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2022 Blog Posts

Shaolin Generational Dharma Names (7/24/2022)

The 28th Indian patriarch of Mahāyāna Buddhism and the Chánshī (禅师; lit. "Dhyana Master" or "Zen Master"), the first patriarch of China was Bodhidharma (Sanskrit: बोधिधर्म). The Chinese called him Pútídámó (達摩). He lived from about 483 AD to 536 AD (Traditional Chinese Kan-chih Calendar 3179 to 3180 – 3232 to 3233). Bodhidharma arrived at the Shaolin Temple in 527 AD (Traditional Chinese Kan-chih Calendar 3223 to 3224). Since his advent, numerous generations of indoctrinated monks and nuns, warrior monks or wǔsēng (武僧), and lay disciples have handed down the pillars of Shaolin culture: Ch'an Buddhism (禅 Chán) or Chinese Zen, martial arts (武 ), Buddhist art (艺 ), and traditional Chinese medicine (医 ). The dissemination of knowledge was through the relationship of master and disciple. The master-disciple connection is a manifestation of the traditional patriarchal clan network of the Shaolin Temple. Read More

Miu Hin – Shaolin Five Elder Folk Legend (6/20/2022)

Miu Hin (Traditional Chinese: 苗显; pinyin: Miáo Xiǎn; Cantonese Yale: Mìuh Hín; lit. "Prominent Seedling" or "Prominent (Plant) Shoot"; c. 1700) lived during a time of upheaval in China. The Han Chinese Ming Dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 明朝; pinyin: Míng Cháo; 1368–1644) had been conquered by Manchurian invaders from beyond the borders of Northern China. The successful Manchu invaders established the foreign Qing Dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 大清; pinyin: Dà qīng; Manchu: Daiqing gurun; 1636–1912). Throughout their reign, the Qing faced constant resistance and revolts by Han Chinese rebels, though. Miu Hin was a member of the legendary Shaolin Five Elders who supported revolutionary activity against the Qing. Read More

Princess Pingyang – Woman General of the Tang Dynasty (5/29/2022)

Princess Pingyang (Traditional Chinese: 平陽公主; pinyin: Píngyáng Gōngzhǔ; c. 598–623; t. 618–623) was the third daughter of Li Yuan (李淵; 566–635). Her father was a prominent aristocrat and skilled general who named himself Emperor Gaozu of Tang (唐高祖; r. 618–626) and founded the Tang dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 唐朝; pinyin: Táng Cháo; 618–690, 705–907). China suffered under the reign of Emperor Yang of Sui (隋煬帝; 569–618; r. 604–618), who was the second ruler of the short-lived Sui dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 隋朝; pinyin: Suí Cháo; 581–618) and one of the most hated tyrants in China's history. Princess Pingyang formed and led an army in her own right, helping her father to overthrow the Sui dynasty. Moreover, she was beloved by her followers for her kindness and compassion as well as her strength. Read More

Mu Guiying – Heroine of the Northern Song Dynasty (4/17/2022)

Mu Guiying (Traditional Chinese: 穆桂英; pinyin: Mù Guìyīng; fl. 999–1004) was a famed warrioress. She lived during the Northern Song Dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 北宋; pinyin: Běisòng; 960–1127) when China faced constant warfare on its northern and western borders with militant nomadic tribes. Rather than stay at home to tend after her children and household, which was the norm in ancient China, Mu Guiying rode out to numerous battles to protect her family and country from nomadic invasion. Mu Guiying is iconic for brave, dependable, and loyal women in China. Read More

Zhiyuanduo – Sole Woman Army Leader of the Three Kingdoms Period (3/20/2022)

Zhiyuanduo (Traditional Chinese: 治元多; pinyin: Zhì yuán duō; ?–c. 221 AD) was a non-Han Chinese tribal leader during the fall of the Eastern Han dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 東漢; pinyin: Dōnghàn; 25–220 AD). A fiery and charismatic chieftess, she was the only woman recorded as the leader of an army in China during her days. Read More

Fung Dou Dak – Shaolin Five Elder and White Tiger Style Creator (2/20/2022)

The middle 17th century was a turbulent time in China. The country was invaded by the Manchu people from beyond its northern borders. The Manchu overthrew a faltering Han Chinese Ming dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 明朝; pinyin: Míng Cháo; 1368–1644) and established the foreign Qing dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 大清; pinyin: Dà qīng; Manchu: Daiqing gurun; 1636–1912). The Manchu then had to contend with resistance by Han Chinese rebels throughout their reign. One controversial resistance figure was Fung Dou Dak, who was a Shaolin Five Elder and the founder of the White Tiger Style (白虎派; Cantonese: Bak Fu Pai; Mandarin: Bai Hu Pai). Read More

Lady Sun – Fabled Fierce Lady (1/22/2022)

Lady Sun (Traditional Chinese: 孫夫人; pinyin: Sūn fūrén; c. 200 AD) was a prominent Chinese noblewoman during the time of the late Eastern Han dynasty (Traditional Chinese: 東漢; pinyin: Dōnghàn; 25–220 AD). She was known to be astute, militant, and forceful of character, a match for the male warlords of her day. Read More


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