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18 Jewels of Shaolin Wahnam Chikung: 10 Questions to Grandmaster Wong

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  • 18 Jewels of Shaolin Wahnam Chikung: 10 Questions to Grandmaster Wong

    QUESTIONS TO GRANDMASTER WONG: CHIKUNG-18 JEWELS

    I´m glad to let you that you can ask questions about the set of Chikung exercices "18 Jewels" that Sifu will be teaching in Barcelona (May) for the first time in Europe .

    Sifu has generously agreed to give answers about this topic.

    So please, all your interesting questions are welcome.



    Best regards,

    Daniel


    ****
    Barcelona Courses Organization:
    Sifu Adalia:chikung.bcn@gmail.com
    Daniel Pérez
    http://www.shaolinbcn.es

  • #2
    That's great! Thanks alot for this great opportunity! Ever since seeing the videoclip Sifu recently posted about "White Crane Steps on Snow" from the courses on the Blue Mountain, this following question has been on my mind. I hope this is an appropiate question, as it has not much to do with Chi Kung for health (in general). If not, then please apologize my question.

    Dear Sifu,

    Is White Crane Steps on Snow in any way related to the Art of Lightness?

    Thank you.

    Tim
    Last edited by Tim Hoorens; 19th March 2013, 10:19 PM. Reason: spelling

    Comment


    • #3
      Wow, another great „10 questions“ opportunity!

      Dear Daniel Siheng,
      Thank you for starting the thread and providing us the chance to ask questions!

      Dear Sifu,
      In the announcement to the renaming of the 18 therapeutic exercises, it is mentioned that you invented the exercises yourself. I’d like to congratulate and thank you very much that you are teaching them to the public now!

      Would you please elaborate on the developmental phase:
      - At least some of the exercises (I don’t know all yet) are similar to chi flow movements. Did you formalize the chi movements to patterns?
      - Have there been other exercises you drew your inspiration from?
      - Did you create the single exercises for special purposes or did you find out their benefits after the creation, e.g. through experience of your healing patients?
      - Have there been more exercises that did not make it to the collection of the traditional number of 18?

      Sorry for asking so many questions, but they just keep flowing out…

      Thank you in advance!

      Best wishes, o\

      Leo

      PS:
      Sifu will teach the 18 Jewels in Austria from May 3 to 5 already, what is not widly known, I guess. But I am sure that our Spanish family will benefit from Sifu’s improvements during the course in Austria. And you still have the Baguazhang first-timer, which alone is great enough to compensate. Sorry for damaging your announcement, Daniel, but I wanted to let the other family members know about another great opportunity to attend the course!
      Sifu Leonard Lackinger

      Wahnam Wien Logo

      Shaolin Wahnam Wien
      Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung
      Southern Shaolin Kung Fu
      Wahnam Tai Chi Chuan

      Shaolin Wahnam Wien on facebook
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      Comment


      • #4
        Thank you for this Questions/Answers series on the Eighteen Jewels. I am sure it will be also very beneficial for the participants of the upcoming courses in Europe. I would like to ask the following question:

        If I understood correctly in Costa Rica the Eighteen Jewels are relatively speaking of low-level QiGong for our school. Looking at the different results/benefits participants have been sharing, they are incredible far-reaching and profound. Why can so called low-level QiGong exercises be so powerful and when and why do they sometimes suit better for healing?

        Thank you very much to Sigung and Daniel Sisook for this opportunity and for sharing.

        Kind regards, Binia
        Last edited by Binia; 21st March 2013, 11:58 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Dear all,

          Here comes the first answer from Sifu, enjoy it!:

          18 Jewels Question-Answer 1 - Part 1

          Question 1

          In the announcement to the renaming of the 18 therapeutic exercises, it is mentioned that you invented the exercises yourself. I’d like to congratulate and thank you very much that you are teaching them to the public now!

