CDMAA Training Hall Discipline & Sanctions
Translator’s Note: The following martial code is essentially Confucian in nature. It was compiled by Grand Master Chan Tin Sang in 1952, and is indicative of the rules of discipline followed by the Chan surname clan of Banana Village, situated in the Sai Kung area of the New Territories, Hong Kong. In Banana Village gongfu practice happened in specific outdoor areas – usually near shrines, or other areas of natural beauty and good energy – and inside or around the local Name Temple. This temple was multi-purpose and served for Buddhist, Daoist, and Confucian meditation and worship, as well as ancestral worship. A gongfu training hall is a sacred space for mind and body development which is regulated by the often very strict rules associated with good behaviour in public. Indeed, civility within Chinese society is regulated by the principle of correct, polite behaviour. Each of the five regulations listed below, are augmented by a statement derived from the work of Confucius entitled the ‘Lun Yu’, or ‘Selected Sayings’ (also known in English as ‘Analects’). The CDMAA is based upon Buddhist and Daoist principles that are preserved and presented to the student through a Confucian format. Training begins and ends with a disciplined and regulated mind and body.
International and national members of the Hakka originated Ch’an Dao Martial Arts Association (CDMAA) may apply the following code of ethics to their particular style of martial arts as they see fit, relevant to prevailing local conditions. For international and national members of the CDMAA, the code of ethics exists as a broad guide to martial cultivation.
For successful candidates who have been accepted as ‘Training Hall’ students, the situation is different. Training with the lineage inheritor of the CDMAA at local level, is training at the source of the style and requires that the student accepts the code of ethics and fully implements the practice of this code during martial arts training. There are no exemptions to this rule. Hakka martial arts are based upon a strict adherence to the principle of psychological and physical discipline at all times. This is a historical issue for the Hakka Chinese people who have survived extreme hardship, warfare, and lack of resources through the correct application of communal and self-discipline.
Definition of ‘Training Hall’
The term ‘Training Hall’ (训练馆 – Xun Lian Guan) is an area used by the CDMAA lineage inheritor or appropriately authorised CDMAA member, to instruct students in the Ch’an Dao Martial Arts Association tradition. This may include, but not be limited to the following locations:
a) A sports hall.
b) A Buddhist, Daoist, or Confucian temple.
c) A park or other similar public space.
d) An outside garden or other similar private space.
e) A private residence or other similar private space.
Should any CDMAA member, whether of international, national, or training hall status, bring the CDMAA into disrepute, whether by breaking the following code of discipline, or participating in any other unsuitable behaviour or activity, the following sanctions will be applied to the individual member concerned by the lineage inheritor or relevant CDMAA official holding appropriate authority. All CDMAA members agree with the following code and sanctions without exception:
Sanctions: Permanent & Temporary Exclusion from the CDMAA
A) Permanent exclusion from the Ch’an Dao Martial Arts Association, and/or training hall: The member receiving this sanction will have their details, status, and CDMAA awards permanently rendered null and void and removed from CDMAA records. There is no appeal against permanent exclusion; this decision, which is based upon the collection of evidence, is final, lasting and binding.
B) Temporary exclusion from the Ch’an Dao Martial Arts Association, and/or training hall: Temporary exclusion will last a certain period of time, to be decided by the lineage inheritor, or the highest ranked CDMAA member holding authority.
CDMAA Training Hall Code of Discipline
(武术训练馆纪律 – Wu Shu Xun Lian Guan Ji Lu)
All CDMAA members are required to adhere to the following martial code and generate the following attributes:
1) Respect (尊重 – Zun Zhong).
Respect between teacher and student must be maintained at all times. The teacher and student are not friends, and sentimentalism, emotionalism, and limited perspective are not allowed in the training hall. The ordinary ego-mind must be abandoned when entering a training hall. A training hall is the physical area or space the master is using to convey the martial art. The training hall and mind are not two separate entities. Correct respect applied to the environment, is correct respect applied to the logical and clean organisation of the mind. Without self-respect, and respect toward others, there can be no genuine martial arts training. True martial arts training begins and ends with mutual respect.
