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Your Tai Chi Journey

Like all journeys, be they long or short, they all start with you. Sounds simple doesn't it? It is, but there's more to that. The journey starts when the seed in your mind starts to grow. Maybe you were inspired by something you read, saw or heard. Action does not happen straight away. Maybe the times or circumstances weren't right.

When you do, you will eventually find the teacher to help you on your path. Some people may look to other teachers if they're not on the journey they're after. Others stay with just the one. This is all fine and understandable. You meet everyone you need to meet. They all either give or take from one or another. These relationships might be favourable or they might not. This is destiny or what we call yuenfen (緣分) and karma. This is life and we need to manage our own expectations. You can't win at every, so why not put your energy into what actually matter.

Taiji is no different, but through practise and perseverance. We may come to the stage where one see things in perspective and not take life so seriously. This way of perception is not to say you're totally above everything, but you just manage things differently. So yes we're affected by negative behaviour too. But it is how do you deal with things? Do you respond by giving them instant justice? Or do you step away and rise above it all? Why? Because what do you really achieve from? In the end, was it really worth it?

Learning is part of the journey. Along the way, be prepared to encounter failure and not just achievement. It's normal to feel upset, but instead of failure as an end. Why not use failure as a source of motivation? We Chinese call this eat bitter, where you learn to gain from the bad experiences. This is not far from the the concept of investing in loss. Not everybody starts off doing well, but with hard work you will succeed. Remember that what you gain from your training is your own. Impressing others is not as important as you might think. However, your abilities and achievements don't belong to anybody else. Your training is like your personal investment and only you can take your Taiji practise further. What you do and how you do it, influences your training. At the end of the day, your training never lies.

Taiji is a lot of things to different people, but to me Taiji has given more than self defence and health. A lot of things I once thought as important aren't and through practise, I find that the basic truths in Daoism opens the door to the correct path. Taiji is the art of living.

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