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Thread: Abbot Shi Yongxin's 2023 West Coast visit & Shaolin Kung Fu Games

  1. #31
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    2023 Oceania Shaolin Kung Fu Games Dec 1-2, 2023

    Gene Ching
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    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  2. #32
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    Our latest ezine offering

    A mislabeled installment - READ Shaolin Trips: The Abbot’s 2023 Trip to the City of Angels by Gene Ching

    Gene Ching
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  3. #33
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    Slighty OT

    The Oceania Games were held after Europe.

    Shaolin Kung Fu competition enthralls martial arts enthusiasts in Oceania
    By Liang Youchang (Xinhua) 08:56, December 05, 2023


    A participant demonstrates Kung Fu during the 2023 Oceania Shaolin Games held in Sydney, Australia, Dec. 2, 2023. (Photo by Hu Jingchen/Xinhua)

    Shaolin Kung Fu, a world-renowned intangible cultural heritage, is practised by many in Australia. A Shaolin Kung Fu games competition held in Sydney featured various Kung Fu styles and weapon categories, and was believed to enhance understanding, friendship and cooperation among Shaolin disciples around the world.
    SYDNEY, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- A Shaolin Kung Fu games competition was recently held in Sydney and attracted more than 300 martial arts enthusiasts from Australia, New Zealand and other regional countries.
    The 2023 Oceania Shaolin Games include various Kung Fu styles and weapon categories such as Shaolin Fist, Animal Styles and Seven Star Fist.
    "Shaolin Kung Fu is a world-renowned intangible cultural heritage and an important cultural heritage shared by mankind," Shi Yongxin, abbot of the Shaolin Temple, told the opening ceremony of the competition at the Quaycenter in the Sydney Olympic Park.

    A participant demonstrates Kung Fu during the 2023 Oceania Shaolin Games held in Sydney, Australia, Dec. 2, 2023. (Photo by Hu Jingchen/Xinhua)
    Once a year, the abbot would assess and confirm the Shaolin disciples' eight kinds of practice such as preaching, chanting and etiquette. The Shaolin Kung Fu games competition is part of these contents.
    "The contest has enhanced understanding, friendship and cooperation among Shaolin disciples around the world, and also reflects Shaolin Kung Fu's core values of strengthening the body and clarifying the mind," Shi said.
    Blake Brown, a 22-year-old man who achieved a high score of 9.05 with a spectacular set of monkey fist, told Xinhua that Shaolin Kung Fu gave him the meaning of life and dreams.
    "I found my purpose in life, my dreams. I was a bit lost beforehand and Kung Fu training told me to find peace," said Brown from Brisbane, Australia, who was elected as one of 10 Shaolin Kung Fu stars at the games.

    Photo taken on Dec. 2, 2023 shows the scene of the 2023 Oceania Shaolin Games held in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Hu Jingchen/Xinhua)
    So far this year, the Shaolin Temple has held Kung Fu games in Africa, Asia, Latin America, North America and Europe. The Oceania competition was the final one.
    According to the organizers, more than 2,300 Shaolin disciples from more than 100 countries and regions participated in the examination contests this year.
    "This competition serves as a testament to the universal appeal and profound impact of Shaolin martial arts," Wang Shuyu, consul for cultural affairs at the Chinese Consulate General in Sydney, said at the opening ceremony.
    "In seeing participants from different cultural backgrounds, we recognize the unique opportunity this competition presents for cultural exchange and collaboration," she said.

    A participant demonstrates Kung Fu during the 2023 Oceania Shaolin Games held in Sydney, Australia, Dec. 2, 2023. (Photo by Hu Jingchen/Xinhua)
    Riley Greenland from Sydney told Xinhua that he had practised martial arts for more than 20 years since he was three years old and he went to China three times to learn Kung Fu.
    "Kung Fu for me is everything. Everything, no just training," Greenland said. "I love the way it makes me feel. The energy, the power, the mental strength, everything."
    (Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  4. #34
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  5. #35
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    Props from Adisa Banjoko

    The Black Belt from the 47 Ronin Temple

    Adisa Banjoko aka Bishop
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    12 hours ago

    A friends journey to Japan to get buy a black belt- gets crazy!
    A few months ago, while teaching and training in the UK a friend from SF in The Bay Area. His name is Prof. Greg Watkins at Stanford University. We met through a friend of ours named Remi when Remi invited me to run a youth chess summer program a few summers back. Greg and I hit it off immediately. He teaches philosophy, he knows Shakespeare better than most, and he loved the UFC. How could we not be cool?! He also has a deep respect for Eastern philosophy. I learned a lot from him about Zhuang Zi, Socrates and so much more.
    So while I was in the UK, I called him one day to catch up and he said “Hey I’m going to Japan with my wife, do you want me to grab you anything? I was blown away and I said “Please grab me a black belt while you are out there.” He said “OK” and lets say a month or so later he messaged me asking me where to send it.
    I told him to send it to America because I was so scared something might happen to it. I did not want it to get lost in the mail, etc cetera. So he sent it to my parents place. This all happened about 4 months back. I came back in October, and my dad had set the belt out for me.
    So, while at my parents recently I was talking to my lady on Whats App and I showed her some of the stuff in my old bedroom. I opened one drawer and it had some incense in a purple box with beautiful art and Japanese writing on it.