          Would you please elaborate on the developmental phase?
          At least some of the exercises (I don’t know all yet) are similar to chi flow movements. Did you formalize the chi movements to patterns?
          Have there been other exercises you drew your inspiration from?
          Did you create the single exercises for special purposes or did you find out their benefits after the creation, e.g. through experience of your healing patients?
          Have there been more exercises that did not make it to the collection of the traditional number of 18?

          Sifu Leonard


          Answer

          Anthony Korahais, the Chief Instructor of Shaolin Wahnam USA, was the one who suggested changing the name “Eighteen Therapeutic Exercises” to “Eighteen Jewels”.

          Anthony was also the one who suggested grouping these eighteen exercises into a set. Many years ago he and I were discussing what exercises we had in our teaching repertoire. After listing exercises in Eighteen Lohan Hands, Sinew Metamorphosis and Eighteen Shaolin Wahnam Techniques for Health and Vitality, he mentioned that there were exercise I used for healing, like Bear Walk and Embracing Buddha. (At that time we did not teach Eighteen-Lohan Art and Bone Marrow Cleansing yet.)

          This gave me the impetus to group the therapeutic exercises into a set. Why do we choose 18 and not other numbers. This is in honour of the 18 Lohans, the 18 special and direct disciples of the Buddha often mentioned in Chinese Buddhist literature. You may have noticed that Shaolin kungfu sets are usually composed from patterns in multiple of 18, like Cross-Road consisting of 36 patterns, Flower Set of 72 patterns, and Triple Stretch of 108 patterns.

          The eighteen jewels are as follows:

          1 Double Dragon
          2 Fish Flip
          3 Dancing Fairy
          4 Swinging Hips
          5 Bear Walk
          6 Immortal Takes off Shoes
          7 Dragonfly Plays with Water
          8 White Crane Steps on Snow
          9 Drumming Kidneys
          10 Touching Toes
          11 Old Man Rows Boat
          12 Shaking Fingers
          13 Rocking Feet
          14 Kicking Legs
          15 Hula Hop
          16 General Surveys Field
          17 Dancing Butterfly
          18 Embracing Buddha

          All the exercises were invented to meet expedient needs. Most of them were for healing purposes. Some of them were for improved chi flow.

          I did not learn chi flow from any of my sifus the way it is now taught in our school. It was evolved from my early years of teaching. I confirmed both the nature and benefits of chi flow experienced by my students with what I read in chi kung classics.

          Even the way I teach chi kung and kungfu in regional and intensive courses is my innovation. I believe I was one of the first, if not the first, in teaching chi kung and kungfu in a package course of a few days. It was unthinkable when I started doing it. A brief description not only of how the 18 jewels developed but also an overview of how our methodology evolved would be interesting and beneficial.

          I learned kungfu the traditional way. Chi kung, more commonly known as nei kung, was incorporated in kungfu, but taught only to trusted and advanced disciples. Most kungfu students did not have the chance to learn nei kung.

          The same tradition is carried on today all over the world. By traditional way is meant that students learn mainly kungfu sets from their teachers. There is hardly any free sparring. Sometimes students may perform sparring sets, which they perform as a routine and not as training for combat.

          There are no set objectives and no set aims. Usually both the students and their teachers have no idea what result the training will bring. Often they do not know why they are doing what they are doing. They do not know, for example, why a certain stance is used, or how they could apply a particular pattern in combat.

          Some enterprising instructors introduced free sparring, which they borrowed from Karate and Taekwondo, into kungfu hoping that this would make their students combative. But there is no method and no system. Students put on gloves and sometimes protection gear, and just punch and kick one another.
          Daniel Pérez
          http://www.shaolinbcn.es

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          • #6
            18 Jewels Question-Answer 1 - Part 2

            (Continued from part 1)My kungfu “enlightenment” came when I learned from my sifu, Sifu Ho Fatt Nam, the third generation successor from the southern Shaolin Temple. My practice was not merely learning kungfu sets as is done in most kungfu schools, but force training and combat application. Later I discovered this was what past kungfu practitioners did, especially at the Shaolin Temple.

