Under the traditional martial arts are basic values and views of life. It is
this internal aspect which elevates the study of combat techniques into a "DO"
- a "way", a "path", an "art" - above and beyond
the cultivation of external skill alone.
1. Two Aspects of Training
The presence of such values means that treading the Way of Harmony (Wonhwa Do)
successfully is not only a matter of applying oneself to the perfection of the
forms, one-step sparring, and other techniques. These comprise the external
aspect of the DO which by themselves will not lead the practitioner to the goal
of Wonhwa Do, no matter how arduously they are practised. For true progress
to be achieved, earned attention must be given to the complementary INTERNAL
aspect of Wonhwa Do: its basic values and views of life.
In Wonhwa Do, the study of self-defense skills is a learning medium, but that
which is to be learned is something internal, beyond the visible medium of instruction.
This is because the deepest object of pursuit in Wonhwa Do is not the external
perfection of art, but rather the internal perfection of the artist.
This perfection in turn is but the first rung in an ascending ladder of harmonious
relationships. The Wonhwa Doist then aspires to achieve harmony within the family,
society, nation, world cosmos, and ultimately with the Origin of harmony.
II. The Meaning of WonHwa Do
There are three ideograms which comprise Wonhwa Do. An ideogram is a visual
symbol (gram) which represents a specific idea (ideo). Thus, each character
has a clear meaning which is eloquent when examined closely.
The first two ideograms represent the harmony of circularity and/or togetherness.
The third ideogram represents the "way of life" and contains the idea
of turning one's head steadfastly towards a fixed point or goal. Thus, the three
ideograms represent a harmonious way of life or more simply put, "The Way
III. True Development
With the achievement of harmony as the inner focus of Wonhwa Do, the belt ranking
must indicate the harmony of both internal and external development. Such an
approach obliges the instructor to promote balanced development of internal
character as well as external skill, as the student advances from the lighter
to the darker belt rankings. The darkest colors in Wonhwa Do must actually be
an indication of not only advanced skills, but also of advanced achievement
in virtue and character. This commitment is why the achievement of our "Original
Human Nature" is one of the primary goals of Wonhwa Do.
IV. The Purpose of This Book
Essential to the pursuit of these internal goals is the necessity to first understand
them, and it is for this reason that we present this volume. It is a complementary
work to the first publication - Wonhwa Do, the Unified Martial Art - and is
intended as a primer in the Philosophy of Wonhwa Do. Together, the two volumes
represent complementary aspects of Wonhwa Do. The first provides basic information
on the external aspect, while the present work addresses the internal aspect
Our concern then in the following pages will be to elaborate the views and values
of Wonhwa Do so that they can be more fully comprehended by all the members
and friends of the association. As an initial reference point, we begin with
a chapter on "Traditional Martial Arts Philosophy". After that, there
are six more chapters, each devoted to presenting the basic views in the philosophy
of Wonhwa Do.