Pai Lum’s Ghost Strikes

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Hidden within the Pai Lum system is a secret set of ghost strikes guaranteed to stop any attacker

by Dave Cater

Great grandmaster, Daniel Kane Pai's grandfather, Po Fong, left his home near Singapore and traveled to Hawaii in the early 1920s with the dream of giving his family a better life. Po Fong later adopted the Hawaiian name, Po Pai.

Kane Pai, the son of Po Pai, was one of six children. He had a son, Daniel Kane Pai, born in Kamuela, Hi. Sijo Po Pai taught his grandson the family martial art style, which contained mainly elements of the crane and dragon movements, as well as other animal styles found within the traditional southern shaolin systems. His grandmother was a master of the white crane system and his father was a judo/jiu-jitsu expert. During this time of training, Po Pai sent his grandson to the White Lotus Monastery, Byakurenji, on the northern coast of Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands, to study kobayashi-ryu karate-do and white lotus kenpo. Young Daniel learned many lessons that prepared him for life; he also earned his black belt in kenpo.

Working with Parker

As a young man Daniel Kane Pai worked herding cattle at Parker Ranch on the "Big Island." During this time, Daniel Pai and Ed Parker, who would become a famous kenpo grandmaster, worked and trained together. Pai studied the art of judo/jiu-jitsu and massage with professor Osakis and Richard Takamora. He was also involved with the Hawaiian Kenpo Association. During these growing times Pai began fusing together his vast and diverse martial arts knowledge. This was the beginning of the foundation for today's awesome style called Pai lum tao.

In 1952, Daniel Kane Pai joined the U.S. Army and was stationed in California. He opened his first martial arts school at the back of his Sunset Boulevard home in Los Angeles just before leaving to fight in the Korean War. He re-enlisted in 1953, where he continued his service in Army Intelligence. He retired from active duty in December 1955. During his service to his country, Daniel Kane Pai was awarded four Bronze Stars, a Korean Service Medal, a U.N. Service Medal and the National Defense Medal. Dr. Daniel Pai graduated from the Chicago Medical College, Calcutta, India, June 29, 1960, with a degree in Homeopathic Medicine. He incorporated his knowledge of herbs and natural medicine into the higher-ranking curriculum of Pai lum tao. Dr. Pai believed that a sifu or sigung should first understand how to heal and treat people before knowing how to destroy them.

Pai Lum Comes Home

Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Dr. Pai opened schools throughout the United States. he trained instructors in Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Connecticut, Colorado, California, Canada and Hawaii. During the mid-1970s, Dr. Pai moved to Daytona Beach, Fla., where he opened the Pai Lum Martial Arts National Headquarters. This era peaked with 50-plus pai lum and fire dragon schools operating in North America. Over the next two decades some of these students, who trained mostly in kenpo, stayed close to Dr. Pai as he trained new students in kung-fu and tai chi disciplines. Daniel Kane Pai's martial arts system became known as the white dragon style.

In the early 1970s, Glenn C. Wilson was sent to meet the world-renowned kung-fu grandmaster from Hawaii, Daniel Kane Pai. Their friendship was instantaneous and grandmaster Pai was impressed with the young sifu's level of skills and the awesome style he taught.

Wilson trained in and taught the virtues of gong uen chuan fa, which has its foundation in the four systems of: shorinji kenpo, lo hand - Buddhist monk boxing, plum flower system and the five animal school. This combination would prove to be an unbeatable combination of fighting, empty-hand forms and weaponry.

In 1974 grandmaster Pai accepted Wilson as a student. He maintained the rank he held in gong yuen chuan fa and with the Kou Shu Organization in Taiwan, which was the third highest level. This began a historical blend of two great systems - white dragon and the way of the hard and soft fist.

A New Star

Wilson began a lifelong endeavor to study the disciplines of bok leen pai, pai lum tao, pai yung tai chi, quan yin chi kung and chin kon pai meditation. At Dr. Pai's request Wilson taught the traditional lohan and plum flower forms to the rest of the Pai lum families.

In 1979, Wilson was elevated to the prestigious rank of sigung (master) by Dr. Pai and to Kou Shu Fedration of Taiwan. In 1992, Pai began organizing his Pai lum schools with several associated systems under an umbrella organization. Wilson was directed to protect and to preserve the curriculum.

