A Message from the Grandmaster

 

Shen Long Tai Chi Australia

I wish to congratulate Stephen Frost for setting up the website of Shen Long Tai Chi Chuan Australia. He is an outstanding member of our International Shen Long Tai Chi Chuan Society which comprises 11 Shen Long Tai Chi organizations in various countries. Stephen had followed a few well-known Kung Fu masters before knowing me in year 1986; he was also an amateur weightlifter and assumed a very senior position in the government hydrology department. The most appreciated character in him is his relentless learning spirit and perseverance in enriching himself in the practice of our Traditional Taoist Tai Chi Chuan. During a period of 26 years under my tutelage, he seldom absent himself from classes unless with reasons, he adopts a very serious learning attitude towards the learning of Tai Chi art, he would discuss with me in depth about any doubts he faced during the learning process and satisfied only when he understood them completely.

 

I started learning martial art from my father when I was 9 years old, I served 19 years in the army of which 9 years as head of the hand combat training instructors for special missions behind the front zone, after serving the army, I served the government civil service for another 11 years. It is because of this actual combat experience that I advocated truthful practice in martial art; I deplore those fake actions and spectacular coordinated display in martial art in order to please the audience. Since the day I began my Tai Chi Chuan teaching, I always tell my students not to adore someone blindly and not even believe what you see, they must personally practice it, feel and experience it, and they should believe only the achievable mentioned in the old adage and texts by acclaimed Tai Chi Chuan martial artists, not anything supernatural. I am truthful in my teaching, I used to repeatedly correct my students even it is a minor error and I will also repeatedly explain and demonstrate if my students do not understand any of the Tai Chi principles. I treat my students as if they are my family members and always advise them that Traditional Taoist Tai Chi Chuan is the gem of the Chinese culture, it is invaluable as it is not only martial art, it is also more than a health exercise, it is “Tao”. “Tao” is the way or path to righteous thoughts and actions, it is the ultimate universal virtuous and truth. Practicing “Tao” may be simple and easy, it is the “way” to change our acquired habits, reactions and thoughts, and it is just opposite to the worldly knowledge not in line with Tao we acquired during our up-bringing process. Practicing “Tao” is first the spiritual reversal process to find and understand the “source” or “origin”, and the “way” or “walk the path” is just about changing your habits, thinking, practice and everything else and reversing yourself to be as close as possible to the state of “origin”, “Tao” is not a blind seeking process without to understand and establish “origin”, which means you must first find the target then the “path” toward it. Tai Chi concept is only found in Chinese philosophy, and it has a history of 5,000 years, the principle of Yin and Yang has helped the Chinese to shape the great Dynasties of Han and Tang and this superior philosophy has survived and maintains its continuity and development in other dynasties too, therefore we can say that Tai Chi Chuan of today has gone through a few thousand years of evolution and improvement, it is not an individualistic effort which can occur overnight.  

My master, Professor Cheng man-ching is a genius and excellent scholar excelling in five Chinese traditional arts - poetry, calligraphy, medicine, painting and classics, he has adopted the fine connotations of these teachings in the practice of Tai Chi Chuan, similarly from the comprehension he acquired through the actual dueling practice of Tai Chi Chuan, he adopted a practical approach in his research and understanding of the five traditional arts. After practicing them for fifty years and searching for that ultimate common principle, he has laid down his thoughts in his last book about the understanding of I-Ching (Book of change) called “I-Quan”(Complete-I). He has advocated that Traditional Taoist Tai Chi Chuan has adopted the principles from the “Change” of I-Ching, the righteous and Central-thinking of the Confucius, the Natural or wu-wei (action without action) of Taoism, Emptiness of the Buddhism and the essence of all the old Chinese Classics, this is the conclusion he has drawn for the practice of Tai Chi Chuan. Therefore he kept on telling me just a few days before he passed away “my Tai Chi is the pure Taoist, internal Qigong ….” he was also interviewed by Aide Magazine of Taiwan and he said “ My present form of Tai Chi Chuan can be the bridging medium for mutual understanding between the Eastern and Western cultures”.

Stephen is a university lecturer and is proficient in English language, and I believe and with great expectation that he will be a very successful researcher and promoter for the understanding and practice of Tai Chi Chuan by the Western enthusiasts.

 The Founder of International Shen Long Tai Chi Society

Grandmaster Kuo-chung Wu

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