Pathlessness News before 2007

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    April 15, 2007: Workshop
    Taiji Jiàn

    Practitioners having completed the Taiji JIàn 42 form gathered in Gharzouz for 6 hours of specialized training. The session started with sword-specific conditioning, followed by a revision of basics and postures, made more challenging by the strong wind that was blowing. Form correction in details followed, alternating with Tuishou practice. The day closed with some work on rhythm.

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    January 10-11, 2007: Seminar
    Conscious practice by Avedis Seropian

    Members gathered in Bzebdine valley on Saturday afternoon, which was dedicated to external practice. After running in the nearby terraces, there was a discussion of healthy training habits, mindfully of integrating martial arts into the broader context PF is concerned with – consciousness. Goalsetting was explained and practiced using two goals necessary to effortless Wushu (touching the toes to the forehead and achieving a perfect bridge). Sunday turned to more internal practices as more members joined us. The Chinese classification of organs and a related meditation took place, followed by practice. Some of the material was left over for the next "awareness gathering".

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    November 2006: Competition
    Asian Games 2006, Doha, Qatar

    Observations by Avedis Seropian:

    It is pretty obvious that Wushu (or “modern wushu”) is going through a complete metamorphosis, like every art that is trying to book a seat in the “modern world”. My part in the games (at least internationally) covers only the new millennia, and yet the changes I have witnessed in those few years are breathtaking. From one compulsory routine to another one body and mind learning and integrating, and by the time athletes all over the world familiarized with those hardly accessible  taolu-s another leap to the world of quantum form making called ZiXuan taolu (or self-composed routines) where an athlete is said to have more freedom with the execution of stylized movements with the introduction of some must-do difficulty moves.

    The question is: can this kind of competition prove to be a real test for a gong-fu? (achievement of perfection in a particular style)

    With a jury still biased, masters replaced with some movement technicians and where disciples are disguised athletes? Clearly, my commentary is given from the point of view of a traditionalist (or a left party). I consciously chose that stance in my review for this equation needs to be balanced… But I also was a participant in the same event, and earned the right for the Beijing 2008 games with my performance. And finally, the most important of all roles, am myself also a pilgrim, taking this beautiful journey with friends now all over the world, and encourage whoever in our humble group with enough aspirations for a demonstration of his/her inner beauty to the world by means of performance in this ever-mutating art to step forward and sweat a little, and I will do my best to stay up to the level and be honored to accompany such an individual to the growing in popularity “Wushu Sport”, to keep an invisible green touch while a paradigm is being implanted…

    October 7-8, 2006: Seminar
    Taking your training to another level by Avedis Seropian

    The seminar took place at the Alpine Hotel, on the outskirts of the Arz village where trees of autumn gold and a silver fog contributed to a unique atmosphere. The program focused on fundamental details of the 42 form and went on to more general training in the currently taught forms, as well as discussions and individual evaluation.

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    July 1-2, 2006: Seminar
    Introduction to Inner Transformation by Avedis Seropian

    A 2-day seminar took place at the Arc-en-Ciel Organisation of Maaser el Shouf. Members met in the afternoon of Satruday to begin with Taiji practice and encounter exercices. Activities carried on into the night with pre-sleep exercises, and carried on well before dawn with more physical/internal training. A documentary, What the Bleep Do We Know, was projected and followed by a discussion animated by Razmig Azezian. The Death exercise and a small workshop aiming at "not concluding anything" wrapped up the seminar.

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    May 7, 2006: Workshop
    Meshmesh

    Nearly 20 members, undaunted by the early hour and stormy weather, drove up to Meshmesh for a workshop that took place on the grounds of a private property. Starting with Qi Gong upon arrival at 5:30 am, with a discussion animated by Razmig Azezian, practice evolved into Taiji and Wushu, ending with an impromptu football match around noon.

