Category Archives: Personal Stories

Personal Stories from beginners to long time members.

Our Youngest Volunteer

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26-month-old Valentin has already started on his Taoist path, volunteering at the International Centre at Orangeville for several months over this Canadian summer.

With his parents Nicoline and Ted, he arrived from France last month and has already been helping with the temples, gardening, washing dishes, cleaning, taking out the recycyling and compost bins, and entertaining the other volunteers and centre staff.

Valentin has also helped our tai chi; we can observe his good posture and watching him roll around on the floor we can see where the movement starts in his spine.

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Filed under Canada, National Updates, Personal Stories, Youth

99 Years Young: Taoist Tai Chi Society of Great Britain Participant Celebrates 99th Birthday

 May Hillier (red shirt) celebrated her 99th birthday surrounded by friends in her local class. She began to practise Taoist Tai Chi® arts with the Taoist Tai Chi Society of GB in 2002 and has been an enthusiastic participant since, regularly attending the Monday morning class at St Anne’s Scout Hall in Cardiff and many social occasions such as Christmas and Chinese New Year celebrations. Her favourite move is Wave Hands like Clouds and she even practised foundation exercises in bed while she was in hospital one time. May has said that her greatest regret is that she didn’t discover these arts earlier in her life.

May’s daughter, June is also a committed practitioner and volunteer and instructed for many years. May’s friend Vera (white shirt) is only a youth at 94 years old. We wish to celebrate many more birthdays with them both.

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Filed under Great Britain, National Updates, Personal Stories, Seniors, Society News, Tai Chi for All

Greetings from Dunedin

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by | November 14, 2014 · 4:42 pm

Autumn Moon Banquet in Costa Rica

Enjoying ourselves with an exquisite banquet, more than 70 members of the Costa Rica Taoist Tai Chi Association celebrated the Mid-Autumn Moon Banquet last Saturday, September 13th. Our MC was Liseth Weigelt, a 24-year-old young woman diagnosed 10 years ago with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, who has been practicing Taoist Tai Chi for the past 2 years, gaining lots of benefits for her physical health and wellbeing. After spending 5 hours preparing 300 won tons for the banquet with two other members she was on her feet for another 5 hours MC ing. After starting her Taoist Tai Chi on the floor as she was too weak even to sit, and her contribution was a pure joy to experience.

AMB Tine (4)Many new members received the opportunity to learn more about diligent practice, responsibility and propriety when she shared the legend of Chang-O, entertaining everybody with beautiful images of the story, one of the most important holidays in Chinese communities around the world. Tales of mooncakes and the Jade rabbit followed before a beautifully scripted and managed links to testimonials from Marielos and Fransisco and illustrated sections on our help with families in need in the community and the development of our three new satellite locations. We had 12 new members from Tibás alone, for their first Banquet.

Autumn Moon 2014 (58)The special guest table included Mr. Rafael Gamboa, the building owner; Mrs. Roxinia Arguedas, our accountant and Dr. Ricardo Sáenz, Rheumatologist, who came with his young daughter. Dr. Sáenz has been frequently referring people to the arts without knowing who we were, but aware of the benefits of practicing Taoist Tai Chi arts. In gratitude to this selfless recommendation to his patients we wanted to receive him as our special guest for the night.

Starting with Indonesian prawn crackers and 3 different won ton varieties made by three Club members, DJ, Katherine, and Liseth, we opened the menu and relished the flavors of a great Chinese dinner.

The music came along with three Club members: Phillip Reed, guitar; Dimas Barrantes, voice and harmonica; and DJ Gonzalez guitar with a very sweet melodic voice (I guess that three was our lucky number for the evening!)

During the banquet we shared stories, images and videos about CIT Week & International Awareness Day, also about our next big new International Centre project, The Fenway! It was an opportunity to remind all the attendants of the many ways we can be involved in its development, showing that when we come together, we practice more than 108 moves and we can make this is an opportunity to keep offering the arts for future generations to come.

Without a doubt…a lovely evening!

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Filed under Costa Rica, Events, National Updates, Personal Stories, Regional Updates, Society News

Taoist Tai Chi™ weekend Sept 19-21: From a Newbie’s perspective

Smiling faces, friendly greetings, sincere, caring, helpful people, with a sense of well being. This is who you will find at the International Taoist Tai Chi™ Centre beginners’ class. The first weekend accelerated class was held September 19th – 21st.

As you drive up towards the entrance you see statues and flags, several buildings that pique your curiosity, dragons and cauldrons, flowers, and did I mention flags, lots of flags, from several countries. Paths made of different materials, trails to explore, trees, clouds and as you step out of your vehicle: fresh air. There is a sense of sacredness and serenity here.

Even before the first hello is exchanged you feel welcomed.

Arriving for dinner and time to settle into a room allows time for registration before class. A tour of where linens are and directions to the meditation suites are given. Bernice and Sharon are greeters for registration and name tags are distributed.  Before taking one step into the practice hall, Delores, Jane, Mar and so many others gave a mini tour of the centre, sharing their knowledge.

