Qi Gong was the first exercise that introduced me to mindfulness and meditation in movement, before then it was just seated meditation.
Tai Chi gave me a martial aspect to Qi Gong. I avoided looking Tai Chi initially, because I struggled with how the simulated acts of violence can bring any peace...
The availability of good Tai Chi instructors and the medical benefits urged me to looked at it some more.
As I practiced though, I realized how much of an awesome exercise it was.
Chen Men Ching often used to say in yoga if people try to push you off the mat, you could not do anything about it. I did not understand this before but I think I am understanding it now....
We live in a world that is not perfect, if anything it is unsafe, unpredictable, and selfish. The question arises then how does one navigate this harsh world, in line with keeping with natural laws of cause and effect, dealing with this crap, and at the same time having a sense of dignity.
Chen Men Ching used to say that Tai Chi is like someone stepping on a rake, the rake will come up and hit the person on the head by itself of its own accord.
Having martial training then, in this sense is very beneficial, on how to handle day to day confrontations as the principals are they same whether, they are dealing with physical or mental conflict, without overly hurting the other person but at the same time protecting yourself.
Tai Chi thus seems like a perfect exercise and a paradox in itself...moving meditation, self defense, following that natural laws of the nature and Tao itself.
As such we live in a world that needs us to be aware, to act out of dignity and self respect, and to act with the truth, and not embed ourselves in a further negative spiral.