Famous Korean Swordsmen
Kim Yusin
595-673 A.D.Kim Yusin was born in 595 A.D. in the ancient Korean kingdom of Silla. He began his martial training young and became a Hwarang warrior at age 15. He was an accomplished swordsman and by the time he was 18 years old he had been appointed a Hwarang leader. By the age of 34 General Yusin was given total command of Silla’s army.

When he was just 16 Yusin seeking spiritual guidance retreated to Chung’ak mountain to train and ask heaven for the strength to fulfill his goal to expel the invaders and unify the three kingdoms of the Korean peninsula. The gods were moved by Yu-Sin’s diligent training and in response, a heavenly figure appeared to him in the guise of a old wise man named Nansung. This celestial being bestowed upon Yusin an engraved sword and some special texts. These sacred gifts were meant to help Yusin realize his goal. Nansung also taught the young warrior secret methods and bade him not to pass the information on carelessly.The following year when the invaders advanced still further into Silla, Kim Yusin once again sought spiritual guidance. This time he took his precious doubled-edged sword and climbed Mt. Inbak where he entered the seclusion of a deep grotto. He burned incense and prayed for the Heavenly Gods, to send down a light and let a spirit descend into his sword. On the third night of his retreat, the stars “Barrens” (in Aquarius and Equuleus) and Horn (Spica) shown their light into the sword, till it started to quiver tremulously.

Years later, while Silla was allied with China against one of the neighboring Korean kingdoms, an argument broke out between Kim’s commander and a Chinese general. As the argument escalated into a potentially bloody confrontation, Kim’s sword was said to have leaped from its scabbard into his hand. This so frightened the Chinese general that he immediately apologized to the Silla officers.

Kim lived to the age of 78 and is considered to be one of the most famous generals and swordmasters in Korean history.
Chang Sik Kim
1944-Present · founder of Shim Gum DoZen Master Chang Sik Kim founder of Shim Gumdo (Mind Sword Path), a Korean sword art, received the movements of his style in a vision during a 100-day meditation retreat on Sam Gak mountain. Master Kim still teaches the art of swordsmanship as a means of enlightenment at Shim Gwang Sa, the Mind Light Temple, a Zen Buddhist temple in Boston, Massachusetts.”Why train Shim Gum Do? Training is all action. Shim Gum Do has clear forms. To have clear form you have to move clearly each moment by moment, that is action, that is the highest light. That is why you have to train everyday, to make correct action appear. That makes your thinking clear, your mind clear; it makes all clear. If you train and follow the forms, you don’t make any ‘thinking’. You make your thinking and mind all clear automatically by following the Shim Gum Do forms.
Eat clearly, work clearly, be polite to your parents, help your friends, help your sister and brother, help your own country – that is the highest action. Every moment by moment if you do that way, that is the universe’s highest light. Move correctly, then the universal kingdom is yours.”

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