Tai Chi?


#1

Are Tai Chi and Roman Catholicism compatible?


#2

I have but a limited understanding of the history of Tai Chi but what I do know suggests that some of the principles could be contradictory to Roman Catholicism. When I took martial arts, I remember my instructor refering to Tai Chi as “actually the deadliest of all martial arts”. He suggested that many of the movements and energy manipulation could be deadly blows in combat. I remember one particular movement was described as the ripping of an opponents throat. So… all that being said, IMO, it may not be consistent with Roman Catholic values but that begs the question, are any martial arts compatible? Self defense is always justified but ideally one could defend oneself without seriously harming or killing the other. That is why I am so intrigued by Akido. I am not currently training but hope to do so soon.
BTW, are you a Philosophy major too?


#3

I know priests who use Tai Chi for their daily exercise so I hardly think they would be committing mortal sins every day by doing that.
Also martial arts is a way to defend yourself and others which is not a sin.
What would be wrong is to include accept and practice the spiritual aspects of any marial art but to practise only for exercise or self defence is okay.


#4

Priests are sinners too, unfortunately. And some of them sin gravely, even more unfortunately.

Not to say it’s invariably a mortal sin since it’s not for us to judge the state of their souls.

Learning self-defence isn’t a sin, otherwise soldiers and members of shooting clubs would be in a constant state of sin. Unprovoked violence would be.

I agree, however, that if you can divorce the spiritual and new-agey aspects of tai chi from the physical exercise it would be fine.


#5

Been boxing since age 8,spent 10 years in taekwondo and have been doing kung fu for over 2 years now.I started to pick up tai chi a while back but stopped learning/practicing it.Not mainly cuz of the God issue,but I found it too slow and boring for me,on top of a nagging feeling that it may be counter productive to my Faith.

I should also say that I never really questioned if matial arts and being Catholic was compatable until tc.It was’nt the actual tc that bothered me,it was all the qi gong that went along with it.For me something just did’nt feel right about it.But thats me.

I just do kung fu now a days,the qi-gong in my style is more approached as stance training.For me its just excercise with a martial platform.

But if you feel the Holy Spirit telling you something is off base,maybe its your thinking.Talk to your Priest.After talking to mine,I was able to come to peace with it.Again,I am not saying tc is bad,it just was’nt for me.

Frank


#6

I would avoid Tai Chi, as it is very much associated and part of Eastern Religions which are against the first comandment. I have a long article by Michael Prabhu on it which would not fit on this site, but if you want it, feel free to e-mail me via this site and I will send it to you.


#7

Most folks just use Tai Chi for exercising and meditation. I see nothing evil in that.


#8

#9

Tai Chi and many of the martial arts will expose one to the spurious glitter of Eastern mysticism. It will also likely put you in the close company of enthusiasts for Eastern mysticism.

thechrismyster mentioned boxing for self defense. I would add plain old wrestling for ground skills.

Scott


#10

So long as the practice is for exercise, and neither an endorsement or practice of the Eastern mysticism behind it, you should be okay.


#11

I am a stout Roman Catholic and I took Tai Chi. There is nothing wrong with it. I took it strictly for exercise, flexibility, and to relax. It teaches you to be like bamboo. When a hard wind blows, it sways and bends, unlike the Oak which will snap in half. I think that is something we could all put into our lives. When something upsets us, sway and bend (be forgiving), do not snap. If I remember correctly, Jesus taught us to be forgiving:D

Go to a Tai Chi class and see the average age there of the people. It’s around 100:p
Once you go to one, you will see how non-violent it is. For those who have never been, do some research first before commenting.


#12

info on krav maga here just fyi - listing of clubs kravmaga-clubs.com/home.html


#13

I didn’t say it would certainly be a danger to one’s faith, but there are potential spiritual risks when dealing with programs that have their basis in non-Christian religions and philosophies and it would be foolish to give it an unreflected free pass.

