Tai Chi and Flow

My sifu, realized the physical limitations of my asthmatic state when I would become wheezy early on, during Wing Chun Gung Fu training sessions. Rather than enabling my weakness or forcing my body to adapt to the oxygen deprived state, sifu started to teach me Tai Chi. A few minutes of each class were devoted to breathing slowly, learning the forms and relaxing into the movement. His goal simple, that it would improve my Gung Fu skill overall.

Gung Fu is my obsession. I have numerous books on Wing Chun and a few on Tai Chi. I would read then re-read and annotate the margins and gaps, highlighting the important aspects. And from time-to-time, I’d make my own unique observations. But at some point, the study has to make sense. It has to be assimilated and the student has to ‘make it his own’. I now realize that all I managed to do by reading such books, was to take away from the process of self-discovery by failing to focus on the most important requirement; practice.

Two days ago the sun beamed down and my only desire was to go into that evening sun and bathe in it. I started to do the Tai Chi form, self conscious that I was being watched at first. When I had finished I started again, from the beginning, but found that I was still forcing the movements, whilst continuing to be aware that I was in clear view of neighbours. Each time I finished, I found the sun permeating my skin, willing me onwards, and I would begin again. After several attempts the form became unforced and I lost myself completely within the motions, losing all sense of where I was. The flow consumed me, chanelling through me, a feeling that became overwhelming.


Gung Fu has freed me. Finally.


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