Two nice things happened over the week that I was away. One is that my friend TJ saw me for the first time on Wednesday and almost didn’t recognize me. I’ve physically shifted weight around, and changed body mass from fat to muscle (and probably bone as well — tai chi chan slow down bone loss to osteoporosis). He was impressed with the change. I need to keep going.
The second was that my friend Lisa admitted that she’d been a taiji practitioner but had gotten overly perfectionist about her practice, and had given up. “You just have to flow into it,” she said, “and give up any expectations about it being a certain way or achieving certain things.” which I totally agree with. Then she said something really interesting…
“The really hard part for me was that I had to pretend chi was real,” she said. “I could hardly ever feel it when I was doing anything else. But if I was doing the form, it was better to practice in a way that suggested chi was real… When I did that, chi was real, and I got much better results.”
So now I’m practicing as if chi was real. And I find that I can sense it more effectively now, because I think it’s there. And I can use it more effectively, because I feel it. Interesting.