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Introduction

 
Zhang-Sanfeng, the founder of Wudang Boxing, was a legendary character. According to history books, he was born in the Yuan Dynasty and died in the Ming Dynasty, having a life of over 200 years. He was always kind-hearted to oppose the evil and help the weak, and also humorous and easy to deal with, so the people liked and respected him very much. He had made many proposals for the government, built Wudang Mountain; with the power of Emperor Zhenwu, he had frightened and controlled those sons and grandsons of the emperor who wanted to rebel against the reign of the Ming Dynasty, making Emperor Yongle be able to pacify the frontiers and maintain national unity so as to set Chinese domain for the later generations. He, broad-minded, had proposed to combine Confucius, Shiism, and Taoism into one, which made Wudang Taoism develop very quickly, and then became the No. one religion in China. Especially, he, on the base of Taoist theories, such as the naturalness of Taoist theories, keeping in a humble position and so on,

had combined Taoist inside exercise, guarding skills of regimen, boxing acts of martial art, military sciences of militarists into one, then created Wudang Boxing, which is with the inside exercise as the body, attacking as the purpose, regimen as the first important thing, self-protection as the main principle, and to defeat the tough by a tender act, charge the active by the still movement, attack the opponent with his own force, strike only after the opponent has struck. For hundreds of years, Wudang Boxing, with Zhang-Sanfeng as the banner, has developed vigorously into many schools and has had millions of students, which is famous in the word and does good to the human beings.
For his outstanding contributions, he has been respected by the people. When he was alive, Emperor Yongle had ordered to build Meeting God Palace for him, in which worshiped his statue and offered sacrifices to him, treated as the emperor. Nowadays Zhang-Sanfeng' copper statue still demonstrates his charm as an amiable man of virtue, founder of Wudang Boxing.
 

Saved by a profound Taoist


On the midnight of April 9, 1247, in Scholar Zhang-Juren's home, (Taziyin Village, Yi County, Liaoning Province) Ms. Zhang, who was in her family way, was awaken by a dream, then she woke her husband, Zhang-Juren, and told him that she dreamed a swan flied from the East Sea to landed on their roof.
He touched her wife's big belly and smiled that it was a good sign that their new baby would be born. With his words, his wife's belly began to ache; a moment later, a baby boy came into the world. According to the legend, a swan circled around Zhang's home three times, had a shout, then flied up into the high sky. All his family members and servants ran out of the home to look at the swan, happy and excited.
Hugging the boy in the arms, Zhang found that his son had a special form with big ears and round eyes, knowing that he was not a usual man. So he named him Quanyi, hoping that he would be an intact man; then he gave Junshi to him, meant that an honor man should be honest, hoping that he would become a perfect man of honor.
Zhang-Quanyi was very clever so that he could read books at the age of three; recite hundreds of poems of the Tang Dynasty. Zhang-Juren, born in a family of letters, was knowledgeable and once given an official position in the Yuan Dynasty, but he preferred easy country life to government work, so he stayed at home with his wife to lead a simple but happy life.
The parents hoped that Zhang-Quanyi could study hard at Confucius and get a position in the government, so that gave honor to his family. Unfortunately, at the age of five, he got eyes trouble; the illness became worse and worse, in the danger of losing his sight.
Just when the parents felt nervous and uneasy, a traveling Taoist named Zhang-Yun'an came. He said that he was familiar with Yin and Yang and could forecast the future, also could read curse to pray for fortune and get rid of disasters. So Zhang-Juren invited him to have a look at the boy's eyes trouble. After watching a moment, Zhang-Yun'an became surprised and then said, "The boy is uncommon, is special. He will have many fortunes and long life than I can say." Heard the words, Zhang-Juren asked the uninvited gust to cure the eyes of his son.
Comforting his beards for a moment, the Taoist said solemnly, "Your son's eyes are harmed by the devil of the mortal world. Only he makes me teacher and study from me can he keep away from the mortal world and cure the eyes." Finding that there were some difficult feelings in Zhang-Juren's face, he laughed, "Don't worry, I will take good care of your son when he is with me. I will send him back when the eyes trouble is cured. I know he will be working in government for several scores of years, ask him study Confucius when his eyes are recovered."
Heard that the Taoist would take the son away to study Taoism, the mother cried sadly and held the son in her arms tightly, not letting him go. Seeing this, the Taoist smiled and said, "That the parents love the children is human nature. But his eyes must be cured. The eyes are on him, so we should know what he will decide." Then Zhang-Quanyi looked up in his mother's arms and said, " Mom, do you want a blind son to be with you, or a healthy son to lead a successful life?" All the audiences were frightened, for a common child of five could not speak like that. The parents just looked at him quietly and listened what he said, "Mom, when master cures my eyes, I will work hard at studying, pass the imperial examination as my father and help the government run the country." So the mother let the Taoist take the son away.
Who knew that there was not any message about him after they left, so Zhang-Juren thought that the Taoist had cheated the son out of him, missing and worrying about his son, then he was ill in bed. Ms. Zhang was the worse, just crying and looking forward to his son's returning at the door all the days. Seven years later, young Zhang-Quanyi returned home at last.
Formerly, the Taoist took Zhang-Quanyi from Liaoning Province to Hebei Province, then lived in Zhenwu Temple, in Qingyuan County, Hebei Province. There he cured Zhang's eyes for half a year, and then the eyes recovered. So he taught him Taoism. Zhang was very intelligent that he could remember what he read by just once reading. He also read books of Confucius and Shiism when he had some free tome. During the seven years, he had read all the important books of Taoism, Confucius, and Buddhism, and had understood the gist of them...

 

 

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