Wing Chun has evolved from the Southern Shaolin System to the modern day due to many events. Between the years of 1644 and 1911 China was controlled by the Ching Government, who were the Manchurians, although they represented only ten percent of the population they controlled the Hans, who were the majority, by force and repression. The Hans were not allowed to own any weapons or to train in Martial Arts. The Manchurians were afraid of the martial artist and begin to kill them and forced them to train in secret, many fled to southern China.
In Fukien, Da Jung is credited for establishing the Buddhist Hung Moon Association, in the Southern Shaolin Temple, that advocated the overthrow of the Ching. The Southern Shaolin Temple had become a special meeting place for the Chinese patriots. In the late 1660’s, under the rule of Emperor K’ang Hsi, the Southern Shaolin Temple was destroyed. It was under these circumstances that the martial artist who were in temple, were forced to separate and spread throughout China, some even went to other countries.
It has been told that two people assisted in maintaining Wing Chun. A Buddhist monk from the Northern Shaolin Temple named Chiu Yuen and Da Jung, a military officer from Northern China, have been noted for keeping anti-Manchurian activities alive. There were Five Secret Societies that were the outgrowth of these perilous times. Also during this time Cheng Sing Kung, one of the last surviving Ming generals, fled to Formosa and liberated it from the Dutch in 1662.
It is said that two monks, that survived the massacre of the Southern Shaolin Temple, Yat Chum Dai Si and his disciple Cheung Ng are credited for keeping Wing Chun alive. In 1710 Cheung Ng surfaced in Fatsun and started the Red Opera, this period continued through 1720. Following the Red Opera period the Red Boats became the hiding place for Wing Chun. The Red Boats were entertainment boats that sailed from town to town. Cheung Ng joined founded the Hung Fa Wui in memory of the Hung Fa Ting and trained many in secret. Other Wing Chun practitioners had private students and also taught them in secret.

 


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