ErMei Style Kung Fu

ErMei is the site of the first Buddhist temple constructed in China. It is one of a number of important and beloved mountains in China. The other two, Song Shan (hone of Shaolin) and WuDang (supposed birthplace of Tai Chi) are famous indeed among martial artists. A third mountain range, O Mei (or E-Mei or ErMei) is also the home of martial styles, though branches far more famous in China than outside. In Buddhism it is considered one of the four major mountains and is also sacred to Taoism.

bx_ermeiCErMei is situated in SiChuan (SzeChwan) province also home to a world-famous cuisine. It’s peak of 3099 meters above sea level makes it the tallest in the Si Chuan valley. SiChuan itself is the largest province in China and its capital city, Cheng Du, is well known in martial circles. ErMei is said to be the site of the first Buddhist temple ever constructed in China, preceding by centuries the home of Shaolin. It is therefore considered a “Buddhist” mountain with many temples but Taoism, too, has woven itself into ErMei’s history.

bx_emeiAAs far as Kung Fu ErMei is, to an even greater extent than either Song Shan or WuDang Shan, a COMBINATION of styles without a specific core style. Over 300 styles have been practiced in the ErMei region with styles like BaJi and PiGua being added to the list gradually. Some styles, like Tzu Ran and Jou Tui (Soft Push) originated in SzeChwan then spread through other parts of China.

While some call Shaolin a style that moves from “hard to soft” and Tai Chi a style that moves from “soft to hard” Ermei is said to start fifty-fifty and retain that in its training. There are so many styles in ErMei that they fall into some main categories. In our collection series you will see the effect of this with the so-called Five Sects (Pai) and Eight Doors (Men). Door in Chinese can also be used to represent a “branch” of a Sect. Other styles that used this designation are, for instance, Wing Chun PAI (Eternal Spring Sect) and Ba MEN (Eight Branches Boxing) or JIAO MEN (Islam Teachings Branch.

bx_ermeineedlesErMei has many weapons sets represented through its plethora of style. These include examples such as Li Bai Shi Yi Jian, Emei Spear, Emei Sword, Emei Saber, and others. Of all of these the most famous weapon associated with the mountain area is the EMei Ci or EMei Needles which are metal pieces thick in the middle and tapered at the ends each with a finger ring in the middle loose enough to spin the shafts. Associated with water combat the needles were constructed so warriors could swim open handed without fear of losing their weapons.

The Main Sects (Pai) of ErMei are:
Huang-Lin (Emperor’s Clothes)
Qing-Cheng Pai after a famous Taoist Mountain (see our series on this style )
Tie-Fu Iron Buddha
Dian-Yi Pai Point Strike
Qing-Niu Black Cow

The main “Sects (Men) of Ermei are:
Zhen: (Monk)
Yue : General Yue Fei  (see YUE Family boxing)

bx_ermeiBExamples of the Styles of ErMei:

Hui Style (慧 門)is a popular form of Wushu from Sichuan, in Sichuan it is known as one of the “Four Small Families”, and it is also called Hui Men(會門)Sect Boxing. These “Guan Shi Mo Xiang” exercises engage the Yi (intent) and Qi (energy) while “paying particular attention to “The hands following the mental changes, method coming when the hand emerges”; namely with consciousness directing the four limbs, and the four limbs actualizing the attack and defense. This style of boxing uses a higher stance and an empty stance (cat) as its most typical position. Fist Sets include Headwind, Following Wing, Rolling Doors and Passing Wing along with Soft Hand Five Element Boxing. At the end of the Qing Dynasty, there were many religious secret societies among the people, this form of boxing was very influential, scaring not a few with its superstitious character. Nowadays not many people practice this method.

bx_ermeiDOther famous styles include Sun Boxing, Du Boxing, Huo-Long Fire Dragon (See series) Monkey Boxing, Eagle Boxing. There is one branch of Ermei known as ErMei Shaolin and now encompasses forms lost from the Henan Temple such as Tian Gan (Big Dipper), Qi Xing (7 Stars), Hei Hu (Black Tiger) Tian He (Heavenly River), Fei Long (Flying Dragon) and Ba Fa (Eight Methods).

There is also a Taoist inspired branch of ErMei which, according to here say, was created by Wang Lo Dao who visited Wu Dang and brought back some of the inheritance left by Chang San Feng, legendary creator of Tai Chi. This, known as ErMei Wudang Nei Jia Quan (E Mei Wu Dang Internal Family Boxing) has five forms for hands and one for staff.

A very old sect of ErMei developed in the Sung dynasty (1127-1279) is Shi Er Zhuang (ErMei 12 Postures) supposedly created by Buddhist priest Bai Yun (White Cloud) who amalgamated Taoist principles, Chinese medicine and Buddhist philosophy into a Chi Kung type regimen with 12 steps as its core.

Other famous ErMei forms include:
ErMei Water boxing
ErMei Sickle Play
ErMei Soul-Chasing Fist
ErMei Gung Li Fist (see our ErMei Survey)
ErMei 36 Closed hands
ErMei Reeling Silk Boxing
ErMei/Shaolin Boxing

ErMei VCD Page One
ErMei VCD Page Two
Ermei VCD Page Three