|Autumn: A Time of Gathering and Reflection|
How can Tai Chi help?
In a class by the beach our teacher, Janet, explained there are three levels of Tai Chi practice: Recreation, Relaxation, Transformation.
Notice that "recreation" is "re-creation" when we give our bodies, minds, and spirits a rest from the endless list of "must accomplish" activities and re-create a space for ourselves. We regenerate and recharge needed energy reserves. Tai Chi re-creation feels good as the body stretches and unwinds. The mind centers itself. Clear focus and awareness begin to develop in many areas of life. When you practice Tai Chi in class as you become more comfortable, a few gentle moves can be included into a daily home routine. Many Tai Chi students begin to write, paint, or sing, opening the creative heart-mind. New Tai Chi friends appear. Re-creation is here!
As the student progresses, a sense of inner peace and well being begins to spread throughout the person. Wholeness and connection is developing. You may find your temper is not as quick. Breathing is easier. Sleep deepens and natural color appears in your face. When you are working on the computer your attitude improves as frustration levels begin to change. Kay says take a few deep breaths, get up and walk around a minute. Say to yourself or out loud, "It's only a machine and I am in control!" Now the students finds comfort increasing practice a little more than just 3-5 minutes a day outside of class. Perhaps 10 minutes once or twice daily is better and easier now, as Tai Chi becomes a joy filled event.
Tai Chi "Trance-formation" is when Tai Chi becomes a way of life. Tai Chi is a self-care daily health program and meditation combined. "All is possible with the mind," Paul Lam, M.D. believes. Tai Chi is strengthening the body and regenerating the spirit. Creative energies and increased positive thinking may surprisingly open doors and windows of opportunity. At this stage the student may practice one or several Tai Chi and/or Qigong forms fitted to the individual so that 20-30 minutes or more feels right. Some may even want a quick review later in the day if they are in the stage of learning a new form. Endurance, strength, and spiritual outreach connect to new levels, and enhanced enjoyment appears. Rob thinks, "Tai Chi enters the entire arena of your life." Intent leads energy, transform with Tai Chi.
Tai Chi and Qigong are your exercises, designed by you for you! You will be led to forms and exercises you need, what feels right for you is your path. Tai Chi is not a substitute for qualified professional medical advice. Consult a health care professional and qualified instructor. "Tai Chi is free from competition and judgement. All one energy in Tai Chi," states Jiong Gu, Tai Chi instructor and Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine. With Tai Chi and Qigong, the journey climbing the mountain and good company along the path makes the way much easier. As we gaze from the mountain top, it's a beautiful sight!
Related Posts: Universe Shadows of Cranes (Tips to Achieve Your Goals by Paul Lam, M.D. Mar 2011), Tuning In (Apr 2011), Painting the Earth (May 2011), Carry Water Chop Wood (June 2011), The Great Harvest ("Growing Home Again" Oct 2011) more about Tai Chi see Story Index, Links, and Tai Chi & Qigong tabs.
http://www.taichiforhealthinstitute.org/ Dr. Paul Lam, a family practice physician from Sydney, Australia develops Tai Chi for Health programs easier for a beginner to learn and practice before advancing on to more complex forms. DVD's step by step instruction and explanations, workshops, music, articles, forum, newsletter and more begin your Tai Chi journey.
http://www.innerpathtaichi.com/ Tai Chi as Spiritual Practice, book by Caroline Demoise
http://www.taichimania.com/ Terry Dunn shares DVD's for Yang Long (Yang 108) and Yang Short Form (Yang 37) plus Flying Phoenix Qigong, articles and more.
http://www.ymaa.com/ Dr. Yang-Jwing-ming Tai Chi, Qigong, Martial Arts, books, E-books, DVD's seminars world wide
http://www.taichifarm.org/ Jou, Tsung Hwa, mathematician and Tai Chi master, books, The Tao of Taijiquan, The Tao of Meditation, and the I Ching Way to Divination
http://www.taichi18.com/ Master Wing Cheung presents 18 Form Taiji Qigong (Shi Ba Shi) in DVD free download for easy following and learning. 18 Form, a blend of Yang Style Tai Chi and Qigong Exercises, is easier to learn and practice than complex Tai Chi forms. Master Cheung studied with He, Weiqi and Lin, Hou Sheng, creators of 18 Form for accuracy of practice and explanations.
*http://www.721pleasantstreetstudio.com/ Janet Snelgrove, Tai Chi instructor, thank you for story contributions. Teresa Ferrill, owner of studio and Tai Chi instructor, Yoga classes also available in St. Joseph (SW) Michigan area
firstname.lastname@example.org Purchase paintings and prints, inquire to receive Silver Butterfly, Create A Vision, Awaken Your Creative Spirit, Free PDF E-book, a Tai Chi journey with a mystic twist.
Fall Leaves, watercolor painting by Kay Wilson, Tai Chi Instructor
Microclimate, photo by Rob