Article by Emanuel Giordano
Five ancestors Fist 五祖拳 it is known by several names, depending on the Chinese dialect in use. The most used pronunciation is Wuzu Quan, but the Wuchu Chuan or Ngo-cho Kun pronunciations are not uncommon. According to Master Chee Kim Thong, the origins of this style date back to 1300 and at the northern Shaolin Temple. Although the date may not be shared by others, it seems instead that almost everyone agrees in identifying the origins of the style in the northern Shaolin Temple. With the fall of the Ming dynasty and the advent of the Qing dynasty, some monks fled to southern China, where the Ming resisted for a few years. Here the original style would mingle with Fujian martial arts, giving birth to Wuzu Quan. However, there are other theories, including one in which the style was born from Taizu Quan, a style that is based on the cult of the "great ancestors". To date, however, Wuzu Quan includes forms and knowledge of the following styles: Taizu Quan (Great ancestors fist), Luohan Quan (Arhat fist), Baihe Quan (White Crane fist), Hou Quan (Monkey fist) and Xuan Nu Quan (Soft fist). Starting in 1644, Wuzu Quan became the main style in China and especially in Fujian, where the main lineages would develop. Between the mid and late 1800s two great masters, as well as friends, reformed the style giving way to two main lineages, the Yongchun Wuzu Quan and the Wuzu Quan Ho Yang Pai, born respectively from Li Jun Ren and Chua Giok Beng. However, it should be stressed that not all teachers will join these two lineages, in fact a minority continued to transmit the original Wuzu Quan. According to what emerged in a private conversation with a well-known Yongchun Wuzu Quan master, the various lineages would transmit different teachings, a bit like what happened with Shuri-te and Naha-te. Continuing however with the part that concerns our objective, we will speak only of the Yongchun Wuzu Quan.
YONGCHUN WUZU QUAN
THE CHINESE NAME OF SEISAN
AND ABOUT THE FUJIAN WHITE CRANE??
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