When my body is relaxed and my mind is quiet, I become more aware of my senses. I am more engaged with life in a positive way and less trapped in my mental struggles. Tai chi and qigong helps me to achieve a sense of relaxation and a quiet mind.
My spiritual teacher Ishwar Puri told me that we have 8 senses. The first 5 senses are the senses of sight (perception), hearing, touch, taste and smell. The 6th sense is intuition, which is our soul level awareness. The 7th sense is common sense. The 8th sense, which is the most important, is a sense of humor. We can laugh and play. Live doesn't have to be so serious when we come to our senses!
One of my meaningful quotes is from spiritual teacher and author Eckhart Tolle. He states, "Life isn't as serious as (the) mind makes it out to be."
A big part of the practice of tai chi and qigong is to learn how to relax our bodies and quiet our minds so we can live more harmoniously. Our minds can be consumed by our thoughts, emotions, feelings, actions, reactions, how we relate to other people and situations. This all can seem like serious business because our "monkey minds" or overly active minds can get involved.
I have seen this occur with my own monkey mind. At this stage of mental agitation, I depend on the slow, flowing movements of my tai chi and qigong to bring me back to a place of relaxation, grounding, and emptiness from mental drama. Life doesn't have to be as serious as my mind makes it out to be.