Aug 19-23, more than twenty-five hours of Moy Yat Ving Tsun Kung Fu training was made available for the Moy Tung Jong workshop in Richmond, VA. As is his custom, Grandmaster Moy Tung taught senior classes and oversaw the regular workshop programs run by instructors. Parts of the program were led by MY3 and GSSA members Grandmaster Marcus Evans and Sifu Barry O’Brien. However, unbeknownst to many in advance, Moy Tung also graciously arranged for his sidai, Moy Yat SSA member Sifu Richard ‘Moy 52’ Andino to lead portions of the regular workshops, as well.
“Kung Fu without a system is not kung fu. Kung Fu dependent upon a system is not good kung fu.” – Grandmaster Moy Yat
Most Richmond workshops are open to all students at all levels, but in this case, attendance at even the regular Jong workshops this August was limited to active inner circle members and select candidates. Despite this restriction, in all, twenty-nine Ving Tsun Kung Fu sifus and students in five generations, including Grandmaster Moy Tung and his Moy Yat Kung Fu brother Sifu Moy 52, participated. People attended from ten different locations around the U.S.: New York, Main Street, West End, Chesterfield, Virginia Beach, DC, Detroit, Austin, Houston and Louisville, KY.
There is a saying in Ving Tsun from Grandmaster Moy Yat, shared by his SSA disciple Grandmaster Moy Tung on many occasions – “Kung Fu without a system is not kung fu. Kung Fu dependent upon a system is not good kung fu.” Because of the Ving Tsun Kung Fu foundation that Grandmaster Moy Tung created in Richmond, VA, with his opening the first Richmond Moy Yat Kung Fu Academy in 1986, and building his kung fu the right way, into an association that is growing toward thirty independent member branches today – because of this Ving Tsun Kung Fu foundation, the regular Jong workshop training programs in Richmond this past 5-day weekend ran largely without his direct involvement.
This has been Moy Tung’s practice increasingly over the past decade, in his third decade of teaching Moy Yat Kung Fu – during workshops, he generally focuses on teaching the sifus and seniors informally and in special classes, including on how to run effective workshop programs. This is his way, from Moy Yat Ving Tsun Kung Fu, in keeping with the saying that Ving Tsun Kung Fu is a system, and that good kung fu doesn’t depend on it. Other sayings are like it, such as, “Kung Fu can’t be bought or taught, it can only be caught.” Another one Moy Tung has said goes something like, ‘It’s more important that a student learn, than a teacher teach.’
Of course, Moy Tung’s kung fu was behind everything in this workshop, from beginning to end. While working with the Texas schools in the month before the workshop, he was also observing and participating in Jong workshop preparations. And during the course of the five workshop days, as he wished, Moy Tung involved himself in the regular programs and younger student training – by informing seniors and sifus on program content, organization and delivery; checking on classes and instructor/student conduct; giving information to students directly about details or an exercise to work on for the next period of time; and/or introducing an instructor for the next portion of the program.
Grandmaster Moy Tung was physically present at the Main Street school periodically during the course of the August 2016 25+ hour / 5-day Jong workshop, but he spent most of those workshop hours spending time with and teaching the many Ving Tsun sifus and senior students under him that were visiting for the workshop, as well as with his long-time sidai Richard ‘Moy 52’ Andino. In other words, for five days, Moy Tung’s attention was focused on training the teachers and future teachers in his lineage, while at the same time it was on the regular training programs, and on those leading the programs for him. These were his younger Moy Yat SSA kung fu brother Sifu Richard Moy 52, as well as two senior sifus in Moy Tung’s own lineage – Grandmaster Marcus Evans and Sifu Barry O’Brien. The latter are both MY3 Association member disciples of Grandmaster Moy Tung, as well as Moy Yat Grand Special Students Association (GSSA) members.
This is significant, meaningful and noteworthy in a number of additional ways. First of all, as always, hours of training were made available on every one of the five days of this workshop. There were times for lecture and demonstration, but the majority of the time students were directed to spend working on and studying the kung fu they’d been taught. Participants would learn something new, then get time to study it in their forms, including the Muk Yan Jong, and also apply these things in Chi Sao and other hands-training.
