Introduction to the Wing Chun Philosophy
By Chu Shong Tin
After one is familiar with all the movements in the Wing Chun Forms, he should study and understand more in depth the theory, Philosophy of Wing Chun and contents of the Forms in order to establish the concept in training so that he could reach the revelation – “Lop Nim” (Means: establish intention – determined to use the thinking process to achieve the basic principles of Wing Chun) – as told by the late Grandmaster Ip Man. Practicing in this way, one can be able to gain an ideal result and obtain enrichment.
Now I will give a brief description of the philosophy of Wing Chun. Wing Chun kung fu always emphasizes on not to use any muscular force but to conjugate with the mind and work it out as the source of power. This reinforces the importance of “Lop Nim” during training. I hope that the followers of Wing Chun can assimilate the logic of modern scientific theories in analysing its movements so one can learn more about the Wing Chun system and make it easier to understand why Wing Chun is so profound in its learning.
During the Qing Dynasty of China, Wing Chun was created from the life martial arts experience of the Abbess Ng Mui during her latter years. Now a few hundred years later, if one use the modern scientific knowledge to analyze Wing Chun, no matter which movements, [Siu Nim Tao ], [Chum Kiu] or [ Biu Jee ], are backed up by the logic of physics, dynamics and the theory of body structure. That is why I believe Wing Chun is an invented martial art that transcends time.
Generally, when beginners study the movements of the Wing Chun forms, most of them find it very difficult to comprehend. Therefore, they concentrate on the practical application of the techniques and neglect the importance of the logic of the theories of force and structure. After analysing Wing Chun within the theory of leverage, if one believes that this is the highest skill of Wing Chun then they have overlooked the advance effects that are obtained from the energy developed from mind force, the reasons why it can save strength and the theories of force and structure etc. which can help one to progress to a higher level.
When I try to explain the profound theory of Wing Chun kung fu, I find it very difficult to describe and put in writing. Even if I demonstrate the movements on people as I did in my previous seminars, I was still thought to be acting. Therefore, it shows that the practical effects of Wing Chun have reached a point of view that the force it can be generated is hard for anyone to believe.
In practising Wing Chun, besides studying the application of the movements, one should not neglect the theory of each Form. For example, in Siu Nim Tao, of course its movements can be used for defense and attack but in practising, one should direct all the movements in the form with the use of the mind. In establishing this mind force theory by not using any muscular strength, one can derive the skill of how to generate force with his mind and a good example of this is the Bong Sau. Bong Sau can easily fling the downward pressing force of the opponent by not using any muscular strength. It is said that the Bong Sau was created by the late Abbess Ng Mui when she sighted the fight between a crane and a raccoon. The crane just used its thin wing to rotate the raccoon away and it could continue to stand on one leg throughout the fight. She then suddenly understood the principle why a lighter object could fight against a heavier object by not using any strength. It is difficult to prove whether Wing Chun was created from those incidents but it does not need to use any strength is an affirmative fact.
In order to achieve the mind force of Wing Chun, practitioners should first practise according to the functions of the Forms and try to merge your mind and the movements together. When one starts to feel the existence of the mind force, Wing Chun will become one of the enjoyments of life.
Wing Chun comprises of three forms i.e. [Siu Nim Tao], [Chum Kiu] and [Biu Jee] and each form has a theory of its own. In application, if one can combine the three forms together, Wing Chun will become a system which is practical and capable of deriving a highly destructive force.
Practising, discussing and questioning are the best ways to success!
By Chu Shong Tin