When I started practicing kung fu and actually a long way into it, I always wondered, what is the real point of kung fu forms anyways?
Why should I spend all this time memorizing and perfecting a stance, a certain punch or movement when I wouldn't ever fight like that? Why not just train with simplistic techniques like punches, kicks, and throws? Why bother spending all this time with forms when there is a much shorter route to getting good at throwing a stiff punch.
One of the best models that I have come across to explain the complexity of human development has come from the model above: The Five Levels of Human Potential.
The reason why it is so powerful is it explains how your body interacts on different levels with different techniques.
Many people are familiar with the mind-body connection, but this expands the concept to consider a wider range of aspects.
A young Shaolin boy goes and studies at the Shaolin Temple. His first training exercise is to slap the water in a basin.
The boy, perplexed, asks, "Why?"
The master said, just do it. Slap the water.
In the video above, artist Tobias Gremmler captures the fluidity of Chinese Kung Fu. You can observe the elegance of the movements as they flow and pause at the right time. It is refined chaos - adapting to an ever changing environment.
Life is a lot like that. We have to flow, change and adapt. The more skilled we are, the easier it looks and more powerful we become.
But there are principles at play that are subtle and go unnoticed to the untrained eye. If you look closely, you will see how the energy flows swiftly and easily. It achieves all things without effort.
The opponents strength becomes their weakness. An obstacle becomes the strategy.
About the blog
Luke Siljander began training with Master Wang in 2007. He and Master Wang want to share the value of Kung Fu