The profound cultural connotation expressed in Shaolin Kung Fu is fundamentally endowed by the wisdom of Chan Buddhism (Zen). Shaolin Gongfu is in the first place, the expression of a deeper spiritual goal and secondarily in the pursuit for superhuman strength. The desire for transcendental strength and wisdom are at the core of Shaolin Chan Buddhism. This is the reason behind Shaolin Kungfu appearing as a miraculous martial art and it's difference to other martial arts.
Realms of practice
Shaolin Kungfu practice can be talked about in terms of three realms:
In the primary realm, the practitioner practices their form and appearance.
In the intermediate realm, there is the integration of mind and fist, changing the tangible into the intangible, turning the law into the lawless; obeying no rules, having no movement to follow, controlling the enemy in the intangible. An ancient boxing manual reads, `defeat a person in the intangible or fail being seen`.
Shaolin Kung Fu's highest realm is for all to be guided by the heart and to fight not just from form but from the formless.
Buddhist practice is started in the mindful training of Kung Fu. It cultivates and entails the highest integrated wisdom of Buddhism and martial arts.
Features of Shaolin Kung Fu
1.Short but precise.
2.Box in a line.
4.Roll in and out.
5.Integration of mind and behavior.
6.Bending but actually not and straight but actually not.
7.Rise high in a tight form and drop in a spreading way. Rise to move with an intention of advance and drop to move with an intention of retreat.
8.Integration of Buddhism and boxing.
9.Focus on defense.
10.Combination of attacking and defending.
12.Simple and practical.
13.Vigorous and strong.
14.Numerous acts shrinking back
Wushu Chan 武术禅
Shaolin Kung Fu is one of the paths to Buddhism and to the practice of Chan. It is also known as 'Wushu Chan'. Studying Shaolin Kung Fu, you experience the atmosphere of Shaolin Temple Buddhism and start to convert your rational cognitions of Shaolin Wushu into a deeper knowing of Buddhist wisdom. The purpose of learning Kung Fu no longer becomes the goal in itself, but is used as a means of awakening. By practicing Kung Fu, you will feel the depth of Buddhist teachings, the truth of wisdom and the real nature of human beings and the universe.
Shaolin Boxing is the short form for 'Shaolin Temple Boxing Techniques'. As a means of spiritual discipline, it has been integrated into hundreds of schools, Chan Buddhist influence guiding the wisdom behind it. 'Shaolin Boxing' includes not only the 'Shaolin' boxing styles such as 'Tiger Boxing', 'Controlling-evil Boxing' and 'Liuhe Boxing' but also different techniques for practicing weapons like the Shaolin Shuangbian (double whip), Shaolin Zhuantangguai (rolling crane), Shaolin Shaohuogun (fire stick) as well as monkey boxing, etc.