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    April 2, 2006: Competition
    Lebanese Cup 2006

    After presenting an opening ceremony choreographed by Avedis Seropian, Path Four members representing HMEM entered the following categories, with these results:

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, male:
    1st – Avedis Seropian (with difficulty movements) (gold medal)
    2nd – Hagop Hovannessian (with difficulty movements) (silver medal)

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, female:
    2nd – Crystal Safadi
    3rd – Joumana Medlej

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, male:
    1st – Avedis Seropian (with difficulty movements) (gold medal)
    2nd – Hagop Hovannessian

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, female:
    1st– Crystal Safadi (gold medal)
    2nd – Joumana Medlej (silver medal)

    March 27, 2006: Competition
    Path Four Intraclub Competition

    A competition between Path Four members took place in Aghpalian, gathering 19 participants.

    Overall best scores:

    1. Joumana Medlej / Barbara Drieskens 8.4
    2. Crystal Safadi 8.35
    3. Tatiana Bocharova 8.3
    4. Hagop Kayabalian 8.1
    5. Vicken Demirjian 7.99
    6. Rana Haddad 7.95
    7. Asbed Seropian 7.8

    Complete list by category:

    External: Freestyle
    Hagop Kayabalian 7.4
    Tanguy Smoes 7.3
    Aram Abrilian 7.2
    Abdul-Nabi Fneiche 6.5
    José Chidiac 6.2
    Joumana Medlej 7.4
    External: Weapons
    Hagop Kayabalian 8.1
    Asbed Seropian 7.8
    Rania Halabi 7.0
    Internal: 42 style
    Joumana Medlej 8.05
    Rana Haddad 7.95
    Hiam Jarrouj 7.2
    Annabelle Chadaverian 7.2
    Maria Kasparian 7.0
    Mirna Farajian -
    Maysaa Abu Mrad -
    Vahan Kassardjian 7.65
    Internal: Chen 56 style
    Crystal Safadi 8.35
    Barbara Drieskens 8.2
    Vicken Demirjian 7.9
    Kevork Djoulfayian 7.3
    José Chidiac 7.0
    Internal: Tai Ji Jian 42
    Joumana Medlej 8.4
    Tatiana Bocharova 8.3
    Crystal Safadi 7.9
    Hiam Jarrouj 6.0
    Vicken Demirjian 7.99
    Kevork Djoulfayian 7.45
    Internal: Freestyle
    Barbara Drieskens 8.3
    Crystal Safadi 8.1
    Vahan Kassardjian 6.6

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    February 19, 2006: Wushu Workshop
    Ramlet el Bayda

    A workshop took place on the beach, focusing on Wushu acrobatics and jumps.

    January 15, 2006: Competition
    Independence Cup 2005 (postponed)

    Path Four members representing HMEM entered the following categories, with these results:

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, male:
    1st – Avedis Seropian (with difficulty movements) (gold medal)
    2nd – Hagop Hovannessian (with difficulty movements) (silver medal)

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, female:
    1st – Crystal Safadi (gold medal)
    3rd – Joumana Medlej

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, male:
    1st – Avedis Seropian (with difficulty movements) (gold medal)
    2nd – Hagop Hovannessian (silver medal)

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, female:
    1st– Crystal Safadi (gold medal)
    2nd – Joumana Medlej

    Traditional: Chang Quan, female:
    1st – Joumana Medlej
    2nd – Crystal Safadi

    Traditional: Chang Quan, male (junior competition):
    3rd – Maher Doumani (bronze medal)

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    December 8-15, 2005: Competition
    8th World Wushu Championship, Ha Noi

    Lebanon was represented in Ha Noi by a delegation including Avedis Seropian from Path Four, who participated in Tai Ji Quan (difficulty) and Tai Ji Jián (non difficulty). Lebanon earned a silver medal in Sanshou. This championship saw the first implementation outside China of the difficulty moves system and new judging methods.

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    November 18, 2005: Group meeting
    Program appraisal

    A meeting took place at the Dojo on Friday 18th of November, to evaluate together the program of the past term (autumn 05) and advise students in the choice of their classes for the coming term.

    October 23, 2005: Federation event
    National team test

    In preparation for the upcoming international junior and senior championships in Italy and Vietnam, a test competition took place for the National team. The new judging regulations were implemented, providing training for a new generation of judges, and technological support was tested as well.