    [IMG]https://miro.medium.com/v2/resize:fit:720/format:webp/1*94GfJBUB3w32qIgP9BtgwQ.jpeg[/IMG]
    My kuro obi at Segakuji Temple in Japan.

    Adisa Banjoko lecturing on Stoic philosophy at the NXT 45 mens retreat in the United Kingdom.

    The box was sealed. The thing is, my parents hate incense. When I was about 13 I bought insense and a little burner for my room. It was the 1983. My parents were like “Don’t try to cover up the smell of marijuana with incense, boy!!” I was such a nerd, I did not even know what weed looked like yet! But I loved the incense and I hated that my parent thought I was trying to smoke something I had never even seen before. I was mischievous though, and it was the 1984. In reflection, their attitude at the time made sense.
    My point is, I knew they did not purchase it. But I wanted to burn the incense immediately. I asked her if she sent it before I arrived in the states. She said no but wondered if maybe my parents had bought it for me and maybe forgotten. Once my friend Dr. David Timony sent me some amazing incense. I could tell by the box that something else was happening. I ruled Dr. Timony, my parents and my lady out immediately, and I got off the phone.
    As soon as we hung up I wondered if maybe Greg had sent it. I called him. He said “Yeah, that incense came from Sengakuji Temple of the 47 Ronin”. My jaw dropped. The 47 Ronin is one of the best old school samurai stories from the middle ages. It is also a true story. It deserves the popularity of the 300 Spartans.
    Check this out:
    The story of the 47 Ronin, also known as the Ako Incident, unfolds in 18th-century Japan. After their lord, Asano Naganori, is forced to commit seppuku (ritual suicide) for assaulting a court official. He was set up to fail by a rival lord named Kira. Asano was ordered to kill himself and his loyal samurai, were made ronin ( become masterless warriors) . Led by Oishi Kuranosuke, the 47 Ronin patiently bide their time, enduring various humiliations and acting as if they have abandoned their samurai code. They take on other jobs. One of Anano’s high level samurai was seen running around bars and lives the life of what some might call a drunken bum. However, their true intention was to avenge their Lord Asano’s unjust forced death. They waited patiently for two years. January 30, 1703 the reunited warriors stormed Kira’s stronghold in a carefully planned attack. After being found in a hidden room, they gave him an opportunity to kill himself with same blade Asano used for seppuku. Kira refused, so and was beheaded with the same blade. The 47 Ronin then turn themselves in to authorities, willingly accepting their fate of seppuku. The tale of the 47 Ronin is a legendary example of loyalty, honor, and their unwavering commitment to avenging a master’s honor- even at the cost of their own lives. They were laid to rest at Sengakuji [Mountain Forest] Temple.

    [IMG]https://miro.medium.com/v2/resize:fit:720/format:webp/1*yYZ_eCjxnAXOVFDUf8Gdfw.jpeg[/IMG]
    Map of Sengakuji Temple grounds.

    “So, you didn’t get the pictures?” Greg asked in a confused tone.
    “What pictures”? I asked even slightly more confused.
    “My wife and I bought your black belt at the Isami store and took it to Sengakuji Temple, where the 47 Ronin are buried. We sat the belt at the altar and burned some incense. We took it to the graves of the father and son who led the attack. Then we mailed it to you. We sent pictures of the belt at the altar and the incense together.”
    My mind was blown *insert appropriate emoji here*!!
    continued next post
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  6. #36
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    continued from previous

    [IMG]https://miro.medium.com/v2/resize:fit:720/format:webp/1*5zG7Rvjuxi785fzUrw_Jeg.jpeg[/IMG]
    A young man preparing incense for visitors to the temple of the courageous 47 Ronin.

