TAI CHI HISTORY
The creator of Tai Chi is unknown. It probably began prior to 400 BC and has had several names since that time, the most common being Nei Chia which means 'internal family'.
The 4th century BC Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu who lived one hundred years after him referred to Nei Chia, which had the same techniques, method and execution of movements that Tai Chi has today.
Nei Chia was a 'secret exercise discipline' which was practiced in small groups mainly by family members who passed it down through the generations. These families kept the discipline a secret from outsiders because it was considered a rare and powerful exercise.
During 1700 to 1800 AD, Nei Chia made a transition into the hands of new families who made the practice widespread. The term 'Tai Chi' was first used around 1850, when it was first demonstrated to the public in Beijing, but it was not until the early 1900's that Tai Chi became accessible to all.
Tai Chi is often associated with the Chinese concept of yin-yang, the notion that one can see a dynamic duality (male/female, active/passive, dark/light, forceful/yielding, etc.) in all things. Tai Chi can be thought of here as the way to achieve this ying-yang, or 'supreme-ultimate' discipline.
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