The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary






The Quanzhen School

The Quanzhen School is an important school in Chinese Taoism. This school is also mentioned in Jin Yong's novels, and thus many people have some sort of misunderstanding about this school. Here we try to list out differences for comparison.

The Quanzhen School in History

The school is founded by Wang Chongyang, who is a Taoist. It specializes in the process of "alchemy within the body", or what is called Qigong. The disciples of Wang Chongyang served the Jin Dynasty in mid-13th century. When the Mongols overrun Northern China in 1254, Quanzhen taoists were among those who exerted the most efforts in keeping the peace, thus saving lots of innocent lives.

The Quanzhen School in Jin Yong's novels

Quanzhen (全真教) is a Taoist martial arts school founded by Wang Chongyang after losing the bet to Lin Chaoying and giving up the “Ancient Tomb.” Quanzhen’s main principles are primarily Taoist studies and secondly martial arts, in a short period of several decades Quanzhen gained a lot of support from both the world of martial arts and the common people.

Because the northern territories of the Song Empire were in the hands of the Jurchens (and Mongolians later on), they viewed the Han Chinese as second rate (or even lower rate) citizens, making their lives extremely harsh.

The common people in the north had lost all hope in the Song government to save them and saw the Quanzhen School and the Beggars Association as their only hope for some improvement on their hard lives. In some places the power of the Beggars Association and the Quanzhen School were greater than the government. It is said that Quanzhen disciples were both chivalrous and benevolent and gained a high reputation in the realm of martial arts. Out of respect people called the Quanzhen School the Orthodox Taoist Martial Arts School.

- Headquarters: Mount Zhongnan, Chongyang Temple

- Martial arts:

  • The Big Dipper Formation
  • Pre-heaven Skill
  • Quanzhen internal energy cultivation
  • Quanzhen swordsmanship; i.e. The Swordsmanship of Common Demise
  • Quanzhen palm styles; i.e. Treading Frost and Breaking Ice Palms.

- Appearances: The Eagle-shooting Heroes and The Great Eagle and its Companion.

- Reference(s): Chapter one of Heavenly Sword and Dragon Sabre .

Last updated: 05-07-2005 14:26:04
Last updated: 05-13-2005 07:56:04