Manchurian invasion During the end of the Ming dynasty (1600 AD), China was significantly weakened. Many of Ming’s government officials were corrupted. Invaders from Manchuria, lead by the Qing family ended China’s golden era. They slowly but surely took control of power in China. The reason they wanted to conquer China was because they were amazed with the development, culture, government structure, wisdom, wealth, and martial arts in China. In fact, even though they were the “Manchu” race<non Chinese>,they were always trying so hard try to be “Han”, which is the main race of Chinese. China was so developed and good that other non-Chinese races/nations like the Manchurians became so jealous. They simply wanted to conquer China and wanted to be Chinese.
1st Burning of Shaolin temple, in Honan When the Manchurians steadily conquered China, those who didn’t want to submit had to either migrate or go underground. A Shaolin temple in Honan had become the “Refugee center of Ming loyalists”.
Many loyal Ming’s soldiers, nobles and warriors sought refuge in the Shaolin temple. Shaolin, which was originally supposed to be a passive ‘Chan’ Buddhist center become a center of resistance.
Around 1647 AD, through betrayal of Shaolin members and a large amount of Qing troops armed with Canon, the original Shaolin temple was destroyed.
Shaolin temple in Fukkien During that first burning, many monks and Ming’s loyalists fled to a Shaolin temple in Fukien, in Pu Tian city. From this point, Shaolin was outlawed and any practice of Kungfu was punishable by a death sentence. Many Kungfu masters, nobles and warriors sought refuge in the Shaolin temple.
Development of Eng Chun Kun system For the about 40 years, many Masters together with Ming’s generals and Shaolin monks practiced Kungfu together. They were actually developing a new hybrid system as the essence of all advanced styles. The room they used to discuss the new hybrid system was called Eng Chun Tim. It means the hall of forever spring. They were joining their efforts, vision and mission to create a new Shaolin style that is effective, direct, simple, deadly and does not require too much time to learn it. Their purpose was for the new system to be taught for the secret rebellion army to overthrow Qing imperials.
2nd burning of Shaolin temple, located in Fukkien. Before the new hybrid style/system was finalized and given a name, it happened again that there were traitors inside the Shaolin temple in Fukkien. Qing’s government was informed. With a large amount of Qing troops armed with many canons, the Shaolin temple in Fukkien was destroyed and burned to the ground. Legends say there were only five survivors, known as the Five Ancestors. These Five Ancestors are praised as the founders of many southern Kungfu styles and many secret societies. It is believed that there were more than just five survivors during that burning time. All the survivors were involved in the process of developing a new system, so after they fled, they started to teach this new developed system.
Some of them simply took the name of the hall used to develop the new system; Eng Chun. Among these groups, there was a fable story created, which Eng Chun Kun (Wingchun) was created by Njim Eng Chun (Yim Wing Chun) to protect the secrecy of this style since they were on the run and hunted by the Qing government. In fact, the actual meaning of the word “Njim/Yim” is “To protect the secrecy of” <Eng Chun>.
But there are some other people among the survivors that had chosen not to use the name of Eng Chun, for fear of being arrested by the government. These masters (survivors) were already an expert in Chinese martial arts even before the 40 years gathering at Shaolin temple in Fukkien. Therefore, some of them just implemented/blended the movements, concepts, techniques and essence of the Eng Chun system into their previous martial arts style. This is why there are many southern styles that are similar with Eng Chun Kun.
Some mysterious phenomena happened after the burning of Shaolin temple in Fukkien, There was a mysterious sword that came out of the ground where the Shaolin temple used to stand. There were some inscriptions on the body of the sword: “Sang Leng Jiu Su” that means “Two dragons fighting for the pearl”. On the tip of the sword, there were other inscriptions; “Fan Qing Fu Ming” meaning “overthrow Qing, restore Ming”. These sayings were later adapted by many secret societies as their motto.
The underground Eng Chun system There were many underground secret societies who claimed their organization was founded by these Five ancestors. These organizations can easily be categorized by five different flag colors: 1. Red flags 2. Black flags 3. White flags 4. Green flags 5. Yellow flags
Development of Eng Chun Kun inside Red Flags Society Group Red flags had a large number of trained troops. Their main objective was to overthrow the Qing with large army attacks. There were many societies belonging to these Red Flags such as Hong Boen Hwee (Hung Moon / Hung Fa Yi), Ang Hien Hoo, Tian Di Hui, etc. Eng Chun (Wingchun) was taught to it’s troops so that they could have advance kungfu skills. The development of Engchun through “Red Flags society” line had evolved. Somehow, the Engchun system through this ‘Red Flag’ group had arrived in Guang Dong province. Long after that, one of the native people of FoShan, known as Yip Man (Who moved to Hong Kong afterwards) learned Eng Chun while he grew up in Foshan city - Guan Dong. Yip Man became famous because of the fame of his late student: Bruce Lee in United States
Development of Eng Chun Kun inside Black flags society group Black Flags had a smaller number of highly trained troops. The main objective was to train professional killers to kill the Qing officials. Most of their organization operated with extremer caution and more secretly than the Red Flags. Because of their super secretive identity, not many people in the societies identities were known. One of the societies in Indonesia that originated from the Black Flags Society in China is known as “Seng Ki We”. The Seng Ki We society, just like any other society, evolved from it’s function and become the society of Chinese immigrant brotherhood in Surabaya-Indonesia. These were the good ones. There were also the bad ones that become a criminal society in China, known as the Triad.
