Tai Chi Y2D13: surface and depths

Hi hum. Another tai chi post. Are you bored yet? In one of his books about ceremonial magic, Archdruid John Michael Greer said that the first year or so of any practice is the hardest, and he’s right. I’m finding that it’s largely a matter of intention and attention at this point.. You would think the question would be, Can I keep going?. But I’m finding that the longer I’m awake in the morning, the harder it is not to go carry out my practice. The question is really more like, can I push myself harder? or can I do this part more slowly and deliberately?

It’s a complex distinction. When doing the work itself isn’t the problem, how does one dive into the depths, to do the harder work that’s further down? I have a little trouble getting up at 5am to go to do my tai chi, but the effort needed to complete the work is now placed as a habit. How do I reach for the more difficult work of doing it more intensely and more effectively?

There’s no easy answer. Time invested is always a big factor. Doing an hour instead of twenty-five minutes works. Making art connected with my practice is another — an investment of time in a different way. Meditation works — a different time effort. It’s always about time, but invested and used differently.

That seems to be how one learns to dive deep.

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