Tai Chi Chuan & The Code of Life for Both East & West details how to build chi, circulate and store it. In order to understand the energetic method of Tai Chi & Chi Kung, Graham Horwood has highlighted parallels from its source, The I Ching and the archetypal principles from both Eastern & Western philosophy and medicine. The text and diagrams show the synergy between the different cultures, yet show how they are all linked. This enables the beginner or the experienced Tai Chi practitioner to improve their understanding of Tai Chi. This will strengthen both the mind and body opening the gateway to the inner person.
Plus an exclusive set of Chi Kung Exercises which will augment the building, circulation and storage of chi for the healer and martial practitioner. These are accompanied by an explanation of where chi comes from and the its application for the mind and body as well as the flow in the meridians.
“The martial art of Taijiquan operates on multiple levels. Physically, it
helps strengthen and heal the body. Psychologically, it alleviates
stress and helps the practitioner achieve calmness of mind and mental
focus. Spiritually, it provides a mechanism to integrate breath, life
force (qi) and mind to achieve oneness with Nature and the forces in the
Universe. For centuries, this profound martial arts’ secrets were hidden
away in the esoteric teachings of Daoism, Traditional Chinese Medicine,
and Chinese classical texts such as the Book of Changes (Yijing, I
When Taiji was introduced to the West in the mid-twentieth century,
those essential teachings needed to fully comprehend this art were
either ignored or misunderstood by Occidental practitioners. The serious
student was left to his own devices to unearth Taiji’s foundations from
the few reference books that existed. In Tai Chi Chuan: The Code of
Life, Graham Horwood has created an important and sophisticated work
that opens the mysteries of Taiji to the West. What is unique in this
book is that Horwood uses contemporary findings in DNA research and
Jungian psychological techniques in which he is adept to explain in
Western terms Taiji’s inner workings.
Carl Jung, who departed from Sigmund Freud’s school of psychotherapy to
establish his own system, rejected the monolithic emphasis Freud placed
on the effect of sexuality on the subconscious. Jung believed that just
as the human body shows a common anatomy beyond racial differences, so
the psyche possesses a common substratum that transcends all cultures
and consciousness. Jung called that substratum the “collective
unconscious.” He recognized that mankind’s conscious imagination and
actions developed from certain common unconscious archetypal images and
always remain bound up with them. These archetypes have been expressed
in the classical mythologies and enlightened texts that man created in
early historical times when the distinctions between conscious and
subconscious reality were not as ossified as they are today.
Horwood utilizes these and other Jungian concepts to plumb Taiji’s
spiritual depths that heretofore remained ensconced in the Eastern
psyche. The author thereby lets the Western reader utilize his own frame
of reference to explore this Oriental art at its core. In so doing,
Horwood synchronizes Western myths and spiritual symbols with the
parallel universe of rich Chinese motifs that are physically expressed
in the Taijiquan movements, which have been traditionally elucidated in
China by the archetypal hexagrams contained in the Book of Changes.
As observed by Horwood, the symbols of the Book of Changes are
representations of energy states that can be expressed and developed
within the Taiji postures at a cellular level. For example, as Horwood
sets forth in his treatment, the two initial moves of Taijiquan known
as “ward off” and “roll back” are represented by the Book of Change’s
hexagrams of Heaven (six yang or masculine lines) and Earth (six yin or
feminine lines) respectively. Horwood then presents numerous analogous
archetypes that are familiar to us in the West for Heaven (the Supreme
Creator, Yahweh, and Zeus) and for Earth (Earth Goddess, Sophia, Venus,
and Mother Mary). Horwood so analyzes the six other main Taiji movements.
Horwood also explains how the most recent discoveries in the field of
DNA genetic coding correlate to the Book of Change’s ancient
permutations. Remarkably, the genetic vocabulary set forth in the DNA
language unearthed by modern science consists of 64 basic combinations
of acidic positive and sugar negative ingredients that seem to have been
mapped intuitively by the creators of the 64 combinations of yin and
yang contained in the Book of Change’s hexagrams.
