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In 1981, a 16 years old young man came to the Shaolin Temple from Anhui Province, China. All he got here were a quilt and some food coupons ( if you wanna buy some rice, you will have to show them your food coupons in the 1980’s China ) at that time. He wished to be a Shaolin monk and learn the Shaolin kung fu. The Shaolin masters received him and gave him the name – Yongxin. Now he is called the “CEO of the Shaolin Temple” by the people from all over the world. He saw how the Shaolin Temple changed from a declining temple (less than 20 monks in it) to a famous Holy Land of the Chinese kung fu. “In the 1980’s, you can only see broken walls and shattered debric in the Shaolin Temple.” he said.( kung fu martial arts info )
What changed the fate of the Shaolin Temple was a movie called “Shaolin Temple” in 1982. This movie is now notable in the world and it let millions of people know that the Shaolin Temple is the source of the Chinese kung fu. From that time, a lot of young people dream to be a Shaolin kung fu master one day. Nowadays, there are more than 50 kung fu schools in the Shaolin Temple area. The number of the students here is about 100,000.
As the Fangzhang (the leader of a temple) of the Shaolin Temple, Yongxin Shi is also acting like the CEO of a company now. He believes that the Shaolin Temple must use the Internet to communicate with the world outside. “We can greatly improve our influence by using this brand new way of communication. We used to be seperated from the outside. All we did is the work of farmers 20 years ago. Now we have to learn how to communicate with people. We need to learn new things and new skills, like English, computer, Internet, etc.” he said. He is now using the Internet, DC, cell phone and laptop every day. (useful kung fu martial arts info)
In 2002, Yongxin Shi was acting as the Fangzhang of the Shaolin Temple for the 3rd year. He was the 30th Fangzhang of this famous temple. In this year, the Discovery channel visited the Shaolin Temple and recorded a TV show named “New CEO of the Shaolin Temple”. In this TV show, you can see Yongxin Shi riding a Benz in the big cities every day, managing the daily activities of the Shaolin Temple with his cell phone. Because there is no English words for “Fangzhang”, it was translated to “CEO”. This is how he got the title – “CEO of the Shaolin Temple”.
“CEO is how the foreigners translate the word – ‘Fangzhang’, but this translation is not very accurate. But I do not want to explain this.” Yongxin Shi said.
A lot of people believe that the Shaolin Temple is not a traditional Buddhism Temple now and Yongxin Shi is not the traditional Fangzhang either. (helpful kung fu martial arts info) Although there are lots of controversies in this matter, Yongxin Shi still insists his way to develop the old Shaolin Temple. “We have our base line for sure. There is a rumor about the IPO of the Shaolin Temple in China. To do the IPO and make the Shaolin Temple a stock company is ridiculous. We will never do things like this.” he said.
By Shane Lee. Date: 05/12/2009.
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