Shi Yan Ming
American martial artist
Shi Yan Ming
Shi Yan Ming is a 34th generation Shaolin warrior monk, teacher and actor, best known as the founder of USA Shaolin Temple. Trained at the Shaolin Temple in the People's Republic of China (PRC) since the age of five, Shi Yan Ming defected to the United States in 1992, before opening the USA Shaolin Temple in Manhattan, where he has taught hundreds of students, including numerous celebrities.
Biography
Shi Yan Ming's personal information overview.
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Relationships
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News
News abour Shi Yan Ming from around the web
The end of air conditioning? Asia architects use green solutions to cool buildings
CNN - 16 days
Spend five minutes in humid Ho Chi Minh City and you'll probably be running for cover into the nearest air-conditioned refuge.
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CNN article
Their parents' lives were defined by war. Now Vietnam's youth are pushing the country toward a new identity
LATimes - 19 days
In front of Ho Chi Minh’s statue and the baroque yellow walls of Communist Party headquarters, they danced. Strobe lights and bass washed over sweaty young bodies twisting in the tropical night air. The DJ took a selfie with the crowd, and the din on this downtown promenade blended with the roar...
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LATimes article
The end of air conditioning? Asia architects use green solutions to cool buildings
CNN - 21 days
Spend five minutes in humid Ho Chi Minh City and you'll probably be running for cover into the nearest air-conditioned refuge.
Article Link:
CNN article
NGOs urge search for Laos activist 4 years after he vanished
Yahoo News - 2 months
BANGKOK (AP) — Ng Shui Meng hasn't given up hope.
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Yahoo News article
Saigon street food: What to eat in Ho Chi Minh City
CNN - 3 months
Ho Chi Minh City is widely considered the food capital of Vietnam.
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CNN article
Vietnam brewer Sabeco's shares jump 20 pct on debut in thin volume
Reuters.com - 3 months
HANOI, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Shares of Sabeco, Vietnam's biggest brewer, jumped the maximum allowed 20 percent in thin volume on debut on Tuesday to hit 132,000 dong ($5.8), data from the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange showed.
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Reuters.com article
Saigon street food: What to eat in Ho Chi Minh City
CNN - 3 months
Ho Chi Minh City is widely considered the food capital of Vietnam.
Article Link:
CNN article
Vietnam's biggest brewer to make market debut on Dec. 6 - paper
Reuters.com - 3 months
HANOI, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Vietnam's biggest brewer Sabeco is scheduled to make its debut on the Ho Chi Minh stock exchange (HoSE) on Dec. 6 at a price of 110,000 dong per share, the Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper quoted the firm's chairman as saying.
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Reuters.com article
Vietnam delays planned Vinamilk stake sale to Dec. 12 - state investment firm
Reuters.com - 3 months
HANOI, Nov 25 (Reuters) - Vietnam's State Capital Investment Corporation (SCIC) on Friday said it plans to sell 9 percent of Vinamilk, the country's biggest listed firm, on Dec. 12 on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange, 10 days later that previously planned.
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Reuters.com article
This Jewelry Is Made From Bombs Dropped During America's 'Secret War'
Huffington Post - 4 months
This article is part of HuffPost’s “Reclaim” campaign, an ongoing project spotlighting the world’s waste crisis and how we can begin to solve it. These earrings were made from bombs.  Their components came from Laos, where an estimated 80 million undetonated explosives lie strewn across the countryside. The failed devices are remnants of America’s “secret war,” carried out in Laos from 1964 to 1973. Today, workers in the southeast Asian nation continue the painstaking effort of locating, detonating and disposing of these dangerous munitions. At their current pace, it will take decades to clear the country of unexploded ordnance.   Article 22, a jewelry company, hopes to speed up this process and, at the same time, turn the ugly evidence of war into something beautiful.  Article 22, which takes its name from a section of the United Nations’ 1948 declaration of human rights, employs local craftspeople who transform bomb scraps into bracelets, necklaces, earrings and mo ...
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Huffington Post article
Vietnam police arrest anti-government blogger
Yahoo News - 4 months
Vietnamese police on Wednesday detained a prominent blogger for distributing anti-state information, the latest in a crackdown on critics of the country's Communist rulers. Ho Van Hai, 52, was arrested in Ho Chi Minh City and accused of "spreading information and documents on the internet that are against the government of the Social Republic of Vietnam", according to a statement by Ho Chi Minh City police on their website. Despite sweeping reforms to its economy and increasing openness toward social change, including gay, lesbian and transgender rights, Vietnam's ruling Communist Party retains tight media censorship and zero tolerance for criticism.
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Yahoo News article
Forget Singapore! Asia has a new garden city ...
CNN - 4 months
Move over Singapore -- Ho Chi Minh City could be Asia's next garden city.
