‘Metta’ is a Buddhist term for ‘compassion’ or ‘loving kindness’. This principle lies at the heart of Mahayana Buddhism and is inexorably linked with the wisdom that we are all connected – with each other and with our environment – through our common experiences and our interdependence.
Tai Chi has Buddhist roots which go back to the introduction of Buddhism into China and the integration of Buddhist spirituality with martial disciplines, especially the ‘hard’ martial arts centred around the Shaolin Temple. Later, the emerging ‘soft’ inner-disciplined martial art of Tai Chi Chu’an was imbued not only with the philosophy of the Tao but also with the spirituality inspired by Buddhism. The true warrior was seen as one whose life is centred on compassion – for themselves, for others, for the world. From compassion comes balance and harmony. From balance and harmony comes openness of heart and mind. From openness of heart and mind comes freedom: freedom from fear and anger, and freedom to decide what should be done.
The principle of Metta is central to our practice and teaching and is reflected in the structure and running of our School, the kindness and respect we strive to bring to ourselves and others, and the care with which we hold the trust of our students.