THE COURSE FOR PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT AND THE BENEFITS OF INTERNAL FORCE
This year in Italy Sifu said that this course will be very good not just for teaching but also for personal development. I felt that Sifu's statement was far deeper than what I could perceive at that moment but during the preparation process and as the beginning of the course approaches, specially after reading these marvelous answers, I can perceive more clearly how will it be and I´m just amazed. Thank you very much for offering again this wonderful opportunity.
My question is if new methods of internal force training will be transmitted during the course, what benefits will there be in our kung fu development as well in our daily life experience.
-- Angel, Spain
This course is very good for both teaching and learning kungfu as well as for personal development and for helping others.
As Damian has rightly pointed out, “There is nothing glamorous about fighting.” We want to avoid fighting as best as possible, but if we have to fight, we shall fight well. We want to come out of combat unhurt.
But that is not the purpose of many martial artists today. Many martial artists seem to enjoy fighting. They look for fights when they can and they get hurt, sometimes more than their opponents.
Why do we train kungfu, any style of kungfu, if we do not want to fight? As I have often mentioned, kungfu training gives us many qualities important for our daily living, like quick reflexes, fast movements, calm disposition, mental clarity as well as good health, vitality and longevity, usually more than what chi kung can provide.
Molly also mentions two important points. We learn entering into a chi kung state of mind (called entering Zen in Shaolin Kungfu and entering Tao in Taijiquan) and smiling from the heart. All our students, including those who do not practice kungfu, learn these two important skills right at the beginning, which is a policy inherited from Sifu Ho Fatt Nam.
We also learn chi flow. All these skills – entering into a chi kung state of mind, smiling from the heart and chi flow – are different skills. When one is proficient in one of these skills, he (or she) is not necessarily proficient in the other two. Most people are, in fact, not proficient in any of these skills.
It is a very common compliant of most people that they have hundreds of thoughts going into their head and they cannot relax. Not having hundreds of thoughts going to the head and being relaxed are two different skills, though they are closely related. One can clear his (or her) mind of all thoughts and still not be relaxed, and vice versa.
One has to be in a chi kung state of mind, i.e. he can free his mind of all thoughts and be relaxed at the same time, to practice chi kung. In other words, if he has practiced chi kung for six months, he has freed his mind of all thoughts and be relaxed for six months. Hopefully, and this happens to our students, he can free his mind of all thoughts and be relaxed habitually.
When a practitioner smiles from his heart, his heart opens and he becomes happy. Most students in our school know the Chinese word for being happy, which is “kai xin”, which actually means “open heart.” Other people may think our students become happy for no reasons. I recall that when Julia returned to Moscow, some good-meaning friends asked whether there was anything wrong with her as she was often happy for no apparent reasons to her friends. Our students become happy because their hearts open as a result of their smiling from the heart.
Our chi flow gives us good health, vitality and longevity besides making us happy and peaceful every day. Not many people know of this fact. Most people think, wrongly, that if they know the techniques of good health, vitality and longevity, and if they practice these techniques long enough they will have the results. To us in Shaolin Wahnam, they know and have practiced the techniques correctly for many years, but they are still sickly and weak because they don’t have the skills to generate a chi flow.
To have mental freshness and clarity, to be relaxed, to be happy and to have good health, vitality and longevity are very important in our daily life. Not only we know the philosophy, we have the techniques and skills to gain the results. As we progress, we become more and more skillful.
We have many methods of developing internal force. Most kungfu schools have only one or two methods, and understandably they reserve their methods to specially selected disciples. Many martial artists today do not believe in internal force. But we in Shaolin Wahnam know that internal force is true; we know from direct experience.
Internal force contributes greatly to good health, vitality, longevity, peak performance and spiritual joys. For those who train kungfu, internal force also contributes to combat efficiency.
Internal force is not dependent on gender, age and size. In other words, with internal force a woman can be more forceful than a man, a 60-year old can be more forceful than a 30-year old, a small sized person can be more forceful than a big sized person.
In kungfu development being more forceful is obvious. An internal force practitioner also has more stamina and endurance. But what is more important is that internal force contributes greatly in daily life. We may sum up the benefits of internal force as emotional health, peak performance and spiritual joys.
In this respect, we are better off than genuine internal force masters in the past. The proverbial examples I offer are Yang Deng Fu of Taijiquan and Gou Yun Shen of Xingyiquan. There is no doubt that both of them were great Kungfu masters with a lot of internal force.
Yang Deng Fu was actually the founder of Yang Style Taijiquan, though he generously accredited it to his grandfather, Yang Lu Chan. Yang Deng Fu changed the fast, small movements of Chen Style Taijiquan which Yang Lu Chan practiced to slow, big movements which are characteristic of Yang Style Taijiquan.
What many Taijiquan practitioners or dancers today do not know is that Yang Deng Fu suffered for life a palm strike from his father, Yang Jian Hou, during free sparring. Yang Deng Fu did not know chi flow which could have overcome his injury. He channeled his internal force for combat, whereas our Shaolin Wahnam family members use internal force to enrich their daily life.
Yang Deng Fu also did not live beyond 60. Our family members use their internal force to enhance their longevity.
Guo Yun Shen is famous for the kungfu saying, “Ban bu beng quan da tian xia”, which means “half a step of crushing fist strikes heaven and earth”. “Crushing Fist” is one of the five elemental fists of Xingyiquan for which Guo Yun Shen was a master. The forward movement in Three-Body Stance, the main stance in Xingyiquan, is considered “half a step” as a full step would be stepping forward with the back leg.
It is reputed that Guo Yun Shen fought with Dong Hai Chuan, the founder of Baguazhang, for three days and three nights, and they ended in a draw. Other sources mention that they did not fight because earlier Guo Yun Shen met Cheng Teng Hua, who was Dong Hai Chuan’s student, who avoided two crushing fists from Gua Yun Shen in a sparring.
Guo Yun Shen did not have a happy family life. He was imprisoned for killing an opponent. He did not use his internal force to enrich his life or the lives of other people.
Our family members know the three functions of internal force, but Yang Deng Fu and Guo Yun Shen and most other kungfu masters in the past didn’t. The three functions, or three categories of functions, of internal force are (1) to maintain life, (2) to enhance life, and (3) to do anything better. Our Shaolin Wahnam family members use internal force for good health, vitality, longevity, peak performance and spiritual joys.
Many new topics will be taught at the “Becoming a Shaolin Wahnam Kungfu Practitioner” course from 27th November to 1st December 2018 in Penang. There will not be enough time for internal force training.
The course will be interesting and rewarding. But those who attend the course should make arrangement to spend a few days on their own in Penang or elsewhere in Malaysia. Food is very delicious and things are cheap. They should make full use of their currency conversion.
The questions and answers are reproduced from the thread 10 Questions on "Becoming a Shaolin Wahnam Kungfu Practitioner" in the Shaolin Wahnam Discussion Forum.