Tai Chi and Science



Winding paths; unnoticed crossings

This section will expand to explore the similarities and differences between Tai Chi philosophy and western science. Sections will update every week or so.

















Sections:

Summary

Introduction

Divisions and Paradoxes

The path, the journey and the wayfarer:

The Art (Tai Ji Quan)

Tai Ji Quan and the Tai Ji Tu

Tai Ji Quan and Daoism

Qi and Tao

The Chinese Theory about the Origin of Everything

Yin and Yang

Reaching the intersections

    Still in Two Minds Looking and Seeing Monkey Mind Good; Monkey Mind Bad

At the Intersections

Curiosity, Fuzziness, Crossing Boundaries

The Open Mindset

There is always Reason to Reason

Enquiry; the Curious Meeting of Eastern and Western Minds

Physics and Daoism

    Just Let It Lie

    Quantum and Qi

      In the Beginning Schrodinger’s Cat

Summary: The paths Tai Ji Quan and the Sciences wind and meander, they sometimes meet and cross. It might not be planned but they do. They are formed and re-formed to suit the footfall and direction of those that frequent them. The paths may appear so different that those determinedly plodding along them, focused on their own journey, do not notice the intersections.

Even the journeys themselves viewed, as they are, from rather different perspectives might appear incompatible, even mutually incomprehensible. Indeed, it is not unknown to find mutual suspicion, sometimes a hint of hostility between the two factions can be detected– one considering the other closed-minded, unimaginative and trapped in linear thinking; in return, the other has been known to look askance and mutter words like “woolly-minded, subjective” and “suggestible”.

Hardly surprising, the two communities use different methods to understand the material and come to their subject with different qualities of understanding even when addressing oddly similar topics -different words, different terms and a different language.

Send an observer sympathetic to both factions floating high above both territories in a hot air balloon. Survey from this perspective reveals strangely similar explanations and conclusions even an analogous network of interconnected concepts and ideas; intellectual gems which are in danger of being lost to the other tribe as they walk their separate paths and read quite discrete literature –especially if they are doing both at the same time.

These unplanned, serendipitous encounters are where the Art of Tai Ji Quan (Tai Chi Chuan) and the Sciences meet.

Not far below the surface lays a commonality often associated with contradiction and paradox, where all the really interesting bits from both disciplines are found, examples include:

    • The Big Bang Theory and Taoist ideas about the origin of everything
    • Biodiversity, the Gaia hypothesis and Taoism
    • Quantum physics / mechanics, both Qi and the Tai Ji Tu
    • Psychology physics and non-action
    • Health benefits of Tai Ji Quan confirmed empirically and proven by research using the same rigorous methods as are applied to western medicine for several defined medical conditions

In life, change is a constant.

The topics are huge.

There is will be much material I will have missed as new knowledge is discovered and existing information is being re-evaluated to produce new understanding, even as I write this; even more by the time as you read it.

There will certainly be material I have either misinterpreted or chosen a different interpretation to your own.

I would like to return to this enquiry from time to time and I hope you will feel engaged enough to send me occasional corrections and comments.