Master Zhou Xuan Yun has dedicated his life to promoting the unique heritage of Daoist philosophy, medicine, divination, rituals, and martial arts. His aim is to celebrate this native inheritance, of which he is proud of, as a bridge to cross-cultural understanding between East and West.
With over twenty years of teaching experience, Master Zhou continues to share his skills and knowledge of Daoist martial and healing arts with students and teachers of all levels and ages. He started teaching in China in 1997, then in the United States in 2009, and most recently, he has built teaching partnerships with martial arts schools in Europe. He has taught students from over 25 different countries and is considered to be the first Daoist monk to bring the traditional and authentic martial arts, as taught on Wudang Mountains, and the first disciple to build a Daoist Center in the United States.
Because of his deep connection with Wudang, in 2013, he represented Wudang in the United States by donating pictures, videos, and printed materials about Wudang Mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage site, for a special collection at the Library of Congress in Washington DC. He regularly provides lectures about Daoism in American institutions and organizations such as Brown University, Endicott, Yale, and Google. He has participated in off-site symposiums and forums nationally and internationally; just recently, as a Daoist representative in the World Federation of Zen For Wellbeing in Toronto. As a practitioner of Wudang martial and healing arts, he is also a feature writer for Kung Fu and Taiji Magazine.
Aside from producing popular series of educational videos (DVDs) on Wudang Taiji, Kung Fu, and Qigong, Master Zhou Xuan Yun embraces online teaching and learning through an interactive streaming platform where he has students in many parts of the world. This is in addition to his regular classes in Boston and Beverly of Wudang Kung Fu and Taiji. In order to preserve the perpetuity of the Wudang martial arts tradition outside of China, he is earnestly working for a teacher certification process for his students to become bona fide instructors themselves. Since 2009 he continues to take a small number of students to take part in his yearly China training tour; in particular, on Wudang Mountains in Hubei province, and other sacred mountains such as Mount Tai in Shandong province, Mount Hua in Shaanxi, and Kongtong Mountains in Gansu. Following in the footsteps he made as a wandering monk, the object of this journey is to deepen his students’ understanding by giving them a glimpse of the traditional life in Daoist temples and spaces where its tradition is still faithfully practiced.
Biography of Master Zhou Xuan Yun
Daoist Zhou Xuan Yun (Birth name Hongliang Zhou) was born in a small village in central China’s Henan Province. At age 13, his parents sent him to live on Wudang Mountain, where he was a student and later an instructor of Taiji, Kung Fu, and Qi Gong. Living at the Daoist Association Martial Arts Academy, in the Purple Cloud Temple, Zhou Xuan Yun was accepted into the 24th generation of the Wudang Long Men (Lóng ménpài 龙门派) lineage. At the age of 16, Zhou Xuan Yun took the vows to become a Daoist Monk and began his study of Daoist philosophy and religious practices. While all the students at Wudang are considered Daoist initiates, Zhou Xuan Yun remains the only student from the martial lineage to have devoted years of his life to studying full time in Wudang’s temples, completing the more traditional process of ordination as a Daoist Monk.
He belongs to the Orthodox Unity sect (正一道 Zheng Yi Dào) of Daoism and is trained in ritual arts, chanting, divination, and internal alchemy. Zhou Xuan Yun is a formally recognized disciple of Master Li Guang Fu 李光富, the Chairman of the Chinese Taoist Association (中国道教协会会长). At the age of 20, Zhou Xuan Yu left the monastery to live as a wandering Daoist. He traveled alone around China, from temple to temple, for four years. Seeking out other martial arts masters, he practiced what he had been taught and learned many new skills.