Download video: Shaolin big Buddha kung fu (luohan quan), simplified

Channel: Shaolin kung fu


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Instructor: Zhang Shijie

Shaolin Buddhahood style (罗汉拳: luohan quan):

- 'strategy': this style is about camouflage. for defense, the saying is "the golden cicada sheds its shell (金蝉脱壳)," i.e., hide things that attract enemy's attention to you, and for offense the saying is "hide the knife behind a smile (笑里藏刀)," i.e., hide your offensive means behind peaceful things. Shaolin monks are Buddhists. Buddhist monks greet other people with "Amituofo! (阿弥陀佛!)" salutation, the wishful prayer for infinite life, infinite light, and infinite wisdom. in Buddhahood style, monks hide their moves behind Amituofo and other spiritual images of the ones who have reached the enlightenment of Buddhahood (the luohans in Chinese, the Arhats in Sanskrit). this is both a Buddhist virtue and a strategy for both defensive and offensive camouflaging against enemies. this is the main strategy of Shaolin Buddhahood style.

- 'history': Buddhahood is the ultimate goal of Buddhist monks. since the earliest eras of Shaolin temple, the monks have pursued unification of Zen Buddhism and kung fu (禅拳合一: chan quan he yi), and they consider kung fu as part of the way to Buddhahood. Shaolin monks developed luohan quan based on the luohan 18 hands. this has happened in the earlier eras of Shaolin temple and at the beginning of the Song dynasty in the 960s AD, this style was officially recorded into the 'Shaolin kung fu manual' by chief monk Fuju. it is the most representative and purest style of Shaolin kung fu.

here, Zhang Shijie teaches the simplified form of big luohan quan, which is usually practiced in Dengfeng county around Shaolin temple, as has been taught by monk Shi Degen, as one form of his 18-form Luohan quan. besides this form, there are some clips of the other forms of his 18-form luohan quan. however, the original Shaolin luohan quan is based on Shaolin small and big luohan quan.
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