BEGININGS
Crucibles for Creation: A Timeless Story of Learning to Balance
Freedom of Expression with the Correct Way to Honor One’s Past, Teachers and Mentors

DESCRIPTION

Zeigua Integral Arts

Necessity is the Mother of Invention

Reasonable Expectations

Purpose and Philosophy

BEGINNINGS

Finding a Simple Name

Core Influences

Enthusiasm and Daydreaming

Reality Check & Character Building

Trusting in the Intangible Forces

Common Struggles and Energy Gates

Sincerity and Belief in Self

PRINCIPLES

Circle

Square

Triangle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Zeigua-Arts-Logo©2004-2010Finding a Simple Name

One day, during an evening Baguazhang forms and Chigung class, one of my students was really struggling with a certain form, he just couldn't do it and both he and I became very frustrated. I really struggled to find a way to help him move correctly, but his body just wouldn't open up. Then suddenly, I approached it from a whole different angle and simply adjusted his form to accommodate his body's current limitation. And, that seemed to work so well that he eventually was able to move correctly shortly there after, to his and my surprise. So, he very innocently asked me: "what system does that come from?". But, I drew a big blank in trying to answer him, because I couldn't figure-out on the spot where and or from whom exactly I had learned this from, so I jokingly said: "Oh, this is special Zeigua-Bagua!"...

But, these kinds of teaching situations were now happening to me on a regular basis, as I taught more and more classes. And, I found it easier and easier to make these kinds of adjustments on the spot with all my students, so I kept the "joke" going of doing this Zeigua-Bagua stuff. But eventually, as the years passed on and I consistently kept getting good results, I started to take this skill more seriously...

So, "ZEIGUA" (pronounced "Zzz-eye-Guwah") is simply the name I've given to my particular teaching approach in general, but more specifically to the subjects of internal martial arts, natural healing and spiritual self-cultivation -a combination of my family last name Zeisky and the Chinese word Bagua (eight trigrams).


Core Influences

Zeigua Arts is my individual interpretation and understanding of the various disciplines that I have trained in and practiced since early childhood, a melding together of the martial arts, natural healing methods, esoteric sciences, eastern & western spiritual practices, goldsmithing, craftsmanship, graphic arts and my general life experience. Most importantly, Zeigua Arts have been greatly influenced and inspired by the principles of Taichi, the beautiful art of Baguazhang (8 trigram palms) and the wisdom of the TAO (The Way) contained within the I Ching (The Book of Changes).

The combination of my close family upbringing, alongside my personal life experiences and the many hours I spent training in these various disciplines and creative arts, have undoubtedly greatly influenced the kind of lens thru which I see and experience this world. But undeniably, the natural meditation practices that are built into the internal martial arts, of which I've trained in since 1984, have proven to me to be especially reliable methods of de-stressing and rejuvenation. Its like having a wise old friend that you can to turn to in times of trouble, who can also soothe your acnes and pains and help you to see things more clearly, endlessly inspiring and motivating you to do more learning, researching and practicing.


Enthusiasm and Daydreaming

Throughout the years I've enthusiastically pursued learning the subtle energy cultivation arts of Qigong/Neigong and their connected internal martial arts of Taijiquan, Baguazhang, Yiquan, Xingyiquan, Aikido and others, in as a traditional a manner as possible. After recognizing the enormous contributions made by the countless generations of spiritual seekers and martial artist throughout the centuries, it made me truly appreciation the ancient teachers and their modern day torchbearers for continuing to pass on this integral knowledge to future generations. And, so naturally I wished to honor them by showing the proper respect, patience and perseverance in my training, behavior and attitude, to best of my ability. However, learning and applying the correct cultural etiquettes and codes of behavior is still quite the challenge.

Like many kids who were influenced by pop culture and the movies of the 1970s, I too loved to watch Bruce Lee movies, TV's Kung Fu Series, Star Wars, Jackie Chan and all those other Hong Kong “chop-socky” films that were usually only shown in the world’s Chinatowns. My father and his Chinese friend, Min Ho (who till this day I still call "Ho su su," uncle Ho) would always take me to see Kung-fu movies on Saturdays, after working all day in the jewelry shop. Like many other aspiring young martial artist, I fantasized about training all day on a secluded mountaintop with my very own “Yoda-like” hermit. I wished for some sagely being to teach me the sacred mysteries of life and help me conquer all my inner demons, since I was having difficulties dealing with the inner city realities of living in New York City. And, at the same time of course, I also had to have the physical skills necessary to kick Godzilla’s butt!