‘Respectfulness, without the rules of propriety, becomes laborious battle; carefulness, without the rules of propriety, becomes timidity; boldness, without the rules of propriety, becomes insubordination; straightforwardness, without the rules of propriety, becomes rudeness.’ (Kongfuzi – Lun Yu – Analects; Book 8, Chapter 2)
2) Virtue (德 – De).
Virtuous behaviour between teacher and student must be maintained at all times. Inner virtue is generated in the mind by an act of will. It is partly natural – as people are born with an inner virtuous potential – and it is also the product of deliberate cultivation. The mind must develop a higher perspective of vision that sees beyond petty issues and selfish desires. Virtue is the ability of a developed mind and character to shine forth and benefit society. If the mind and body are made straight through the discipline of martial training, the innate purity of the empty mind manifests as virtuous thought and behaviour. Activity based upon virtue is progressive and beneficial to the entire world. In difficult circumstances harsh discipline should be applied correctly so that inner and outer order is maintained. In such circumstances the mind’s ability to think clearly is elevated to a higher level of awareness.
‘The superior man thinks of virtue; the small man thinks of comfort. The superior man thinks of the sanctions of the law; the small man thinks of favours which he may receive.’ (Kongfuzi – Lun Yu – Analects; Book 4, Chapter11)
3) Justice (義 – Yi).
The concept of ‘justice’ is associated with the cultivation and practice of the five virtues of Confucianism;
a) Benevolence (仁 – Ren)
b) Justice (義 – Yi)
c) Propriety (禮 – Li)
d) Wisdom (智 – Zhi)
e) Trust (信 – Xin)
Martial art training involves the highest levels of (inner and outer) discipline. This discipline must be based upon a sense of justice, which is reinforced by the presence of wisdom, benevolence, propriety, and trust. In this way the oppression associated with tyranny is avoided. All discipline and hardship is designed to facilitate the personal growth of the student to a higher level of awareness and physical ability. This can only be achieved if the characters of the teacher and student are suitably cultivated and refined.
‘In ancient times, men learned with a view to their own improvement. Now-a-days, men learn with a view to the approbation of others.’ (Kongfuzi – Lun Yu - Analects; Book 14, Chapter 25)
4) Loyalty (忠诚 – Zhong Cheng).
True loyalty is not based upon petty bonds. A training hall student in the CDMAA should have loyalty toward;
a) Teacher (师父– Shi Fu)
b) Martial Arts School(武术学校 – Wu Shu Xue Xiao)
c) Fellow Students (同学 – Tong Xue)
d) Spiritual Development (精神发展 – Jing Shen Fa Zhan)
e) World Peace (世界和平 – Shi Jie He Ping)
True loyalty is based upon the sharing of the martial training path. It denotes a commonality of experience and effort toward self-transcendence. This knowledge is the basis of a deep and profound loyalty between CDMAA students.
‘When we see men of worth, we should think of equalling them; when we see men of a contrary character, we should turn inwards and examine ourselves.’ (Kongfuzi – Lun Yu – Analects; Book 4, Chapter 17)
5) Discipline (纪律 – Ji Lu).
The principle of discipline is the practice of the continuous adherence to an often arduous regime of military derived, martial arts training. To be disciplined is to exercise the capacity of always pulling the mind back to a set criterion of thought and action, whilst minimising any movement away from this path. Discipline is a voluntary self-imposed expression of both inner and outer order that must never waiver. Ill-discipline is removed through discipline. By setting an orderly standard for the regulation of the mind and body, order is brought to the inner and outer world so that the apparent realities are understood to be distinct expressions of the same reality.
‘What is meant by “making the thoughts sincere” is the allowing no self-deception, as when we hate a bad smell, and as when we love what is beautiful. This is called self-enjoyment. Therefore, the superior man must be watchful over himself when he is alone.’ (Kongfuzi – Da Xue – Great Learning; Chapter 6, Verse 1)