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CNN article
Southeast Asia Travel Advice
Huffington Post - 4 months
Every adventure-loving traveler has "Southeast Asia" scribbled down on their bucket list -- myself included. For nearly a year, I waited for the right airfare offer to present itself, and as soon as it did, I whipped out my credit card faster than my mother at a Macy's semi-annual sale. While my nearly three-week long trip was all rainbows, pad thai and sunshine, there were some bumps in the road while planning that, even as a seasoned traveler, I did not anticipate. When thinking about what knowledge and tips I could pass on to future Southeast Asia travelers, I whittled it down to what I'm referring to as the "travel trifecta": Assemble the A-Team This is something that most people would not necessarily put on the top of their list. Plan your ideal vacation and then see who wants to come along, right? Or maybe you have a built-in travel buddy like a best friend or a spouse, so the thought never crosses your mind. Personality compatibility is crucial to any vacation, but I ...
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Huffington Post article
Viet Youth Panel Conference: Innovative Solutions For Social Challenges
Huffington Post - 5 months
After being battered by decades of war, Vietnam has risen as one of Asia's most dynamic and rapidly growing countries. With an emerging economy that is creating opportunities, the youth of Vietnam are being empowered to take on real world challenges through nonprofit and social entrepreneurial projects. Trinh Nguyen and Giang 'Jasmine' Phan are two such individuals. Trinh is a senior student at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), majoring in Biological Engineering; while Jasmine is a graduate student in Master of Digital Media at Northeastern University. Although they both originated from Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) in Vietnam, they did not cross paths till they were introduced by mutual friends in Boston, USA. Through conversation, they realized that there was a noteworthy need for an event that brought together likeminded individuals who undertook social projects. Inspired by the projects that were founded and run by their Vietnamese friends, they wanted to give back by emp ...
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Huffington Post article
Letter: Jefferson and Vietnam
NYTimes - 5 months
A professor writes that Ho Chi Minh, using Jefferson’s words, outlined the grievances of the Vietnamese against France, their colonial master.
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NYTimes article
Obama can't endorse during the Democratic primary, so he's just pointing out how hard the job is instead
LATimes - 9 months
He met with heads of state, lawmakers and a battery of dissidents, in between lifting a half-century-old trade embargo and negotiating access to key ports. By the time President Obama filed past more than 2 million people lining the streets of Ho Chi Minh City and flew to Japan aboard Air Force...
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LATimes article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Shi Yan Ming
    FORTIES
  • 2010
    Age 46
    The USA Shaolin Temple has six international satellite branches in Austria, South Africa, Trinidad, Chile, Argentina, and Mexico. In 2010 Shi and the USA Shaolin Temple purchased over of land in Middletown, Delaware County, New York, where he intends to build a new Shaolin Temple.
    More Details Hide Details According to The New York Times, as a young monk, Shi Yan Ming learned to break rocks with his skull, deflect blades with his skin, and sleep while hanging upside down from a tree branch. By the age of 17, according to Time magazine and The New Yorker, he could deflect the tip of a spear with his neck, sleep standing on one leg, and dangle a 50-pound (23 kg) weight from his scrotum, a practice that helped train him to withstand a full-force blow to the groin. He can also lick red-hot iron shovels. According to Shi, since being taken by his parents to the Shaolin Temple, he has never experienced any health problems as he did as an infant, and has never been sick. Shi's punching strength has been measured at of force. Among his martial arts specialties are Luohan Quan, Magic Staff and other Shaolin weapons, and hard chi kung.
  • 2006
    Age 42
    In 2006 Rodale Books published Shi's own book, The Shaolin Workout: 28 Days to Transforming Your Body and Soul the Warrior's Way.
    More Details Hide Details Shi has two children with his partner, Sophia Chang, a Korean-Canadian music promoter who represented Ol' Dirty Bastard, and the temple's then-manager, whom he met in 1995. Shi never took the Shaolin celibacy vows, as he entered the Shaolin Temple at the age of five. Explaining his eschewing of celibacy, Shi remarks, "I'm too handsome for that."
  • THIRTIES
  • 1999
    Age 35
    Shi Yan Ming had a small role in the 1999 movie Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, which was directed by one of his students, Jim Jarmusch.
    More Details Hide Details He has been profiled on PBS, and on the History series Stan Lee's Superhumans. In 2005, National Geographic filmed a documentary on him titled "Kung Fu Monk". He has also worked as a model, and the tourist bureau of his native village, Henan Province, put him on a billboard advertising their most famous native son. He is also depicted performing various styles of kung fu in four giant posters that show him that hang over the entrance to the modern Anhui Guoyang Chudian Branch of the Shaolin Wushu Center, near the Shaolin Temple. Says Jarmusch, "I love his contradictions. He's so playful and yet he has the potential for incredible physical ferocity." The RZA, producer of and Shi's co-star in the urban kung fu film Z Chronicles, says of Shi, "When I looked at the dailies, he just exploded on the camera. "I'd say, 'Damn Shifu, you're a real live movie star.'"
    In 1999 he returned to China with his students to help build relations between China and the United States.
    More Details Hide Details In late 2001 he returned to the Henan Province with 40 of his students for a martial arts festival.
