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Thread: The Frolicking of the Five Animals

  1. #1
    illusionfist Guest

    The Frolicking of the Five Animals

    Did Hua To's invention of the exercises of the frolicking Five animals lead up to the five animals theory that hung gar stylists study today? Hua To's animals of deer, bear, and monkey could have been easily changed to dragon, leopard, and snake. The tiger and crane (generically described as "bird") were already present.

    The frolicking of the five animals describes tones that are used to vibrate organs in order to cure diseases. It utilizes stationary postures, small movements with specific sounds, expressions, and shapes that are characteristic to each animal. Although Hua To's exercises were only intended for a preventative/curative/restorative purpose, someone along the line could have seen there martial value.

    What do you think??

    Peace [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

  2. #2
    mantis108 Guest
    I was going to post something on the Five Animals. I guess I will post some related stuff here:

    1) Hua To Five Animals (HTFA), I believe predated Shaolin Temlpe (STFA). Hua To lived around (190 AD). The temple was built around 386 - 534 AD). Bodhidharma came to China around 527 AD and resided there about a decade or so.

    2) HTFA are animals existed in the wild. It is more lessons from nature (Taoist tradition.)

    3) HTFA was medically inclined and had heavy influence from Taoist thoughts.

    4) STFA was influenced by Buddhism, which in its early stage retained some Hindu tradition included Yoga.

    5) STFA was more metaphysically inclined (mythical animal included). It is quite possible that these animals had a role in the meditation practices.

    6) Both aimed at health benefits for the individual. A healthy and happy warrior is a better warrior, n'est pas?

    7) Eastern traditions (Hindu, Buddhist, and Taoist) view a person as both physical and metaphysical. Therefore, a healthy person is healthy in both mind and body. I think the word health in (ancient?)Greek means "the whole". So, IMO, East and West pretty much believes in the same thing way back when.

    More thoughts?


    Contraria Sunt Complementa

  3. #3
    illusionfist Guest
    But wasn't Taoism born from Buddhism? How do you explain the correlations between the sounds and the vibration of the organs and both of the philosophies?

  4. #4
    mantis108 Guest
    Taoism is 100% authentic Chinese. In its original form (can be traced back to prehistoric legendary Empiror, Fu Hsi (2852 - 2738 BC), which is Chinese world view, had nothing to do with religion. The religious form was first develope during Hon dynasty (sorry about the missing dates here) as a movement toward a corrupted government. The religious form collected Chinese thoughts (Lou Tze's "Tao Te Ching"), philosophies, medicine, mythology, folk lore, and many more cultural stuff. Throughout the centuries, it has developed into many schools (some are cultisth). There are schools of Taoism which preach the convergance of the Taoist, Buddhist, and Confuciousim. Today, the line between all 3 "isms" are very weak.


    Fu Hsi is credited as the auther of the "Primariol Trigram" (Sin Tin Pa Gau)- the foundation of I Ching (the book of change).

    Lou Tze was the revered as "Tao Jo" who's much like Buddha.

    Hope this would clear things up.


    Contraria Sunt Complementa

  5. #5
    Kung Lek Guest
    Not to mention that any post-lithic culture would have a definite interest in what the animals are up to and doing.
    Stories could be told, morals spent, health regained and so on through the mimicry of animals in combat and at rest and liesure and also by the realization of connectivity that was apparent in all living things except the human beings who were more prone to attempts at shaping the surroundings into a molded form.

    To get back to "primordial" bliss it would be wise to immitate that which possesses same.

    And so, the wheel turns all the way to today where you have some of the most curious blends of religio-philosophies and sciences as there has ever been.

    Many branches of the same religions and philosophies and as well many branches of the same sciences.

    Each has some flavour of the preceding within it.


    Kung Lek

  6. #6
    mantis108 Guest
    Forgot to put in my thoughts on the sounds and organs correlations.

