An anonymous reader asks:
“Strong yet smooth Tai Chi move amazes me. What Tai Chi moves would one practice to obtain that high level of confidence and peace at the same time?”
You indicate that you think that strong yet smooth moves equate to confidence and peace. May you be correct, but strong and smooth moves really just equate to strong and smooth moves.
That said, In Tai Chi, as with everything else, you get out what you put in. As you expect a lot back, you would need to make an investment of time and effort. You would need to learn the Tai Chi form really well. Correcting Tai Chi is like sculpture, over a long period of time, a small correction here and a small correction there, over a period of years it comes to really good shape and really good movements between shapes.
From there go to push hands and become really proficient at that over a course of years. You will need, among other things to get the hang of, neutralization, pushing and root. As you do that you will learn timing, and jing and how they are represented in the form.
Then learn sword form and dueling. In the sword form you will learn to project both energy and sensitivity at the end of a sword or stick. From dueling you will learn to sense another person at the end of a sword or stick. Compared to push hands it is much harder to sense at the end of a sword or stick. Take these lessons back to the Tai Chi.
Then martial applications, and see the moving applications, and the way to read and fit to your opponent like the air itself. And apply these lessons back to the Tai Chi.
As feelings are subjective and relative you should start feeling confidence and peace on and off from the first few months, as you progress. The reason I say on and off is that the study of Tai Chi has hills and valleys in it. You feel on top of the world for a while, and then you make a breakthrough and while you can see where to grow your skill, you feel like a beginner again.
As you do this you will be living your life, on the way to these goals. As these goals are all relative, you can continue on this journey all the days of your life. Often you will feel closer to your goals, but then seeing where you can progress again, you will feel further away from those goals again. It is not that you are still a beginner, but that your can see better where you want to go. As you progress, you will welcome these insights of what you do not know as opportunities to know what to learn, and not see them as signs that you are still a beginner, except in the sense that we are all beginners.
I have been practicing Tai Chi since 1967. I am fortunate that I still can see where I can improve, for in that is progress.
In Tai Chi,