Just as I did on Wednesday, I stopped everything today when the sun emerged over the horizon. Yep. It was time for a T'ai Chi Chih practice.
This morning the sky offered no opening between horizon and clouds, but there was a thinner cloud layer close to the earth's surface (just enough space for a beautiful bright pink-red glow to seep through). I basked in the color while it lasted and then watched the sky shift from its lively energy-filled rose tone to a too-familiar staid, blue-grey.
During practice I repeatedly focused on the soles of my feet since I finally read Sr. Antonia's December Newsletter several days ago and she provided me with thought-provoking comments. When she wrote about the Rest Pose, she mentioned that it is unique to the T'ai Chi Chih practice and is meant to help each practitioner ground and center.
Of course, I often remind my students to return to the soles of their feet when they sink into Resting Position. But I seldom mention--or remember myself--that the "Bubbling Spring" lies in the soles of the feet. Sr. Antonia's questions for reflection were interesting and intriguing: Do you ever feel the "Bubbling Spring"? What is that like? How do you experience "Grounding" the Chi? And so, I allowed my mind to settle into these questions and contemplate them.
Sister also mentioned that at a recent Albuquerque Teacher Training someone there said that they sense everyone in the room grounding like an Aspen grove of trees. Yes, one of the sensations derived from a group T'ai Chi Chih practice is the feeling that all members of the group are One. However, Sr. Antonia went on to say that: Aspens grow in large colonies derived from a single seedling and thus share the same root system. What an amazing image this is!
I can't think of a better or more hopeful image to carry in my psyche than that. I, too, am an Aspen growing in the forest of humanity. How can I not love and accept all others when I realize that we all grow from the same seed and spring to life from one shared root?