    Buddhism's root is in Hinduism, which has heavy influence of Aryan culture. Sound, the mandra "OHM" for example, is secrat to both.
    For those who find this strange, just think of sound wave as a energy wave.

    In Taoist tradition; however, it's a different story. Chinese associate most every to the Five Elements. Each organ is associated with an element and is to assume such attributes. The five musical notes; hence, are believe to behave in the same manner as the five elements.

    There was a disturbing report about the original HTFA being lost. It cast great doubt on the current claim of HTFA being hand down from an unbroken line. I once had a copy of a book printed in Mainland China claimed to be THE HTFA. It was quite interesting, but it didn't shed light on the issue. Unfortunately, I lost it due to my move to Canada. I'll approach with caution to any claim of authenic HTFA.

    As for sound and organ vibration. I don't recall that being part of HTFA study.

    STFA being a Buddhist origin, it is conceivable that the sound and organ vibration developed from that tradition.

    That is my take on the topic.

    Peace and Joy to all


    Contraria Sunt Complementa

    [This message has been edited by mantis108 (edited 06-01-2000).]

  7. #7
    illusionfist Guest
    i should have known better than to argue with you mantis, you are a far better historian than i. Thanks for crushing all my thoughts of discovering something!!!1 [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img] Yeah right, prolly any schmoe knows this stuff!!!

    Peace out [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

  8. #8
    mantis108 Guest
    Hi illusionfist,

    Thanks for bringing forth an interesting subjuct. I find debate is a wonderful tool for personal growth. You know, mental sparring. LOL...

    It's great that technology provide a free and "safe" virtual colossium. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]

    Thank God for technology, Kung Fu, KFO, every open minded martial artist, etc... Amen

    Peace and Joy to all


    p.s. It's only round 3! I might have won the battle, I have not yet won the war. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

    Contraria Sunt Complementa

  9. #9
    mantis108 Guest
    There is a great article on martial art and Zen Budhism at Shaolin temple at this site.


    P.S. thanks meltdawn.

    Contraria Sunt Complementa

  10. #10
    drunkenostrich Guest
    The FIVE ANIMAL FROLICS are a very interesting subject. we teach these methods tp people when they are in oue TAI-CHI classes. The frolics are extensive and we only go over some of them with our beginners.
    the martial value contained within the frolics are quite evident. but you can look at them from two different perspectives. the
    physical and the internal/spiritual.
    our five animal frolics are; BEAR,TIGER,
    CRANE,DEER,MONKEY. IN the TAI-CHI classes we focus on the BEAR and the CRANE. These seem to help people with thier balance/flexability
    and root/focus. the others we do as well but at more advanced levels. as far as the tones are concerned we do have some sounds that we emit during each of the animals. we also focus on certain meridian points with each of the animals. thats all i can reveal to you all. however i would like to disuss this further and get others input on the frolics. jason

  11. #11
    illusionfist Guest
    Well i wish i could ellaborate more, but unfortunately i don't know the frolics, i only have descriptions of them. I didn't know that they were associated with Tai chi, but i guess that supports mantis' theory that they might be taoist in origin.

    Peace [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

  12. #12
    drunkenostrich Guest
    If my history is correct then hua to was the monk that the shoalin temple was built for by the emperor at the time. it would seem that the collaboration between the taoist and buddhist philosophies originated there at the temple. the animal frolics were
    probably the culmination of buddhist and taoist philosophies regarding the meridian points and the indian yoga techniques. however i think that the frolics are more buddhist than taoist in nature..we associate them with tai-chi because we feel it is a good warm-up to do the tai-chi form. kind of like the morning exercises before you do the
    24 or the 64 posture form (yang)

  13. #13
    J Guest

    You've confused names here. Hua To existed centuries (2nd century AD) before the shaolin temple. The emperor built the temple for Pa Tuo in 495 AD. Double check your notes.

  14. #14
    drunkenostrich Guest
    HUA TO BA TO MY TO YOUR TO All of those **** chinese names sound alike!!!! ITS CONFUSING!!!! but you are right J.

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