Time for class to commence. Do you remember your first class?

As participants file in creating lines I position myself near the front knowing I will need to hear the instructor. Fortunately, the class had many experienced participants as it became clear early-on that memorizing the 108 moves takes time. Ah, acceptance, a good lesson. I was here for the weekend and was determined to enjoy myself. Let go, breathe, and follow along.

The movement, the silence, the collective consciousness, how beautiful is this! Everyone is a mirror image of each other, reflecting a practice that is tremendously powerful.

After class, some stayed on to continue their practice, some stayed to visit and have a snack. The kitchen is always open and you are invited to help with preparation for meals and clearing and washing of dishes. The honour system is in place, all doors open. How refreshing. Yes, the food is delicious.

I settled in for the night feeling relaxed and energized at the same time. Although I awoke with vivid dreams, I was able to fall back asleep and felt refreshed in the morning and ready for a full day. Chanting in the temple, breakfast, three two hour classes with breaks for meals,and a tour of the property.

Each class offered instruction, repetition, tea, biscuits, fruit and story telling. Lots of laughter, some tears, exchanges of emails and and on Sunday, a raffle. I will wear my tai chi hoodie proudly.

Each person has a story, what brought them to this moment, why they sought out Taoist Tai Chi™ and each story has a happy ending. Each story has a happy ending, did you hear that?

Tai Chi equals equanimity, a connection is made, sublte and transformative.  As you leave, a realization that the journey has just begun and that you will be back. Tranquility stays with you and can be accessed at anytme.

Tai Chi is truly for everyone.

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Filed under Canada, International Centre Events, Personal Stories, Tai Chi for All, Testimonials

Veteran Copes with Spinal Cord injury using the Taoist Tai Chi™ Arts

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Filed under Personal Stories, Society News, Tai Chi for All, Testimonials, USA

“Taoist Tai Chi™ Society to hold open house” – article in Tallahassee Democrat

(You may also read the story here)

Sue Ebbers 2:29 p.m. EDT August 29, 2014

Being healthy is really important to me — as it is to many of my fellow Tallahasseeans.

But it seems in our Western society, “healthy” can be increasingly based on taking medication — often lots of it. I am a hearty endorser of the right medication and I know that medication can and does save lives. However, I am equally convinced that a good amount of medication, prescribed and over-the-counter, is often only about addressing symptoms rather than the real problem. We often look for quick fixes to feel better, but they don’t typically solve the problem.

There are other ways to address health issues — in collaboration with medical doctors, and sometimes instead of them. I have found that in Chinese medicine, and particularly in practicing the Taoist Tai Chi™ Internal Arts, that these practitioners work to address the root cause of medical problems.

These challenges are often due to such contributing factors as living lives that lack balance and having circulation that is blocked by stress and poor structural alignment. Taoist Tai Chi™ is often not the fast way to address health challenges, but because it tends to address the true causal factors of an issue, the problem often disappears or becomes manageable with far less medication.

Almost eight years ago, I followed my husband in taking a beginning class at the Taoist Tai Chi™ Society on Thomasville Road, and I have continued my Tai Chi practice to this day. I have seen amazing things happen there — to me and to others — and I have heard of amazing things that have happened to others all over the world to those who have persisted in what is called the “dual cultivation of mind and body.” It is for those reasons that I persist.

What have I seen? A woman who no longer has to take heart medication. Another woman – over 60 — with two herniated disks who now is as flexible as a 40-year old. An elderly man who is able to flexibly move what used to be a frozen shoulder. A woman getting taller as she ages. People with MS, Parkinson’s, strokes, traumatic brain injuries — the list goes on — whose lives have been significantly restored because of a series of 108 specific, continuous movements that are designed to work with the body as a system to achieve better health.

Through diligent practices of these 108 moves over time, I have found my Type A personality has become almost a Type B+! Because of my work in Taoist Tai Chi™, I can actually relax, even during stressful times.

There are moments where I feel so connected to life, because I am so much more connected within myself. And as I get older, I know that with Tai Chi I have the best shot at remaining flexible, balanced and healthy.

True change typically doesn’t happen overnight. Turning the clock back on one’s health issues takes time and diligence. Like water over rock, the rounding of edges takes time. But the results I have seen and experienced have convinced me that the Tai Chi can address the root causes of problems, not just the peripherals.

If you’re interested, I hope you will join me at the society’s next open house from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the National Center, 2100 Thomasville Road. During the open house, you will learn how to do some Tai Chi, experience brief lectures on specific impacts of Tai Chi on your health, take a tour of the center and get a taste of this amazing art.

At 1 p.m., stay and join us for a free vegetarian meal (called a “jai”). Consider signing up for a beginning class – they all begin between Sunday and Sept. 13. You’ll be making a modest investment and potentially reaping phenomenal dividends. I hope to meet you there.

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Filed under In the News, Personal Stories, Society News, USA