Posted by: Mike Ferruggia | April 11, 2009

The Tai Chi Paradigm

I don’t think I’m going to be able to say what I want to say here in a short essay. But here goes. My tai chi life is a paradigm for me, a way for me to co create my reality and existence. It is a reality based on the tai chi principles and philosophies and qualities and ethics I have so far talked about in this blog. It is also a social paradigm.

Creating a framework within which society functions is complex and difficult. The Constitution provides a pretty good framework for the American way of life. But then again, so does the rule of St. Benedict, a paradigm of monastic living that shows the world there is another way.

The problem is that it gets corrupted, and while for most of the time and for most people, the paradigm works and provides people with a way of life, it sometimes begins to lose control of itself, perhaps because it is inherently faulted and broken?, and in order to maintain the power structure, it begins to engage in fascistic behavioral control and fear based discipline. Exploitation and manipulation are used to maintain the status quo. Conformity and ostracization go hand in hand.

If you find yourself not believing in the current paradigm, or wish to live according to another paradigm, it may not be so easy. In a complex society, you still need to eat, get shelter, get clothing, provide for basic needs. Even the American Constitution provides for certain inalienable rights. When, these rights are infringed upon, people of good will have to stand up and fight for justice.

Controllers and manipulators and exploiters will try to disguise what they are doing as part of the paradigm when in fact the truth is they’ve hijacked it. If you become disenchanted or are disenfranchised by the powers that be, you’re kind of screwed. It’s not easy.

Extricating yourself from the brain washing, the behavioral control, the manipulation, the mind control, the economic control, can be very difficult. I used to joke that it was very easy for someone like a John Lennon to speak out for truth and be a bit rebellious because he had boatloads of money. It’s harder to be a St. Francis or Gautama Buddha or Ganhi or Mother Theresa and say, I’m giving it all up to pursue the truth.

The other problem with a corrupted paradigm is that in order to survive in it or even to thrive if you want to thrive in it, do you find ourself putting on different personae, different masks to make the grade? And does this remove you further asnd further and further from your true self, your authentic person?

If you keep getting the feeling that you’re the victim of a con game, maybe it’s time to re think our world. If you feel betrayed by the paradigm, if you were sold a bill of goods, if you do this, you’ll get that, if you were bait and switched, then maybe you need to stand up and say, no, stand up and extricate yourself from it, throw off the chains that bind you.

There’s self reponsibility here, no doubt. Take responsibility for yourself and what is happening to you. Fix it. And move on!

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