By August 3, 2015 Read More →


By Mary Layton

With the drought upon us water is on everyone’s mind. Or at least we hope so. When I moved to Modesto in1994 I was touched by that simple but very significant Modesto arch holding the city’s motto : Water Wealth Contentment Health. Wow! It says it all. Water brings all these things. We all need water. I couldn’t live without water. Who could? There’s nothing better than swimming in a pool or the river, or to take a cold shower to beat the Central Valley’s summer heat. And now that water is becoming scarcer – and more expensive – it makes me appreciate it even more.

The old Chinese culture has made many acute observations of water such as water cleanses and refreshes all creatures without distinction and without judgment. Water freely and fearlessly goes deep beneath the surface of things. Water is fluid and of all things is the softest. It cannot be broken. If you throw a heavy rock on it water will yield. Water yields to the rock in it’s path, yet eventually wears the rock down. Even though water is soft and responsive, it is extremely powerful. T’ai Chi players learn that in assuming the nature of water they will be able to overcome a forceful opponent; the soft overcomes the hard. The nature of water sets a great example of how to go about one’s life.

For more information go to or call (209) 572-4518



Posted in: community, outdoor

About the Author:

Mary Layton has practiced T'ai Chi for 35 years and co-founded T'ai Chi Ch'uan Academy of Modesto in1995. She and her partner have taught hundreds of students. Mary travels frequently to learn from her teacher Grand Master Kai Ying Tung. Interested in every aspect of health Mary likes to follow a natural path. She loves writing, painting, gardening, hiking and playing piano.