T’ai Chi Chih is a mindfulness-moving meditation practice that’s easy to learn. The series of 19 movements and one pose helps circulate the Vital Energy, the Chi. Practitioners experience peace, improved health, and many more benefits. Our free monthly e-newsletter offers inspiration between issues of the TCC quarterly journal, The Vital Force, in which teachers and students tell stories about ways they’ve benefited from the practice. 

“Building a silent and imperturbable Center.’” – Justin F. Stone, TCC Originator

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From the May issue of The Vital Force:

Rediscovery: “The seated variation of TCC was invaluable during health struggles in 2015 and will always have a place in my heart. Standing, I had become shaky and frustrated, the extra effort to maintain stability preventing Chi from flowing. I applied ‘the effort of no effort’ intellectually, unaware of the depth of this principle. When I could barely walk, it was a revelation to rediscover the Chi by starting very small (reclined in a gravity chair with unrecognizably small hand movements). After one group practice in the park this way, my gait was stabilized for three days!” JLS, Fort Collins, CO

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Editor’s Note: Read more about TCC teachers’ experiences with seated TCC

in the May issue of The Vital Force.

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Exhilaration: “When I learned TCC as a younger person, I thought of seated practice something I might do if and when I got older and weaker, injured, or needed to demonstrate it to a student. I considered it a modification of the REAL practice. Then I got a glimpse of its power and was able to appreciate it as a form that offered its own gifts and treasures. Toward the end of his life, Justin practiced TCC seated. He sometimes invited me to practice, facing him, both of us in chairs. I got to observe, up close, what he had always told us — it’s all in the wrists! Well, not quite all; there’s the tan t’ien too. Arm movements were done mostly with the wrists and were done smaller and more slowly, in time with the yin and yang flow of the tan t’ien. The energy I felt in my hands and fingers was exhilarating!” – LMO, Port Hueneme, CA

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Surrender: “In the practice of TCC we surrender to the movement of the t’an tien…surrender to the flow of Chi…surrender our weight into the soles of the feet…surrender to the softness, the effort of no effort. When learning TCC we learn that surrender means letting go…of the need for perfection, self-judgment, and thoughts such as, ‘I already know that’ or ‘I’ll never get this right.’ Letting go leads to discovery, and out of discovery comes transformation. Letting go means: listen to your body, breathe with ease, expand your field of awareness, focus within, release physical tension. Keep the mind clear and open and experience the gentle practice of TCC. Only when we surrender to the flow of Chi can we feel the balance, calm, centeredness, energy, grounding, joy, quiet, stillness, and freedom to simply be.” – DK, Midland Park, NJ

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Emptiness: Within this emptiness is a circle, and within the circle are the mountains and the lakes. There is nothing empty about emptiness. Justin F. Stone

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Where in the World have you been doing T’ai Chi Chih? Share your images for our gallery.

Want more inspiration? Want a connection with the global TCC community? Want tips for a better practice? Join us:

Subscribe to The Vital Force. Our quarterly journal offers engaging stories, hints, and insights from TCC teachers and students. We also highlight wisdom by, and photos rarely seen of, originator Justin Stone.

 


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