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Spread Taoism and Wudang Boxing


When Zhang returned back to Wudang Mountain, he began to teach his students Taoism and Wudang Boxing. Now the real visage of Dirty Zhang was revealed to the public, lots of Taoists came to study under his tutor. Meeting Gods Temple was too small to hold so many people, so they built some huts nearby.
At the very beginning, he taught the students to exercise stake work. He said, "Stake work is the base of Wugong; only have a steady base can we make a progress in Wugong. Taoist stake work has two kind, Taiji stake and Wuji stake. It can not say the we succeed in exercising stake work until we stand there steadily as the tree sprouts roots into the earth." Then he taught them Wudang Taiji Boxing, Wudang Swordplay, Wudang Light Exercise, Wudang Inner Medicine Exercise, Wudang Vital point-hitting Exercise, Wudang Sleeves Exercise.
Besides teaching the students Wushu, Zhang also wrote many poems, especially the twenty-four poems of Wuji Root, to explain Taoist cultivation and boxing exercising, which influenced the later generations a lot.
In order to better teach the students Wugong, he ordered them to plant many posts in the shape of a club in the yard in front of Meeting Gods Temple and then he practiced and taught Taiji Boxing on these posts. One newcomer saw Zhang practiced Taiji boxing in a very tender way, which seemed as if there was no strength in, so he said, "Sir, what you practice is nice, but not useful, not worth learning." Zhang jumped down the post and said, "I will practice Taiji Boxing, you can hit me with your full strength." The big and strong newcomer thought that he could hit Zhang down to earth by one attack, so he made a violent attack towards Zhang's stomach when Zhang was practice Taiji Boxing casually. Zhang turned around a bit and then met his attack with his left hand, made a tender palm towards his stomach, which made him backed up for several paces and sat on the earth. Not to accept defeat, he jumped up his feet and gave another violent attack to Zhang; Zhang avoided away and got hold of his wrist and gave a tender attack on the back with his right hand, which made him spring forward about ten meters and fell down. He stood up, wiped out the dirt on the face and said, "Sir, you just use a miracle way to defeat me, which is not enough to make the opponent convinced."
Zhang smiled, "Young man, I just used less that one of my strength to fight against you, or I will hurt you. If you want to see the power of Taiji Boxing, I can show it to you." With the words, he began practicing Taiji Boxing slowly, and then suddenly gave a palm to one of club post, which made the bowl-thick post break into two parts. Becoming excited, he kicked up a large blue stone and then gave a palm, making the stone into pieces. Convinced, the newcomer kneeled down before Zhang and said, "Sir, Taiji Boxing is so powerful that I am convinced now. " Zhang stopped his practicing and smiled, "Young man, Taiji Boxing is seemingly soft but very tough in reality. When soft, as soft as swimming silk, can twist the opponent's hand, which stops him from escaping; when tough, as tough as iron and steel, can break logs and open tones, which makes the opponent bad injured or lose his life. Taiji Boxing is the first-rate one among all the boxings in the world."
Suddenly, a man shouted "Very good" out of the yard; when Zhang looked towards the voice, he found a monk standing on the road, who was fat and tall, with a thick iron truncheon loaded his luggage on the shoulder. He went forward to the yard and put his truncheon into the earth, which dropped into the earth more than one foot deep. When he heard that Zhang-Sanfeng had created Wudang Boxing, so he wanted to complete with him. He said that Zhang could create his own school only when he could defeat him. He was very impolite to Zhang and hurt some students of Zhang, which made Zhang determined to teach him a lesson, so he said, "Ok, let us have a competition. I will stand here still, you can hit me first."
Zhang stood there with a Wuji stake, the monk gave a violent boxing to Zhang's stomach; but Zhang was there still without any movement, while the monk was sprung three meters away, nearly fell down. He made forward again, jumped up to kick Zhang's face, the latter just put out one hand and poked away his foot, which made the monk turn two somersaults in the air and fell down to the earth. He jumped to his feet once again and stroke Zhang violently with his own head. Zhang was still there without any movement, but the monk's head was stuck so tightly that he could not take it away, no mater how hard he would try. The monk had no choice but to ask for mercy, "Sir, I am wrong. Please forgive me!" Zhang let up his belly and said "Go away," the monk was sprung away more than three meters away and fallen down to the earth. Red-faced, the monk said, "We will meet in the future", and then went away with his iron truncheon.
Saw off the monk and thought of something, Zhang gathered all his students and said, "Wudang Boxing is profound, but we should not keep it indoors, but spread it widely. When you have grasped Wudang Boxing, you may created a school and become a founder." Heard this, all the students kneeled down and said, "We will never forget or betray you." Zhang continued, "I have combined most of things of Wugong, Guarding skills and Inner Medicine Exercise, then created Wudang Boxing. In the future, if you want to create a new school, you must put Wudang before your school." These students did remember Zhang's order and created many schools, which made Wudang Boxing widespread in the world.
After the reign of the Yuan Dynasty was overthrown, the new Junzhou County Official escorted the imperial envoy of the Ming Dynasty to Wudang Mountain to visit Zhang-Sanfeng, with the emperor, Zhu-Yuanzhang's order to give Zhang a government position and court clothes. When they came to the entrance of Meeting Gods Temple, they asked Qiu-YuanJing, one of Zhang's students to report.
On hearing that the imperial envoy came to Wudang Mountain and wanted to see him, Zhang understood their intention, but he decided not to receive them. So he ordered some Taoists to get him his dirty clothes, hemp shoes, broken cap made of bamboos, and an iron rule. He seldom wore this set of costumes, only when he went out for a travel. After put them on and told something to Sun-Biyun, he took a broom in the corner and went out to sweep the yard. He went on sweeping till to the entrance where the imperial envoy met him and asked, "Sir, could you tell me Zhang-Sanfeng is in or not?" Zhang just pointed to Meeting Gods Temple and continued his sweeping.
The imperial envoy and his suit hurried into Meeting Gods Temple, where Sun-Biyun gave them a warm welcome. The imperial envoy asked, "Where is Zhang-Sanfeng?" Sun answered, "You had a talk with Zhang-Sanfeng just now." Till now the imperial envoy understood that the Taoist sweeping the floor was Zhang-Sanfeng, he hurried out to look for him; but there was only a broom left, Zhang was gone.

 

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