Peace through TCC practice

These articles from The Vital Force tell students’ stories of T’ai Chi Chih’s gifts.


“I did my practice to find peace”

By RH, Parma, Ohio

 Without a doubt, the last 18 months have been the most difficult in my life. My son was diagnosed with a brain tumor in May 2012. From that day until his death in October 2013, and through this grieving process, life has been a very different process. The world seems to move in a strange way, as if my life is separate from the whole.

 I did my best to focus on the positive through each of the three brain surgeries. Watching the process of radiation and chemotherapy was difficult – being aware of all that these protocols destroy. My son had been so physically fit and healthy.  He was an avid athlete (he qualified for the SWAT team of the FBI when he was 40), so the worst part was watching the gradual physical deterioration.

Through this incredibly difficult journey, I had one constant: my regular T’ai Chi Chih practice. I did my practice to find peace. I did my practice to find courage. I did it at the hospital when I needed to calm myself. I did my practice looking for hope. Each time I did my practice I felt a new beginning, and I could face it all again.

TCC brought me to the groundedness I needed to remain in the moment and with it came peace and knowing that in the end, we would all be okay. This too was part of the process of life experience.

I talk to my son, Joe every day, as I know he is near and I will see him again. I miss him in the physical. I do my TCC practice each day to find peace, hope and joy in this moment.


TCC’s Gentle Power

By SB, Richfield, Minnesota

In October 2012, my beloved husband of 40 years was diagnosed with lung cancer. It was a terrifying and devastating diagnosis. My T'ai Chi Chih practice helped me to stay grounded through all of the tests, scans, biopsies, surgeries and visits to the various doctors. We were told in the beginning that Jim's cancer was curable because it was contained in his left lung and that once removed, the cancer would be gone. That was not what the cancer had in mind.

Jim recovered well from the lung removal surgery in December but then something went terribly wrong in January. He could no longer tolerate the smell or taste of food and, in the end, lost over 100 pounds from October to mid-March. TCC kept me calm and helped me focus. Jim was in terrible pain that was helped by watching Sandy's seated TCC DVD. He could not physically follow the movements but watching her and listening to her voice helped him relax, decreased his pain and allowed him to sleep. We were also blessed by a healing visit from Antonia when she came to Minnesota for her annual retreat.

Jim died on March 16, 2013 surrounded by family. TCC helped both of us stay grounded through this difficult experience. It provided comfort and helped us accept what was happening and to transition from one life to a new one for us both. TCC helped me carry on, offering quiet strength and comfort in the gentle rhythmic movements that transcend the present realities of life.

Reprinted by permission from the February 2014 issue of The Vital Force.

Got #Peace?

"T‘ai Chi Chih has changed my life,” say many people who practice TCC regularly. In fact, was one of the most common statements of gratitude TCC originator Justin Stone (1916-2012) heard from students over many years. Improvements in physical, emotional, and mental health are enjoyed by students of all ages – children, teens, young adults, mid-lifers and seniors. The benefits are often quickly apparent to newcomers, as well as cumulative for those who have practiced TCC for years and decades.

Peace Is One of the Most-Often Cited Benefits of Practicing TCC

"As soon as we began the first stance, I really put my mind in 'focus mode' and I definitely felt the Chi. Wow. When I left class I felt extremely relaxed and completely stress free. It was as if someone completely wiped my slate clean.” – TCC student, Prospect Park, PA

"I’ve loved doing TCC. I came into college very stressed out and this course gave me a place to be calm.” – TCC student, Prospect Park, PA

"I‘ve been noticing some of the effects of TCC: My overall stress level has definitely decreased and my body feels rejuvenated even more than last week.” – TCC student, Prospect Park, PA

"My children students tell me that TCC practice makes them happy and that it takes away their fears.” Judy Hendricks, TCC teacher, Albuquerque, NM (Reprinted with permission from Blooming the Flower: T’ai Chi Chih Experiences, Vol. II)

"TCC tills the soil so that I can allow writings, experiences, and conversation to take root and show me a softer way to move through life.” – Connie Hyde, TCC teacher (Reprinted with permission from Blooming the Spirit: The Spiritual Dimension of T’ai Chi Chih)

Unless otherwise indicated, all quotations are printed with permission from The Vital Force, the quarterly journal of T’ai Chi Chih. The Blooming the Flower series and Blooming the Spirit are published by the T’ai Chi Chih Association, Albuquerque, NM.