MODERNIZED WUSHU IS DIFFERENT FROM TRADITIONAL KUNGFU

Shaolin Kung Fu Show in Sabah
A beautiful wushu pose taken from a magazine


The following discussion is reproduced from the thread Dispelling Ignorance and Untruths: A Case Study of Baguamonk's Posts started in the Shaolin Wahnam Discussion Forum on 25th September 2006.

For some odd reasons, some people take objection to the mention of an art being elite. They want their art to be commonplace. That is their view, and we do not wish to argue with them. But for us, we are proud that we practice an elite art, and we are not afraid to admit it.
Sifu Jordan Francis


Jordan Francis Sifu Jordan Francis
Instructor, Shaolin Wahnam England
17th October 2006


Modernized Wushu is Different from Traditional Kungfu


Baguamonk1,

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baguamonk1
Some people of the newer generations, if not educated or cultured by their siblings or family, often grow up without the knowledge or actual experience of the past generations, and the heritage they left behind. Some of the "modern" thinkers, think differently, and often times discard the old traditions and philosophies without even trying to decode or understand them.

Unfortunately many practitioners today fall into this category of newer generations of people without the knowledge and actual experience of the past generations and heritage, and who often discard the old traditions and philosophies without even trying to understand them. For example, many lack the knowledge and experience of traditional Chinese martial arts, and discard them for modern sports like Kick-Boxing and Wrestling. To us, it is like discarding gems for stones.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baguamonk1
Just because they are Chinese, it does not mean that they practice kung fu, taiji, or even have a basic understanding of the taoist/buddhists philosphies and how it applies to martial arts. Or perhaps they do, but they don't believe in it. Just like there are skeptics and Aethiests here in the states when it comes to religion.

Your comments confirm an important theme that we in Shaolin Wahnam often express, and that is the arts we practice in Shaolin Wahnam are elite and rare. For some odd reasons, some people take objection to the mention of an art being elite. They want their art to be commonplace. That is their view, and we do not wish to argue with them. But for us, we are proud that we practice an elite art, and we are not afraid to admit it.

Because of the Cultural Revolution and other factors, much of Chinese martial arts and chi kung as well Taoist and Buddhist philosophies in China today has lost their essence. For example, most Chinese martial artists today cannot use their own martial arts for combat, most chi kung practitioners today never have any experience of chi , and many students of Taoism and Buddhism merely study Taoist and Buddhist philosophies rather than practice them in their daily lives. Applying martial arts for combat, experiencing chi in chi kung, and practicing Taoist and Buddhist teachings in daily lives are the essence, but most people have missed them today.

In Shaolin Wahnam we do not merely study these arts and philosophies, or just talk about them. We practice their essence. In Shaolin Kung fu and Wahnam Tai Chi Chaun we apply picture-perfect Shaolin and Tai Chi Chaun techniques, including proper stances, for combat. In our chi kung we enjoy chi flow. In our daily life we are relaxed, happy and free, which are characteristics of Taoist teaching, and we are simple, direct and effective, which are the hallmarks of Zen.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baguamonk1
The state of kung fu itself is different. As many of you have said, there are lots of wushu monks out there, and alot of BS. How shaolin is practiced now (even the image), is seemingly different form how it used to be practiced. You guys train it more authentically than the Wushu crap that is out there, it is not that wushu is crap, but rather that people mistake Wushu for the traditional methods.

I am glad of your statements here. They show similar views with what we hold in Shaolin Wahnam.

But we never said that a lot of what the wushu monks did was BS. We also never said that wushu was crap. In fact we find wushu a magnificent art, and the wushu monks have attained a very high level in their art.

But we are in total agreement with you that modernized wushu is vastly different from traditional kung fu, and that we also lament many people mistake wushu for traditional kung fu.


