quadra Island, British Columbia, Canada. A large organic garden and orchard supply much of their food needs. Their pets are the wild birds and animals that share their property."

The Sage's Way

Friday, January 12, 2018

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, Chapter 11

Daodejing by Laozi
Chapter 11

"Thirty spokes unite in a nave, but the nothingness in the hub
Gives to the wheel its usefulness, for thereupon it goes round;
The potter kneads the clay as he works, with many a twist and rub,
But in the nothingness within, the vessel's use is found;
Doors and windows cut in the walls thereby a room will make,
But in its nothingness is found the room' s utility;
So the profit of existences is only for the sake
Of non-existences, where all the use is found to be."
-  Translated by Isaac Winter Heysinger, 1903, Chapter 11 

"Thirty spokes share one hub.
Adapt the nothing therein to the purpose in hand, and you will have the use of the cart.
Knead clay in order to make a vessel.
Adapt the nothing therein to the purpose in hand, and you will have the use of the vessel.
Cut out doors and windows in order to make a room.
Adapt the nothing therein to the purpose in hand, and you will have the use of the room.
Thus what we gain is Something, yet it is by virtue of Nothing that this can be put to use."
-  Translated by D. C. Lau, 1963, Chapter 11 

"Thirty spokes share one hub.
It is just the space (the Nothingness) between them
That makes a cart function as a cart.
Knead clay to make a vessel
And you find within it the space
That makes a vessel as a vessel.
To build a house with doors and windows
And you find within them the space
That makes a house function as a house.
Hence the Being (substance) can provide a condition
Under which usefulness is found,
But the Nothingness (space) is the usefulness itself."
-  Translated by Gu Zengkun, Chapter 11 

"Thirty spokes surround one nave, the usefulness of the wheel is always in that empty innermost.
You fashion clay to make a bowl, the usefulness of the bowl is always in that empty innermost.
You cut out doors and windows to make a house, their usefulness to a house is always in their empty space.
Therefore profit comes from external form, but usefulness comes from the empty innermost."
-  Translated by Isabella Mears, 1916, Chapter 11 

"Although the wheel has thirty spokes its utility lies in the emptiness of the hub.
The jar is made by kneading clay, but its usefulness consists in its capacity.
A room is made by cutting out windows and doors through the walls, but the space the walls contain measures the room's value.
In the same way matter is necessary to form, but the value of reality lies in its immateriality.
Or thus: a material body is necessary to existence, but the value of a life is measured by its immaterial soul."
-  Translated by Dwight Goddard and Henri Borel, 1919, Chapter 11

"Thirty spokes will converge
In the hub of a wheel;
But the use of the cart
Will depend on the part
Of the hub that is void.
With a wall all around
A clay bowl is molded;
But the use of the bowl
Will depend on the part
Of the bowl that is void.
Cut out windows and doors
In the house as you build;
But the use of the house
Will depend on the space
In the walls that is void.
So advantage is had
From whatever is there;
But usefulness rises
From whatever is not."
-  Translated by Raymond Blackney, 1955, Chapter 11   

"Treinta rayos convergen en el medio,
pero el vacío mediano
hace andar al carro.
Se modela la arcilla para hacer jarrones con ella,
pero de su vacío interno
depende su utilización.
Una casa está abierta con puertas y ventanas,
otra vez el vacío
permite que se habite en ella.
El Ser da posibilidades,
sólo se utilizan a través del no-ser."
-  Translated by Alba, 1998, Tao Te Ching, Capítulo 11 

"Though thirty spokes may be joined in one hub, the utility of the carriage lies in what is not there.
Though clay may be moulded into a vase, the utility of the vase lies in what is not there
Though doors and windows may be cut to make a house, the utility of the house lies in what is not there.
Therefore, taking advantage of what is, we recognize the utility of what is not."
-  Translated by Jan J. L. Duyvendak, 1954, Chapter 11

"Thirty spokes share the hub of a wheel;
 yet it is its center that makes it useful.
 You can mould clay into a vessel;
 yet, it is its emptiness that makes it useful.
 Cut doors and windows from the walls of a house;
 but the ultimate use of the house
 will depend on that part where nothing exists.
 Therefore, something is shaped into what is;
 but its usefulness comes from what is not."
 -  Translated by Kari Hohne, 2009, Chapter 11 

當其無, 有車之用.
當其無, 有室之用.
-  Chinese characters, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 11   

san shih fu kung yi ku.
tang ch'i wu, yu ch'ê chih yung.
yen ch'ih yi wei ch'i.
tang ch'i wu yu ch'i chih yung.
tso hu yu yi wei shih.
tang ch'i wu, yu shih chih yung.
ku yu chih yi wei li.
wu chih yi wei yung.
-  Wade-Giles Romanization, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 11   

"Thirty spokes unite in one hub: on what in it is nothing
depends the usefulness of the cart.

Clay may be made into vessels: on what in them is nothing
depends the usefulness of the vessels.

We cut out doors and windows to make a house: on what in them
is nothing depends the usefulness of the house.

