Set into Wudang Mountain just below the Purple Heaven Palace is a Daoist school of Tai Chi. In this tranquil setting students and teachers practice the Tao. Standing meditation is a perfect example of non-action an underlying theme of Tao Te Ching. Verse 43 tells us “In this world there are few that can understand teaching without words and accomplishing without action.” Standing Meditation lies at the heart of the internal styles of Chinese Martial Arts and is a primary exercise practiced throughout Wudang Mountain.
The Tao teaches us that Earth is Yin and Heaven is Yang with man positioned between… drawing Qi from both Heaven and Earth. In Standing Meditation the body and mind are being restored. In this posture with arms held in front, the nervous system and heart are working without stress. Body and mind are relaxed. Legs and back muscles are strengthened. It is a process of rejuvenation.
Verse 16 of Tao Te Ching begins… “Bring yourself steadily to absolute emptiness”. In Taoism it is called “Wu-ji”… the mother of Tai Chi. It is to enter the absolute void and is the deepest state of meditation. In other terms the separation of Yin and Yang forms the complex cycles found in nature. The five elements described as Wood, Metal, Water, Earth and Fire together with Yin and Yang are the building blocks of our universe or in Taoist words… “The Ten Thousand Things.”
Man’s relationship with nature is an underlying theme of the Tao and scientific evidence shows that our environment has a large impact on our health. The practice of Standing Meditation can expose an unhealthy lifestyle. Only by standing still can we know if we are truly relaxed. Joints and muscle lose stiffness. As the heart rate lowers and blood circulation increases, you feel warm and a sense of elation flows over you. The Tao Te Ching reminds us that “Man at birth is soft and flexible. At death he is rigid and hard.”
This is a three minute excerpt taken from our latest release The Immortal Path, The Tao of Tai Chi Chuan. This and other films are available for purchase on this website. Please watch The Immortal Path trailer.