ISAI The Martial Art of Formless Flow: THE SECRET TREASURE OF FUXI – THE PRACTICE OF HARMONYbyGorelik Monya, M.Sc. Applied Mathematics

Monday, May 22, 2017

Gorelik Monya, M.Sc. Applied Mathematics


Our investigation shows that the general form of the natural motion of living beings and specifically that of humans is similar to Taiji symbol.

The natural motion trajectories of the different body parts produce a repeating fractal general Taiji pattern.

The eight trigrams and hexagrams of Fuxi describe synchronization between different parts of the body moving naturally along these Taiji-formed trajectories. The names of trigrams reflect the character of the natural motion and the sounds it can produce.

The natural motion makes maximal usage of relaxation and of inertial and reaction forces. These principles correspond to Pu and Wu Wei principles in Daoism. The body proportions which provide this kind of motion correspond to Golden Ratio, the etalon of beautiful proportions.

The fractal structure of the natural motion corresponds to Hundun in Daoism and Oneness.

Our research also provides a new possible way of developing Wen Wang and Mawangdui Bagua.

Together Daoist principles, Taiji symbol and Fuxi Bagua provide a detailed description of the natural motion and practical guidelines to its practice.

The research lead to the creation of natural exercises for the cultivation of harmony and health and for the implementation of them in Natural Martial Arts and other natural skills.


Natural Motion, pure natural motion, locomotor motion, fractal structure, taijitu, Fuxi bagua, Wen Wang bagua, Mawangdui bagua, golden ratio.


“Natural motion is that motion which is closest to the inborn motion applied under existing conditions in order to solve motor problems”.

"Pure natural motion is a natural motion free of cultural influences".

"Fractal is a geometrical figure or natural construction or motion where every fragment repeats itself with decrement of the scale".




Mother Nature created human beings equipped with inborn reflexive motions or motor skills. These inborn motor skills are the basis for every other motor skills humans learn during their life. Natural motion contains the following features that make it the most versatile and efficient:

Maximal usage of inborn reflexive motion

Maximal dynamic relaxation

Maximal usage of inertial forces

Maximal usage of reaction forces

Maximal changeability and maneuverability

Maximal fractality

Great beauty

These features are completely expressed in main Daoist principles:

Ziran    - spontaneous reflexive motion

Pu        - relaxed formlessness or lack of acquired forms

Wu Wei - inertial or reactive motion, relaxed motion                 

Hundun  - chaos, represented by fractality of body and motion


Our research shows that the human body can be considered as a fractal structure.

We refer to it as the "empty-full-empty" model and is obtained by dividing of "empty" into two "empty" parts connected by one "full" part – see pic. 1:

Pic. 1

The shortest chain of 2 "empty-full-empty" elements consists of "empty-full-empty-full-empty" – see pic. 1. For example: "forearm-upper arm-chest-upper arm-forearm" 
Compare with:
"The Dao produced the One. The One produced the Two. The Two produced the Three. The Three produced All Things. All Things carry Yin and hold to Yang. Their blended influence brings Harmony". (Laozi, Chapter 42).

These fractals and their combinations produce fractal natural locomotor motion which repeats itself starting from the body as a whole up to its smallest parts.

Our research shows that the pure natural locomotor motion of living beings in general and of humans specifically has a 3D general form or morphology of its trajectory. Every motion of every part of the human body follows this general trajectory during natural motion. This form has a shape of Taiji symbol or Taijitu. This motion is performed simultaneously by opposite and symmetrical points of the body - see pic. 2:

The segments R0-R1, R2-R3 for the right side and L0-L1, L2-L3 belong to accelerations.
The segments R1-R2, R3-R4, L1-L2 and L3-L4 belong to decelerations.

 The body has a general structure consisted of triads – see pic.3:

Pic. 3

Every one of the three components performs a sequence of accelerations and decelerations as was described in the chapter " THE GENERAL FORM OF MOTION". There is no constant speed as muscles can't provide this kind of motion. Therefore, if we encode acceleration as " –" and deceleration as "- -" we will receive 23=8 different trigrams.


Our research shows that the order of these trigrams is the same as in Fuxi bagua with only one difference – the trigrams must be read only in the up-down direction except for Li and Kan, which are symmetrical in relation to the central Yao. This arrangement changes the places of two trigrams, Chen and Ken, comparatively to the traditional reading.

Therefore, Fuxi bagua is a digital representation of the pure natural motion of triads of   the body – arms, legs, torso and neck with the head and fingers – see pic. 4 and pic. 5:

Pic. 4

Pic. 5

If the arm is depicted in its natural relaxed position with the shoulder upward and the palm downward then the torso with the head must be oriented as the fetus in the womb of the mother, with his head pointing downward. This can be the reason for another name of Fuxi bagua – prenatal bagua. 

Therefore, each trigram is a kinematic binary code of the specific phase of the limb's or trunk and head's motion.

The coordination of limbs and torso-head movement is concealed in Fuxi hexagrams.

I provided mathematical proof for this decoding.

The story that Fuxi observed the sky, the earth, the birds, animals and himself and then drew his bagua also provides some support to my hypotheses that taiji and bagua started as a model of microcosm of human body - see the second chapter of Xi Ci Xia (Categorization of Terms) from Confucian classic The Ten Wings.

