In Taoism we represent beginning as:
From Nothing to Something. Nothing is no thing and Something is an object (or thing) which exists for a subject. Something exists in the realm of Duality or Tai Chi. Nothing represents Non-Duality/Oneness (when the subject and object merge and no thing is the same as every thing) or Wu Chi.
So how does this understanding of beginning relate to the experience of a ‘beginner’ considering taking up Tai Chi (or Yoga or Meditation)? We can describe the normal mode of living as a kind of oneness. We live inside our thinking mind and, even when we are doing physical activities, we experience constant thoughts both about what we are doing and about unrelated or associated things. Because ‘survival’ is such a significant function of the ‘thinking mind’ we have a negativity bias which prioritises thinking about threats to the self system. This mode of living inside our thoughts is before Tai Chi. It is a bizarre kind of Wu Chi because we are essentially unaware of the energy field in which we exist, we could call it No Chi. In the state of No Chi the real-time, fully connected, experience of reality is essentially outside our consciousness, and, because we are wired for survival, it is best depicted as darkness.
When we begin Tai Chi we have moments when the thinking lessens and the silent aspect of mind – perception or awareness – comes into the foreground through our direct experience of the subtle, inner aspect of our body. This experience of mind focussed on body is when Yin Yang or Tai Chi begins. The subject is our own awareness and the object is our our real-time experience of our body, our own Chi (Qi) field.
The more we work in the realm of Tai Chi the more we find balance in every aspect of the self; body, emotions and mind. In time we start to move from Tai Chi to Wu Chi.
As a beginner considering taking up Tai Chi there are quite a few things that are worth knowing in order to stand the best chance of finding a Tai Chi practice that works for you. So I hope you enjoy reading some of these articles as they emerge from my mind -_ –
About Tai Chi and Qigong
Finding a Teacher
My own experience of healing, growing and engaging in health have given me so much, I am dedicated to sharing what I have been lucky to learn and am starting to embody.
To coin a phrase from my teacher Grand Master San Gee Tam
Happy Qi : )