Chun Seung Won 


The way of life


The origin of martial arts in history can be traced back to the moment when humans utilized their bodies and whatever was available to defend themselves. The original martial art is called "Jung Do" in Korean, which translates to "Way of Life" in English. This Way of Life teaches skills intended to help individuals become good life practitioners. The grandmaster would often repeat to his students, "Have a sincere and serious attitude, be a good life practitioner." The primary focus for all of his students is to answer a simple question, "What kind of individual are you?" The highest objective is to attain a high level of skill as a good life practitioner.


Defining a good life practitioner is a difficult task that requires extensive thought and reflection. It is something unique for everyone. Just as students sitting in a circle may have different perspectives when observing an object placed in the middle, we all have unique perceptions of life. We are influenced by our environment and our relationship with our surroundings, which shape our perspective on what constitutes a good life. It is impossible to define a single definition for an entire planet; all we can do is share our perspectives and let our lives reflect our interpretations. What everyone sees as a "Good Life Practitioner" may vary, reflecting their own ideals of what is good or bad.

Nature is the way


The Grandmaster teaches us a guiding principle for life: "Close to Nature, Far from Disease; Far from Nature, Close to Disease." Nature and the Universe provide us with valuable teachings. One of these teachings is that the Universe operates without waste. It demonstrates that all life is interconnected and constantly seeks balance and harmony through expansion and contraction. We can learn from Nature to better understand this teaching.


To understand our connection with each other, the earth, and the ever-expanding universe, we can use the Korean phrase "Chun Ji In" and its English translation. "Chun" translates to "Heaven," "Ji" translates to "Earth," and "In" translates to "Man." Here, "Man" refers to mankind as a whole. The concept of Heaven Earth Man involves examining how our lives impact each other, the world we live in, and our actions' influence on the universe. By making efforts to learn from Nature and nurture our relationship with it, we can become "Good Life Practitioners."


The Way of Life is not a complicated, mystical endeavor reserved for a select few. Humans have been studying their relationship with nature and their surroundings since ancient times. Throughout history, different individuals and cultures have interpreted existence and added their unique perspectives to it. These perspectives have evolved into modern-day beliefs that have shaped our evolution. Simplicity carries a profound complexity within it. The concise statement "Be a good person" encompasses countless complex actions and their impacts, which collectively harmonize with what this statement encourages us to strive for: being a good person.

Three principles & four foundations 


The "Three Principles" serve as the foundation for our health: Mind, Body, and Spirit. "Mind" refers to mental development and health. "Body" pertains to physical development and health. "Spirit" represents the balance and harmony that result from cultivating both physical and mental well-being. By cultivating the mind and body, our overall character is shaped, embodying the individual's spirit.


Unfortunately, traditional fundamental health practices and teachings are often misunderstood and misrepresented as mystical or impractical. These valuable teachings are sometimes misused and distorted, losing their core meanings. However, the opportunity to understand and embrace this way of life through effort and discipline is available to everyone. It is important to emphasize that the goal of a good life practitioner is not an esoteric secret reserved for a select few.


A powerful lesson was taught by the Grandmaster during a class. He asked, "Do you want to know the SECRET to becoming a Grandmaster?" The students were captivated, expecting to hear a profound secret. The Grandmaster smiled and revealed, "The SECRET to mastery, to becoming a Grandmaster is... DISCIPLINE!" This unexpected response became one of his greatest lessons. It signifies that it is through one's own effort and sacrifice that the highest levels of the good life practitioner are achieved.


The study of the Three Principles expands into what is known as the "Four Pillars." In addition to mental and physical health development, the Four Pillars include nutritional health and environmental health. These two pillars contribute to the overall breadth of health practices.


  • The mind holds control over all things. What you believe is what manifests in your life, whether positive or negative. Mental health is a foundational element for a healthy life.

  • Money can be lost and it holds significance. Honor can be lost and it holds even greater significance. But health, once lost, means losing everything. Taking care of the body through balance and moderation is crucial. Physical health is a foundational element for a healthy life.

  • As Hippocrates once said, "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." The energy we put into our bodies through nutrition shapes our being. Nutritional health is a foundational element for a healthy life.

  • Lastly, the company we keep and the environment we surround ourselves with have a significant influence. Being mindful of our surroundings is key. Environmental health is a foundational element for a healthy life.


These four pillars—mind, body, nutrition, and environment—form a framework for overall health. This framework serves as the foundation for a practitioner to lead a good life. The teachings from Nature and the Universe govern these Four Pillars of health.


The teachings of Nature and the Universe serve as the foundations. Discipline is the secret. The Three Principles and their evolution into the Four Pillars provide a compass for living. Strive to be a good life practitioner and a good human. This is a lifelong effort, giving rise to the phrase "Way of Life". We all make mistakes and lose balance in life. Balance is an ever-changing exchange of natural forces. Sometimes, we lean too far in one direction or the other. The more we embrace the effort of being a good life practitioner and understand these lessons, the better our skill to regain balance in life becomes. Having balance in our lives is beneficial, and moderation is key. While there may be extremes in life, balance does not mean there are no swings in direction. Balance reminds us to comprehend the impact of extremes and to be accountable for our choices and their consequences.


"The Way of Life" and "The Teaching" will enrich our lives. However, it is not the only way. Claiming that there is only one answer to life is arrogant. Traditional teachings are based on the examination and study of great intellectuals throughout history. There are many paths to becoming a good life practitioner, and each person needs to find the path that aligns with their journey. Although there are multiple paths, the destination remains the same: optimal health. Health is wealth, regardless of the chosen path. Take the first step and build momentum on your journey. Along this journey, remember the lesson of "The Power of Belief". Developing a positive mindset is crucial as it directly influences the outcomes in your life. It is imperative to overcome any negative thoughts and instead focus on cultivating a positive outlook, attitude, self-image, and a strong belief in oneself.