Even the names of trigrams support this hypothesis. The punching produced by relaxed arm actually includes double punch, producing two loud cracking sounds. These cracking sounds correspond in Fuxi bagua to the passages from trigram fire to thunder and from trigram mountain to earth.

Therefore, the fire running from the sky to the lake produces thunder. Then the wind rises and expels the water from the lake. The water run by wind falls down from the mountain on the earth producing the sound of waterfall.

The form of taiji as well as of bagua and hexagrams can be visually observed in Martial Art, Motion Art, Movement Therapy and every skill of Formless FlowTM – the practical training method based on the theory represented in this article.

Without discovery and usage of Daoist principles and taiji and bagua symbols as the codes of Pure Natural Motion it was impossible to create and develop a practical system of training.

We found that the general morphology of the natural motion during inhalation and exhalation as well as of suggested morphology of the internal energy as we feel it, are Taijitu and therefore naturally combine with other motions of the body, which have the same morphology – see pic. 6:

Pic. 6


Inertial and reactive motions alone can't provide effortless changeability and maneuverability of motion according to Pu and Wu Wei principles.

These effortless changes must also be very fast, otherwise no living being could survive in nature.

Golden Ratio proportions allow to annihilate inertial motion effortlessly or drastically reduce the energy consumption required for such annihilation. This phenomenon is similar to self-annihilating of the whip motion during whiplash. It can be observed during the motion of the limbs but also of the trunk of the body, neck and head.

Self-annihilation can happen due to rotation in joints and then "closing of motion on itself". This phenomenon is called Self Annihilating Inertial Motion (SAIM) – see pic. 7.

Due to the spacial restrictions of the living body almost all of the motions must change during their performance. Golden Ratio proportions allow these changes to be effortless, according to the principles of Pu and Wu Wei. 

Pic. 7


As we know the vast majority of living being's motions are repeated in cycles. Even a single motion can be considered as one repetition of cyclic motion. This cyclic motion can occur only due to repeated annihilation of the motion during each single repetition.

Thus Golden Ratio body proportions are necessary for the cyclic motion performed with maximal relaxation, according to the Daoist principles of Pu and Wu Wei.


I suggest that Fuxi bagua is an encoded Natural Motion. It seems that the creation of Wen Wang bagua was a successful attempt to conceal the real meaning of Fuxi bagua. Wen Wan bagua can be percieved as an application of simple mathematical algorithm to Fuxi bagua and has no direct connection to natural motion – see pic. 8: 

Pic. 8


I found that Mawangdui bagua can be derived from Star of David.
So, I suggest that both Mawangdui bagua and Wen Wang are not directly connected to the motion as Fuxi bagua.
The suggested relation of Mawangdui bagus to Star of David is shown in the pic. 9:




I believe that Emperor Fuxi was a real historical person- a prophet, a leader, a researcher and a great scientist. It is also a probable that Fuxi was a collective personality, a legendary accumulative figure.

It is unclear whether Fuxi discovered Taijitu and the core Daoist principles by himself or that this knowledge already existed before he started his observations and research.

Nevertheless, it is quite clear that Fuxi knew about Taijitu and these principles or about underlying mechanical principles of natural motion and made use of them while creating bagua. This bagua is a code of natural motion, based on the deep understanding of the human body's structure and function. I believe that once the principles of natural motion were discovered and formulated by Fuxi, he generalized them and developed the general model of the world. Therefore, Fuxi developed united microcosmic and macrocosmic model of the world.

Therefore, I believe that Fuxi encoded natural motion into Daoist principles and symbols.

The paper suggests my decoding of the Daoist principles and symbols into natural motion.

I believe that my decoding of Wen Wang bagua as encoded Fuxi bagua stands for the possibility that both Fuxi and especially Wen Wang bagua were created in order to keep the knowledge of natural motion in secret as the most valuable knowledge.

My following work finally resulted in the creation and practice of FORMLESS FLOWTM  - natural motion training for diversity of motor skills and for developing of general creativity (with Prof. Vadim Rotenberg). This training is a full practical implementation of the theory suggested in this article in the microcosmic plane. Therefore, this training method can be considered as a reconstruction of the ancient Daoist method of training established by Fuxi.


Taiji and Fuxi bagua symbols and core Daoist principles of Ziran, Pu and Wu Wei provide a detailed, though encoded, descriptions of Natural Motion and practical guidelines to its practice.

The Emperor Fuxi created them thousands of years ago after profound investigation of Nature.

This is the secret treasure of Fuxi and his gift to mankind.

Hundun and Oneness are reflected in fractal structure of the body and its Natural Motion.

The perfect human body proportions of Golden Ratio make natural motion and its cyclicality possible.


 The keys for the codes of the Secret Treasure of Fuxi were lost for thousands of years.

Their decoding opens the door to completely new but also very ancient way of life to all – life as a practice of harmony and practice of harmony as a way of life.

My research resulted in the new and important vision of some aspects of Daoism.

It also resulted in the great contribution of Daoism to the science of motion.

Probably the most important result of this research was the probable reconstruction of the ancient practical method of training based on natural motion in Martial arts, Movement Therapy, motion Art, Bodybuilding, General Creativity Development and other applicable motion skill.

Fuxi left us his immortal legacy of practice of harmony. Let's follow it!

1 comment :

  1. An interesting direction to understand n apply the Fu Xi's contribution, would be useful in practice.