A Shaolin Disciple’s Tale of Dedication and Transformation
Hey there, Temple Fam! I'm TC, also known as Tian Ge in our Temple community. You can call me DG's little brother, not only through the family connection of him marrying my sister, but I was his first student back in early 2007. I hail from China and have been a Shaolin Disciple since the tender age of six. For over 16 years, I have dedicated myself to the practice of Kung Fu.
From Dreaming to Training at Shaolin Monastery
My journey with Kung Fu began in the summer of 2007 when DG visited my hometown, and we first met. At that time, I was just a kid who loved watching Ultraman and trying to mimic the cool moves I saw in movies. Little did I know that my Kung Fu dream was about to come true, and I would have the opportunity to go to Shaolin Monastery. I showed DG a few things I had learned from movies and training classes. Although my form wasn't perfect, the positive energy I exuded became the driving force behind my pursuit of what I loved.
DG’s Guidance: Master & Disciple
DG decided to take me to DengFeng, the city where the Shaolin Monastery is located, it was not just a mere visit. It marked a significant turning point as DG took me as his first disciple. DG, who held the esteemed position of head coach at the Shaolin Monastery’s traditional training ground, personally mentored me, providing me with rigorous one-on-one training and adventure - immersing me deep into the ways of KungFu, and from hours of storytelling to long, hikes, and camping trips, deep in Song, mountain too hours of dedicated Kung fu development. I lived, trained, and shared meals exclusively with DG, fostering an unbreakable bond between us.As I’m DG’s disciple, DG became my master, a relationship reserved for just a chosen few. However, in our Shaolin heritage, as we all belong to the same generation, we have all taken official discipleship under the abbot of The Shaolin Monestry, Shi Yong Xin to continue the lineage of Shaolin, Therefore, I, like others, underwent the sacred ceremony of becoming an official disciple and received a Buddhist name from the esteemed abbot. My given name is Shi Yan Yi (释延奕), which translates to "stay positive" in Chinese. This acts as a constant reminder, As an athlete of Temple, maintaining a positive mindset has been crucial.
Mastering a Multitude of Kung Fu Disciplines
During my 16-year training journey, I've immersed myself in a diverse range of skills. From the foundational training of Tongzigong to the mesmerizing art of acrobatics, I've explored the dynamic world of Kung Fu, including the captivating style of drunken boxing. Animal forms, traditional Shaolin techniques, and the art of weapons combat have all shaped my expertise. Moreover, I've ventured beyond Kung Fu, delving into weightlifting, jiu-jitsu, boxing, and mixed martial arts. As a qualified fitness instructor, personal trainer, nutritionist, and mental health counselor, I bring a holistic approach to training. And when I'm not on the mat, I find solace and joy in strumming the strings of my guitar.
I hope that all of these experiences resonate with you and the Temple community, and that they provide you with positive energy. I'm here to communicate and discuss anything you're interested in.
From Performances to Worldly Adventures
As a proud member of the official Shaolin Monastery Warrior performance team, I have been fortunate enough to seize incredible opportunities. I have been involved in filming, TV shows, and various performances in countries such as the USA, UK, Latvia, Singapore, Russia, Cyprus, Israel, Thailand, France, Japan, and Australia. I look forward to showcasing all of these experiences in the future!
Teaching Lessons and Learning at Temple
In 2018, after waiting almost 10 years to get a Visa I was granted access to the UK and embarked on my teaching journey at Temple Fam UK, which was not only a great opportunity to learn from DG but also a chance to be with my family. During those six months, I not only learned how to teach, but also how to maintain passion in training, the importance of continuous learning and growth, and the value of sharing our beliefs and warrior spirit. It was also my first time stepping into a gym, where I delved into nutrition and witnessed my abs make a comeback in just 8 weeks after a five-year hiatus. I even picked up skills like painting, drawing, cooking, decoration, oh and ofcourse Kung Fu High Bar!
While the word "teach" is commonly used, I personally prefer "share" or "communicate" because, regardless of who you meet, there's always something to learn from them.
Australia: A Journey of Growth
After spending the summer of 2018 with DG, my brother, at Temple in London, I found my passion for Kung Fu reignited. The experience sparked a newfound inspiration and deep love for the art within me. Fueled by this enthusiasm, I took the initiative to request help from my master the Abbot, seeking permission to continue my learning and development abroad. Recognizing my dedication, the Abbot graciously granted my request, and he sent me to Australia to embark on the next chapter of my remarkable journey.
My time in Australia was transformative. I had a profound impact on the Shaolin monastery there, propelling it from a small group of students to a thriving entity with hundreds of dedicated members. Together, we expanded and moved to a larger, more remarkable location, as our shared commitment and relentless efforts paid off even through the hard ships of lockdown and the global pandemic.
Returning to Temple: A Warrior’s Homecoming
As I generously shared my knowledge and expertise with fellow members in Australia and the reopening of the world, I began to sense a personal calling, an opportunity to explore new horizons and pursue my own aspirations. While the Shaolin Monastery remains an integral part of my life, I recognized the importance to embark on a path of self-discovery and growth outside of monastic life.
Now, after three years of lockdown and with a newfound sense of maturity, I return to the UK once again, this time with a resolute determination to train and grow alongside the Temple community that has become my extended family. Temple holds a special place in my heart, a sanctuary where I can fully immerse myself in the teachings and spirit of Kung Fu. Together, we continue to forge our own path within the boundless world of martial arts.
Temple is more than a martial arts school; it is an extension of my home. DG, my teacher, surpasses the role of a Kung Fu master—he is my family. I am incredibly blessed and grateful to be part of this extraordinary journey, where we not only share our story with the world but also carry forward the ancient traditions of Kung Fu. Witnessing the sacred ways being passed down from generation to generation fills me with immense pride and reverence.
As I step into the role of a teacher, I eagerly anticipate sharing my wisdom and knowledge with everyone who seeks it. However, there is a special place in my heart for T, my nephew, the young warrior. Guiding and nurturing him on his own path is a responsibility I hold dear. Together, we continue to embrace the wheel of life, honoring the legacy that has been entrusted to us.