“Hi, my name is Irving Yee and this is The Art Of Tai Chi - THE place for you to learn Tai Chi in one movement with ease and excitement. Learn it, practice it and live Tai Chi in every aspect of your life. I’m happy that you are here. It’s time to live and age well by cultivating your INNER CHI!”
Let’s face it. You’re busier than you’ve ever been before. The advancements in technology that you enjoy have only made life faster.
Text messages and emails buzz in your pocket. The new apps and social media on your cell phone keep you occupied. Let’s not forget that the only reason you have a cell phone to begin with is to keep you available for calls all the time.
You’re constantly distracted, spread thin and scattered. You’re all over the place, not inside your body.
It’s a chaotic world.
You walk the city street and see signs everywhere. The signs on the storefront seductively tell you to consume.
You look up and see billboards that tell you to forget where you are and where you want to go. You obey and go somewhere else, not looking before crossing the street.
A bus passes you by and on its side it tells you to watch a provocative program on TV. You watch the TV program later that night and it just put you to sleep.
You’ve gotten yourself nowhere.
All you did was get lost quicker.
As the hare learned in his race with the tortoise, fast is only good when you’re on the right path.
You feel overwhelmed daily because you’ve lost focus. Focus resides somewhere in your gut. And it’s being buried under the pile of stuff you accumulated from your fast life. Your body can feel heavy at times, packed tight with stuff that has no meaning.
When you lose focus, you start to question your purpose. You may feel hopeless and even trapped.
Well, I am here to show you where you can find your path through life. I am going to put you in touch with who you are, the individual you, the only YOU that matters. And the great thing is you don’t have to look far.
On this journey, we are going to look into the solar plexus.
Why is the solar plexus an important place to be?
The solar plexus is where your individuality resides. It is inside your body, but it is not part of your physical appearance or reality.
It involves your emotions. It helps you to find your passions. It is where you make the possible from the impossible, outside the laws of the chaotic world.
The solar plexus is located in the stomach area. This area is where you receive strong impressions. It is where you are influenced by emotions and experiences - sometimes for good and sometimes for bad.
We don’t experience happiness, love or fear just in the head. We feel those emotions get stirred in the stomach area as well.
When I get disgusted, I say that “I am sick to my stomach.”
When I have fear, I feel my “stomach is tied in a knot.”
When I feel nervous, I have “butterflies in my stomach.”
So many negative emotions are felt in the stomach. It is “gut wrenching.”
When you trust your intuition, you have a “gut feeling” to open your mind and balance your thoughts against the data that comes from the body’s senses.
The solar plexus is your proverbial sixth sense. There are certain feelings you follow without sound reason. This is where your body speaks to your mind by engaging the spirit.
The fast life quickly fills up the solar plexus and short circuits the mind-body-spirit connection. Stress builds up. A nervous tension comes over you. You have trouble breathing. It’s because your solar plexus is blocked.
When you massage the solar plexus, you release a deep relaxation, which spreads throughout your whole organism.
The solar plexus is where you connect your mind-body with your soul.
It is a gateway to your spirit.
If you point to yourself, you are pointing not to your head. You may be pointing to your body. But you are really pointing to your solar plexus.
Try it now. Point to yourself and ask, “Who? Me?”
You are pointing to YOU within your body. When the body speaks it does not lie.
So if you want to get to know yourself, start looking into your solar plexus.
Your spirit comes from that region.
What is the solar plexus?
Plexus is a network of nerves that meet at small centers to regulate organic functions in the body. The solar plexus is the network found behind the stomach with radiating nerve fibers.
Physically, the nerve fibers are connected to the liver, pancreas, kidneys, stomach and intestines.
Emotionally, these nerves send signals when the brain or stomach is distressed. The emotions we feel with our stomach (the knot and butterflies) are forms of stress. Stress is your body’s reaction to a demand. In this case, we are talking about the demands made by your fast life.
Stress triggers the fight-or-flight response in the brain. When you’re in the fight-or-flight response, blood flow gets diverted from the stomach and into the lungs and muscles instead. The body is then prepared to either outrun a predator or fight off an attacker. The heart rate increases. The release of sugar from the liver into the blood increases.
The sympathetic nervous system stimulates these activities that prepare the body for action in times of stress.
Stress is good when it happens in the short term. But what happens when stress is more chronic and long term, as in the case of meeting the demands of today’s fast life? What do you do when you suffer from emotional pressures that leave you with little or no control over your life?
You must find a balance. Find ways to relax the body and slow down the high energy functions made possible by the chaotic world.
The solar plexus is the key to restoring calm.
It allows you to stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system to conserve your energy. It gives your body the rest it needs. It helps the process of digestion by increasing intestinal activity and relaxing the sphincter muscles in the gastrointestinal tract. It slows your heart rate.
How do we use the solar plexus for internal healing?
Chronic stress is very damaging to your entire system.
75% to 90% of our health problems come from stress-related ailments or complaints.
Sources of stress include money, work, the economy, relationships, family responsibilities, job stability, personal safety. The list goes on and on…
It is really hard to let go of it all and relax in this chaotic world. Fortunately, there’s an answer.
By touching the solar plexus, you can start to let go of your tension and soothe your mind. It’s a way of getting in touch with what’s happening on the inside.
For quick stress relief, just touch it with your finger. This is a great starting point to relax.
Press on the solar plexus to balance your autonomic nervous system. Bring inner calm by emptying out the solar plexus.
In Tai Chi, we say empty out the solar plexus 5%.
With the touch of your finger, exhale naturally.
Gradually drain your body of stress.
Feel your shoulders sagging.
Your chest collapsing.
Your tailbone dropping.
Melt away the tensions one body part at a time – your neck, shoulders, back.
This is active relaxation for the entire body.
It promotes deeper breathing.
Loosen up the solar plexus.
Permit the natural flow of energy to happen there.
What if we emptied the solar plexus 5% each day?
Take a moment out of your day and integrate your mind and body with the spirit.
Put your finger on your solar plexus. Go ahead and gently press that button.
Slow down your breathing and look within yourself.
Recognize your feelings and become more aware of your sensations.
Listen to your body. Make your muscles less tense. Re-organize your internal structure by loosening up its parts.
Then put more fingers on it and massage it.
Know thyself, not just think it in your head. Be honest and get to know yourself deeply.
Then express your individuality and strength from the solar plexus!