The Sublime Breath    
Meditation for Tranquil Power, Intentions of Peace
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Tai Chi

Tai Chi is a traditional Chinese martial art. Used for exercise and meditation, it brings physical coordination and dexterity in balance with mental calmness. It is similar to QiGong, but involves more footwork, always involves a martial application and is done in routines rather than single motions. Despite its graceful and tranquil motions, it is in essence an art of hand-to-hand combat and self defense.

First Thoughts: Tranquil Power, Intentions of Peace

If you are new to Tai Chi, it is recommended that you find a good school and teacher. Because the moves are intricate, they are best learned through the experience that a good teacher can provide. This site can help students of Tai Chi find resources that will describe movements, applications and philosophy in more detail. They will reinforce what you learn in class.

"Originally developed in China as a form of self-defense, tai chi is a graceful form of exercise that has existed for some 2,000 years. Practiced regularly, tai chi can help you reduce stress and enjoy other health benefits."
From The Mayo Clinic site

Please carry one thought with you: an intention of peace leads to tranquil power. One Tai Chi move illustrates this. You can neutralize an incoming strike with your arm by deflecting the strike. This deflection is grounded in a good stance and powered by a turn emanating from the waist.

This type of response to an incoming force redirects its negative energy away from you and into nothingness. After instruction and practice you will see how to maintain your balance and composure while warding off harmful intentions without engendering hostility on your part.

There is also a hidden aspect to this move. By pivoting from the waist to deflect the strike to one side you are also powering the other side of your body to issue a punch or push with the other arm and hand. The pivoting at the waist simultaneously wards off harmful energy on one side and develops the capacity to issue power from the other. It is actually one motion, though it may seem like two.

The lesson here is that usually all you need to stop a bad situation is a well-controlled and simple turn. You don't need hostility or anxious defensiveness. Just stay well-rooted to the ground and turn your waist to address the danger. Send the threat into nothingness not with anger nor fear, but with an intention of peace. That intention will bring both peace and a tranquil power.

Learning more

Please visit these good links about Tai Chi or browse the books listed in the column to the left.