The Great Bear Star Steps©

Sacred Movements: Great Bear Polar Star Circle (500 A.D)

The above is a diagram depicting the use of sacred movements from the fifth century Taoist Rite of the Great Bear Polar circle. In Taoist practice, such sacred movements enhance the dancers to resonate with the circle of the cosmic forces. This embraces the central Taoist concept of human as microcosm mirroring the macrocosm.

Taiji Quan movements evolved from this ancient lumbering gait of a bear, unfortunately due to the linguistic drift and misinterpretation, the Great Bear Polar Circle remains hidden for most practitioners. If one retraced to an older practice of the Five Animal frolics, one can still see the original lumbering Gait of a black bear frolic swaying side to side. If Taiji Quan did evolve from the Five animal frolics then the Taiji form must contain within its structure a Bear movement. It is my most sincere wish that you could discover it for yourself the Bear movement within the Taiji Form.

Such discovery re-connects me to the ancient Complete Reality Sect of Taoist Ritual and opens my eyes to the depth of Taiji practice. That the very functioning of the Taiji form is a Shamanistic journey of recreating the Heavenly drama of the Ursula Major constellation which contained the Big Dipper.

With the Great Bear Rite as part of my practice of Taiji movements, this transported my consciousness to a level that is universal. My body became part of the Cosmo. The movements took on a numinous quality. Sometime, when I practiced late at night I could almost hear the song of the stars. Suddenly, the meaning of Taiji—Supreme Ultimate revealed to me as the universal movements of unifying between human and the whole of the Universe. At that moment, my body became utterly transparent and different part of the body lights up.

From my own meager experience of the Grand Ultimate—Taiji, I entered the vast field of Taoist Alchemical cultivation. It is this transformation from the profane physical movements into the sacred Taoist rite that the power of the Great Bear Step becomes so necessary.

For the future of Taiji Quan, I sincerely wished that other players and practitioners joined me in developing Taiji in the context of Taoist Inner Alchemy.

Written by Sat Chuen Hon

Founder of Dan Tao

July 5, 2001

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