Change

When I started Taoist Tai Chi® practice, there were many things that I had a hard time doing physically without pain; getting dressed, putting my socks on, sitting, getting up, taking long walks … These seemingly small movements affected the quality of my life and even my attitude towards life.

I never thought Taoist Tai Chi® arts would change my life immensely when I stepped into my first class. I remember the question the instructor asked about what we felt after three months of practice.  I realized I was enjoying it despite my pain and I shared the feeling of joy with them. Over time, that joy brought healing and ease to the pain.

When I practice, I explore how to do a movement without triggering pain. Pain becomes a guide. After the session when I return home, I like to repeat the moves and try to catch the same feelings I felt during the session so that I would not forget. Sometimes, I concentrate on just one moment of the movement and work on the feeling. The kick was one of the moves I had a hard time doing properly. When I did it with confidence for the first time, I came home, practiced again and again. I was repeating the kick with such childish joy with a full smiling face, in every direction. Am I doing it perfectly, no! But I can put on my socks standing up now. 

I still have pain and I still have difficulties with many movements. I know that I have plenty of things to learn and work on. When I look back on where I’ve come from, I feel a sense of hope, happiness and gratitude. I can’t thank FLK enough. His teachings made my life much better.

~Kadriye

Wong Dai Sin Festival

Participants of Fung Loy Kok Institute of Taoism around the world chant to celebrate the festival of Wong Dai Sin. He was a simple shepherd who displayed great virtue and is said to have cultivated immortality by practising the Taoist Arts. His story tells us that with a good heart anyone can cultivate themselves through Taoist practice. FLK has a temple specially dedicated to Wong Dai Sin on Steeles Avenue in Toronto that everyone is welcome to visit.  

Mid-Autumn Festival

Fung Loy Kok Institute of Taoism participants from around the world chant in celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival. The autumn moon is a time when families and friends come together to appreciate what we received over the past year. Together we wish everyone good health and longevity. 

All Souls Festival Reflection

During the All Souls Festival I saw respect and caring for the souls who have passed over and the love and caring that was given through the acts of chanting and the many pledges.  Seeing the altars carefully prepared was beautifully sacred and inspired me to set up my own altar in my home.  This act has brought me peace and reverence. I am so grateful to have been a part of this celebration.

~ Linda

Happy Birthday Felicia

A few days ago we, at the Greater Miami Branch, had a very special celebration. Felicia Ponzano, a participant of the Taoist Tai Chi Society of the USA for the past 28 years, reached her 100th birthday! Not only that, but the week prior to her birthday, she had successfully renewed her precious driver’s license—precious because she cherishes her independence. As she was leaving the office, beaming with happiness with her license in hand, the officer that had just renewed her the license mentioned to those nervous souls waiting for their turn that she was going to be 100 years old. The place came down with applause. They asked her how she keeps so well. Her answer was the same she gives to everyone: “Because I have been doing Taoist Tai Chi for 28 years! ” Felicia is an inspiration to us all.

Portland Branch Participants Offer their First Demo in Over Two Years

On July 16, 2022, members of the Portland Taoist Tai Chi® branch held an all-day demo at TeaFestPDX.  The branch has participated in this event since its inception six years ago and has enjoyed a very positive relationship with the organizers. The event returned this year after a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19. 70 vendors of teas, teawares showed up, and visitors could enjoy Asian foods, books, classes on teas, a classic British Tea, and other tea-related exhibits. Fifteen participants from the Portland branch volunteered to make it an energizing and successful event. As usual we served iced pu’erh at our booth.

In previous years the branch offered free, shortened classes that were well attended. Due to COVID, only demos were offered this year. Still, a few attendees couldn’t resist jumping in to move with the group. 

Among the enthusiastic visitors to our booth was a woman who had previously practiced Taoist Tai Chi® arts in Chicago, a young man who had lost contact with us after completing his Beginning Class, and an older man who came to TeaFestPDX specifically to find us. Volunteers enjoyed this opportunity to spend the day together and to reconnect with our community.  

~Judy Weber

All Souls Festival – Reflections

Many participants have reflected on their experiences during the recent All Souls Festival celebrations. Below are some of the comments received on Facebook.

I feel the All Souls Festival is a time of special connection for us with our ancestors and ALL souls. And feeling it so strongly now, that the connection carries on throughout the year. I feel humbled by this feeling. Thank you.

~Shelley

Thank you for the peace and harmony through the message of this post. Helping us through sorrow after the loss of a really kind friend. Helping to find joy and the value of the daily moments. 

~Zsofia

Thank you for the enlightening talks about the importance and significance of the All Souls Festival.

~Oimei

Much caring, dedication and working together making for a very successful All Souls Festival! I participated on Zoom but certainly felt like I was part of it. I experienced the peace from the chanting and felt I had helped with the intention of the Festival. Thank you to all!!

~Barbara

All Souls Festival Conclusion

Throughout the vast world
May there be no anxiety and no hindrance.
The cycles of death and life go on;
What else could there be?
If you go when you must go,
How could you not be at ease?
Turn your mind to the Tao
And deliverance will quickly come!

Chanting encouraging souls of the departed to let go of attachments and be delivered from suffering

Honoring and Aiding

There is a Chinese saying “When the dead are at peace, then the living shall prosper.” All Souls Festival gives the living an opportunity to express filial piety, harmony and dedication.  In honouring and aiding the dead during All Souls Festival, we reduce suffering and bring blessings to the worlds of the living and the dead. 

Incense offerings during the All Souls Festival comfort the souls.

Goon Yam Precious Announcements

Goon Yam, Deity of Compassion, cares for all.

“She seeks out and responds to the cries of the world
Moving her spirit and revealing her compassion
Her enlightened virtue towers over all
And her power is deep beyond measure
The netherworld awakens to receive the gift of deliverance
All beings come to health and receive the gift of life”

From the Precious Announcement of the Bodhisattva Goon Yam