Sunday, January 16, 2011


Today I didn't rush through my T'ai Chi Chih practice. I moved s-l-o-w-l-y (unlike my practice yesterday). That was due, in large part, to the fact that my body and mind felt tired. I couldn't have moved faster even if I'd tried.

Although today's TCC practice wasn't a rest-and-recline experience it was darn close ... perhaps rest-in-divine-energy or pause-and-refresh. I placed a lot of attention on my knees to ensure that they softened in order to allow the weight to flow slowly and evenly forward and back. It always feels decidedly different to move with an intention of allowing instead of forcing or pushing my body to and fro.

After practice Frances and I drove to Washburn to attend a matinee performance of Animal Farm at Stage North. What a wonderful, creative, thought-provoking, and inspiring production! The play was based on George Orwell's tale about a barnyard filled with animals that revolt against the farmer who owns and mistreats them.

The animals soon discover that their efforts at democracy fail when the pigs take over. All too quickly their revolution tilts in the direction of a dictatorship as Napoleon, one of the pigs, takes charge and asserts his dominance over the rest of the animals.

The final message of the play is that, even though the animals on this farm failed to create an empowered living situation and eventually succumbed to the same swine-inspired greed and abuse as their keepers--the human farmers--there are other farms, other revolutions that have the potential to lead to evolution....

I'm incredibly impressed and in awe of the creativity and talent that lives within the boundaries of our small rural community. And though I felt tired earlier in the day my passion and belief in the creativity and power of the human spirit (as evidenced through the performance of these part human-part puppet animals) is revived. I'm tremendously grateful for theater, music, costuming, puppetry, and visual spectacle. It was animalistic!

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