Photo by Toni Tan

If there is to be any peace,
it will come through being,
not having.
~Henry Miller

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In TanDao, we use this famous zen tale as a metaphor for long and winding path to martial arts mastery:

The Master’s Three Sons

Once upon a time two old kung fu masters were in a teahouse. One master asked, “How are your three sons progressing with their martial arts?”

“Let’s test them,” said the host. He took a heavy vase and placed it over a door so when opened the vase would fall. He called his youngest son, a strong youth who demonstrated powerful punches and kicks with fierce shouts.

“Pay your respects,” his father said. His son strutted over and shoved the door open. The vase crashed on his head but when it hit the floor he shattered it with a punch.

“Your boy is powerful,” said the guest. “He is young, one day he may understand power,” said the host, placing another vase over the door. He called his middle son, a tall youth who performed graceful and ferocious animal movements. When the youth pushed open the door he dodged and caught the vase as it fell. He bowed.

“Your second son has power and control,” complimented the visitor. “If he perseveres he may one day achieve true power.” the host said, putting up another vase. He called his eldest son.

After doing a slow moving meditation form, the son calmly walked towards the door. Noticing the vase, he reached up and took it down. He held it out while bowing, “Pleased to meet you, sir.”

“This is my number one son,” his father smiled. The visitor said, “Indeed, he is on his way to becoming a master”

Photo by Toni Tan

Three Stages of Mastery: Technical. Strategic. Intuitive.

The sons correspond to three different stages: technical (youngest son), strategic (middle son) and intuitive (eldest son). Each stage is a different mindset and focuses on a particular way of problem solving (the falling vase). The three sons express three alternative options reflecting their stage of development: the youngest son aggressively confronts the problem, the middle son strategically defuses the problem and the eldest, avoids the problem through mindful awareness.

Think about it.

Lawrence Tan

Photo by Toni Tan

Managing cancer or crisis?

Listen to our ENERGY WARRIORS book interview with Bob Ellal on Chris Springmann’s Body Language show at Radio MD.

ENERGY WARRIORS
is Bob Ellal’s journey from four bouts of cancer to healing, along with simple how-to qigong exercises by Master Lawrence Tan. It also includes Master Tan’s signature exercise, The Universal Form.

Energy Warriors is a sign post for the future of medicine — the bridging of eastern and western paths to healing and health.

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Kung Hay Fat Choy!

Today begins a new cycle in the lunar New Year calendar…the Year of the Snake.

Looking back: The dragon, an ancient Chinese symbol of nature’s primal power, controls winds, water and weather unleashed destruction with Hurricane Sandy and ended the year with the blizzard of 2013. The Year of the Dragon 2012 was a helluva roller coaster ride for the world economically and geo politically with challenging reverberations in everyone’s private lives. Whew!

In the East and in many native traditions, the snake, which sheds it’s skin, is a symbol of spiritual transformation and rebirth. With all the challenges we face these days, many of us need to reassess and revitalize ourselves. Let this be a year of renewal for all.

Happy New Year from your friends at TanDao,

Lawrence and Toni Tan

Sifu Al Simon


In addition to being the founder of ChiFusion, his modern, effective approach to tai chi and qigong, Al Simon is the author of:
To Float Like Clouds, To Flow Like Water: Tai Chi As A Zen Path to Mindfulness.

Great title!

Al Simon’s book integrates two separate, though related, Chinese traditions: Tai Chi (taiji), a prearranged sequence of slow and flowing body postures and Zen (chan) meditation, a way of awareness through sitting. He links Tai Chi’s way of movement with Zen’s way of stillness.

Through his personal experiences and clear descriptions he succinctly conveys essential Tai Chi principles based on the Daoist philosophy of balance and harmony and Zen Buddhist mindfulness awareness. His writing distills complex Eastern concepts and creatively updates and makes them relevant with clear, practical information and tools to help you relax, become aware and cultivate the qi life force energy.

For those of you who would like to get a modern master’s creative insights on Tai Chi and Zen (and a perspective on our own Universal Form and TanDao Energy Snacks), read Al Simon’s book. It flows and nourishes.

And please join us in wishing Sifu Al Simon a Happy Birthday.

Float, Flow

To Float Like Clouds, To Flow Like Water

Happy 2013 Everyone. We wish you good health, peace, and magic…

MAY YOU FIND A JOYFUL SURPRISE AND PEACE IN THE MOMENT….