            Later when I set up Shaolin Wahnam I followed this tradition of force training and combat application. I went a step further. The combat applications I learned were from Four-Gates and Shaolin Pakua Set, which were advanced and sophisticated, and too difficult for most students. So I devised more simple combat applications, which now evolved into our 16 basic Shaolin combat sequences. I also devised 12 basic Taijiquan combat sequences.

            Another historic development occurred when I decided to teach chi kung to the public. Chi kung classics indicated that chi kung was excellent for curing illness. But I reckoned that the way chi kung was traditionally taught those who needed it most urgently to overcome their illness would have no chance to learn chi kung, whereas those who had the opportunity were already fit and healthy.

            So I taught the Eighteen Lohan Hands to the public in a package course of 6 months. This was revolutionary. Many people wondered what I could teach in 6 months. Chi kung training meant years. Some masters were angry that I revealed secrets to the public. When I accepted non-Chinese as students, many people were outrageous.

            Later as I improved my teaching methodology I shortened the same course to 3 months. When I first traveled to Australia to teach there, I shortened the course to 10 days, but teaching 10 selected exercises instead of 18., and naming the course just “Shaolin Chi Kung”. Years later when I taught in Spain, the course was shortened to 3 days, teaching 6 exercises instead of 10. Later it was furthered shortened to just 1 day of 8 hours, teaching just 3 exercises, and naming the course “Generating Energy Flow”. Meanwhile I also taught another course of 8 hours, “Massaging Internal Organs”, using another 3 exercises of the Eighteen Lohan Hands.

            Gradually I realized the difference between techniques and skills. This realization enables us to be extremely cost-effective. Now these and other courses like “Cosmic Shower”, “Internal Force” and “Cosmic Breathing” take only 4 or 5 hours each. Not only the time to learn the exercises is much less, the benefits derived are much more, though the actual techniques learnt may be less

            Double Dragon, Fish Flip, Dancing Fairy, Swinging Hips and Bear Walk, which are the first 5 of the 18 jewels, were amongst the first techniques created by me. This occurred quite early in the developmental history of our methodology, before my realization of the difference between techniques and skills. When I first taught the Eighteen Lohan Hands, it took about 4 to 6 months before students had their first chi flow. As I became more knowledgeable by reading chi kung classics, I could speed up the time for chi flow, but still it was not short enough for a course of three days.

            So I started thinking. I observed how students developed their chi flow. I found two important facts: the type of patterns they performed had an effect on the type of chi flow movement that followed, and the more vigorously they performed their patterns as they progressed, the more vigorous the subsequent chi flow movement would be.
            Daniel Pérez
            http://www.shaolinbcn.es

            Comment


            • #7
              18 Jewels Question-Answer 1 - Part 3

              (Continued from part 2)

              I devised a few sets of three exercises per set. These sets of exercises generated chi flow quickly that led to self-manifested chi movement.

              One set consisted of Pushing Hand Lift Sky, Double Dragon and Fish Flip. Pushing Hand Lift Sky is a combination of Pushing Hands and Lifting Sky into one exercise. This set of three exercises creates a forward-backward chi flow movement.

              Another set of three exercises consisted of Dancing Fairy, Swinging Hips and Bear Walk. This set generated a circular chi flow movement. I used this set in Toronto when Dr Kay invited me to help patients with endometriosis. All the patients recovered.

              Immortal Takes off Shoes and Dragonfly Plays with Water are two of the 5 exercises in the Art of Flexibility, which I originally taught in the Intensive Shaolin Kungfu Course, and which I myself used to loosen my legs so that I could sit in a half-lotus position in sitting meditation.

