Say it again Saturday

May 12th, 2012 by Jan

I’m not sure when I posted this story, maybe 4 or 5  years ago — but this morning, as I was rifling through some “old ideas” I came across it. I think I’ll start a “Say it again Saturday” series. I say the same thing over and over again anyway — and some stories are worth repeating. Plus, this will give me a chance to sort through my files and maybe polish things up a bit. Yes ma’am, blue bikes and shiny!
Walkin or talkin
A young girl went to her father one afternoon. “Tell me about sex”. She asked. The father stumbled and hemmed and hawed and then finally said, “Why don’t you ask your mother?” The girl, let out a big sigh, “Well, because I don’t really want to know that much about it”.

Ken once told me that, I tend to hit people with a fire-hose of information, when I’m asked about tai chi. He said most people are being polite and they are really just asking for a sip of water from the vast well.

I’ve taken years to learn this lesson. Perhaps it’s because I found passion and excitement in this art. I enthusiastically want to share it. I want to tell everyone how great it is, and that the practice of tai chi changed my life, and could probably change theirs too.  I want them to see that it is not just a bunch of slow dance like movements for old people or hippies. The study of tai chi is hard, deep, and huge work. I want everyone to know that the art is alive and well in hearts and legs of people like me. I’ve talked so much about Tai Chi that in some circles I’m known as “Tai Chi Jan”.

Nowadays, I’m learning to keep it simple when asked about the art and my part in it. I understand that not everyone wants to know so much. So, I temper my answers. Sometimes I don’t even talk about it, I bite my tongue and smile when I hear someone say they did tai chi once.

The other day I read one of those little slogans that help us get through life… you know, bumper sticker philosophy. I read, “Talk and walk are only one letter, but worlds apart”. Ain’t it the truth! I can talk all I want to about tai chi, but my practice of it is what counts. I walk in the benefits of my own work.

I didn’t know when I began to learn that this practice would reveal to me who I am. I didn’t know the study would reveal so much and go so deep. I thought it would be a Tuesday night nice exercise class. I was surprised when I found out I was studying a martial art. Yet, persistent mindful movement has become the safe place for me to explore my all of fears, doubts, dramas, traumas as well as my joys and celebrations. How can I explain that to anyone simply?

I’ve heard it said, that Tai Chi people talk too much. We can. Most of the Tai Chi people I know like talking about what is going on in their practice because it affects everything else in their life. “Look what I’m learning,” we tend to exclaim.

I find learning is the greatest expression of creativity; not the just consumption of information. For me walking in that expression is more interesting and speaks much louder than anything I could possibly say.

5 thoughts on “Say it again Saturday

  1. Laur

    Exactly! Thanks for sharing your wordsand thoughts. My friends and family hear it all of the time, what a difference for me in my six months with Dorian. Life changing, indeed.

  2. Allyson

    Great story! The nice thing about sharing your enthusiasm though, is that people get the impression that it’s something really interesting — so maybe they’re a little more receptive.


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