I took it strictly for exercise, flexibility, and to relax. It teaches you to be like bamboo. When a hard wind blows, it sways and bends, unlike the Oak which will snap in half. I think that is something we could all put into our lives. When something upsets us, sway and bend (be forgiving), do not snap. If I remember correctly, Jesus taught us to be forgiving:D

Like on another thread, just because something can give benefits does not necessarily make it accpetable.

Go to a Tai Chi class and see the average age there of the people. It’s around 100:p

???

Once you go to one, you will see how non-violent it is.

That is not the issue.

For those who have never been, do some research first before commenting.

While I have not taken Tai Chi, I have observed and read on Tai Chi, have taken Karate and Aikido, so I think I am qualified to comment on it. I advise extreme caution.


#14

Actually, I was not directing that comment to you nor anyone else that has posted. It seems that on a lot of these forums, people give information from what they think, not what is factual.
I firmly believe Tai Chi is harmless, even in philosophy. I do agree, you have to be cautious in choosing your class and instructor…but only if your faith is weak. If it is strong, then there should be no problem discerning what to take and what to leave. But, as far as exercise and balance, studies have shown Tai Chi to be of benefit.


#15

As a martial artist, I do dabble in Tai Chi.
There is a scientific explanation for the concept of qi, so it isn’t necessarily subscribing to a different cosmology. In other words, one can practice qigong or some other art involving qi, while ignoring the Daoist origins.
Also, Tai Chi, or Taijiquan, is one of the least “deadly” martial arts. The strikes and throws are not meant to severely injure the opponent, but just to stop their attack.

So, as far as I can tell, it’s not a sin to practice Tai Chi, so long as it doesn’t lead to practicing Daoism.


#16

The reason that older people like Tai Chi is because the movements are slow and that they are easy on the joints. It is also low impact which is wonderful for older people. I know many older people who have found that by exercising using Tai Chi they have increased their strength and even reduced joint pain. They do it for exercise not for any spiritual reasons.


#17

Hi,

People of all ages can practice tai chi and transfer it to everyday life. The age group that benefits the most of tai chi is the seniors. As we grow old, the health condition deteriorates. The strength lessens, the joint mobility decreases and the elasticity fades. The tendency of falling increases with age because of the body’s imbalance that may result to injuries. Adults practicing tai chi can regain the balance and strength.


#18

Win loose or draw; Tai Chi is not any type of practice for self defense. At one time in my life I myself practiced it. It would be a life long journey. taoist.org/content/standard.asp

What is the Chi in Tai Chi? That’s the question. It is the same force used by those who attempt to direct it in Feng Shui. Chi is the life force that powers the planets, the world, and each person. ( according to the Chinese who have, if you will, invented it )

In practicing Tai Chi, one brings down the Chi force into themselves like a lightning rod attracts lightning. Yes, it keeps you limber and stretched out, however, that it just incidental. Its main goal, the power behind it, is channeling the Chi force. Is it spiritual force? It may be like electricity or gravity. An unseen force and not a type of religious practice. I tend to think not but I am not sure.

What do I think about Tai Chi and Feng Shui and the like ? I am not sure. Its a question I have asked at this very web sit. It may be an offense against the First Commandment.

Did not the Psalmist ask, why should I burn incense to the mountain gods when I can burn incense the the one God who created the Mountains and all there in?


#19

:rolleyes:ohh boy. Did I ever join the wrong forum…sheesh


#20

Wynyard Baptist Church bans sneaky Tai Chi devotees
The Australian Read Full Article
THE forces of eastern mysticism and Christianity have had an almighty clash in a small rural town on Tasmania’s northwest coast.

Worth reading comments to find out some frank words sent by Australians. I am a Catholic, will always be one, and will do my taichi exercises to relieve my body of aches and pains, there is no religious overtones to the gentle swinging and stretching of the body. This is my first posting and will not join any extremist forums.

My sentiments are with this poster who wrote:

  • ohh boy. Did I ever join the wrong forum…sheesh*

Joe


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