    I go back into the drawer and low and behold, I see the pictures. My heart soars and my eye tear up because I have loved the 47 Ronin for many years. When my son was a young teenager I gave him a very beautifully written and illustrated graphic novel (not bloody just incase parents were wondering). It is by Mike Richardson and illustrated flawlessly by Stan Sakai. I recommend it to anyone curious about the story. If your child is 12 or above it’s a good story about courage, loyalty and patience. I highly recommend it.
    Stay away from the Keanu Reeves film (I love him as an actor but the writing for that was way more sci-fi than anything else). The Japanese old school film is great and its on YouTube, but I think it is too slow for modern moviegoers. Last Knight, is a European remake of the Japanese legend. Because it is a European remake, it falls far short of it’s potential. No film, has ever done the actual Ako Incident justice, sadly.
    The crazy part is, a few weeks back I had given my belt to a kind friend, Jonny Oh (at the iconic Tiger Claw) who was getting my belt embroidered with the with the word: BANJOKO 7.21.21 on my belt. The numbers reflected the dated I got my belt. The thing was there was a big delay in getting my belt back. My friend Gene Ching explained that part it was because the Venerable Abbot of Shaolin, Shi Yongxin was visiting California. Jonny was overseeing his trip and because of it there would be a delay.
    I told Gene, “I think it is the coolest thing that my belt is delayed because the Abbot of Shaolin is in California”. I had no problem being patient. I called Jonny as soon as I learned about the belt being taken to Sengakuji Temple. I reached out to Jonny the next day. He was super apologetic about the delay on my belt. Apparently he had fallen ill with the flu after The Abbot returned to Shaolin.
    I explained that there was no apology necessary. Then I explained to him that the belt had been taken to the 47 Ronin Temple, and I wanted to have the 7.21.21. numbers replaced with BANJOKO 47. Jonny let me know that was possible. A gratitude beyond words filled my spiritual heart.
    The morning after talking to Jonny, I went to the balcony, sat in the sun and burned incense from the temple. I did yoga and meditated. My focus that day, and this day is on gratitude and patience. I have two incense burners that were gifts to me. I use them often. One from my son, is long ceramic dragon with red eyes named Smaug (the dragon from The Hobbit) . The other is a smaller jade colored dragon I got from my second BJJ student nicknamed Skywalker. (the boy was nicknamed Skywalker). I named that dragon Bruce (after the iconic Bruce Lee).
    On December 7th, 2023, my boy DeShawn swooped me over to the Tiger Claw HQ in Fremont, CA, to pick up my belt.

    [IMG]https://miro.medium.com/v2/resize:fit:720/format:webp/1*JLbhVMqRJYCKsQwXMm5mRg.jpeg[/IMG]
    Jonny Oh President of Tiger Claw, and Adisa Banjoko with his new black belt.

    Jonny greeted me with the belt in his hands, and we took a quick picture together. I walked out like a kid who got the big gift he wanted for his birthday. To celebrate, we went to eat at Vinum at New Park Mall. I had tea, veggie tempura, and the saba fish. Then we went to my homey King Kou’s house and caught up with him and Skywalker.

    [IMG]https://miro.medium.com/v2/resize:fit:720/format:webp/1*gHjCp68LGjavbHb1KOsGQw.jpeg[/IMG]
    My Isami black belt straight from Japan! Jiu-jitsu gi by JREAM.

    After I got home I put on my JREAM gi with my Heroes Martial Arts patch on the back. Then I put on The Belt from Sengakuji Temple, faced East and prayed. I thanked God for the honor of getting to the goal of achieving a kuro obi (black belt), and I thanked God for all of my teachers and training partners. I then prayed for the souls of the 47 Ronin. I asked that I be able to teach and compete honorably in the future with the same conviction they fought with.
    The moral of the story: Sometimes the God/Universe does not give you what you want when you think you want it, so that something greater can be organized for you. If you attempt to force a thing into being, you can get it. However, what you got in a rushed manner, my not have been the best thing. With patience the positive conspiracies of divine order can be left to manifest their own beauty on your behalf. I am grateful to Greg and his wife Sue for getting the Isami belt and taking it to the Sengakuji Temple. I know they did not have to do any of that. I am grateful to Jonny Oh, Gene Ching and everyone at Tiger Claw in Fremont, CA for getting my belt embroidered immaculately.
    This experience has expanded and instilled my sense of patience and acceptance of whatever comes to me in the future. I hope you, too, can get a sense of its value the next time you hit the mats or life hits you hard.
    Adisa Banjoko is a BJJ black belt, award winning writer, speaker and documentary filmmaker. Adisa has lectured on martial arts history and philosophy at Harvard, Stanford, Brown, Oberlin and many other universities. He founded the ONLINE community, the Resilient Men’s Group to help men heal mentally, emotionally and physically.
    Shout-out-to-Tiger-Claw
    Hip-Hop-Chess-Federation
    Abbot-Shi-Yongxin-s-2023-West-Coast-visit-amp-Shaolin-Kung-Fu-Games
    47-Ronin
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  7. #37
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  8. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by GeneChing View Post
    Posted to out Facebook album once more.

    Greetings,

    Gene, who is the tall lady in the red, button down, dress in the group photo (standing next to the man with the plaid shirt)? She looks like the love child of Paula Patton and Chang Yi. Is she a MA practitioner? She looks the healthiest of those in the photo.

    mickey

  9. #39
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    Sorry mickey

    I don't know who she is.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  10. #40
    Shucks!.......

  11. #41
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    Registration is now open!



    Register HERE.

    New this year - The May the Fourth LED Saber Championship.

    Updated this year - our Songshan Shaolin Division is now an official part of the Shaolin Kung Fu Games under the Shaolin Temple of China.

    Returning this year - The WildAid Tiger Claw Championship.

    2024 Tiger Claw Elite Championships & KUNG FU TAI CHI DAY May 4-5, San-Jose, CA
    The-May-the-Fourth-LED-Saber-Championship
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    Gene Ching
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