Tai chi as a practice to train the mind

Renown Zen master DT Suzuki writes in the introduction to the little book entitled Zen in the Art of Archery that describes something that I’ve discovered about tai chi. He writes that a significant feature of the practice of archery is not “… for utilitarian purposes only or for purely aesthetic enjoyments, but … meant to train the mind; indeed, to bring it into contact with the ultimate reality.” This is la Read More …

Beginning tai chi and trusting

When I started tai chi I didn’t know what to expect, but I was rather desperate. I had been ill for a long time and I was willing to try anything. It just so happened that a colleague at work invited me to join him in his tai chi class. So I did, and that was the beginning of my journey into discovering what tai chi is and what it would mean Read More …

A goal in tai chi

There is a progression to tai chi. First is to relax places where we’re tight (often painful, too). Often it can be described as “clenching.” For most of us that is true. The next step in the progression is to move. Move around and through the tight places with a mindful intention to dissolve the tension. The moves are designed to help you to relax. Moving changes the body. We use different Read More …

Watch for gaps in your practice

I’ve noticed that, while I received some basics in the beginning, much was skipped over and I’ve felt a gap in my learning progress that I became aware of some years ago. This was from a lack of organization in the presentation of information. The sequence of learning had gaps that I would have to fill in years later. I would have to practice regularly for a long enough time to discover Read More …

Standing in Wu Ji

Wu Ji is the first position in the form or before doing anything in Tai Chi or Qigong. The first thing to do is find your Zhong Ding, your central alignment. Your ears are over the shoulders, which are in line with the hips, which are in line with the knees and ankles and the “Bubbling Well” (Yongquan). You will probably have to bend the knees to get there and maybe tilt Read More …