Horwood elucidates how practicing the eight basic Taiji postures affects
the energy meridians that correlate to the yin and yang organs of the
body as catalogued in Traditional Chinese Medicine. He further reveals
several distinctive energy work (qigong) breathing patterns with
detailed diagrams setting forth the particular acupuncture points and
meridians that are energized in the meditative practices of Taiji. These
patterns, which Horwood represents as secret Yang family teachings,
transform Taijiquan practice from an empty dance into a rich meditative
exercise that not only can be used to prolong life, but also to enrich
I recommend this book to Taiji practitioners of all levels. For the
novice, it provides familiar Western symbolism and modern scientific
explanations to the otherwise inscrutable physical and spiritual
components of Taiji derived from ancient esoteric Daoist practices. For
the advanced practitioner, Horwood provides multi-leveled insights that
penetrate the essence of this art form that will enhance his or her
practice and understanding of Taiji. Horwood provides all Taiji
practitioners with the psychic and physical tools needed to penetrate
deeply into and explore the realm of humanity’s collective unconscious
from which the art derives.”
Noah Nunberg, J.D.
New York Law School
“I finally obtained the hard copy of your excellent book, “Tai Chi Chuan &
The Code of Life”. I am reading it with delight, as it is a superb book,
full of wisdom on Tai Chi and Eastern thought. Thank you, sir, for
enlightening those of us interested in all things Taoist.”
Key to Health is a comprehensive guide on how to maintain or retain good health by balancing lifestyle relative to personality, gender and environment. So if the body is left alone, it will always try to heal itself, naturally. Here Graham Horwood lays out a classic, yet simple way to cover this. One major mainstay of health is food, but what type and how much? There are any number of suggested diets, peddled in all the media sources, books and on television by a variety of so called experts, nevertheless always changing and different. Whereas if you can harmonise the energy potential of food, one is free to judge what to do. Modern society and travel mean that we have lost or discarded many of our traditional and wholesome diets which were built up by trial and error over the centuries.
The simple, yet effective, method in Key to Health is self empowerment. This knowledge replaces habitual eating with informed choice. Therefore, delicious food can become a healing tool in itself. In 1985 one in forty people were destined to contract cancer. At the beginning of the 21st Century, one in three Westerners are threatened, yet in China it is still one in one hundred thousand. What is wrong? The answer is lifestyle, which Key to Health shows how to balance naturally. If knowledge is power, then self knowledge is freedom.
These simple principles, explained here in detail, have been tried and tested successfully for at least five thousand years, first cited in the Yellow Emperor’s Treatise on Internal Medicine. Also featuring an A-Z of health complaints with cures, using natural healing as well as a complete section of fortifying Breathing Exercises – Chi Kungs. These help balance and store up a surplus reserve of internal energy – Chi – in order to assist the healing process as well as relieving stress.
Very interesting read. A lot of emphasis on nutrition and Tai Chi.
We all need to eat. Why not eat something that is good for us? It is not however another great diet, but one based on thousands of years of experience.
This book focuses on a variety of conditions that could be managed by choosing the right kind of food and food preparation method. This is some 75% of the book.
Very unique approach to suggests food, Tai Chi, Massage (chinese Tui Na) and other techniques to overcome a wide variety of common ailments from Asthma to Stress.
Also he was a great Tai Chi teacher, and here he teaches some easy to follow breathing techniques.
Check out his other book: Tai Chi Chuan and the Code of Life to read a very interesting take on the ancient I Ching, or the book of changes.
Full of extremely valuable guidance on how to restore ones body back to a balanced and harmonious state. Importantly, the soul is factored in to the equation.
A thoroughly recommended book. Take on board the advice and you’ll live longer… and with a bit of luck, die healthy!
If you are interested in health, then you are certainly interested in diet. Graham Horwood’s article and book ‘Key To Life’ is an invaluable resource to understanding this most essential element of health
“Key to Health, will help people solve existing health problems and make them less likely to develop other illnesses.” M.Clarke, Evening Echo