There are many qualities that the student must either have or develop in order to gain the most from learning Wing Chun Ling Tung Gong or even to become a student to begin with. Grandmaster Choi has shared with me these qualities not just by telling me directly, but more so by his guidance and teachings just as Ip Man had done for him. These prerequisites are in no particular order, but all have intrinsic value in the path to mastering Wing Chun Ling Tung Gong in its entirety and therefore mastering yourself.
- DESIRE– The student must have the desire to learn. Without the deep-rooted desire for learning the student will lose interest and move on to the next thing that takes their fancy. Lots of people have the desire but few have the commitment to follow through. You must also have the desire to be the best, it is of no use to strive to be average at Wing Chun Ling Tung Gong you must want to be the best!
- INTELLIGENCE – Many people have the desire to learn, but if you lack the intelligence required to understand and apply it then you would be better suited finding something that is within your grasp of mastery. That is not to say that you can’t improve your intelligence, but it will take time to do so and with that you may miss your chance.
- COMMITMENT – 100% Commitment to the art and yourself is a must. If you bounce around from one style to another, or from Sifu to Sifu always looking around for the next best thing then it is possible you will miss what is right in front of you. Focus on what you have at that moment, explore and study it to become the best you can at it.
- PERSEVEREANCE – Practice consistently and study the information passed down every day to ensure it is never forgotten and itbecomes a part of you. It’s not just something that you “do”, Mastery comes from commitment and perseverance.
- LUCK– Having the good fortune to meet the right master is something that may be out of your control but if you are lucky enough to be given that opportunity then it’s up to you to you make the most of that chance.
- TIME– Time is possibly one of the hardest requirements that many people struggle with. Not only do you have to have the time available to put towards training , it also takes time to achieve the results. The student must also be at the right time in their life to be able to fulfil these needs. For example, if the person has recently got married and has had children then most of their time will be devoted to providing for the family and ensuring their future. The best time to learn is when you are young and do not have major commitments or when you have passed the time of raising a family.
- MONEY– Firstly you must pay the right money to learn fully. The monetary payments to the Sifu have many reasons. One of which is that you value what is being taught and you also value the personal time your Sifu is giving up to teach you. The more money you pay the more he feels valued and the more obligated to you he is to ensure that you get the best from him. Just like the saying goes “You get what you pay for”. Another reason that his fees may seem high is to create commitment so that you will put in greater effort to your learning and not waste the money you’ve paid or the time you’ve spent. Because time wasted cannot be regained.
- WILLINGNESS TO TEACH – The Sifu must want to teach you. If he is not willing to teach anyone then no amount of time, persistence or money will change the fact.
- OPEN HIS HEART – You must find a way into the Sifu’s heart. The only way to do that is through honesty, integrity and a commitment to your training and his teachings. Look after his needs and help wherever possible and he will do the same for you.
- HUMILITY – A Wing Chun Ling Tung Gong practitioner is humble and has no need for pomp and grandeur. They are content within themselves by simply being the best that is humanly possible with a great understanding of the cycle of life. There is no need for ego because it is a personal road to self-development, not a pedestal to make oneself seem better than others. We should always strive to help each other.The true measure of a Wing Chun Ling Tung Gong practitioner will be the health and vitality that is obtained by “living” the art. People will naturally gravitate toward someone who is brimming with strength and compassionate wisdom.
These are some of the qualities required for self mastery to live a life that is full, well-rounded ensuring that your health and wellbeing will last your entire lifetime. Many will try, but few will achieve it and through these few our Wing Chun will continue ever onward. In future articles I look forward to sharing more of Sifu’s guidance that has helped me get to where I am today and hope that you too will be inspired to live the best life you can through Wing Chun or whatever means you choose to follow.
Relax & Be happy.