Central Divinity Wang Chongyang (Traditional Chinese: 王重陽; Simplified Chinese: 王重阳; pinyin: Wáng Chóngyáng) was a Song Dynasty Taoist who founded the Quanzhen School in the twelfth century. He is one of the Original Five Greats of Wulin in the Condor Trilogy.
Note: All information is based on the fictional Wang Chongyang in the Condor Trilogy, not the historical figure.
Wang Chongyang was an extraordinary man. In his younger years, he assembled an army of righteous, heroic men against the Jurchens. Their objective was to recover the lost territories of the Song Dynasty and rescue the Han Chinese under the Jin rule. However, he could not overcome the strong and powerful Jurchen army and was defeated many times and in the end he gave up this dream of his.
Wang Chongyang later retreated to an Ancient Tomb in Mount Zhongnan where he resided for many years contemplating his mistakes and meditating. He refused to share the same sky with the Jurchens and made a vow never to step out of the tomb. Eventually, many friends came to urge Wang Chongyang to come out of the tomb because they considered him a hero and the Jins were still marching into their country.
The emperor of the Jurchen Empire saw Wang Chongyang as a threat even when his army was gone. So, he sent more than ten martial arts experts to find the Ancient Tomb and kill Wang Chongyang. However, all of these martial arts experts were inferior to Wang Chongyang and were all defeated or killed by Wang Chongyang.
After the death of that emperor, the new emperor did not know of Wang Chongyang and did not see him as a threat. And so, Wang was forgotten by the world of Jiang Hu.
In the end, it was Lin Chaoying who forced him out of the tomb. Wang Chongyang had met Lin Chaoying earlier in his life and they developed a very close relationship. She was the only person with whom he felt a certain affinity because of her martial arts ability that could rival his own.
Lin Chaoying stood outside Wang's tomb and cursed him for days until finally he stepped out of the tomb to confront her. But when he stood outside, Lin Chaoying laughed and said that he does not have to go back into the tomb anymore because he has already broken his vow by stepping out of the tomb.
From then on, Lin Chaoying and Wang Chongyang roamed Jiang Hu, the realm of martial arts together. They would often train martial arts together and develop their skills to a higher level. Both eventually fell in love with each other, but unfortunately their prides prevented them from being together.
Lin Chaoying would often indirectly show hints of love towards Wang Chongyang, but he pretended not to see those hints. It was not because he did not love her, but because he could not bring himself to accept her and start a relationship. Because of this, Lin Chaoying thought Wang Chongyang looked down upon her and love turned to hate. They would often quarrel and fight each other. Because Wang Chongyang was not eager to fight Lin Chaoying, she could sometimes gain the upper hand but often they would reach a draw.
The falling out between Lin Chaoying and Wang Chongyang was depicted by a stone slab with inscriptions in the novel, The Return of the Condor Heroes. According to Qiu Chuji who was retelling the story to Guo Jing and Yang Guo, Lin Chaoying found a way to end the endless debate between her and Wang Chongyang.
Lin Chaoying proposed a duel: If Wang Chongyang defeated her, she would commit suicide. But if she won, Wang would have to surrender his ancient tomb to her or become a Taoist priest or a Buddhist monk and live in the vicinity of the ancient tomb on Mount Zhongnan for at least 10 years. The underlying meaning was giving up the tomb to her meant marrying her and living in the tomb together. Or if he did not want to, he had to become a Taoist priest or a Buddhist monk and thus preventing him from marrying another woman.
Wang Chongyang consented to this and asked how they would duel. Lin Chaoying said that whoever could write on a stone slab with his fingers would win. Wang Chongyang knew he could not do that and said he lost. Lin Chaoying walked over the stone slab and gently stroked the slab a few times. Then, she started to use her fingers to carve a poem. After she was done she smiled wryly that Wang Chongyang was destined to become a Taoist priest. Lin Chaoying knew very well, that her level in martial arts was inferior to Wang Chongyang and proposed this duel, because by stroking the stone slab, she smeared a chemical substance on the slab to make it soft and thus making it possible for her to write on. The very next day, Wang Chongyang became a Taoist priest and resided at Mount Zhongnan.
Wang Chongyang only found out how Lin Chaoying won many years later, when Huang Yaoshi visited him and he asked Huang if he knew how it was possible that Lin Chaoying could write on stone. Huang Yaoshi saw the slab and laughed and said he had not learned this technique of writing on stone and he would think on it and return one month later. After a month, Huang Yaoshi came back and together with Wang Chongyang they went back to the slab. Huang Yaoshi stroked the slab a few times, just as Lin had, and started to write another poem on the slab. Wang Chongyang was extremely surprised and touched the slab and found out that it was soft and realised how Lin Chaoying won--she had mixed some some chemical treatment that softened stone and applied it when she stroked the slab.
The Quanzhen Sect
In the beginning, Wang Chongyang was very reluctant to become a Taoist priest, but after studying Taoist codices for some time he understood Taoism and became an enlightened priest. Thus, Quanzhen School was founded.
His sworn-brother Zhou Botong became his younger martial arts brother and learnt martial arts from Wang Chongyang though he was not fully engrossed in the authentic Quanzhen Martial Arts and made up many other martial art techniques by himself. He accepted seven disciples, teaching them Taoist philosophies and martial arts. They were the famous Seven Masters of Quanzhen
The Quanzhen school became the most prominent martial arts school in the entire realm of martial arts and was known as the Taoist orthodox martial arts school. The main principles of Quanzhen school was to help others and resist the Jurchen aggressors in the north. Thus, Wang Chongyang and the Quanzhen school not only won the respect of martial artists but also of the common people.
