Under the reign of Yong Le 永乐 in the Ming Dynasty 明朝(1413年),the Emperor instructed for the start of a monumental construction project here 在武当山。Zhang Yu Qing, a Taoist from the 正义派 ZhengYi Sect, acted upon the order, and called more than 500 Taoists from nearby provinces to follow him to 武当山。Among them, around 20 were assigned with important duties and positions in many different temples. All of them considered 真武 to be the common deity and 张三丰 to be the founder of their movement. Therefore, people called them 真武玄武派。1989年 In 1989, upon the common understanding, the Taoism association agreed to change the name of the sect into “武当玄武派”。This sect boasts classics, among which, the 真武 Cannon remains the mainstay.

张三丰 transmitted his knowledge to Lu Qiu Yun, Liu Gu Quan, Yang San Cheng, Zhou Zhen De, Li Xing Zhi, Qiu Xuan Qing. Li Xing Zhi also transferred his knowledge to Zhi Dao Ren, Shu Fu Chu; Qiu Xuan Qing to Yan Shan Ming, Pu Shan Yuan, Ma Shang Ning, etc.

The Taoism Sects Chronicles, an ancient book circulating the Wudang area, has the recording that 玄武派 was one of the eight branches of 武当派。

玄武 Dadi

The legacy of the Founder 张三丰



Almost 800 years after 张三丰 was preaching the texts of the 道德经 at 五龙宫在武当山 in Wudangshan, his legacy lives on. In its preservation throughout history by Taoist scholars and revolutionary heroes, the system of 武当内家拳 was passed on from one generation to the next, and was thus at times difficult to trace over the course of the centuries past. The Taoist culture and practices of Wudangshan had its moments of flourishing and its moments of being close to extinction. The unique arts of Wudangshan are now open to the public so that the knowledge can spread and live on forever. At the beginning 张三丰 had a humble amount of disciples who followed him to live in huts around the early temples of the mountain. They were studying the stars, energy, medicine and martial arts, thus forming the legacy we still keep alive to this very day. Based on the Taoist Principles, the knowledge about Yin and Yang, the Five Element Theory and the martial heritage of the 嵩山 “Shaolin Temple”, this movement grew strong. A movement that would change the world of martial arts forever. It is considered that the modern forms of 太极拳,形意拳和八卦掌 were born out of this movement, and Wudangshan was, and still is, a place for people to gather for internal martial arts practice and self cultivation.


Taoist master You XuanDe is the 14th generation Grandmaster of 武当玄武派。Coming from a family with a strong tradition in martial arts, You XuanDe had been practicing martial arts since childhood. When he turned 18 he was already assisting his father in training the Chinese Special Forces. Even though his knowledge was already on an advanced level, he left home to seek even more guidance by great masters. After studying Wudang Boxing with Wang Wei Shen, the inheritor of Wudang SongXi Pai, he was strongly recommended to go and learn at the place of origin of Wudang martial arts – Wudangshan.
At the mountain, his teachers were the foremost Wudang Taoists of their time: Tong Shen Wang (a hermit at Wudang Temple), Zhu Cheng De (Taoist headmaster) and Lu Ming Dao (who lived more than 100 years). During the 1990s, Grandmaster You demonstrated in many exhibitions and shows in helping to spread the culture and practices of Wudang all over China.
His teachings are based on Taoist principles and Chinese Medicine. Every movement has a practical application which underlines the heritage of Wudang Pai as an effective martial/fighting art. Grandmaster You XuanDe is now resident at 南武当山, close to 武汉。