“A lot of people believe that martial arts was born in the Shaolin Temple. That’s not true. When the Chinese people were born, martial arts was born. But the Shaolin Temple was the first place to combine all the martial arts together.”

—Shifu Shi Yan Ming, abbot of the USA Shaolin Temple

In 1992, while on a tour of the United States, Shaolin monk Shi Yan Ming defected from his native China and hid out in a San Francisco basement. Now, 21 years later, he is the abbot and founder of the USA Shaolin Temple, located in lower Manhattan, where he is the Shifu (teacher) of many disciples devoted to learning the ways of Chan Buddhism and Shaolin kung fu. Check out the preview below for Amituofo, Tricycle‘s short film profile of Shifu Shi Yan Ming and the USA Shaolin Temple.

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