    October 20, 2005: Federation meeting
    Training for new judging regulations

    Heads of the Lebanese Wushu Kung Fu Federation and potential new judges met for an introduction to the new Taolu judging methods by Avedis, holder of an International Judging Diploma. Focus was placed on the newly introduced concept of difficulty movements and grading them. Further training will follow to bring Lebanon in line with the newest Wushu regulations.

    October 16, 2005: Seminar
    Round table and practice

    Around 15 members gathered in a home by the sea for a seminar animated by Razmig Azezian and Avedis Seropian. Soft exercises were followed by a discussion of personal experience with Taiji in our daily lives, leading to in-depth subjects such as the qualities of water. Medical Qi Gong for specific organs followed, then forms practice.

    September 21, 2005: Workshop
    World Peace Day at the Unesco Palace

    "The 4th Path is the Way of the Integrated Human Being, The Path to inner peace, while glorifying all aspects of life. And as life is defined by movement, it is through movement that we attain this understanding. We spend our entire lives breathing almost every second, less often (hopefully) eating, walking, sitting, lying down. We call them routines, thereby we do not pay much attention to the functioning of those activities, yet we never hear anyone saying:"I have been breathing for the last 43 years of my life, i will take some vacation !" So why is that when asked to cultivate healthy habits, inner peace-both crucial to a harmonious way of life, hesitation takes over?
    We invite you to this workshop about inner peace to experience a moment of awareness in this river of time, a moment that when lived (and that can only happen in the Present) may give you glimpses of deep transformation that can happen in your being.Remember, you do not need this workshop to go through such transformation. For LIFE itself is whispering in your ears: "The only stable thing in life is Change". "

    August 21, 2005: Seminar

    On Sunday August 21 a seminar took place in Balaa, near Laqlouq. From 8 till 3pm we followed a dense program, starting with inner exercises taking advantage of the cave at hand, and progressively turning outwards, ending with form practice. More detailed review upcoming.

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    July, 2005: Exams
    Level 1 certificates

    The group's first exams, for the Bronze Belt 6th Ji in Wushu and Taiji Quan. The Wushu exam consisted of verification of cursus knowledge, speed and endurance testing, form performance and free fight. For Taiji, a 45-minute form was performed that must take a list of 10 criteria into consideration, followed by martial applications and questions of theory.

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    May 22, 2005: Competition
    Lebanese Championship 2005

    Path Four members representing the Dojo club entered the following categories, with these results:

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, male:
    Gold – Avedis Seropian
    Silver – Hagop Hovannessian
    Bronze – Vicken Demirdjian

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, female:
    Gold – Joumana Medlej
    Silver – Crystal Safadi

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, male:
    Gold – Avedis Seropian
    Silver – Hagop Hovannessian
    Bronze – Vicken Demirdjian

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, female:
    Gold – Joumana Medlej
    Silver – Crystal Safadi

    April 16-17, 2005: Competition
    Arab Wushu Championship

    Path Four members Avedis Seropian and Hagop Hovannessian were part of the Lebanese team that was sent to the Third Arab Wushu Championship in Amman, Jordan. Their results:

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, male:
    Gold – Avedis Seropian
    Bronze – Hagop Hovannessian

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, male:
    Gold – Avedis Seropian

    April 10, 2005: Meeting
    Theory discussion class

    Members met for a Sunday morning practice followed by an indepth round-table discussion of the seminar of 18-20 January 2002 (click to download), animated by Razmig Azezian . February 27, 2005: Competition
    Lebanese Cup 2005

    Path Four members representing the Dojo club entered the following categories, with these results:

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, male:
    1st – Avedis Seropian (gold medal)
    2nd – Hagop Hovannessian
    3rd – Vicken Demirdjian

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, female:
    1st – Tatiana Sabbagh
    2nd – Crystal Safadi

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, male:
    1st – Avedis Seropian (gold medal)
    2nd – Vicken Demirdjian
    3rd – Hagop Hovannessian

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, female:
    1st – Tatiana Sabbagh (gold medal)
    2nd – Joumana Medlej
    3rd – Crystal Safadi

    Traditional: Chang Quan, female:
    Undecided(!) – Joumana Medlej

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    February 26, 2005: Workshop
    Introduction session for members and non-members

    A special off-syllabus Taiji session was held to equip practitioners with Taiji basics and the beginning of the Form. The main purpose of the session was giving new members the basic knowledge they need to integrate classes in progress.