Eng Chun Kun system arrived in Indonesia There were a Kungfu master in China named “Cia Pun Jiao”. It was later revealed that He was actually the Head instructor of Engchun system of one of black flag society in China. Due to one incident, He killed one of the government’s official and his identity was revealed. In order to protect his society, he fled to Indonesia. He had chosen Indonesia because he heard the rumor that one of his cousin had settled down in Indonesia(at Malang city) and had an established kungfu school at Malang city(note: there were no phone technology yet at that time).
After Jo Su Cia Pun Jiao arrived at Malang city, he couldn’t found his cousin. He had become a homeless person for weeks. During one incident when he was attacked with local native trouble makers, 80 people armed with an axe, he took all of them down without injuring any of them. Word traveled very fast. One of martial artist from Surabaya city, “Mpek Tik Guan” heard about that incident. He asked his friend, “Mpek King Yang” to accompany him to go to Malang to meet Jo Su Cia Pun Jiao. Before the meeting, Mpek King Yang were already a kungfu master. He had learned many kungfu system from nine different masters such as Tai Zu, Ho Yang Pai, etc.
After meeting with Jo Su Cia Pun Jiao, Mpek King Yang felt sorry for Him. Mpek King Yang took him home and took care of him for almost two years. After two years, Cia Pun Jiao felt that he owed too much favor to Mpek King Yang and he want to repay it by teaching Mpek King Yang everything he knew about Engchun system. Because of the secrecy of this system, Mpek King Yang must took an oath to His master, Cia Pun Jiao. The oath had 3 major points that if it is being broken, blood will come from 7 holes in the head and die.
SuKong Tio Tik Kwi After Cia Pun Jiao taught everything he knew to Mpek King Yang, Cia Pun Jiao grant permission to open Kungfu school in Indonesia. From Mpek King Yang, there were many great masters arised. One of them is Sukong Tio Tik Kwi who is the most favorite ‘closed-door’ student of Suco Mpek King Yang.
Suco Tio Tik Kwi is the only student that have the ‘official permission’ from Sukong Mpek King Yang, to establish a kungfu school. Unlike other Mpek King Yang’s students who had to ask for the permission to teach, Su Co Mpek King Yang, in fact, instruct Su Kong Tio Tik Kwi to establish a kungfu school to carry on the teaching.
Another thing is that Sukong Mpek King Yang only gave one portrait of himself to his only choosen student(Tio Tik Kwi) so that it can be hanged in the practice hall. The rest of other students had to ask Sukong Mpek King Yang for his portrait.
Our Suhu (instructor) A son of Chinese parents, Our instructor, was born in Indonesia. As he’s grown up in the Chinese community, he began to learn kuntao/kungfu at the age of 10 and He was and still is one of the ‘closed-door’ student of SuKong Tio Tik Kwi.
He has completed all of his training and has more than 18 years experience in Wingchun Kungfu.
Su Kong Tio Tik Kwi had given him permission to teach and spread this system. He’s has been certified as Fukkien Engchun(Wingchun) instructor.
To extend his knowledge, Suhu had a chance to also learn other Wingchun system from different lineage (non fukkienese). He learned Yip Man originated Wingchun system, from Chung Che Man who is one of instructor of Vikoga Wingchun. Afterwards, Chung Che Man grant him permission to teach the Vikoga Wingchun and He also received permission from Sikung Victor Leow, founder of Vikoga Wingchun who had learned Wingchun from Yip Man’s official students; Wong Shun Leung and Fung Bing Bol, and also Malaysian Wingchun. Suhu had became also certified as Vikoga Wingchun instructor.
In the last five years, Suhu opened the door for the public to learn kungfu. He had conducted both public and private class in Indonesia to the Chinese Indonesian students, Students from Japan, Brazil, USA.
After he moved to USA, he has established Shaolin Kungfu Center Academy and make this Fukien Engchun style/system available, here in USA.
He carries personal mission from his master (Sukong Tio Tik Kwi) to spread and preserve the Engchun/Wingchun’s art for this & next generation.
His motto are very simple; 1. Kungfu (martial art skill) can only be achieved through proper training, practice, instruction and motivation to learn. 2. The name of specific kungfu names/style bear no meaning, as most other styles claim that their style is the best. What really matters is “How good is your training and practice ?”. Engchun system is not the only best kungfu style, but failure to train it properly with enough dedicated practices means “learning to fail”