“Words don’t teach, experience does.”
I often refer to the quote above, when practicing Qigong/Tai Chi. To me, the experience of both modalities is what keeps me coming back to learn more. It’s been 25+ years, since I went to my first free lecture demo on Tai Chi, and met Sifu Gardner.
At that time, Red Lotus School of Movement, was located on Café Pierpont downtown in Salt Lake City. That first evening, after listening to him, practicing some simple movements, and feeling the effects of Tai Chi, I knew this is where I needed to be.
You see, at that time, I was an aerobic instructor, who also taught step, and strength training. My dear Soul Sis, Trina invited me to check out Tai Chi. As she put it, “I was meant to do more than teach people how to count to eight.”
Beginning in the fall of 1997, I experienced the last session that Sifu taught from beginning to end. I believe we had been practicing with him for less than three months, when he went around to each one of us—those of us that were left—and asked, “Would I give him a year, and continue to practice?”
Obviously, I said yes. And, after the one-year mark, it was a commitment to three, five and then ten years. After ten years, Sifu explained we were barely scratching the surface of experiencing what Tai Chi has to offer us.
In January 2009, Sifu Gardner made me a (Sifu) teacher, and a disciple in our yang-style linage. Saying yes to becoming a sifu, is a commitment for a lifetime. You see, I promised to teach and share Qigong/Tai Chi for the rest of my life. Which has become my passion—this journey is an infinite onion. I am continuously pulling back the layers of understanding, and experiencing what is—not in what I need to see—but what I feel. Which is a lifetime of progress.
Experiential science is simply that, feeling first instead of seeing. Western medicine is slowly starting to catch up with what Eastern medicine has known for quite some time.
Being healthy begins with prevention, instead of waiting until it becomes a problem. Seeing our body, mind, emotions, and spirit as one—balancing them out. Instead of strictly working on the physical.
I believe when we feel our emotions first, move through our stuck energy, whether it is a continuous self-critical thought or a habitual habit, our mind slows down, our spirit rises, and our physical body follows suit. Creating health in all four bodies.
Four is the number of foundation. When we sit on a chair, and one of the legs isn’t the same height as the other three, there is imbalance. It’s the same with us, when it comes to balance. Except our balance is fluid and moving, where the chair is static.
We may need more movement one day, and less the next. More meditation and contemplation than action. And, the only one who knows that is you. How do we do that? By feeling into our hearts, and trusting it will always guide us in the direction of what’s for our highest well-being.
Which brings me back to Qigong/Tai Chi, they are a vehicle to bring all four bodies into balance. As Sifu Gardner has said many times over the years, “Tai Chi is life.”
If you would like to experience a weekend with Sifu, we are having a Qigong Weekend at the end of August, 2023. This is a rare event. It is for everyone—those who have no experience, a little, those who currently practice, and for teachers who would like to expand their perspective. I will be there to co-facilitate both days. Giving you more personalized attention when we get to the movement sections.
I look forward to sharing this experiential weekend with you.
Remember, science isn’t always seen first, it sometimes it’s felt…