              When I first devised White Crane Steps on Snow, it was meant to loosen knee muscles. But now it has become more sophisticated, contributing to agility and the art of lightness.

              I first learned Drumming Kidneys from Sifu Ho Fatt Nam to loosen my back muscles so that I could bend forward to touch my toes without bending my knees. It has other benefits. Touching Toes was one of the 5 exercises for the Art of Flexibility.

              Old Man Rows Boat, Shaking Fingers and Rocking Feet were invented to meet expedient needs while healing. They proved to be very effective.

              Kicking Legs and Hula Hop were two of the exercises I created for self-manifested chi movement for people with problems at their lower body.

              I learned General Surveys Field during a discussion with my sifu, Sifu Ho Fatt Nam, as he told me how to help people overcome structural problem. Later I found it very useful too for overcoming depression.

              Dancing Butterfly and Embracing Buddha are excellent patterns devised by me to help many people overcome various health problems, especially problems related to the heart, the lungs, the chest, the back, the spine and related emotional disorders.

              Generally I formulated the exercises from pattern to movement rather than from movement to pattern. By certain physical movement of the pattern I can expect the chi to flow in certain manner, rather than desiring certain chi flow movement I set to work out the pattern. For example, because of the physical movement of Kicking Legs I expect the chi to flow to the legs. Because of the physical movement of General Surveys Field, I expect the chi to open the practitioner’s shoulders and chest.

              The creation of these exercises drew inspiration of the Eighteen Lohan Hands. From practicing the Eighteen Lohan Hands I could experience chi flow in certain ways and bring particular benefits. This experience and knowledge provided the foundation to devise the 18 jewels.

              The exercises were first created for specific purposes. Later the exercises led to other benefits. For example, Shaking Fingers was created to overcome problems at the fingers and wirst. But later it was discovered that the exercise could also overcome problems at the shoulders. Embracing Buddha was created to overcome problems of back pain. But later it was discovered that it could also overcome allergy problems.

              Yes, there are other exercises not included in the Eighteen Jewels or other sets of chi kung exercises. Some examples are Swinging Arms, Casting Net and Rocking Hips. Like the 18 jewels, they were dynamic patterns created to meet expedient needs.

              As they were originally created to solve health problems these 18 exercises were collected known Eighteen Therapeutic Exercises. But they have been proven to have other benefits besides overcoming pain and illness. Hence, suggested by Anthony Korahais, we now call them the Eighteen Jewels.
              Daniel Pérez
              http://www.shaolinbcn.es

              Comment


              • #8
                Dear Sifu,

                If students practice techniques from the 18 Jewels, and afterwards don't have a chi flow but just stand still, is there any harm? And does this apply to other types of Chi Kung and also to performing Kung Fu sets?
                少林華南台灣 Shaolin Wahnam Taiwan

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                "Then how could chi kung overcome diseases where the cause is unknown or when there is no cure? The question is actually incorrect. The expressions "the cause is unknown" and "there is no cure" are applicable only in the Western medical paradigm. The expressions no longer hold true in the chi kung paradigm. In the chi kung paradigm the cause is known, and there is a cure."

                -Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit

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                • #9
                  Thank You Sifu

                  Dear Sifu,

                  Thank You so much for sharing with us such profound insights and teachings through all the 10 questions about all the subject that are being and have been covered.

                  I am continuously in awe when I read them.

                  Best regards,
                  Claude
                  Love is wonderful, because anyone with love in his heart wants to see everyone in bliss, everyone healthy and everyone availing freedom. This is the state of a man who considers the world as his family. Such are the wise man, the great souls. (Shri Shantananda Saraswati)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thank you Sifu for have the courage and determination to help those in need regardless of the comments of others!

                    Thank you as well for these tremendous techniques!

                    I find in my teaching and healing practices that people respond amazingly well to these exercises and often enjoy them tremendously. Even after having people enjoy satori with exercises like lifting the sky or great windmill they still tell me they just have to do bearwalk or butterfly everyday because they feel so good!

