The Song Dynasty was the ruling dynasty in China between the years 960 - 1279. It was typical in the history of fallen societies for the conquered rulers and followers to be executed, enslaved, banished or forced into exile. It is in the history of the Song Dynasty that the Song family of modern day Korea is rooted. In ancient times, there were no hard boundaries between present day China and present day Korea. During these times, the Song family would travel between China and Korea as the present day events influenced. The Song family was well known and highly respected in regards to their moral integrity and values. These reputations lead to the influence of martial arts into the Song family traditions. Xu Xuanping or Hsu Hsuan-P'ing was a very well known practitioner of martial arts in ancient China. Xu Xuanping and Hsu Hsuan-P'ing are the Chinese to English translations. The Korean to English translation of the name is Hur Sun Pyung. Hur Sun Pyung was a practitioner of the martial art referred to as Chang Quan or "Long Fist". The Korean to English translation of this art is Jang Gwon. Jang Gwon is rooted in the traditional martial arts of the Shaolin Temple. The reputation of the Song family was such that Hur Sun Pyung passed his knowledge exclusively to the Song family. These teachings were preserved and passed on from generation to generation within the Song family traditions.
Over the centuries, the teachings of Hur Sun Pyung were maintained within the Song family traditions. These teachings were passed down through Song family member Song, Yuanqiao. The Korean to English translation of this name is Song, Won Gyo and Song, Won Gyo's lifespan is recorded as 1288 - 1370. Song, Won Gyo continued to preserve the family teachings and traditions and became a disciple of another master. This master's name was Zhang Sanfeng, the Korean to English translation is Chang Sam Bong. Chang Sam Bong developed an art that is referred to today as Tai Chi Chuan. Song Won Gyo was one of seven disciples of Chang Sam Bong. The seven disciples of Chang, Sam Bong:
A traditional name for the founder of an art is translated from Korean to English as "Moon Joo Nim". Chang Sam Bong was the Moon Joo Nim of Tai Chi Chuan. The Korean to English pronunciation of the art is Tae Geuk Gwon. Traditionally, a founder of an art would select one disciple to pass down the art. This person is called the Jang Moon in Korean. The Jang Moon would possess the best knowledge, character and skill to maintain the purity of the art. Chang Sam Bong chose one Jang Moon, and that person was Song Won Gyo.
As Tai Chi developed, the art form divided into two major groups. One group was called the Southern Group and the second group was called the Northern Group. Nam Pa is the Korean to English translation for the "Southern Group" or "Southern Family". The Southern Group's art was called Geon Gon Pa "Heaven Earth Style" and is the art passed down by Song, Won Gyo. The Song family continued to pass down the teachings of the Nam Pa's Song, Won Gyo. The Heaven Earth Style was maintained by the Song family and continues to be passed down in its pure form. Grandmaster Song, Won Gyo wrote a book of Tai Chi Chuan titled "The Origin and Branches of the Song Style Tai Chi Practice". Song Won Gyo's states in his book, "The respectful Song family carries the tradition of the authentic Tai Chi style of Song Won Gyo". This book was written to maintain and pass the traditions within the Song family traditions.
CHUN SEUNG LINEAGE MAP
During the 13th Century in Korea, Neo-Confucianism became the dominant philosophy. One famous Neo-Confucian was a man named Chu Hsi. Chu Hsi is the Chinese to English translation of his name, the Korean name for Chu Hsi is Joo Ja. Joo Ja's writings on the Confucian classics became very well known and his school of thought became known as Joo Ja Hak. During the Joseon Dynasty of Korea, the Neo-Confucian school of thought was adopted as the official ideology. By the 1600's in Korea, the teachings of Joo Ja became firmly established. Conflicts eventually arose among great Korean scholars with the interpretation of Joo Ja's teachings. These famous debates lasted for many years and as a result there were factional strifes and deaths. One such famous debate involved Song family member Song, Si-yeol. Song, Si-yeol's was also known by his penname U-am. Song, Si-yeol lived from 1607 - 1689 during the Joseon Dynasty and served in many governmental roles over a span of fifty years. Song, Si-yeol was a promoter of the Korean interpretation of Joo Ja's teaching that was called Songnihak "The Study of Nature and Principle".
