April 26, 2017

Book Review: The Tao of Tai Chi: The Making of a New Science by Bill Douglas

The Tao of Tai Chi: The Making of a New Science

Bill Douglas
SmartTaichi Publishing, 2016
Paperback, 246 pp
ISBN 978-1537117935

The Tao of Tai Ch
i is a very informative, personal, and eclectic book perched on the “boundary” between science and spirituality. Half philosophy, half autobiography, the book gives insights into one man’s journey with taiji (tai chi).

Author Bill Douglas is known to many as the founder of World Tai Chi and Qigong Day, which began in 1999.
For those who are curious about the event’s origin and founder, this book will introduce the thinking and motivation behind this labor of love that has helped spread taiji around the world. Douglas is also author of widely selling The Complete Idiots Guide to T’ai Chi and Qigong (Alpha, 2012).

The Tao of Tai Ch is written more as a conversation with the author. In essence, it is organized as a flow of topics, eschewing standard book formating and page numbers.

Blending of practice into daily life is a given for Douglas. Going to the supermarket becomes a lesson in letting go and seeing the beauty of the universe:

“If I rush into a supermarket I am in a Yang state of mind. I am on a mission with a set of tasks I must perform, holding them, sometimes squeezing them in my heart and mind. However, when I sit in my car before entering the store and ‘breathe’ and ‘let go,’ and fall into that Yin state where my mind lets go of mental control (and my knowing awareness allows the light of the universe, the lightness of the universe, to expand through it), then my spine and nervous system’s sensory awareness lets go of trying to feel or trying not to feel....

“I feel the cool air conditioner on my face as I walk through the doors of the supermarket,. I see the extraordinary beauty of the eggplant’s purple majesty, succulent and massive in its glory. The golden yellow of bananas and peppers, the smells of fruits and flowers...

“I still get things I need done, but it is a completely different reality now.”

This is an inspirational book suited for all readers.

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