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Shaolinquan is a collective name for all styles of kung fu which originate from the Shaolin Monastery. Many people wrongly beleive that all kung fu has its roots in the practices of Shaolin Monks but in fact kung fu is not a single martial arts but rather a term for Chinese martial arts in general, and martial arts were practiced in China a long time before they were adopted by the Shaolin Monks.
The Shaolin Monastery was founded by an Indian Buddhist Monk called Batuo in 495 CE under the Imperial Patronage of Emperor Xiao Wen Di of the Northern Wei Dynasty.
In 527CE an Indian prince known as Boddidharma who had renounced s wealth and luxurious lifestyle to become a Buddhist monk arrived at the temple to teach Buddhism.He found that the monks at the temple had become physically very weak from long periods of seated meditation without moving and realised that despite their dedication their physical weakness was holding back their spiritual development. In order to remedy this he taught them a series of external exercises known as the Eighteen Lohan Hands and a system of internal excercise known as the Classic of Sinew metamorphosis. From these foundations were built the twin pillars of kung fu and qigong.
The Shaolin Monastery was a very prestigous place and many Emperors and army generals visited it on spiritual retreats; as martial arts experts it was these men who combined the Eighteen Lohan Hands exercises with their own expertise to form the First Shaolin style - Shaolin Lohan Style.
The Shaolin monastery, situated on a mountain amidst beautiful scenary was a perfect place to practice martial arts and this, combined with its high patronage and the fact that the Monks were often forced to practice their kung fu to protect the now rich Monastery from Bandits meant that they soon became the permiere centre of kung fu training.



JIN JING ZHONG Training methods of 72 Shaolin Arts
The book "Training Methods of 72 Arts of Shaolin" by Jin Jing Zhong is devoted to the most enigmatic and little-known aspect of training of Shaolin monks. The book was written in 1934 with blessing and direct participation of the Head of the Shaolin Monastery Reverend Miao Xing nicknamed "The Golden Arhat", one of the best Shaolin fighters of all times. Training methods described in the book allow to develop supernatural abilities, far beyond abilities of an ordinary man. In the course of many centuries the methods were the base and core of Shaolin combat training, the most secret part carefully hidden from strangers. However, after a huge fire in 1928 that burnt down Shaolin and a greater part of its records the situation changed. An acute problem of preserving the Shaolin heritage for future generations arose. Most probably, it was the principle reason which made Miao Xing reveal one of the main secrets of Shaolin to the public. The book presents full description of exercises and requirements to their execution, as well as the fundamentals of training theory of 72 Shaolin Arts. Click picture (top left) to download.

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