Ancient Tomb revisited
After many years, Lin Chaoying died. Wang Chongyang quietly entered the ancient tomb again to pay his final respects to the woman he loved. However, when he saw the martial arts Lin Chaoying carved on the walls of the tomb he was shocked. Almost every stance of his Quanzhen martial arts was countered. He was amazed by the marvellous Jade Maiden martial arts Lin Chaoying created.
Wang Chongyang later went into retreat for three years, hoping to create a new set of martial arts to overcome the Jade Maiden Scriptures by Lin Chaoying. He was able to come up with some new styles but not the desired results he wanted. He gave up this objective to create a new set of martial arts and respected Lin Chaoying’s talent in martial arts.
Several decades later, the Genuine Scriptures of Nine Negation (9 Yin Manual) (Jiu Yin Zhen Jing) appeared in the realm of martial arts. Many martial artists had died over this scripture; everyone wanted to claim this manual for themselves. The situation became more and more chaotic as about a hundred martial artists had already died over this manual.
To prevent anymore chaos, Wang Chongyang decided to invite the most prominent and powerful martial arts masters of that time to settle this dispute about the manual once and for all. He invited East Heretic Huang Yaoshi, West Poison Ouyang Feng, South Emperor Duan Zhixing and North Beggar Hong Qigong. They agreed to duel at Mount Hua and whoever was the victor could claim the title of the number one martial artist and have the Jiu Yin Zhen Jing. The duel would consist of a theoretical and a practical portion, lasting for seven days and seven nights. In the end, Wang Chongyang was victorious.
After Wang Chongyang's victory at the first Huashan tournament, he met a Buddhist monk at Songshan. He had a drinking contest with this monk and lost. The bet was if Wang lost, the monk would be allowed to read the Jiu Yin Zhen Jing.
Wang Chonyang's reasons for the duel were different from others. He entered the tournament of Mount Hua not to claim the manual or for the title of number one martial arts master, but to prevent the realm of martial arts thrown into turmoil and innocent lives wasted on this scripture anymore. He did not want to study the martial arts in the manual and prohibited all Quanzhen disciples to learn it but instead kept it in his possession all the time.
But out of curiosity he flipped through the manual and read it. After about ten days he absorbed the contents of the scripture and became proficient in the Jiu Yin Zhen Jing and realized it was quite similar to the philosophies of his Quanzhen Arts. He laughed heartily and knew now how to counter the Scriptures of Jade Maiden by Lin Chaoying. He went back into the tomb and carved a few techniques of the Nine Yin on the walls of the ancient tomb, which could counter the Scriptures of Jade Maiden.
The Pre-Heaven Skill and the Yi Yang Finger
One year after the tournament, Wang Chongyang and Zhou Botong travelled to the Dali Kingdom to meet Duan Zhixing. Wang Chongyang said that he admired the Yi Yang Finger of the Duan Family and wished to learn this skill and in exchange he would teach Duan Zhixing the Pre-Heaven Skill. The reason for this was that Wang Chongyang knew that he was dying and wanted to pass his Pre-Heaven Skill to Duan Zhixing so someone would know the blackstar of West Poison's Toad Stance after he himself died. This way, he could also use the Yi Yang Finger to quickly defeat Ouyang Feng should he come and try to take the manual when he was dying. He and Zhou Botong stayed in Dali for about half a month.
Prior to his death, he wished to burn the Jiu Yin Zhen Jing but couldn't do it. He realised that the manual was not his to burn and hoped that in the future someone would make good use of the scriptures. He issued a final order that no disciple of Quanzhen was allowed to learn the martial arts of the manual. With that, Wang died.
Zhou Botong and the Seven Masters of Quanzhen were mourning their Master, when several martial arts experts came to the Chongyang Palace Shrine with the purpose of stealing the scripture. The Seven Masters quickly went outside to engage the enemies individually to prevent those martial arts experts from entering the shrine and possibly harming the body of Wang Chongyang. Only Zhou Botong remained in the main hall to mourn. At this point West Poison Ouyang Feng came with the purpose of stealing the scripture. Zhou Botong did his best to stop Ouyang Feng, but was no match for him and was defeated.
Ouyang Feng was about to snatch the scripture which was put next to the coffin of Wang Chongyang. Suddenly the lid of the coffin was smashed and Wang Chongyang emerged from the coffin used his Yi Yang Finger to hit Ouyang Feng between the eyebrows, destroying his Toad Stance. Ouyang Feng was heavily injured and his kung fu was depleted and quickly ran off.
It seems that a few days earlier, Wang Chongyang sensed that Ouyang Feng was lurking about in the vicinity. So he faked his own death to lure him over and injure him. Wang Chongyang sat down to rest; Zhou Botong did not disturb him because he knew that using Yi Yang Finger and the Pre-heaven Skill absorbs a lot of energy. He quickly helped the Seven Masters to drive off the other enemies. All of them were very happy that Wang Chongyang was alive but when they came back to the main hall they saw that this time Wang Chongyang had really died.
Central Divinity Wang Chongyang possessed a variety of martial arts. His Repertoire included the entirety of Quanzhen Martial Arts, the Duan Royal Family's Yi Yang Finger and an attained proficiency in the Nine Yin Arts. All of which was powered by the superior internal power base provided by the Pre-Heaven Skill.