  • 1995
    Age 31
    In June 1995, Shi traveled to Toronto, Canada to perform with a delegation of his brother Shaolin monks, headed by Great Master Shi Yongxin, who were sent on tour to Canada.
    More Details Hide Details
  • TWENTIES
  • 1994
    Age 30
    Choosing New York to be his new base of operations in order to spread the message of Buddhism and Shaolin kung fu because he saw it as the "capital of the world", Shi opened the first USA Shaolin Temple at 96 Bowery Street in Chinatown in December 1994.
    More Details Hide Details Because there was no heat, electricity or hot water, Shi would tape flashlights to the walls for light, teaching up to 18 hours a day in order to attract students. At night he would wear several pairs of socks on his feet to stay warm, and accumulated hundreds of pairs of unwashed socks due to his initial inability to wash clothes without water. He would also perform in Chinese restaurants to raise money for children and the elderly, gave free lessons, and spoke of philosophy in Open Centre on Spring Street. In 1996 he moved the USA Shaolin Temple to a third floor loft at 678 Broadway in the East Village. In late 2006, after its lease expired, the temple was relocated to its current location in a second floor, high-ceilinged loft at 446 Broadway, in Chinatown, where he teaches authentic Shaolin martial arts and Chan Buddhism in two-hour classes from 5am to 9pm, every day, to nearly 500 students, who have included notables such as Wesley Snipes, Rosie Perez, Bokeem Woodbine, RZA, Jim Jarmusch, Björk and Tricky.
  • 1992
    Age 28
    In 1992, Shi, who had won many national martial arts competitions, was chosen to be among a group of select Shaolin monks invited by the American Kung Fu Association to tour the United States, the first such tour for the Shaolin, to spread the knowledge of Shaolin Kung Fu.
    More Details Hide Details After the tour's last show concluded in San Francisco, Shi secretly left his hotel in the middle of the night and escaped in order to defect from China to the United States. Speaking no English, Shi directed a cab driver with hand signals to an unknown destination, but the frustrated driver dropped him off in the middle of nowhere and called the police. Shi showed the police his passport and some newspaper clippings featuring him, so the police requested the driver take him to a Chinese restaurant in order to find someone who could communicate with him. However, since the staff at the restaurant spoke only Cantonese, and not Shi's Mandarin, the monk wrote down his communications, since both dialects employ the same characters. The restaurant staff helped Shi phone a friend in New York City, who had someone pick up Shi, who hid in a basement for a week, eating only bread and cereal, while the news media were reporting his escape. After a week, he traveled to New York.
  • 1985
    Age 21
    In 1985, Shi won the 65 kg (147 lb.) championship in the Xian National Sparring Competition.
    More Details Hide Details He also won the championship in the annual Shaolin Disciples Competition three years in a row (1988–1990), and was vice-coach of the Shaolin Temple Fighting Monks at Henan.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1980
    Age 16
    In 1980, a young Jet Li arrived at the temple to shoot his feature film debut, Shaolin Temple.
    More Details Hide Details Though Shi barely noticed him at the time, the film's 1982 release was a major turning point for the temple, which experienced a significant increase in tourism. This in turn resulted in more positive attention to the temple by the Chinese government, which rebuilt the building, and in a change to the monks' daily routine, so that they could accommodate the tourists. Around this time, when Shi was 16, his parents, who held stressful jobs and were heavy smokers, died of lung cancer within six months of each other. Shi would then take care of his younger brother, while his older brothers would take care of the younger siblings, with whom Shi is still in contact today.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1969
    Age 5
    In 1969, the five-year-old Duan's Buddhist parents, still worried about his health, took him to the 1,500-year-old Shaolin Temple, the only remains of which after repeated destruction by warring dynasties and the current government were the foundation and some walls. (The temple as it is known today was reconstructed around the turn of the 21st century.) As this was in the middle of the Cultural Revolution, the familiar red and yellow robes and shaved heads were also not present among the monks, and would not be until approximately 1980, after the Cultural Revolution ended.
    More Details Hide Details Since there had not been an abbot at the temple in about 300 years, Duan was taken to the head monk, Shi Xing Zheng (who would later be appointed abbot in 1986). Shi Xing Zheng, whom Duan addressed as "Shigong" ("Grandmaster") or "Shifu Shifu" ("master's master"), looked at the young Duan and accepted him into the temple, where his parents were happy to leave him. As soon as he was accepted in the temple, which was populated by about 16 or 17 monks, all of them older than Duan (most of them in their seventies), his name was changed to Shi Yan Ming. The name is derived from "Shi", as in Shakyamuni, the founder of Buddhism, a family name that Buddhist monks of this tradition take in order to denote that they follow Buddha, "Yan", which denotes the "34th generation" at the Shaolin Temple, and "Ming", which means "perpetual", as in the infinite cycle of the Dharma wheel. Shi says that his "kung fu uncles" at the temple were very loving, and took care of him as his own parents would, though they did not live there all the time, for fear of marauding gangs of Mao's Red Guard, and therefore, Shi saw his parents often.
  • 1964
    Age 0
    Born on February 13, 1964.
    More Details Hide Details
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