Master Tung, Kuan Yen

What is Tai Chi Chuan?

Tai Chi Chuan is a Chinese martial art based on Taoist philosophical principles. Because Tai Chi Chuan theory is extensive and complex, a brief summary is challenging. Still, simply put, Tai Chi Chuan embodies the principles of Yin and Yang, which means there is duality in every movement: if the body moves, then the mind is calm; if your arms go forward, your back goes backward; if your hips go down, then your head goes up; if one leg is substantial, then the other is insubstantial; if one joint contracts, then another joint relaxes. Based on balancing  Yin and Yang, practicing Tai Chi Chuan helps to balance one's mind and body.

What is Tai Chi? It is generated from Wuji and is a pivotal function of movement and stillness. It is the mother of Yin and Yang. When it moves, it divides. At rest it reunites.
— Tai Chi Chuan classic by Wang, Zhong-Ye *

What is Chi Kung and Chi?

Chi Kung (Qi Gong), which literally means “the art of energy”, is the discipline of concentrating, circulating, and focusing Chi. It is an umbrella term referring to hundreds of training systems that develop internal energy for various purposes, especially for health, combat efficiency, mind expansion and spiritual cultivation. Chi Kung is an integral part of Tai Chi Chuan.

The existence of Chi is widely accepted in China and other Asian cultures. Traditional Chinese medicine takes Chi into account. However, the concept of Chi concept is rather controversial in Western culture, as scientists have not satisfactorily identified, measured or explained Chi. It is hence misleading to try to describe Chi using words like energy. Such words have a clear scientific meaning that may not apply. Even though the biological interpretation is unclear, the feeling of Chi and the health benefits are very clear. Feeling is understanding.

 

     

    Recommended Reading

    • "Tai Chi Secrets of the Ancient Masters: Selected Readings from the Masters" by dr Yang, Jwing-Ming *
    • "Taijiquan Theory of Dr. Yang, Jwing-ming: The Root of Taijiquan" 
    • "Sunset Tai Chi: Simplified Tai Chi for Relaxation and Longevity" by Ramel Rones and David Silver
    • "The Tai Chi Book: Refining and Enjoying a Lifetime of Practice" by Robert Chuckrow
    • "The art of meditation" by Matthieu Ricard