View Full Version : anyone here train southern Shaolin?

07-02-2000, 02:06 AM
just curious.

Paul Skrypichayko
07-02-2000, 10:06 AM

Kung Lek
07-02-2000, 08:19 PM
ditto on the yep.

07-03-2000, 07:23 AM
don't forget me.

++---The Southern FIST

07-19-2000, 10:54 PM
me too. well . . . my style, wudang, is supposed to be a mix of northern and southern but is mainly southern due to my sifu's personal prefferances.

07-20-2000, 08:24 AM
There's probably very few in the "Southern" Forum with NO relation to the Fukien Shil Lum Temple...

07-20-2000, 11:37 AM
Me too. We still have a picture of the man who brought our art to the states reading one of the six books his ancestor took from the Quan Yin Monastery in Canton back in the mid 1700's. (That monastery is southern Shaolin, isn't it?)

07-20-2000, 07:29 PM
Me too!!!
(our school specializes in tiger-form boxing though)


Art is limitation; the essence of any picture is the frame - G.K Chesterson

Kung Lek
07-20-2000, 08:12 PM

Although Shaolin is propogated worldwide and has had monks from Henan visit other temples over time, there is only one Shaolin Temple and that is the one that is in Henan at Mount Song.

Fukien Temple and it's historical existance is still to this day a debateable issue as there is no hard evidence of its existance.
The PRC government has rebuilt a temple in fujian province and titled it Shaolin and claims that the remains of the original are close by.

What seems to be more likely is that after several destructions of the original temple, monks dispersed far and wide across all of asia and the world for that matter and took up residence in other buddhist temples and maintained their practice of Martial arts and also passed their knowledge to village masters, other monks and so on.

Shaolin as we all know means young forest or small forest and the temple was given that name because of the fact that it was built in an area where there was indeed at the time a young forest. Other temples that have shaolin temple associations are named for the mountains they sit on. Generally these are holy mountains in China of which there are Five very important ones. O'mei and Wutang being two of those five were also known for the martial arts that came from them and the foundations of those arts being brought by Shaolin buddhist Martial monks as well as Taoist Preists and even non-religious or lay teachers.

Sil Lum (Shaolin/Sui lam) Temple is the only one and the others are associated but they are still not "The" Sil Lum temple.


Kung Lek

07-20-2000, 10:58 PM
Hey, thanks! This is the reason I joined this site and the sort of stuff I was hoping for. I hadn't realized Shaolin was actually a place name. I'd always thought it was a "sect" name, sort of like Baptist or Methodist or something. Your concise definition clarified some stuff that's been mixed up in my head for years from all the various snippets of info in books, magazines and movies.

So, as I understand it now - you should technically say all the other monastery styles are shaolin-style or shaolin-like? Is that accurate?

07-20-2000, 11:29 PM
yes yes...hung-ga is life!!

Kung Lek
07-20-2000, 11:31 PM
Hi again-

well, you can think of it this way. Hung Gar or Hung family Fist is considered a Shaolin Style and for that matter is is considered a Southern Shaolin style and yet, it is based in Shaolin but developed outside of the temple. It is Hung Gar and it is also a shaolin style. the same applies to Hak Fu Pai (black tiger), Fu Jow Pai (Tiger Claw), and later iterations of animal styles.

They owe their foundations to shaolin temple and can be correctly stated as being Shaolin styles.

Of course, not all martial arts owe their origins to Shaolin but there is a huge amount of arts that do. The Taoists of ancient China had health and fighting arts before the formalized Shaolin systems came into being. Some of these styles were adopted into and developed by the Shaolin monks of old.
The foundations of the original temple arts were likely a mix of Chinese and Indian battlefield arts and with the mix in of health arts such as chi kung, yoga and the like it became a vast system taht was like a library of styles and techniques. So much so that the accumulated martial knowledge of the Shaolin temple would take 3 lifetimes to learn and is therefore impossible to do so.
The monks would specialize in a given system offered and would later pass that on. Over time that art would develop into something else but would still owe its origins to the original monk who came from the shaolin temple.
It is the same with any path of study. Each path has been developed beyond what it originally was but by rights and for posterity the art is named according to the founding of it.


Kung Lek

Paul Skrypichayko
07-20-2000, 11:39 PM
The name "shaolin" is debateble too. Some say it literally means young forest, others say it is metaphoric and symbolic, like a secular name.

With the amount of literature on the Fujian (Fukien) Shaolin temple, I'd put my money on the existence of two shaolin temples. The original one in Henan, which started around 495, and the second "branch" in Fujian which was started in the 12th century.

In history, the main groups of martial arts were shaolin, emei, wudang, huashan, kunlun, and hungdong. Shaolin was the most popular and famous. Wudang was based on shaolin, but more involved with taijiquan (shaolin's student, Zhang San Feng). The other schools were all pretty much independantly developed. Today, the only kung fu that is still in practice is shaolin, emei, and wudang.

Kung Lek is right, there is only one original shaolin temple. They may not have found the original site for the southern temple, but does it matter? After all, buildings are just buildings, and land is just land. The main treasures are in the religious and martial arts.