Wu Wisdom: "Tang is the slang, Wu is the way"

The following is an excerpt from RZA's "Tao of Wu."

Studying with Sifu, I learned that kung fu was less a fighting style and more about the cultivation of the spirit. What made a Shaolin monk so tough was his mastery of chi—the fact he could make contact with the Earth and draw the energy from it through him. His chi translates as “the grand extreme” and breaks all ideas, forces, and objects into opposites, yin and yang. But wu-chi, which translates as “no extremes,” came before tai chi. It’s infinite, the source of all power, and it’s all one.

A lot of people in our culture see life in terms of opposites—like, good versus evil, me versus you, valuable versus worthless, black versus white. Taoists believe you have to see beyond these to find their essential union. When Wu-Tang Clan started out, we had the saying “Tang is the slang, Wu is the way.” I didn’t know the tai chi meaning of it then, but it turns out I was on the money. In a way, Wu-Tang pointed me to a wisdom that unified Mathematics and Taoism, that showed me their essential harmony.

Additional Reading: Wuji (Wu Chi) The Unmanifest Aspect of the Tao

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