Tai Chi philosophy comprises a collection of aphorisms, songs and poems, that are collectively referred to as
the Tai Chi Classics. Its key points are contained in the
aphorisms of two masters,
Zhang Sanfeng (1279-1368) and Wang Zongyue (1700s).
Their ideas are typically Daoist, and require a great deal of
study and practice to understand. Their most obvious meaning is often not the right one,
or may only be a fraction of what can be fathomed after years of pondering and applying oneself.
The core idea of Tai Chi Chuan is the relationship between mind, Qi, and body. It emphasises that these
three aspects become closely integrated through right practice, which involves a spiritual transformation that
encompasses subjective (inner) and objective (outer) living, and is attained through meditative ability,
the practice of Tai Chi, and the application of its philosophy to all of life.
The ancient Chinese language is such, however, that the term 'mind' does not simply refer to the intellect, but to
consciousness in its totality, and to the spiritual principle within. What this means is that, through
painstaking effort, the student comes to realise the Light of their true nature through right use of their mind.
Through meditative training, the mind becomes a reflector of this light which, through the agency of Qi, integrates
with and infuses the physical body. When this process is activated, the student's Tai Chi performance begins to reflect
the meaning and depth of its philosophy.