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Your Journey to a Strong Mind and Body
Written by Master Dao on Tuesday, February 01, 2022

Year of the Tiger Wisdom on Health and Prosperity


Happy Chinese New Year 新年快乐! Wishing You Health and Vitality 身体健康!

The Lunar New Year is one of the most important times of the year for the Chinese people and culture. It is a time to visit family and friends, wishing each other health and prosperity.

2022 is the year of the TIGER with the element of water. If you are born in 1926, 138, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, or 2010, you may be a tiger according to the Chinese Zodiac. Keep in mind that the Chinese calendar is based on a lunar calendar, so those born in January and February can consult a Chinese Calendar to confirm their animal sign.

The tiger is the symbol of strength, courage, and toughness, and Tigers tend to be natural leaders who are adventurous and ambitious. They are considered the king of all beasts with a commitment to help others. With respect to the Shaolin Virtues, the tiger represents the Shaolin Virtue of PERSEVERANCE.

Did you know Master Dao is Born in the Year of the Tiger?

It is an especially auspicious year for Master Dao and for the STQI community as he celebrates many cycles of the Tiger. You may be able to guess Master Dao's age considering the Year of the Tiger comes every 12 years.

Master Dao's Words of Wisdom for Year of the Tiger

"Go after your health, for health will not come to you. Pounce on the opportunity now and aggressively maintain it your whole life." - Master Dao

Master Dao explains:

It is very difficult to prioritize your own mental and physical health when you have so many distractions in life. You get busy with work, family, school, or 'life' and suddenly you find there is a pain in your knees, hips, or back; or you have added extra weight that you don't want, or you find yourself getting sick often. Ultimately, you may find that you are not physically or mentally able to do the things you want to.

What people don't realize is that physical health naturally degenerates as we age. We become less flexible, our muscle and bone density drop or our bone marrow dries up. If our physical health suffers, so too will our mental health.

We have to actually make an effort each day if we want to physically and mentally upkeep ourselves and slow the process of aging. We must carefully spend time exercising, eating, and drinking according to our health goals, resting, and self-cultivating.

I will often remind my students, "If you don't use it, you lose it.". This comes from ancient Shaolin wisdom. It is very expensive to maintain the body and you only have so much qi (energy). When you are not breathing well or you are stressed, your overall qi (energy) will drop. Your body then has to give something up.

I've learned to master my body and mind through Shaolin Kung Fu, Shaolin Qigong, and Shaolin Meditation. It is the constant and daily practice of the Shaolin arts that will enable me to remain vibrant and robust even into my elderly years.

The good news is that it's never too late. What works for myself and my students won't necessarily be right for you (or at this time!). So do not hesitate and go find exercises that you enjoy, and then think about how to transition your daily health practices into your life as you age.

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