                    It is such a treat to be able to help people feel well physically, emotionally and spiritually all at the same time. Thank you Sifu.
                    from the Heart...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Wisdom & Courage!

                      Dear Sigung,

                      Thank you so very much for having the courage and wisdom to teach qigong/nei gong to the public the way that you do. Sigung's willingness to go forth to not just recover, but research and create qigong exercises for expedient needs to cure illnesses reminds me of the brave doctors who would willingly test their own medicines on themselves before daring to prescribe them to the public. They put themselves "on the front lines" for the sake of healing people.

                      Thank you very much!
                      I like making silly videos (including kung fu ones!) every so often on YouTube and taking pictures of weird things on Instagram.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        18 Jewels Question-Answer 2

                        --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

                        Question 2

                        Is White Crane Steps on Snow in any way related to the Art of Lightness?

                        Tim


                        The answer is yes and no.

                        The term “White Crane Step on Snow” originally referred to a Shaolin kungfu pattern found in an exclusive kungfu set called “Essence of Shaolin” which I learned from Uncle Righteousness.

                        Sometimes I showed this pattern in class when demonstrating combat application. Amongst many functions, it is useful for intercepting a sweeping kick and breaking an opponent’s leg.

                        When I taught Praying Mantis in Bern a few years ago, I found the Praying Mantis Seven-Star Stance very effective in combat. I wondered why it was not popularly use in other kungfu styles. After thinking over the question, I cam to a conclusion that there was a nemesis to the Seven-Star Stance, and this nemesis was “White Crane Step on Snow”.

                        In other words, if an opponent applies a Seven-Star Stance to break you shin, he would have his own leg broken if you respond with “White Crance Steps on Snow”, and it is difficult, but not impossible, to defend against this White Crane counter. Masters did not want to risk themselves, so the Seven-Star was not popular.

                        To meet an expedient need of helping students overcome knee problems, I devised an exercise that resembled this kungfu pattern “White Crane Steps on Snow”. So I call the chi kung exercise “White Crane Steps on Snow” too.

                        Hence, in these two aspects of kungfu application and chi kung healing, “White Crane Steps on Snow” is not related to the Art of Lightness.

                        I practiced the Art of Lightness for some time in my young days. I could jump up to a height of about 4 feet on the spot. Unfortunately I did not continue the training after sustaining an injury, “White Crane Steps on Snow” was not one of the required exercises.

                        However, when I taught the Eighteen Jewels recently )February 2013), “White Crane Steps on Snow” was one of the exercises. When I taught it, I meant it to be an exercise for the knees. But when students practiced this exercise in chi flow, I found that they became very agile. I was innovative and I encouraged them to run and jump using “White Crane Steps on Snow” while in chi flow.

                        Jereom, for example, was very impressive. He could spring up a few feet quite effortlessly. I encouraged him to continue practicing with this exercise. Hopefully he may break the world high jump record one day! In this respect, “White Crane Steps on Snow” is related to the Art of Lightness. If I shall teach the Art of Lightness one day in future, I shall include the Art of Lightness in its training.
                        Daniel Pérez
                        http://www.shaolinbcn.es

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          um... did Sifu just consider to maybe teach the art of lightness one day?

                          Every time you think it can’t get any better, Sifu teaches you otherwise.

                          Thank you for another great answer, Sifu!
                          And thanks to Tim for asking the question and Daniel Siheng for starting the thread!

                          There are still some questions left to fulfill the 10 offered answers, so I hope someone will continue the questioning.

                          Best wishes,
                          o\

                          Leo
                          Sifu Leonard Lackinger

                          Wahnam Wien Logo

                          Shaolin Wahnam Wien
                          Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung
                          Southern Shaolin Kung Fu
                          Wahnam Tai Chi Chuan

                          Shaolin Wahnam Wien on facebook
                          Shaolin Wahnam Wien on google+

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                          • #14
                            Dear Sifu,

                            Thank you for the answers.