So the existent may be regarded as profitable; the non-existent
may be regarded as useful. The sage discards the outer life in favour of the inner."
-  Translated by P. J. Maclagan, 1898, Chapter 11

"Thirty Spokes converge upon a single hub;
It is on the hole in the center that the use of the cart hinges.
We make a bowl or cup from a lump of clay;
It is the empty space within the vessel that makes it useful.
We make doors and windows for a room;
It is the empty spaces that make the room livable.
Thus, take advantage of what is visible, by making use of what is not visible."
-  Translated by J. L. Trottier, 1994, Chapter 11

A typical webpage created by Mike Garofalo for each one of the 81 Chapters (Verses, Sections) of the Tao Te Ching (Daodejing) by Lao Tzu (Laozi) includes 25 different English language translations or interpolations for that Chapter, 5 Spanish language translations for that Chapter, the Chinese characters for that Chapter, the Wade-Giles and Hanyu Pinyin transliterations (Romanization) of the Mandarin Chinese words for that Chapter, and 2 German and 1 French translation of that Chapter.  Each webpage for each one of the 81 Chapters of the Tao Te Ching includes extensive indexing by key words, phrases, and terms for that Chapter in English, Spanish, and the Wade-Giles Romanization.  Each webpage on a Chapter of the Daodejing includes recommended reading in books and websites, a detailed bibliography, some commentary, research leads, translation sources, a Google Translate drop down menu, and other resources for that Chapter. 


Chapter 11, Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu.  Complied by Mike Garofalo.  

Chapter and Thematic Index (Concordance) to the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

English Language Daodejing Translators' Source Index

Spanish Language Daodejing Translators' Source Index

Ripening Peaches: Taoist Studies and Practices

Taoism: A Selected Reading List

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Chen Style Taijiquan 19 Form

Chen Style of Tai Chi Chuan

Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang

Chen Style Taijiquan 19 Form

A Hypertext Notebook by Michael P. Garofalo, M.S.  

Bibliography, Links, Resources, Research, Notes, Quotations, Key Ideas, List of Movements, Instructions, Videos, History, Principles

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Taijiquan Cane or Staff

Taiji cane forms are typically performed slowly and deliberately.  Hard and powerful strikes are seldom used in T'ai Chi Ch'uan walking stick forms.  The pace of the Taijiquan cane forms are seldom fast and vigorous.  There are few if any vigorous leaps and jumps.  Taiji forms seldom use very low stances.  Taiji cane forms are particularly suitable for fit persons over 50 years of age.  Good examples of a Taiji Cane Form are: the Standard Beijing 24 Form with Cane created by Master Wen-Ching Wu; the Eight Immortals Cane Form, Part I, created by Master Jesse Tsao;  the Plum Blossom Taiji Cane Form; the Tai Chi Stick 18 Form;  the Bodhi Dharma Walking Stick Form; Master Michael Gilman's Three Powers Cane Form; the Wu Tang Cane Form of Master T.T. Liang; the Standard 32 Sword Form; etc.  

There are also many examples of more vigorous "Taiji" cane forms, with hard strikes, leaps, fast moves, spins, and low moves.  Taijiquan saber or broadsword forms are readily adapted for use with a cane, and some are fast and vigorous.  Normally, Taijiquan sword forms are not very well adapted as cane forms, but I practice the Standard 32 Sword Form with my cane as do many others.  Karate, kung fu, Shaolin, Bagua and HsingI cane or stick forms are often fast, vigorous, powerful, twisting, agile, and with some very low stances.  Of course, when first learning any new cane form, begin with a slower, more deliberate, less vigorous practice to help the body adapt to the moves of the new form.  Thus, even a fast and vigorous cane form from any style can be done more in the "Taiji" fashion outlined and shown above.  

Many Qigong (Chi Kung) forms can also we done while holding a cane.  Adaptations are quite easily arranged.  Most often, however, Qigong forms are adapted or created for use with a short 6"-12" wooden stick called a Tai Chi Ruler or Bang.  

I consider a cane or walking stick to be, normally, a straight strong wooden stick with a curved (hook) handle that is from 30" (76 cm) to 42" (107 cm) long.  The cane will typically extend from the floor to the height of your hip socket and maybe up to your belly button.  The cane might also be made out of plastic, aluminum, steel, or rattan.  The cane might have a straight rather than curved or hooked end with a round ball shaped (pommel) end or some sort of straight or carved handle at the end.  The cane might be very simple, natural and plain; or be carved, painted or decorated.  

Each day I use an Instructor's Walking Cane, 40" (103 cm) long and 1" (2.54 cm) in diameter, purchased from Cane Masters.  This cane weights 1lb, 2 oz (510 gm).  This beautiful martial arts combat cane is made of pure hickory heartwood, has multiple notches at three key gripping points, has a ample rounded hooked horn, and has a rubber covered tip inserted over the tip end.  I also own the same Instructor's Walking Cane made of oak - a gift from my children.  I am 6'6" (198 cm) tall, and a 40" cane (103 cm) is perfect for using on my long walks and for my Taiji cane practices.  The only weapon I practice with on a daily basis is a wooden cane; and the only weapon I teach now in my Taijiquan classes is the cane.  Also, whenever I take a walk, anywhere, I bring my cane along for support, exercising the arms, and for self-defense.     

Taijiquan Cane Weapon Research, Bibliography, and Practices

Way of the Short Staff

Long Staff Weapons Practices 

Elvira Memories

I lived in East Los Angeles for 54 years. Television viewing included watching some horror movies hosted by Elvira.

"Cassandra Peterson (born September 17, 1951) is an American actress best known for her portrayal of the horror hostess character Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. She gained fame on Los Angeles television station KHJ-TVwearing a revealing, black, gothic, cleavage-enhancing gown as host of Elvira's Movie Macabre, a weekly horror movie presentation. Her wickedly vampish appearance is offset by her comical character, quirky and quick-witted personality, and Valley girl-type speech."

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Columbia Plateau, State of Washington, USA

"The Columbia Plateau is a geologic and geographic region that lies across parts of the U.S. states of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. It is a wide flood basalt plateau between the Cascade Range and the Rocky Mountains, cut through by the Columbia River. In one of various usages, the term "Columbia Basin" refers to more or less the same area as the Columbia Plateau."
- Wikipedia, Columbia Plateau


Columbia Plateau, Washington

Columbia Plateau Photographs