It all started with a small green "weed" growing in a crack on the rooftop balcony where we held tonight's T'ai Chi Chih class. We practiced outside on the balcony to take advantage of the warmer weather (54 degrees). After we finished I asked students: What about that plant reminds you of our T'ai Chi Chih practice?
I was aware of the fact that, despite cement, roof shingles, and tiles something living could still express its vital force energy through a crack in the flooring. I also speculated that if Chi can move through a crack, just think what it can do when we open our bodies, allow our tension to dissipate, and release blockages to permit energy to flow through our meridians as we practice.
One of my students answered my question with a rapid reply: Well, there's root and suspension there as the plant roots toward the earth and reaches for the sky. And, of course, this conversation was just the beginning of a longer discussion about Chi.
Back inside I asked students to think about what they carry when they Carry the Ball. Instead of imagining it as a ball, I suggested, what would happen if you thought of it as a possibility? Hold it lightly. Don't squeeze. Gently allow yourself to feel the force of energy that lies between your palms. Soften your palms. Relax your effort. And just feel the potential of the energy that you carry inside at the same time that you carry/move it between your palms.
As that plant proved to us all tonight ... there's room to grow anywhere.