                            I would really like to learn the Art of Lightness on day!! Alot of people don't understand the purpose, but I'd love to learn it.

                            I can sometimes "think" the Art of Lightness, like the floating and controlling of energy in the body in the the pattern of the Crane when coming down, or focusing the mind to a point at the sky, and running up a wall, and attacking a horde of enemies from the sides this way
                            Haha, these are just fantasies, but it's interesting nevertheless.

                            Best wishes,
                            Tim

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thank you all for your questions...and thank you Sifu for the answers:
                              __________________________________________________ ____
                              18 Jewels Question-Answer 3 - Part 1

                              --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

                              Question 3

                              If I understand correctly the Eighteen Jewels are relatively speaking of low-level qigong in our school. Looking at the different results/benefits participants have been sharing, they are incredible, far-reaching and profound. Why can so called low-level qigong exercises be so powerful and when and why do they sometimes suit better for healing?

                              Binia



                              Answer

                              Low-level and high-level are relative terms.

                              We can look at the relative qualification from three perspectives.

                              In the first perspective when we compare different qigong arts practiced in our school, the Eighteen Jewels are low-level in relation to arts like the Eighteen-Lohan Art and Sinew Metamorphosis which are of a higher level.

                              A progressive range of the arts practiced in our school from low-level to high-level is as follows:

                              1. Eighteen Jewels (formerly called Eighteen Therapeutic Exercises)
                              2. Eighteen Exercises for Health and Vitality
                              3. Eighteen Lohan Hands
                              4. Eighteen-Lohan Art
                              5. Zhan Zhuang or Stance Training
                              6. Abdominal Breathing
                              7. Dan Tain Breathing
                              8. Sinew Metamorphosis

                              Please note that the above arts relate to techniques. Eighteen Jewels, for example, refer to 18 techniques, which have form and are visible.

                              Arts like Generating Energy Flow and Cosmic Shower relate to skills. Generating Energy Flow, for example, refers to the skill of generating a chi flow, which has no form and is invisible, i.e. the chi flow has no definite form and we do not see the chi flow though we can see the bodily movement manifesting the chi flow.

                              The difference between techniques and skills, which are directly relevant to whether an art is low-level or high-level will be explained later.

                              In the second perspective when we compare Eighteen Jewels practiced in our school with qigong arts practiced in other schools, our Eighteen Jewels is high-level, producing incredible, far-reaching and profound results. This is probably the reason that prompted your question.

                              Understandably, other people may be angry at my statement that our Eighteen Jewels, which we consider low-level compared to other arts in our school, is high-level compared to arts practiced by other schools. Honestly we never mean to be insulting, but this is a fact, and pointing out this fact is relevant and important in this question.

                              Let us take two arts, A and B. By practice art A, practitioners can overcome illness like cancer and heart problems, but by practicing art B practitioners cannot over illness. Obviously art A is of a higher level than art B.

                              By practicing art A, even if they are smaller in size, old or are female, practitioners have more vitality than others who are bigger in size, younger or are male, but by practicing art B practitioners do not have these benefits. Art A is of an even higher level than art B.

                              By practicing art A practitioners who were previous stressful become relaxed, who were previously depressed become happy, who were previously angry become peaceful, but practicing art B practitioners do not have these benefits. Art A is further more higer level than art B.

                              Eighteen Jewels have all the benefits credited to art A, but most other arts practiced in other schools do not have these benefits. They are like art D.

                              The third perspective is skills. Not many practitioners differentiate between techniques and skills. By differentiating between techniques and skills, and apply this understanding to our training, we become incredibly cost-effective. Applying appropriate skills enables us to make a relative low-level art in our school like Eighteen Jewels to become high-level in its results.
                              Daniel Pérez
                              http://www.shaolinbcn.es

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