Posted by: Mike Ferruggia | May 5, 2009

Interdependence and Co-Reliance in Tai Chi

So, having just said what I said, I realize we also have to understand that there is a connection that holds us all together, person to person, and with the world at large.  Hinduism is all about the realization of the unity of all existence. We do need one another, for love, for companionship, for community, for civilization. We depend on our teachers to teach us, parents to guide us, friends to bond with, lovers to grow with, doctors to heal, and on and on. It can be lonely going it alone. Even the I Ching, or Book of Changes, tells us it is our duty to create community for like minded people, sort of a tai chi community, so people will have a place to belong to. Belonging is a deep seeded need in humanity, and it’s a need that is often exploited, so it’s important that there are people like us who can be trusted to create the right kind of community, a place where a person can be free, can be independent, can be self reliant, can make his or her own choices in life. Totalitarianism and fascism are the scariest of things because it strips one of their identity and self, usually by force and violence.

In tai chi, when we move to the next level of push hands, we learn to cooperate with one another as we experience the push and pull of the universe, and we develop our listening jin, or listening power, which can be applied not just martially, but in our lives, in our interaction with others–learning how to listen and cooperate and act as one.

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