In 1993, while visiting the Dominican Republic Dr. Daniel Kane Pai lost his ongoing battle with diabetes. Dr. Pai was laid to rest with full military honors at the Hawaiian National Cemetery. Under Wilson's direction, a board of directors was appointed to protect and preserve the curriculum of the Pai Lum style. Known today as the White Dragon Warrior Society Inc., this Society is devoted to making sure no one forgets the contribution Dr. Pai made to martial arts. As head of his own family as dictated by Dr. Pai, Wilson now wears the title of si tai gung or "grandmaster of his own family." Wilson has become the guiding force behind one of the most potent and effective martial arts systems available. Within the Pai lum tao martial arts system is a series of cutting punches and kicks, coupled with traditional animal movements and san shou training.

Ghost Strikes

But separating Pai lum from other Chinese styles is the potentially lethal ghost strikes series. These awesome techniques are seldom offered to the novice student. Dedication to training and loyalty to sifu are two of the essential ingredients one must possess to be taught his arsenal. The ghost strike series remains one of Daniel Kane Pai's greatest treasures.

One begins by understanding the philosophy behind striking a target with vertical, horizontal and circular motions. Separating the Pai lum cutting series from other formulas is its composition of linear and circular striking. Done correctly, the impact and penetration is potentially lethal to the receiver.

Although the technique possesses power and explosiveness, it is the penetration of the Pai lum tao punch or kick that showcases its significance. These technique begins but does not end at the target; instead, it cuts through the area being attacked. Such shocking penetration makes this technique among the most effective and deadly in any martial arts repertoire.

North and South

The fighting series was developed through the evolution and expansion of various combat styles. Borrowing from strengths found in both northern and southern kung-fu, this series emerged as a potent combination of motion-generated power and explosive short-range combat. The northern-style influence lends its mobility flexible stance movement and long-range striking. The southern style provides the theories of powerful stationary stances and short-range explosiveness into the target area.

The northern style developed sinew strength and power through movement. The southern style practiced powerful explosion into the target. From a blending of motion and explosion; the cutting punch emulates admirable qualities of both styles.

White dragon punches uses of both gong (hard) and yuen (soft) had techniques. Routines practiced by the beginner include: the figure eight, circular and the sphere patterns. The progression of strikes found in the cutting series is quickly executed. Several techniques delivered in an instant are designed to overwhelm an opponent. The movements are smooth, fluid and powerful.

The effectiveness of Pai lum tao's fighting concepts finds its basis is strong, solid stancework. The energy moves from the toe into the calf, travels up the thigh, surges through the waist, shoots up the back, travels into the shoulder, elbow and wrist and culminates in the hand technique being performed. The fighting techniques strike and penetrate through the intended target.

As the fighting series is executed, the body should be relaxed, yet firm; tight muscles or joints should be avoided, since this restricts energy flow and interferes with sinew and/or muscle movement vital to the proper execution of the technique. Relaxation allows the body to perform the whipping motion required to through with a continued circular motion.

Pai lum tao also includes powerful and lethal kicks, which can further be positioned into subcategories of standing, jumping and lying. Also applied here is the theory of relaxed, fluid motion focused on penetration into a particular targeted area.

Some kicking techniques may be targeted to the high-zone area, but most white dragon kicks will be executed to the mid- and lower body areas. Keep in mind, the Pai lum tao system is among this generation's most effective forms of self-defense.

In Pai lum tao martial arts, the practitioner doesn't react to a moving target by adjusting his hand or body. There is a designated target, but should that target move, the technique is designed to shatter and destroy whatever lies in its path.

Serious body conditioning and mind training are required before these techniques can be properly mastered. Solid stancework, aligned body posture and quan yen chi kung breathing methods must be firmly recognized before beginning the demanding repertoire of instruction.

The Pai lum tao legacy lives on in the philosophies, formulas, concepts, theories and techniques practiced by those keeping Daniel Kane Pai's dream alive. This is a unique and enlightening art. The secrets and teachings have taught us in the past, sustained us in the present and will deliver us in the future. The challenge now is to preserve and keep Pai's art pure.

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