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Newcastle Tai Chi (Benton)
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If the essence of the person is weak and fearful, he may put on a gentle act, but the reality he manifests is hard. A person compensates for internal weakness by becoming aggressive and defensive. A transformation is required, one that cannot occur when a person sees taijiquan as an empty dance or a shoving match.
(Wolfe Lowenthal)

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When standing we should have a sensation of being more in our heels than the front of the foot. However, there should be no tendency to tighten the toes or lift them off the floor. Let the toes lie freely and allow the whole foot to 'soften'. Let the weight go down 'into' the floor so your feel grounded. This gives a firm base from which to think of lengthening upwards. Free your ankles so there is a little sway available to help discover upright balance. In order to enjoy standing without strain we should never get fixed in position.

(Noel Kingsley)

Although exercise can over-tax the body, the number 1 way in which the body is over-taxed is everyday bad body use.
Stress is placed on the knees, back, shoulders and neck through 'normal' sloppy habits and laziness.

Poor poise, imbalanced muscle use, being overweight and hunching over mobile phones (steering wheels, computers, watching TV or eating food) all lead to significant strain and eventual damage.

Over-taxing the body can be addressed through careful, safe practice.

By contrast, over-taxing the mind is far more insidious and difficult to detect.
Politics, news, gossip, media, TV, opinions, fashions, negative emotions, competitiveness - all put the mind under duress. They create frustration, anxiety and a feeling of helplessness.

Try switching off all electronic devices. How quiet is it now?

Instead of flooding your mind with stimulation, lie quietly, read calming books or meditate. Reclaim your mind. 

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Can anything be stupider than that a man has the right to kill me because he lives on the other side of a river and his ruler has a quarrel with mine, though I have not quarrelled with him?

(Blaise Pascal)
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