At least theoretically one role of martial arts is to prepare you for death, but there is no guarantee not to be shocked and wounded when death comes.
I am very sad to say that my friend and Taiji teacher Alan Mooney passed away suddenly a week ago. I am told he went for a jog on the evening of Wednesday August 26th and suffered a massive coronary. He was 49.
When I was with Alan he always spoke warmly of his family, and his dedication to his Taiji was very clear. As a friend he was there for me during one of my harder periods in Paris. His classes were demanding and full of humour.
When we spoke on the phone Alan had this infuriating habit of enthusiastically describing very specific and subtle methods of Taiji body use that would be a challenge to explain in person, but almost impossible to communicate verbally. Still the conversations were interesting and could go on for some time, and happily sometimes followed up with face to face meetings.
More recently we would mostly just exchange a few friendly words as I ended my evening teaching and he got stuck in to making his students legs shake.
A lot of people will miss him.
Alan’s funeral will take place on monday 7th september. Funeral mass at 2.15pm at the Chapelle de l’Est at Père Lachaise cemetery, 71 rue des Rondeaux, 75020 Paris, France, cremation afterwards at 3.30pm.
If you are far from Paris some have put their tributes here https://www.facebook.com/alanstaiji