Reality Check & Character Building

In pursuing my dream of doing intensive spiritual and martial training on some secluded mountaintop in Asia (as is sometimes fairly well portrayed in the better martial arts films, where proper Confucian rituals, Taoist virtues and Buddhist ethics are heroically displayed), it seems to have steered me on a collision course with my American-western upbringing. And, for many years my blind enthusiasm did not allow me to balance the realities of modern day living in America with these typically “Asian” pursuits, creating lots of unnecessary conflict and suffering for me and my family. They were not always so enthusiastic about my unconventional pursuits, really wishing I'd be a doctor, lawyer or successful businessman...can't really blame them. But, at the end of the day, they we're supportive in their own way and I always managed to get a little chuckle out of them with my entertaining stories.

Eventually, this complex and fast-paced world quickly snapped me out of my martial arts fantasies several times, circumstances simply didn't allow for the luxury of idly waiting for any sagely beings to magically appear and take away all the self-created suffering. But oddly enough, at that very moments of despair it seemed perfectly natural to shift my awareness inwardly, towards the energetic sensations and visions regularly coming to me as I casually walked along the downtown streets of New York City.

Eventually, the intensity of these inner visions and sensations became quite impossible to ignore, so I simply yielded to them and "listened," intuitively knowing that they potentially held the key towards some sort of balance. And, just like in the Taijiquan practice of Tui-shou (push-hands sparring), the above response is similar to the action one might take to neutralize a strong attack. Taichi training teaches you to sense the right time to act, by opening and relaxing the belly to better link to the feet, which greatly facilitates the ability to deflect a larger more negative force, without loosing your center.

Sometimes, the pressure of an outside force can help define the true center, just as in life certain experiences and relationships can help define our true selves, by exposing what we are not and what we don't enjoy doing. True character building is a product of not being afraid to make a mistake, but also having the discipline and self-restraint to prevent mistakes from manifesting in the first place; respecting our innate wisdom and listening to it's warning signals. When presented with so many life-altering choices and opportunities, endlessly crossing our paths these days, having practical tools to refine our intuition in these extreme times can be a most valuable asset in the daily survival game.


Trusting in the Intangible Forces

Trusting in your own intuition and in the dynamic raw forces of Nature, is certainly not a readily supported skill. But, trusting in visions and messages coming from an even more subtle spiritual realm, such as the "Ether" or "Source Field," is an even less supported skill, by our ever increasing skeptical, sarcastic and apathetic society...

Most of us don't intentionally set-out to make fools out of ourselves and purposely make wrong decisions, so as to loose the respect of our peers, friends and family. But, that FEAR of being wrong and of being humiliated, is precisely what keeps most of us paralyzed from making decisions and taking action...

I eventually did loose my fear and began to trust in these subtle sensations and visions, "downloading" into my mind. These visions and sensations, which became clearer and stronger each time I practiced being quiet and still, during Standing and Seated Meditation/Qigong practices. These visions helped me develop a teaching approach that better served the needs of my students, as they learned to apply the practical aspects of the internal martial arts into their daily lives...

Since I was getting good results, with both my newer and more experienced students, I was further encouraged to continue creating these new exercises and principles, noticing that these students were indeed, performing traditional forms with greater skill and ease...

So, when students started asking me, “What do you call this method?” I would jokingly say, "It's called "Zeigua Arts," because I couldn't specifically pin-point exactly when, where and which school or person I had learned this from. I and others with experience, could see bits and pieces of all my teachers in it, but it was obvious that it was not the same...

In time, I would gain more confidence in my "channeling," innovations and personal research. Especially, after occasionally bumping into a colleague, friend or "stranger" that would indirectly validate my findings, by saying: "Oh yeah, in this style and system they also do that and call it this!." Definitely little happy moments for me...


Common Struggles and Energy Gates

History constantly repeats itself with a very common human drama: individuals struggling to balance their own personal needs with the needs of others. Most cultures seem to struggle with the universal themes of individual self-expression and making a name for oneself, with being less self-important and humbly and quietly contributing your fair share of responsibilities towards the welfare of your tribe and greater human community. My personal story is no different from this common struggle, providing me with a sometimes scorching crucible from which Zeigua ideas and teaching methods have been refined, fused and poured into various molds and situations...

Each master that I had the privilege of learning from, no matter how small or large their individual contribution may have been and no matter whether I had the ability to fully understand their lessons at the time or not, I believe was an authentic experience that directly connected me to a very ancient energy. I found that I could access these libraries of truth and universal energy principles simply by being more quiet and still during my physical form performances, my "listening" skills grew with each seated meditation and standing qigong practice...

These methods are still my primary vehicles by which I safely experience "portals" and "energy gates," where time and space seem to "bend," while in pursuit of higher learning and spiritual understanding. So, I am very appreciative of having the good fortune of being exposed to these mind-body-spirit arts and sciences at an early age...

