Philosophy  & Medicine

Taoist Arts Center:  News and Research
Chinese Philosophy and Medicine

On these pages you will find articles and research on the healing effects of tai chi, chi kung (qigong), Taoist Meditation, and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Doctors and medical researchers continue to investigate the effects of these arts on conditions including diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, pain, and stress management. This page presents a selection of health articles along with others on Chinese philosophy and culture.

Chi Kung, Tai Chi, Meditation
Chinese Philosophy and Medicine

 by Lao Tzu
translated by Gia Fu Feng and Jane English

Lao Tsu, the father of Taoism, became disillusioned with his life in the Chinese Imperial court and retired to the mountains to live a life of  contemplation. Before he was allowed to leave the gatekeeper begged him  to write down his wisdom. Lao Tsu agreed and wrote the Tao Te Ching (The Classic of the Way). Enigmatic yet practical, illusive yet profound,  the Tao Te Ching is one of the foundations of Tai Chi Chuan. It h as been widely translated and studied by martial artists and scholars for  centuries.

The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
 The nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth.
The named is the mother of ten thousand things.

 Ever desireless, one can see the mystery.
Ever desiring, one can see the manifestations.
These two spring from the same source but differ in name;

 This appears as darkness.
Darkness within darkness.
 The gate to all mystery.

 The highest good is like water.
 Water gives life to the ten thousand things and does not strive.
 It flows in places men reject and so is like the Tao

 In dwelling, be close to the land.
In meditation, go deep in the heart.
In dealing with others, be gentle and kind.
 In speech, be true.
 In ruling, be just.
In business, be competent.
In action, watch the timing.

 No fight: No blame.

 For the complete Tao Te Ching see the Tao Te Ching originally found at

 Zen and Taoist Stories
Stories like the following one called "Go with the Flow" and others on  subjects like Ego, Obsession, Meditation, and Surprise make this short  article a must read for everyone.

 Go With The Flow -- This Taoist story tells of an old man who  accidentally fell into the river rapids leading to a high and dangerous  waterfall. Onlookers feared for his life. Miraculously, he came out  alive and unharmed downstream at the bottom of the falls. People asked  him how he managed to survive. "I accommodated myself to the water, not  the water to me. Without thinking, I allowed myself to be shaped by it.  Plunging into the swirl, I came out with the swirl. This is how I  survived."

 Egotism -- The Prime Minister of the Tang Dynasty was a national hero  for his success as both a statesman and military leader. But despite his fame, power, and wealth, he considered himself a humble and devout  Buddhist. Often he visited his favorite Zen master to study under him,  and they seemed to get along very well. The fact that he was prime  minister apparently had no effect on their relationship, which seemed to be simply one of a revered master and respectful student. One day,  during his usual visit, the Prime Minister asked the master, "Your  Reverence, what is egotism according to Buddhism?" The master's face  turned red, and in a very condescending and insulting tone of voice, he  shot back, "What kind of stupid question is that?" This unexpected  response so shocked the Prime Minister that he became sullen and angry.  The Zen master then smiled and said, "THIS, Your Excellency, is  egotism."

 Spider -- A Tibetan story that tells of a meditation student who, while  meditating in his room, believed he saw a spider descending in front of  him. Each day the menacing creature returned, growing larger and larger  each time. So frightened was the student, that he went to his teacher to report his dilemma. He said he planned to place a knife in his lap  during meditation, so when the spider appeared he would kill it. The  teacher advised him against this plan. Instead, he suggested, bring a  piece of chalk to meditation, and when the spider appeared, mark an "X"  on its belly. Then report back. The student returned to his meditation.  When the spider again appeared, he resisted the urge to attack it, and  instead did just what the master suggested. When he later reported back  to the master, the teacher told him to lift up his shirt and look at his own belly. There was the "X".

 For the original see Why Read Zen and Taoist Stroies at The University of Utah

In the Women’s Corner: Susan Rabinowitz
Susan Rabinowitz, founder and director of the Taoist Arts Center in New  York City, has practiced and taught tai chi chuan, chi kung and Taoist  meditation for more than twenty-five years. A dedicated practitioner of  Chinese internal arts, Susan is a senior student of Taoist Master B.K.  Frantzis, a lineage disciple of the Taoist sage Liu Hung Chieh. Her  approach to the internal arts is based on the Water Method of Lao Tzu  and the early Taoists that she learned from Master Frantzis.

The Water Method underlies all of Susan's teaching. It is based on the  idea of going with the flow of nature, of letting things happen rather  than making them happen. As water wears away rock, practitioners of this method dissolve energy blockages and allow their energy to circulate  freely. The method builds a foundation of good health on which  practitioners can transform themselves into balanced, mature beings at  ease with themselves and the universe. The transformation may be worked  through martial arts, chi kung, meditation or a combination of these.

