Tai Chi: Moving Meditation


Some call it a religion.  Others call it a philosophy: Tai Chi.   It’s an ancient Chinese martial art.  It’s used today as meditation or a mindfulness art by people all over the world.

Eric Sbarge is the owner of the Peaceful Dragon in Charlotte.  He says, “you can practice it for stress management, accumulation of what the Chinese call “chi” or vital energy.”

The Peaceful Dragon brings a little bit of China to the QC.  Sbarge leads the way: “It can be a spiritual practice.  It can be a mental practice, or it can be a mind, body, and breath together to elevate the spirit.”

Sbarge and his students demonstrate the Tai Chi solo form.  There are 143 moves total.  They’re performing the first 10 in the sequence for our cameras.  This ancient tradition often is called a moving meditation, bringing about concentration and stillness of mind

“We’re learning the movements, and it really becomes a focal point so the mind – instead of thinking about your work problems or your date later on tonight, you’re just tuned into the body and the breath.  It gives you a break from the normal activity, which often includes anxiety in the outside world, “ Sbarge reveals.

Eric Sbarge began his fascination with Tai Chi and other martial arts at 13 years old.  “I started Japanese martial arts as a teenager.  And for the past 35 years, I have been practicing Chinese martial arts including Kung Fu, Tai Chi… and Chinese wrestling.

In addition to being the owner,  Eric is also the head teacher at the Peaceful Dragon – spreading the wealth.   He says Tai Chi is based on the ancient Chinese religio-philosophy of Daoism – translated as the way.   It dates back to 480-222 BCE.  The Daoist way of life involves creating alignment with the Dao, the creator of all that is.  Sbarge breaks it down.  “Daoism in its essence says to live in accord with nature, to find harmony and balance in all things.”

Those who focus on the religious aspects of Daoism and strive to reach a full enlightenment through Tai Chi.  “In Tai Chi practice you are trying to make two things happen: How do I get more chi and how do I keep the energy moving so I have a clear mind, a strong physical body into old age?”

Sbarge’s students are starting young, with hopes of extending their vitality into the golden years. 

The Peaceful Dragon


12610 Steele Creek Rd. (Hwy. 160)
Charlotte, NC 28273

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