The XinYi martial arts system was brought forth from Daoist hermits into the general public by the ancestral master of the Daoist HuanShanYinXianPai 華山隱仙派 (Flower Mountain Hidden Immortal Lineage), Ancestral Master Chen Tuan 祖師陳摶. During the Song Dynasty (960–1279 ce), Master Zhou Tong 周侗 passed the system on to Yue Fei 岳飛.
Yue Fei became one of the greatest military generals in Chinese history. He used his superior knowledge of the XinYi system to train the soldiers in his powerful army and lead the defeat of the northern invaders. For political reasons, the XinYi martial arts system then disappeared from the public eye for several hundreds of years.
At the end of the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644 ce) and beginning of the Qing Dynasty (1644–1912 ce), Master Ji LongFeng 姬隆峰, from the Pu 蒲 region of ShanXi 山西 province, traveled to ZhongNan 終南 Mountain seeking a martial arts teacher. There, he discovered the XinYi Martial Arts Classic written by General Yue Fei. After returning home, Master Ji spent many years studying and practicing the skills from this martial arts classic and was able to bring the XinYi martial arts system back to life. Later, he passed the art to Master Chao JiWu 曹繼武, who then passed it on to Master Dai LongBang 戴隆邦 from Qi 祁 County in ShanXi province. Due to his great proficiency in his own family’s tradition of martial arts and Daoist internal alchemy cultivation, Master Dai took mastery of the XinYi system to a new level. The depth and clarity of his understanding of the XinYi martial arts system was widely respected by other martial artists and became known specifically as Dai Family XinYi Six Unions Martial Arts.
As the Dai Family XinYi system teaches such formidable combat skills, Master Dai, concerned about allowing such a powerful fighting aptitude to fall into the wrong hands, staunchly warned his descendants against teaching the art to anyone outside of the Dai Family. His son Dai ErLü 戴二閭 passed the art to his nephew, Dai LiangDong 戴梁棟, and Dai LiangDong taught it to his son, Dai Kui 戴奎. As Dai Kui did not have any children, he eventually decided it was better to let the art out of the Dai Family than have it die out. My master, Gao ShengZhen 高升禎, from Lu 魯 village in Qi 祁 County, was his disciple—the first person outside of the Dai Family to be taught this art. I was born and raised in the same village as Master Gao and, luckily, I became his disciple when I was 14 years old. For the last 65 years, I have practiced only Dai Family XinYi and it still brings me great joy each day.
The defining characteristic of Dai Family XinYi is the union of the Dao and martial arts. From the very start of their XinYi training, students learn physical postures that help them understand the deeper layers of meaning of the system as a whole, as well as how to apply the system in their martial arts practice, to defeat others, nourish their own lives, experience longevity, and for their Daoist internal cultivation practice. The XinYi Martial Arts Classic states:
Nourished by your spiritual root
Guided by your heart
The enemy is defeated
Unwavering spiritual root
And a tranquil heart
To cultivate the Dao
Master Zhongxian Wu 吳忠賢 is my disciple. He is gifted with a unique genius as both a highly skilled martial artist and Daoist practitioner. When I teach him one, he takes in ten. I have been encouraging him to write a book on Dai Family XinYi for many years now. A great virtue, he has finally brought XinYi WuDao 心意武道 to the world. Through this book, I hope many people will gain benefits learning Dai Family XinYi.
Zhao ShouRong 趙守榮
Autumn, Year of Snake (2013)
*foreword to Master Zhongxian Wu’s book, XinYi WuDao