Friday, November 9, 2018

30th Anniversary of Discipleship

" When you drink the water, don't forget the well ."
-Chinese proverb

November 11, 2018 marks the 30th anniversary of my discipleship ceremony with Master T.T .Liang.  I took that moment seriously and do my best to spread the art of Tai Chi through classes, seminars, retreats, articles, dvds, and books.  I've taught in both private and public classes as well as in corporate and collegiate settings.

To be a disciple is to be a disciplined student. Constantly seeking to learn, improve, refine, and share. To take what was hard won from the previous generations and add to the ever changing, while maintaining the principles and theories and training methods. To acknowledge your lineage, take your place in history, and perpetuate the timeless lessons of Tai-Chi.

The ceremony is ancient, and evolved from the Peach Garden Oath. In a culture where family and clan was of the utmost importance, three warriors pledged themselves as brothers. It was the first time that heart and mind was put above blood and name.

"When saying the names Liu Pei, Kuan Yu and Chang Fei, although the surnames are different, yet we have come together as brothers. From this day forward, we shall join forces for a common purpose: to save the troubled and to aid the endangered. We shall avenge the nation above, and pacify the citizenry below. We seek not to be born on the same day, in the same month and in the same year. We merely hope to die on the same day, in the same month and in the same year. May the Gods of Heaven and Earth attest to what is in our hearts. If we should ever do anything to betray our friendship, may heaven and the people of the earth both strike us dead. "
-Romance of the Three Kingdoms

The ceremony can simple or complex. It can weave elements of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, and history. The following is part of the oath from the ceremony of the Shao-Lin Temple:

Learn service. Learn fidelity. Learn kung-fu.
Respect the ancestors. Respect the master. Respect the teachings.

An altar is a place of sacrifice. We sacrifice the most precious treasure, our time. The altar is also a place of respect, gratitude, and honor, tinged with pride. The altar can be as simple as a place for an incense burner, or as complex as to house the lineage and mementos.

November 11, 2017 I initiated four disciples at my new Academy: Julie Cisler, Fred Sparks, Karen Barton, and Dan Polsfuss. I have known them for many years, some for decades. Their skill, dedication, teaching ability, and contributions to the art, elevated them beyond the scope of enthusiasts and admirers to lineage holders and inner-door students.

October 13th, 2018 I initiated four more disciples at the Academy: Margo Bock, Wanda Koehler, John Stitely, and John Feely. As with the previous inquiries, I vetted this group concerning years of practice, knowledge acquired, levels reached, and gave each a task to complete to further test them and give them time to be clear about their intentions.

As I look back on my discipleship, I also look forward to those individuals who are helping me carry on Master Liang's message, "Tai-Chi is the whole world's exercise." I am proud and honored to guide such admirable and hard working inner-door students. They have humbled and inspired me, and on my own anniversary, I see Master Liang smiling down on us all...

Sunday, October 28, 2018

MMTCA Newsletter November 2018

"Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow."
- Swedish Proverb

Happy Celtic New Year! A.K.A. Halloween! All Saints, All Souls, Day of the Dead, it's some kind of powerful time! Blessings to you all!

A huge thank you to my substitute teachers, Rondi, Fred, Julie, and Margo, who make it possible for me to travel and for classes to continue as usual. I bow from the waist to you!

We will be closed Thursday, Nov 22nd, for Thanksgiving. The rest of the month is the regular schedule.

I traveled to Delaware twice this month, once for a three day Tai-Chi Retreat at Slaughter Beach DE, and the second in Wilmington for a weekend workshop. Diane Cannon's Ming Tao Tai-Chi coordinated a retreat at the beach, renting a huge beach house. We practiced on the beach as well as a nearby tennis court. We are going to do it again next Fall and I will keep you posted, all are welcome!

I also taught a one day seminar in Dover DE at Reese and Judy Rigby's Karate Academy, covering the three sections of the 72 Medium Form. The second trip was a seminar at Bryan Davis' Shuang Liao Tai-Chi covering subjects like Tai-Chi Saber techniques, and an intro to the Liu Ho Pa Fa 12 Animals, Pa-Kua Qi-Gong, and lots of solo form work and pushing-hands. Another seminar is tentatively scheduled for the Spring.

November 11th marks my 30th anniversary of becoming Master T.T. Liang's Disciple. I will write a blog about that and others ideas this month.

Speaking of Discipleship. I had the great honor of initiating four people as my personal, inner-door students in a ceremony on October 13th. Margo Bock, John Stitely, Wanda Koehler, and John Feely passed through a formal ceremony, including traditional kow-tow and incense, to become 7th generation Yang Style lineage holders. Congratulations! More in an upcoming blog.

Book Suggestion- Think and Grow Rich with Peace of Mind by Napoleon Hill

Diane Cannon is downsizing some of her sword and saber collection. If you are looking for a metal or wood, sword or saber, let me know.

The 12 Animals Class will be covering the Leopard and Water Punch. Feel free to join this class on Tuesdays at 700PM.

Happy November and all its Blessings to you!


“We are within consciousness, not consciousness is within us.”
-Roderigo Nino

contact info
My Blog: The Inspired Teacher (
Facebook: Ray Hayward, Ray Hayward Enterprises, Mindful Motion Tai-Chi Academy

Monday, October 1, 2018

MMTCA Newsletter October 2018

“Spiritual practices help us move from identifying with the ego to identifying with the soul. Old age does that for you too. It spiritualizes people naturally. Then for those who don’t get it, death does it for them.”
-Ram Dass

Happy Fall!!! I love this time of year and am always surprised by the weather. I still get some outside practices when I can.

Our schedule remains the same now until mid-January. Let me know if you have any class requests.

My newest book, A.T.C. Pierson, Father of Minnesota Freemasonry, is now available on my Lulu page. I had lots of help, including photography help from David Brewster, and the lion's share was done by Julie Cisler and Sharon Nyberg, my experts!!

I have two items to inform you about tuition. One is that my bank only accepts checks made out to Ray Hayward Enterprises. They will not let me deposit those made out to the Academy. Also, my rent is on a monthly basis. Please consider that when you pay for a partial month or only attend a half month.

Book suggestion- Awakening Osiris by Normandi Ellis

Thank you to all my substitute teachers who make it possible for me to travel and spread the Tai-Chi message of Relax and Sink!

“In the quest of truth- seek truth, but remember that behind all the new knowledge the fundamental issues of life will remain veiled!”
-from the Temple of Music,
Tyringham Hall

My Blog: The Inspired Teacher (
Facebook: Ray Hayward, Ray Hayward Enterprises, Mindful Motion Tai-Chi Academy
My books: