Hello and welcome Wudang members and other interested visitors! This post today is my personal experience of martial arts which I trained all my life starting at a young age. Sit back and enjoy:
During the generations of peace, the way of the warrior is a superficial idea. Perfection is believed, and the manifestation of trivial aspects in martial arts become apparent. We can learn from war to understand the origin of martial arts. There is nothing perfect; it is our identification with hurting others and train ourselves. I think if you accept this point of view we cannot talk about protecting yourself or others.
Before I started my Wudang school in Vienna, I have been to several places, including ex-Vietcong trainers in Vietnam and I studied their understanding of combat. For people who have been in war, the way of martial arts is a way of life. They identify life by protecting theirs and taking others in the process. That is precisely why I came to Wudang since the understanding of martial arts is hugely different.
I like to say that Wudang martial arts are very spiritual in a practical way.
In the Wudang martial arts, the fundamental understanding of a fight is very different. Lao Zi tells that an idiot can be highly regarded as a genius without luring too much trouble. The winner has everything to lose, and the winner always requires a loser. It is much better to get out of a fight unharmed than declaring a winner. Wudang martial artists are chosen by their personality, tolerating, and reasonable to achieve balance in the nature of men. If you only want to show off your strength then you already failed the first stage of Wudang martial arts training:
The first question in your training is: “can you accept it with your heart?” Half of the students drop out here because they cannot accept why they practice. Our heart is the foundation of our personality, who are we really? Why do you practice? If you are placed in a spot where you cannot escape, and it increases in difficulty every second to keep this state up, you have to work hard. The question is: How much can you accept with your heart”? If we truly believe in what is told, and how we achieve it, then there is no question and thus no internal conflict. Trust in the tradition, of the lineage and your master. When you teach a child to sacrifice comfort, it will cry first but will work hard when there is no other way. Trade all free time with hard work and you become a dignified person. Everyone respects a dignified person, now trade this respect to inspire others to do the same. These people are our Kung Fu brothers in a Wudang martial arts school.
When you learned the discipline and earned the respect of the master to teach you, then you have to be honest with yourself. There is so much you cannot do and so little you can. The more we practice what we cannot do, the more we find ourselves to being able to learn. Our mentality and the physical body is full of faults, the more you practice, the more you can see it. The beautiful thing about having faults is that every flaw comes with strength, often crossing between physical and mental abilities. During this phase, we define our personality and embody our character.
We understand our capabilities, and we will not misjudge our abilities. Once, I experienced my limits by losing my sense of vision and hearing, but what drove me to practice further is the will to succeed and overcome my imagination. By defeating our imagination, we connect free thinking with action. This is the freedom of Wudang martial arts that makes it unstoppable for its practitioners. If it is indeed within our powers, we will be able to do it. Any movements and any kind of focus are in our reality, by giving it effort the lineage is built further for future generations.
From the past, there are tales of Taoists that fell off cliffs and practiced on cliffs to test their skills if you think you are ready it was common in history to test it out. My master Yuan Xiu Gang was known for standing one-legged on a cliff for an hour without moving. Overcoming both, fear and imagination. What does it really mean for you to be in harmony with yourself and to be in harmony with nature?
In war, nobody will care for these values, but the goal is to defeat the other side. The Wudang martial arts or in history previously known as Quan Zhen Dao, always kept the ethics of humanity. A true master of Wudang martial arts identifies his body and soul with his imperfections, and no other person shall rule over his beliefs.