As we approach the holiday season, stress starts to enter the body and mind, family dramas intensify and it’s easy to forget the simple things in life. That’s where Tai Chi can help.
The question of what use Tai Chi or martial arts are to modern life comes up frequently. Unless you’re in a job that requires frequent encounters with violence most of us will live our whole life with minimal exposure to violence.
So what else can martial arts offer? This short film by Pamela Hiley shows some of the meditative sides to life that Tai Chi can reveal, where questions resolve to silence and are answered by nature.
“True to Life’ is a cinematic essay portraying the spiritual ideas of Pamela Hiley, a Welsh born Taiji master living in Norway. This is an exploration of Taoist philosophy, seen through her eyes, with very little factual information apart from ideas on the transcendent mind: breathing, balance, defence, neutralisation of conflict and moving beyond polarity. We follow Pamela on a trip to China where she meets with masters and students of these ancient arts – they love and share a deep respect for the mysteries of their common practice. But this film is not about a journey in the physical world, but rather trip into the the inner landscape of the mind.”
Here’s the last episode of my 8-week course in mindful Tai Chi movements. This week we bring things full circle back to the first exercise we did in week 1 and take a closer look at the back bow.
Here’s part 3 of my 8-week course on mindful movements with Tai Chi. Last week we looked at the lower body, this week it’s the turn of the upper body and I throw in a bit of zen wisdom at the end for good measure. Enjoy!
Good news! I’ve started filming a short 8-week Tai Chi Notebook course, and you can get it here, for free.
As usual things come together by chance (or maybe a it’s fate) but either way, a friend asked me to show them how to do “this internal stuff“, so I was about to shoot them a simple video on the basics, then I realised that there’s too much to cover in just one video, so I planned out 8. Then I started to get creative and made it look a little bit professional, and the end result is what you’ve got here – a short YouTube course called Pulling earth, pushing heaven.
In week 1 of the course we cover the concept of “maintain and extend”. Each week will focus on a different aspect until we get to the point where you’ve got the basic idea of “Tai Chi movement”. Of course, this is just ‘foot in the door’ stuff, but I’d like to think that after following along for 8 weeks, and doing it every day, you’d at least have the correct foot inside the correct door. Look out for part 2 next week.
Writing for Jetli.com is taking up more of my free time, so I haven’t posted too much original content here, but I guess I’m waiting for the muse to find me before I do.
In the meantime, here’s my latest article for Jetli.com
How Wushu and TaiJi Serve As a Path to Mindfulness to Heal Anxiety and Stress
There are so many technical aspects to Taijiquan, that it’s easy to forget to simply breathe and enjoy the practice, keeping that awareness of the breath as you go.
“If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
And if you are at peace you are living in the present.”
– Lao Tzu.