Bagua Kung Fu: The Martial Arts Temple that Wasn’t


Bagua Kung Fu training began for me in the 70s. I was involved in Karate, enthralled by martial arts in general, and I found this book, and…forty years later I still walk in circles. Circles, of course, are what it is all about.

pa kuaYou walk in circles you circle your turns your arms rotate you…breath. It really is the simplest art I know, yet one of the most complex, and one of the most difficult. And, it has the most glorious and observable benefits of any Martial Art that I train in.

Anyway, what this article is about is that back in the 90s I decided to build myself a Bagua training hall. I didn’t want a wooden structure, however, I wanted an open air location where I could experience the purity of environment that the ancients had. So I looked out my back door and up the mountain.

Actually, it wasn’t much of a mountain, but there was a charm unparalleled. The neighbors were hidden by the sweet smell of giant sage plants, and the training hall would be accessible only to those who liked to do a little trudging through the wilderness. All in all, it looked like Paradise Found.

I began the path to my mountain kung fu training hall by selecting a path behind a bush. I used a sharp edge shovel, and I chopped a series of winding steps up the side of the mountain. When I reached the perfect place, I began to scrape and level a twelve foot circle.

The first time I walkeed my bagua circle was heaven. I breathed deeply, felt space expand around me, and I could–I swear–feel the spiritual fires awakening, coursing through my frame, herding me along the path of the ancients. Unfortunately, heaven proved to be a quick trip.

Bugs. Millions of flying gnats, a swarm of eternal hoards surrounded me, tried to fill my mouth, actually tried to swim up my nostrils. And bees, and hornets, and big, fat black things with stingers that made a noise like the exhaust of a racing motor bike.

I tried masks, I tried citronella pots, I tried everything, but it was no use. My Bagua Kung Fu was no match for their ‘bug-wah’ communism. Over the years I have continued my practice, and have experienced profound abilities, revelations, benefits, and more…but virtually all my ¬†bagua kung fu training has been within the confines of one of those darned, infernal, man made contraptions called a house.

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