As noted above, 29 total people participated, in five generations of the Moy Yat kung fu family. One of the popular aspects of these marathon training workshops is the opportunity to touch hands with people from so many other generations and locations. Every set of hands offers a new perspective and interesting insights to the problem of mastering Ving Tsun Kung Fu. If a picture’s worth 1000 words, the kinetic, chaotic and orderly, simple and complex four-dimensional nature of Chi Sao offers much more. The instruction to train, to train kung fu hard and smart, is one of the most valuable lessons taught in the Moy Tung Kung Fu lineage, and it’s repeated and put into practice in every class and workshop.
By having one of his own kung fu brothers teach at his workshop, Grandmaster Moy Tung is being generous with his own kung fu. When his sifu, Grandmaster Moy Yat, was alive, Moy Tung would bring him to town and sometimes his kung fu brothers as well. Moy Tung would also take students to New York to visit and train under Grandmaster Moy Yat. Moy Tung has held nothing back from his students, then or now. Rather, he’s gone to great lengths to make sure every student has many opportunities to learn kung fu the right way.
Grandmaster Moy Tung does what is reasonable and appropriate to help serious students, but he also goes above and beyond, in many ways. One such way is by going out of his way to expose his students to additional valuable viewpoints in Ving Tsun, e.g. this Jong workshop with portions featuring Sifu Richard Moy 52. Moy Tung even went so as to introduce the regular students in the Monday night class – meaning even those who didn’t participate in the workshop – to their Sisuk (or Sigungsuk) Richard, and he had him lead part of their class.
Grandmaster Moy Tung trusts the kung fu, and he knows that those who are disciplined and work hard may grasp the deepest levels. He knows there’s nothing he can to do to stop a dedicated student from learning true kung fu. At the same time, Moy Tung won’t leave his students in the hands of just anyone. He has so much respect for Ving Tsun that, if he does this with someone outside his own lineage, it will most likely be someone significant and special in the Yip Man or Moy Yat lineages, such as one of own his Moy Yat SSA kung fu brothers. There are certain kung fu brothers he will do this with, and Sifu Richard ‘Moy 52’ Andino, is one of them.
Richard Moy 52 began studying Moy Yat Kung Fu in 1989, and is also a long-time Moy Yat Kung Fu sifu, as well as a mathematics teacher. During the course of the Jong workshop, Sifu Andino showed and shared numerous principles, details, techniques, training drills and practical applications from the first and second Jong form sections, verbally, and with his hands and horse in Chi Sao and other exercises. He has a unique and valuable perspective on Ving Tsun Kung Fu, Chi Sao, fighting and the Muk Yan Jong, and we are grateful he made the trip to Richmond for this workshop, and to Grandmaster Moy Tung for arranging this special opportunity with his Moy Yat SSA sidai.
It is always interesting and edifying to see and hear different master-level perspectives on fundamental Ving Tsun Kung Fu principles and details – the same information, presented in different ways and words. And in the course of this workshop, participants were also exposed to two more master-level views – those of MY3/GSS members Grandmaster Marcus Evans and Sifu Barry O’Brien. Both have a few decades of kung fu training, and over twenty years experience teaching.
Again, Moy Tung does not accept just anyone to teach and lead at his workshops, let alone a Jong workshop. Marcus Evans and Barry O’Brien have worked hard both in training and teaching Ving Tsun Kung Fu under Grandmaster Moy Tung, and the power in their kung fu, in their teaching and in their hands and their students’ hands is evidence of this, as is this recognition by Moy Tung – being permitted to teach at his Jong workshop. To hear them discuss Ving Tsun, see them demonstrate or touch their hands is to know they learned their kung fu the right way under Moy Tung, and that Moy Yat Kung Fu is strong in the Moy Tung lineage.
Close to 30 people were involved in five days of training, led by four sifus in two generations, with well over a century of kung fu experience between them. This event was made possible, and organized and overseen by Grandmaster Moy Tung. He began training Ving Tsun Kung Fu in 1980 with Grandmaster Moy Yat as his direct sifu, and he’s been teaching Moy Yat Kung Fu for the last 30 years. Small wonder that so many participants left happy, even exhilarated, minds blown and bodies sore. It was a lesson in the Ving Tsun Kung Fu system, and in not depending on a system, as well as in Ving Tsun passing on the right way, unchanged by our own ideas – “Ving Tsun Chuen Jing Tung”
See below for a short video from one of Grandmaster Moy Tung’s lectures during the Jong workshop – a sifu is to teach students how to fight. The full video is available to inner circle students, by application and approval – contains more commentary, plus personal anecdotes from his training history.