Continuous Strengthening and Endless Softening
T’ai-chi Ch’üan is many things, but one thing that all of its elements are grounded in, is the quest for somatic resilience. Called continuous strengthening by the Chinese, these postural transformations, when actualized according to the three base principles of: centered mental focus, supporting the body on one leg without leaning and moving effortlessly, produces profound changes in the synergistic capabilities of the body. A body moving in complete synchronicity with itself, with all muscles coordinately assisting in unified movement, learns to move as one thought, with all areas responding to the call. Training ourselves in this way will eventually lead to a body that is strong, capable and moves with innate wisdom, before hesitating to think. The slow carriage of the body through the foundational postures of the various transforms, re-enervates the brain and muscles in order to make it possible for them to carry out the new set of instructions. This new method of carrying the same body over the same Earth, holds remarkable promise for longevity, as it balances and harmonizes the entire being into proper biological functioning and appropriate psycho-physical action.
When we induce ourselves to attain a state of being that is focused, balanced, graceful, free and effortless, all natural instincts will flow freely through our bodies. Our actions will become selflessly impeccable and deeply imbued with the synchronicities of true stewardship. With this alignment we innately respond in concert with the demands of the naturally dynamic living matrix. A crisis is an opportunity to preserve ourselves and others through impeccable actions.
This is not an egotistical quest about achieving excellence over others. This instead is about assuming perfection in every action through awareness, selflessness and balance, which amounts to a disciplined victory over the self. T’ai Chi is the art of achieving successive, selfless, appropriate acts and interactions, that meet the stewardship of life demands we are faced with every moment of our Earthly lives. T’ai Chi Ch’üan’s ancient dance of youthfulness produces strength and agility, grace and capability, mental peace and harmony with nature so that our way through the world becomes an enjoyable journey through the reality tunnel of our life on Earth among the all the creatures living here.
T’ai-chi Ch’üan is a rare form of exercise/meditation, a truly magical amalgamation of ancient disciplines, that when practiced correctly, will invariably produce human beings who move and interact differently, more assuredly than others who do not employ such a discipline.
The axioms of T’ai-chi Ch’üan are a three lock box, that must have all three keys turned, to release the treasure. The martial forms (#1), based on 13 postures boxing are the most foundational, naturally endowed, defensive postures available to two-armed bipedal human beings and are therefore considered to be the optimal movements for true martial training. A few other martial forms of movement produce similar synchro-synergetic motion and the consequent self-defensive results. Whether the movements chosen by the practitioner are those of the martial forms of the Chen and Yang families or its offshoots such as Sun, Wu or Dong, or even the non-martial Li family forms, if actualized in slow flowing movements (#2), with centered mind and vertical body (#3), will generate somatic resilience and integrated synergistic motion. This synchro-synergesis of integrated movement, produces defensive effects that when seen seem so magical as to often be perceived as illusion. Core strength sustains health and vitalizes the life and sexuality of the individual living between its own precious heartbeats. Through repetition of slow, balanced, focused movement, the practitioner opens their awareness to the inexorable perfection of each magical unfolding moment. This overall positive outlook coupled with the strength of somatic resilience make living life more pleasurable, more experientially sensational. Movement is no longer cumbersome and fatiguing; it is light, free and fun.