But sadly, at this time, these gifts of the internal arts and meditation are rarely discussed nor taught in any of our conventional schools and governmental agencies. So, it takes a highly motivated individual or the luck of being exposed to special teachers at an early age, to demonstrate they're true potential and beauty...

Hopefully, with the ever increasing numbers of people "waking-up," this reality will soon change...


Sincerity and Belief in Self

I don't claim to officially represent any specific school or teacher, but rather only wish to acknowledge how all these wonderful teachers that I had the privilege of studying with have positively influenced the way I move, think, learn and teach; indirectly helping to co-create ideas. So, I wish to take the time to humbly thank all them for being such an integral part of my life...

Zeigua Arts is a sincere attempt to contribute back to my local and international community and to be of service to people interested in similar pursuits. The personal discoveries that I've come across in the internal arts have helped me realize the importance of respecting Nature's cycles and Natural Law, as the key component in personal vitality and our very survival as a species...

I've had my fair share of failures and trials and errors, which pushed me to the brink, "kicking and screaming" to self-reflect and soberly acknowledge what I'm not naturally good at. But, no matter what our unique process of maturity may be, eventually, authentic growth requires both: acceptance of one's gifts with the self-discipline to properly nurture them, as well as taking full responsibility for our actions...

I don't claim to be some kind of societal authority figure, with special medical degrees, titles, PhD's nor college training of any kind. I only claim to be a self-motivated person who was willing to put in the time and effort to explore, challenge and educate myself in lesser known esoteric subjects, that seemed to be very noble and worthy pursuits, but were difficult to find good sources in the more conventional schools and over-all culture of the 1980s...

Regardless, I believed back then and still today, that all people of this planet are born with an innate right to question, explore, create, imagine and make positive contributions to help improve the human condition. So, I ventured forth with a sense of adventure, later to rediscover and experience for myself many times, that we are indeed multi-dimensional spiritual beings of great importance and purpose. For me personally, as a internal martial artists and craftsman, one of my primary goals has always been to strike a good balance between all the main earthly dimensions: the physical, intellectual, intuitive, spiritual and emotional. And, as far as the subject of "life purpose" is concerned, my many trials and errors taught me no one person can truly tell you what your true life purpose is suppose to be. It is best discovered individually, because spiritual speaking, we are as unique as any one of our trillions of cells inside our bodies...

Always needing attention, validation and external approval, will eventually exhaust you and those around you. However, being pleasantly surprised with a little acknowledgement and or validation, once in a while, is quite nice! Such as when I came across the work of Dr. Bruce Lipton's ground breaking work in his book, "Biology of Belief." As a scientist, Dr. Lipton proved through his many experiments, that "junk DNA" is not really junk after all and that the true "intelligence" and codes of all DNA actually lies in the ether-like source field he refers to as the "epigenics" (above the genes) of the genes. Translation: "God-codes" are omnipresent through-out Nature and we are not condemned to inherit the illnesses and diseases of our family genetics, but rather, our external environment and life-style habits determines more strongly whether specific genes turn on or off to either harm us or protect us -our own efforts and positive surrounding are huge factors in our over-all success!

Commonsense, intuition, "Third-eye" intelligence, spiritual knowing and an open heart, are just some of the positive side-effects of a regular internal arts practice. And, with the works of pioneering scientist like Dr. Lipton, it's becoming easier to trust in the obvious: that all knowledge is already innate and we are constantly surrounded by an highly intelligent and living source field -it seems that the "Creator" has done a job difficult to top...nothing is missing!

So, we continue on with this journey of self-discovery, learning and creating. Hoping that more and more people of our modern era, which has placed greater value on technology and AI (artificial intelligence) over the natural world and human intelligence. However, today's tech companies should humbly remember that Nature IS the original and ultimate "source code," from which they are constantly borrowing, mimicking, copying and drawing inspiration from, in their demented attempts to control and mutate life itself. But, don't worry, Mother Nature is beyond resilient, clever and perfect, our true Mother and Father are more than capable of self-correction and regeneration...

And finally, I always like to remind myself of the inherit value of plain and simple truths and to constantly build and maintain strong positive lifeforce inside my body. Because like gold, "CHI" is the only currency that never looses value nor constantly needs software updates...it just is!


Joseph Zeisky
September 2004
New York City

 

updated August 2017


HOME

DESCRIPTION --- Zeigua Integral Arts | Necessity is the Mother of Invention | Reasonable Expectations | Purpose and Philosophy

BEGINNINGS --- Finding a Simple Name | Core Influences | Enthusiasm and Daydreaming | Reality Check & Character Building | Trusting in the Intangible Forces | Common Struggles and Energy Gates | Sincerity and Belief in Self

PRINCIPLES --- Circle | Square | Triangle