I will offer that there is no mystery in human behavior, just the schism between light and darkness that we create. All behavior arises from the same life force whether we judge the outcome as good or bad.
Chi is said to flow in two ways. It can be receptive and reinforcing, or it can be disruptive and “cutting.”
Martial arts use the cutting kind? It uses either kind, and martial arts styles are often defined by whether they are “hard” or internal.
I saw a guy who could disrupt an opponent’s chi and make them weak. Yes, and chi influence begins well before physical interaction. It might even be where the interaction stops as well, as two martial artists tend to be familiar with what sort of impact their chi state will have on their strength and ability. Another way to describe these two forms of chi behavior are kiai and aiki.
They can size each other up and call a winner before the fight even starts? They can, though they are not necessarily immune to human failings like arrogance or overconfidence.
That must be what a lot of animals are doing? Yes. The snake envenoms their prey’s chi well before they envenom the body. The venom for the body is sort of a formality to prevent the twitching from causing accidental injury.
Is that what causes the animal to freeze when it’s been caught? It is, yes.
You have likely heard the term kiai, usually something along the lines of KIAI! Kiai is all out expulsion of chi.
Aiki is the receptive state. In order to practice aiki chi manipulation, you must be receptive to the chi around you, and prepared to move with any shifts that may involve you, even those that involve you indirectly by extension.
Aiki is the swing and kiai is the punch? Yes. In the aiki state you can feel the aggressive orientation of the opponents chi. In the kiai state you disrupt their chi balance before they can focus on a response.
These balances exist even outside of the martial arts, the round versus the jagged, the egg versus the blade of grass. In chi practices you seek to first cultivate your own chi before trying to influence other peoples chi states or the state of the chi around you. If your chi is diffuse and scattered, it will just be absorbed and dissipated by the environment.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.