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Tai Chi arises out of two important philosophical texts in China: the Tao Te Ching and the I Ching. Tao Te Ching, means the classic way of integrity; Both of these texts stress what the Chinese call Chi is a form of energy. Chi literally means something like breath, or spirit.
According to the philosophy of tai chi, this energy or chi flows throughout the body, but can become blocked. One becomes ill when the flow of the chi through the body becomes blocked. The Chinese free up the flow of chi by accupuncture and tai chi.
Tai Chi, is a form of meditation, and helps one to understand oneself and to enable one to deal with others more effectively. This is rooted in ones learning to control oneself. This self-control can come about through two principal notions of yin and yang. The philosophy of Taoism understands everything in terms of these two opposing principles. Though these two principles are seen as opposites, the one necessarily merges into the other, creating the natural balance of self and world, hence the classic symbol of tai chi yinyang.
The tai chi form is meant to enable one to bring the principles of yin and yang back into their fundamental,natural harmony. The ultimate effect of this harmony, according to Taoism and Tai Chi, is ones physical and spiritual well-being.