Some time back it dawned on me that I am interested in Taiji for the sake of Taiji. There are so many aspects and modalities of practice and application. There are countless ways practice supports us and is beneficial holistically. But these can be seen as a whole. For me, the best way to appreciate Taiji is as Taiji. Not Taiji for Health or Combat Taiji, or Taiji as Dharma, or as an aid to a good night sleep, but as a practice, period. Of course, all the former are included in the definition of the latter, but that is the point. Those things are a given. If one accepts that and instead looks at the art in and of itself, a new and different picture emerges: Gongfu.
The overall majority of students I've ever had who were interested in Taiji because their doctor or therapist recommended it, or because they wanted to address this or that medical or emotional aspect of life, eventually quit or moved on to something else, or just went back to their previous lifestyle. The student who wanted to learn the art because it is an art, or because they just want a new hobby typically stay with it a lot longer. Taiji isn't a pill. It is good physical therapy, but typically as a side benefit not as a driving factor.
I find great benefit in traditional Taiji, the whole practice, not as bits and pieces. I have no interest in changing Taiji, watering it down for this or that reason, teaching it as primarily a health practice, or a self-defense art, or a spiritual practice, or any other sub-category. I find it works well as it was originally practiced and taught. This is the Way.