The next major development in the Song family martial arts traditions was by Grandmaster Song, Duk Soon. Song, Duk Soon lived from 1851 - 1922 and was a famous martial artist as well as doctor of eastern medicine. Grandmaster Song was a practitioner of the Korean martial art Soo Bak Ki, as well as the Chinese arts of Shaolin as passed down from Hur Sun Pyung and Tai Chi as passed down from Chang, Sam Bong. The integration of the traditional martial arts of Soo Bak Ki, Shaolin and Tai Chi by Song, Duk Soon became the official start of the Song's family martial art association translated from Korean to English as "Chun Seung". Grandmaster Song, Si-yeol's teachings of Songnihak are the root for the Chun Seung system of traditional martial arts. For this reason, Song, Si-yeol is considered the founder of the Song family's Chun Seung system. However, Song, Duk Soon created the official Chun Seung system of martial arts and passed these traditional concepts to his son and disciples. During the Japan occupation of Korea, Song, Duk Soon was a leader in the Korean opposition. It was because of his high martial arts skills that the Japanese could never capture the opposition leader. Especially the skills developed in the art of Chook Ji Bub. Chook Ji Bub is the Korean to English translation of the art that translated into English means "The Flying Art". Song, Duk Soon travelled back and forth between China and Korea during his life and he is specifically credited with preserving the pure forms of Shaolin and Tai Chi as previously mentioned. Song, Duk Soon was betrayed by one of his closest resistance members, captured and was executed.
Grandmaster Song, Duk Soon passed all his knowledge to his son Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool who lived from 1882 - 1966. Song, Keum Sool was born before the start of the Japanese occupation of Korea and joined his father in the mountains during the resistance movement. Song, Keum Sool was the last practitioner of the Chook Ji Bub martial art skill. The Japanese occupation of Korea combined with the time required for training prevented the art from being passed down from father to son. Grandmaster Song, Duk Soon and Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool were famous martial arts practitioners. The Grandmasters were also very famous and skilled in the practice of eastern medicine. In traditional martial arts, great martial arts masters were also great practitioners of traditional medicine. The two practices share the same common root and this concept was preserved in the Song family martial arts system. Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool passed his teachings to both his son Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo and his grandson Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik.
Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo lived from 1917 - 1996 and was the son of Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool. In his early life at the age of sixteen, Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo travelled to Japan to research and study martial arts. Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo spent five years in Japan before returning to Korea where he met and married his wife. Soon after the marriage, the Song's left Korea to settle in China where Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo worked and furthered his study of Chinese martial arts for fifteen years. The Song's moved back to Korea after their time in China and soon after the Korean War began. During the war, Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo did not belong to either the North or South factions as he was a nonpartisan man. The Korean War came to an end and the Song family settled in Seoul, Korea in order to situate and adjust to postwar life. Several years later, Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo began to teach and share the martial arts knowledge passed down by the Song family to family and select disciples. Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo was not involved in politics of the times and never involved the Song family in the reformation of the martial arts systems that were active. Grandmaster believed and insisted on teaching the traditional concepts of the martial arts. In 1967, Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo inherited the directorship of the Chun Seung Moo Sool system of martial arts from his father Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool.
Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool and Grandmaster Song Jung Soo transferred the Song's family martial art system to Song, Kyong Sik. Song, Kyong Sik is the son of Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo. Grandmaster Song's lineage is traced back to Song, Si-yeol and the line of Grandmasters that preserved the teachings and philosophies of Chun Seung. At the age of five, Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik started his formal training with his grandfather Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool. Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool took his grandson to live and train in the mountains of Korea. Studies included martial arts, as well as eastern medicine, breathing exercise, meditation and philosophy. Eventually, the three generations of Song family lived together and Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik continued his studies under his grandfather Grandmaster Song, Keum Sool and father Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo. Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik was afforded the opportunity to move to the United States in 1981. In 1983 Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo transferred the Chun Seung system to his son as Chairman. After the unfortunate passing of Grandmaster Song, Jung Soo, Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik became the acting president of Chun Seung. Grandmaster Song continues to teach and pass down the teachings of Chun Seung to select students. Grandmaster's American name is Edward K. Song. Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik exemplifies the honor and tradition that embodies Chun Seung. He is a living example for his students as well as the public. It is through Grandmaster Song, Kyong Sik that the teachings of Chun Seung are kept alive, as well as the goal of spreading teachings that help ALL people develop a sincere and serious life.
THE TREASURED LINEAGE OF CHUN SEUNG WON
GRANDMASTER SONG, WON GYO'S "THE ORIGIN AND BRANCHES OF THE SONG STYLE TAI CHI PRACTICE" - PICTURE GALLERY