TAI CHI FOR CHRISTIANS
Tai Chi is an ancient Chinese Martial Art that is part of the Kung Fu family. It is also a noninvasive part of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Tai Chi works through simple movement forms to enhance health and well-being. It is also a very effective self-defense art.
We teach privately, here in La Porte, Indiana, and will travel to teach a group situation at your church. We also offer one-week and two-week private intensives, here in La Porte.
We have recently joined Martial Artists Against Bullying, an organization dedicated to helping overcome the bullying epidemic among our young people. Our ministry offers, free of charge, an Anti-Bullying Retreat Day to teach Christian young people between the ages of eight and thirteen the principles of negotiation and personal presentation, together with some handy, basic self-defense techniques.
For further information and to set up a meeting or a class, give me a call at (219) 324-8364 or drop me a line at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Who We Are
Saint Joseph of Arimathea Orthodox Church and House of Prayer is a Western Rite ministry of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, a canonical Orthodox Church in full communion with all of Canonical Orthodoxy. Our focus is on prayer and intercession, and on pro-life activism.
We were founded in 2011, under the Omophorion (protection) of His Eminence Metropolitan +HILARION (Kapral), First Hierarch of ROCOR,
with Father James Rosselli as our Rector.
CAN TAI CHI PRACTICE LEAD YOU TO ENLIGHTENMENT?
The short answer is, no. Jesus Christ leads you to Enlightenment.
Now for the long answer…
Enlightenment is a gift from God, Himself, which produces an objective and actual transformation of character by taking up residence in you, in the Person of the Holy Spirit. This sounds hard to us, but it is simple for God, Who is already Omnipresent: everywhere, at all times.
Doesn’t this mean He’s already in us? Yes it does. God dwells in us in the same way He dwells in all of nature. If He didn’t we would be nonfunctional, since it is the Holy Spirit Who animates all of nature. But it is the same impersonal way in which He dwells in everything, just as part of His Omnipresent, Uncreated Energy. We are, naturally, created in three parts: body, mind, and spirit. It is our spirit which animates our body and our mind. But it is in the same fallen condition as our body and mind, and in fact the rest of the creation.
Tai Chi can improve us spiritually, because it can improve us philosophically by putting us in touch with objective reality. The Tao, which is the philosophy behind Tai Chi, means “that which is.” Tai Chi can enlarge us, but putting us in touch with the universal energy, and it can improve our health and well-being: in its Qigong component, it’s a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine. The mysterious universal energy, however, is nothing more than the activity of the subatomic particles that are banging around us everywhere, inside and outside of us. They’re the building blocks of nature, and the things God has created to be nature’s fundamental elements.
But they’re not God. They’re creatures. God is the Creator. That very universal energy would have no life without the Holy Spirit’s presence to vivify it.
So, Tai Chi can improve us physically, mentally and spiritually. In fact, it can improve us quite a bit. But it cannot give us a new nature, just improve the existing one. Only God can give us a new nature, and that’s Enlightenment. The onset of new and expanded capabilities is great, but it isn’t Enlightenment. That comes in Christian Baptism.
Tai Chi, however, can help you bring about improvements in your new person, just as it was able to do in the old one. Its breathing, movement, and relaxation components are meditation aids, and are easily used as aids to Christian meditation. We sill have intellects that need to root themselves in the objective nature of reality, and Tai Chi’s principle of “mindfulness” helps us intellectually order ourselves to bring our study of Scripture and the Church Fathers into the ordinary reality of our daily lives. And, of course, it will still help us improve our health, and, since it’s a martial art, our capacity for both self-defense and self-restraint.