Universal Balance / Universal Harmony
Tai Chi (Taiji) is rooted in Taoist philosophy and symbolizes to the principle of Yin / Yang. Tai Chi is the theoretical underpinning of Chinese cosmology. It is the fundamental principle of duality and change in the universe. Tai Chi is known as the Universal Law of Balance and Harmony.
What is Tai Chi (Taiji)?
As a principle, Tai Chi represents the continuous interplay or dance between the two forces of nature, yin and yang. It describes how these two forces, by their nature, are in opposition; yet are complementary, interconnected, interdependent and interchanging within the natural world. Harmony is achieved when the yin and yang combined are in balance.
As a health exercise, Tai Chi is an ancient practice for stress relief and management. It is a series of Qigong postures and movements linked together in a seamless form. Tai Chi is designed to calm and quiet the mind, to restore the smooth and soft regulation of breathing, to release physical tension and blockages, and to simply relax. Often referred to as a Meditation in Motion, the practice of Tai Chi maintains homeostasis and optimum health, in Body, Mind and Spirit.
As a Martial Art, there are several systems of Tai Chi Chuan (Taiji Chuan). Within these systems there are a multitude of theories, principles and methods, which gradually guide the student from the basic to higher levels. This is accomplished through dedication and diligence in mindset and practice. When one achieves the highest proficiency level in Taiji Chuan they are said to be Supreme in the Art of Self-defense.
Why Tai Chi ?
Due to the complexity of Taiji Chuan, few practitioners were able to apply it as a martial art. Yet, over time many people achieved profound health benefits from their practice. This is typically seen in parks throughout the world where elderly Chinese play various forms of this exercise. Today it more commonly referred to simply as Tai Chi. It is loosely taught in principle and the movements simplified making it accessible to more people. Tai Chi is largely practiced for its health benefits worldwide.
Health benefits of Tai Chi Qigong.
At Tao of Mindfulness, we teach the essential principles of Tai Chi and Qigong, while striving to keep it simple. The health benefits are realized through the quality within your movement, not in the quantity of movement. This is achieved through the practice of Tai Chi Qigong, of a simplified form of Tai Chi Chuan, with emphasis on principle, method and form.
Tai Chi Qigong promotes a calm and quiet mind, which leads to a broad sense of awareness. Expanded awareness opens the door to understanding the effects of stress physically, mentally and emotionally. Tai Chi Qigong gives us the self-defense tools to relieve the negative effects of stress and the ability to manage, rebalance and fortify our health. Longevity, the vibrant extension of life, is achieved through the Mindfulness practice of Tai Chi.
Tai Chi Qigong
Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan – Simplified Form
At Tao of Mindfulness we begin by the teaching Tai Chi Qigong. It is a simplified form of Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan. Rather than teaching a lot of movement in a long form, our emphasis is placed on teaching the fundamentals of Qigong, with the development of a strong foundation in Principle, Method and Form.
The Principle is Mindfulness; “the awareness of” and “the attention to” Method and Form.
The Method relates to “correct structure and alignment,” “correct breathing” and “correct mental composure.”
The Form consists of 5 movements (ward oﬀ, roll back, press, push, single whip) in 8 directions (4 sides & 4 corners), counterclockwise and clockwise (connecting the left and right hemisphere of the brain).
Tai Chi Qigong is performed slowly, evenly and fluidly, with a calm concentration of the mind; while supported with a rhythm of natural breathing and a gentle smile.