Taiji & Qigong Practioner
My name is Maria Chowdhury, and my twenty years as a home birth midwife, herbalist, meditator, and martial artist has prepared me to hold potent medicine and sacred space.
Currently, I midwife spiritual women in the midst of powerful life transitions and support them to navigate the trail ahead to stay aligned with their essence and connect to their power even in times of uncertainty and confusion.
As a temple guide, I hold sacred space for the extraordinary and arduous experience of birth and transformation to unfold safely and organically.
During this work, I'm bringing forth the teachings of my mentor Teresa Elder who taught me how to "be" a midwife with a smile and a light heart full of humor.
My mentor, Dr. Claire Zammit, who taught me the Feminine Power framework, and Elayne Kalila of Priestess Presence, showed me how to walk as a temple guide in the modern world.
It is an honor to carry on the teachings of my beloved taiji, and qigong teachers from YMAA taught me the art and practice of Medical Qigong.
I've trained in many styles of martial arts. In 1996, I started with Shotokan Karate and Taijiquan in Hot Springs, Arkansas. While traveling in Central America, I was introduced to Qigong.
Upon returning home to Fayetteville in 2000, I started training in Judo with Donald Oluett for three years and stopped because I became pregnant with my son Sequoyah. While he was little, my training was put on hold, except for my daily Qigong breathing practices.
Finally, Sequoyah was ready to train in martial arts, and he and I both started our Black Belt Journey with Master Michael Felix in Tang Soo Do. Now we are both Nidan's and Jokoyo's (2nd-degree black belts and assistant instructors).
In 2014, I began training with Dennis Nelms, learning the Chen Taiji, Old Frame 74 movement form. I'm privileged to train and learn from Erik Hardin and Dr. Yang Jing Ming in YMAA Yang Style Taijiquan. Currently, I'm enrolled to be a certified Qigong instructor with Holden Qigong, taught by Lee Holden.
My teaching philosophy and experience stem from my teachers. Training with many teachers in different styles has taught me that a friendly, light-hearted approach to teaching brings out the best in each student. I like to develop a solid foundation by learning structure, form, and breath and then string them together into a fluid, harmonized practice. Teaching both Tang Soo Do and Taijiquan has deepened my knowledge and love for martial arts. It is more than a physical for practice; it's a way of life for me. Walking the path of the peaceful warrior is truly a path with heart.
The Path with Harmony sanctuary is located in Fayetteville, Arkansas, and is directly on the Trail of Tears that the Cherokee walked. My daily hikes are on the earth path of Mount Kessler, the ancestral lands of the Caddo and Osage peoples, and I intend to honor them, their sacred lands, and medicine.