We would also like to thank you for your compliments that what we train is more authentic.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baguamonk1
Anything that does not have perfectly bent arms, ridiculously and dangerously low stances, fast flashy movements, is often misjudged as inferior to the newer flashier stuff. And there ARE some people out there who learn this stuff and think its the same as it was before the cultural revolution!
That is their opinion which they are entitled to hold, and like you, we disagree with that opinion. We also agree with you that the stuff (modernized wushu) after the Cultural Revolution is different from the stuff (traditional kung fu) before the Cultural Revolution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baguamonk1
Like those documentaries out there on the Shaolin temple and just how deadly and effective they are, but we all know they are government-placed monks and they practice wushu. Complete with breaking bricks over the edge of a stair..and only hitting the middle (usiing the stair for leverage) and chi gong tricks...

Yes, here we agree with you that these government-placed monks practice modernized wushu and not traditional kung fu.

We are also aware of the trick you described, but we prefer not to highlight it.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baguamonk1 Again,
I wasn't saying that it was all "physics tricks" but that what these charlatans did, for the most part, do use them. Those who have the real skill, and real gong fu, do not need "tricks" they have the real deal.

Of course, real kung fu practitioners do not need such tricks. In traditional kung fu circles, these tricks are known as "strongman shows".

__________________
Jordan Francis
Shaolin Wahnam England
www.CosmosArts.com


Shaolin Kung Fu Show in Sabah
Grandmaster Wong demonstrating the application of the Shaolin sword against a Samurai sword performed by Andre at the Intensive Shaolin Kungfu Course in Toronto


Emiko Hsuen Sifu Emiko Hsuen
Instructor, Shaolin Wahnam Canada
18th October 2006

Dear Baguamonk1,

Please consider that if Sifu Jordan, or the members on this forum were really attacking you personally, they would have simply asked you to leave the forum.

But, because the objective is only to dispel ignorance and untruths , you will notice that the posts made by Sifu Jordan focus on pointing out areas of discrepancy in your own writing, as well as offering the Shaolin Wahnam perspective for juniors and students of this family.

You may have also noticed that there are more than a few instances where people (including Shaolin Wahnam instructors) have expressed their support of you re: your family member who recovered from cancer. If you were being personally attacked, no one would have expressed their support of you.

Furthermore, Sifu Jordan has even thanked you for the areas in which your thoughts were expressed with clarity and precision. Please see below:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jordan Quote:
Originally Posted by Baguamonk1
The state of kung fu itself is different. As many of you have said, there are lots of wushu monks out there, and alot of BS. How shaolin is practiced now (even the image), is seemingly different form how it used to be practiced. You guys train it more authentically than the Wushu crap that is out there, it is not that wushu is crap, but rather that people mistake Wushu for the traditional methods.
I am glad of your statements here. They show similar views with what we hold in Shaolin Wahnam.

But we never said that a lot of what the wushu monks did was BS. We also never said that wushu was crap. In fact we find wushu a magnificent art, and the wushu monks have attained a very high level in their art.

But we are in total agreement with you that modernized wushu is vastly different from traditional kung fu, and that we also lament many people mistake wushu for traditional kung fu.

We would also like to thank you for your compliments that what we train is more authentic.

In fact, your comments were so strong and derogatory towards wushu exponents that Sifu Jordan had to temper your words and clarify (yet again) that wushu, though "vastly different" from traditional kung fu, is still a "magnificent" art.

This is not about making personal insults towards you or to other people like the wushu exponents. This is about the skillful presentation of truth. Though what you said about wushu may be true, it was unskillful, emotional and could easily be deemed as a personal attack towards all wushu exponents.

Shaolin training is rigorous, Baguamonk1. It is not a path for buttering up the ego, but rather a path for learning how to see and move beyond the ego.

Baguamonk1, from one warrior to another, let me ask you this:

How about learning to see and appreciate the areas of your writing that are clear, just as Sifu Jordan has done?
How about letting more of that same lucidity shine through your thoughts and words from now on?


With Shaolin Salute,

Emiko

__________________
Emiko Hsuen
Shaolin Wahnam Institute - Canada, Japan
www.endofendo.com ; www.joyandfreedom.com
www.shaolinwahnamcanada.com ; www.shaolinwahnam.jp

Enhancing life with the genuine Shaolin Arts - Chi Kung, Kung Fu, Tai Chi Chuan ...

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