    About 15 participants from within and without the group gathered at the Dojo, Sofil for 3 hours of intense practice headed by Avedis Seropian assisted by Hagop Hovannessian and Joumana Medlej. Everyone was so absorbed that nobody realized we had almost reached the end of the period without taking any break! Detailed print-outs produced by Path Four illustrating Taiji basics and the first section of the Form were distributed in closing. Practitioners and instructors went home enchanted, having grown from the experience.

    December 17-23, 2004: Training course
    French National Team instructor trains Lebanese National Team

    The Lebanese Wushu Kung Fu Federation hosted a training course in Wushu given by French National Team instructor Eddy Marie Luce, who came to Lebanon for the occasion thanks to the endless efforts of Federation President George Nseir. Path Four members Avedis Seropian and Crystal Safadi along with the Lebanese National Team participated in the training, which was held at the Antonins, Baabda. The instructor also visited the Dojo, met with Razmig Azezian and granted us two private sessions.

    Eddy Marie Luce was bronze medalist in the Taiji Quan category at the 9th European Wushu Championships in Portugal, while Avedis was not far behind with the 5th place.

    "Such visits enrich our humble baggage of Wushu", Eddy said, "and broaden the horizon of our definition of Gong Fu. One can never say he is knowledgeable in Wushu when there are such humble 'teachers and servants' of the art, living and breathing in Wushu."

    The old saying is again appropriate: Yi Wu Hui You ("Making friends through Wushu practice"). Thank you Eddy! May your path be Enlightened!

    November 21, 2004: Competition
    Independence Cup 2004

    Path Four members representing the Dojo club entered the following categories, with these results:

    Traditional: Taiji Chen 56, male:
    Gold – Vicken Demirdjian
    Silver – Hagop Hovannessian

    Traditional: Taiji Chen 23, female:
    Gold – Crystal Safadi

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, male:
    Gold – Hagop Hovannessian
    Silver – Vicken Demirdjian

    Gui Ding: Taiji 42, female:
    Gold – Crystal Safadi
    Silver – Joumana Medlej
    Bronze – Hiam Jarrouj

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, male:
    Gold – Vicken Demirdjian

    Gui Ding: Taiji Jiàn 42, female:
    Gold– Joumana Medlej

    Traditional: Chang Quan, female:
    Gold – Joumana Medlej

    November 12-14, 2004: Lecture
    "Be SMART: Stress Management And Relaxing Technology" by Razmig Azezian

    A series of lectures given in the Armenian communities of Cyprus covered the nature and benefits of Tai and Qi Gong. Demonstrations, debates and on-the-spot experiments punctuated the presentation.

    October 16-17, 2004: Seminar
    "Spiritual Casting, Mental Broadcasting" by Avedis Seropian

    Fifteen people or so gathered at a quiet hotel in Faraya for the fifth seminar in the series. Through personal and group exercises, discussions and workout, the seminar explored the 4 stages of exploring one's inner self and following a path of self-development: Uncasting the roles we play, casting anew, returning to the system, and "broadcasting". A .pdf file of the material presented can be downloaded from the Library.

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    September 1-6, 2004: Competition
    10th European Wushu Championship, Moscow

    A large delegation represented Lebanon in the Moscow championship, among which two from our number: Avedis and Vicken. Both entered the Taiji 42 and Taiji Jiàn 42 categories, with Avedis presenting the Shaolin Quan form in the Exhibitions category as well. Lebanon returned from Russia with two gold medlas, two silver, and Avedis' own two bronze medals earned in the Taiji categories.

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    October 11-12, 2003: Seminar
    "Demystifying" by Avedis Seropian

    Deir Saydet el-Bir.

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    April 2003: Seminar
    by Razmig Azezian

    January 18-20, 2002: Seminar
    by Razmig Azezian

    "The First Seminar" took place in Rmeileh. A .doc file of the material presented can be downloaded from the Library.

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