Susan is a graduate of the William C.C. Chen School of Tai Chi Chuan,  where she studied with Master B.P. Chan, and a student of Master Ping  Zhen Cheng, from whom she is learning the Wu Tang tradition of Yang  style tai chi. She holds a B.A. in psychology and is a licensed massage  therapist. In addition to her work at the Taoist Arts Center, she has  taught tai chi and chi kung at a number of public and private  institutions, including New York University, the New School University  and Virginia Tech. Susan's work was showcased on the video Who Am I? Why Am I Here? narrated by Thomas Moore and was featured on the cable TV  program Light...Quest. Her article Dragon and Tiger Chi Kung appeared in the November 2002 issue of Inside Kung Fu Magazine. For older adults,  she has developed a chi kung program called Eldercise.

Susan founded the Taoist Arts Center in 1990 as a place where students  can learn traditional Taoist Arts in a friendly and cooperative  environment. She caters to students of all backgrounds, walks of life  and levels of experience. Her approach is based on authentic, traditional health, martial arts and meditation systems of China. She makes these systems accessible to  everyone through clear and thorough instruction geared toward  maintaining health and emotional and spiritual balance amid the stresses of daily life.

The Taoist Arts Center is located at 342 East 9th Street, New York, NY  10003. Further information is available by calling (212)477-7055 or by  visiting the center's web site at

Women's Corner: Susan Rabinowitz was published by Martial Arts World News 2005 at

Introducing: The Taoist Arts Center

The Taoist Arts Center, located in New York's Lower East Side,  emphasizes healing, self empowerment and self actualization through Chi  Kung (qigong), Tai Chi (taiji) and Meditation. Founder and Director  Susan Rabinowitz is a senior student of Masters B. K. Frantzis and B.P.  Chan. She teaches classes in Wu style Tai Chi Chuan (taijiquan), Chi  Kung (qigong) and Taoist (Daoist) Meditation.

The Taoist Arts Center's approach to the internal arts is rooted in the  Water Method of Lao Tsu (Laozi) and the early Taoists which Ms. Rabinowitz learned from B.K. Frantzis, a lineage disciple of the Taoist  Sage Liu Hung Chieh. The Water Method underlies all teaching at the Taoist Arts Center, and  is based on the idea of going with the flow of nature and letting things happen rather than making them happen. As water wears away rock, so  practitioners of this method dissolve energy blockages and allow their  energy to circulate freely. The practices are designed to harmonize  individuals with themselves, their environment and the universe and to  help them maintain their health and balance amid the stresses of daily  life.

The Taoist Arts Center caters to students at all levels who want to  raise their energy and achieve a relaxed vitality through authentic  Chinese health, martial arts and meditation systems and aims to make  these systems accessible to students through clear and thorough instruction in Tai Chi, Chi Kung and Meditation. An increasingly popular aspect of Chinese medicine, Chi Kung balances and increases the body's energies and helps develop feelings of health,  strength and well being by using the natural functions of your body to  release stress, develop flexibility, coordination and stamina and to  heal chronic joint and back problems.

Centuries ago in China, Taoist Meditation was created to help people  turn Chi (qi) into spirit and emptiness. It's main technique the Taoist  "inner dissolving" practice is especially effective for helping people  to become aware of their hidden motivations and enabling them to change  or eliminate those that they no longer find useful. Taoist Meditation  contains sitting, standing, lying down and moving techniques, and joins well with Wu style Tai Chi. Widely practiced throughout the world Wu style Tai Chi is perfect for Americans because it is so kind to the knees. Its small movements  and emphasis on health make it especially good for healing joint and  back pain and releasing stress and trauma.

Western doctors are now studying the effects of Chinese health practices like Tai Chi, Chi Kung and Meditation, and research has verified many  of their claims. An extensive directory of information on the  scientifically verified effects of these arts can be found Taoist Arts  Center's website, including studies on the favorable effects of Tai Chi, Chi Kung and Meditation on conditions such as Arthritis, HIV, Multiple  Sclerosis and ADHD, as well as studies demonstrating improved breathing  and balance, lowered blood pressure, stimulation of the immune system,  and enhanced recovery from illness and surgery

Tai Chi, Chi Kung and Taoist Meditation classes are taught at the Taoist Arts Center year round. Interested? Visit the Taoist Arts Center 342  East 9th Street, New York City. 10003 Info: 212/477-7055

This article was published in the Autumn 2006 Qi Journal. You may read  it online (subscription only) at

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