lifestyle

Yogi love warrior celebrates love, life and destiny

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By Chris Betros

Yogic Arts, established in 1995 by spiritual super athlete Duncan Wong is a natural flow technology of all organic movements, taught in a comprehensive universal style, and was born from the confluence of the sacred mystery schools of budo, yoga, bodywork and dance -- all sharing common ground in attention and energy.

What is your background?

I was born to a Chinese beatnik father and a Scottish hippie mother in San Francisco in 1968, a product of the famous “Summer of Love.” Born into a street life of budo and punk rock communities, I vacillated between urban motorcycle youth culture and remote mountain native nature survival training lifestyles.

What is your martial arts background and how did it lead you into yoga?

I was a street fighter turned professional kick-boxer, in the Korean styles, and came upon yoga as a teen. It was like a healing balm for my body and soul.

What brought you to Japan?

I was based in New York for several years, and I came here in early 2001 to teach with my New York yogi-to-the-stars. I’ve been in love with the land and people ever since. I made Shanghai my world base for several years, taking journeys to Japan for intensive teaching and training throughout that time, and eventually just stayed. I make my home in a 100-year-old temple in Gion in Kyoto.

What’s your yoga philosophy?

Live, love, give.

What is the most common misconception that people have about yoga?

That it is a passive ladies’ exercise cult, or that it is a mysterious religion. Actually, yoga is a spiritual science and a lifestyle that has evolved for several thousand years, and perhaps the ancestor of the martial and healing arts that we know today, including medicine and massage.

How do you spend your time?

I devote 50% of my time to being home in Japan, and these days am spending less time in America, focusing on Europe, Latin America and, of course, Asia. I also try to spend more time in nature to balance my soul, and save time to work with less privileged youths, such as the rural country orphans and urban street teens of the world, wherever I can.

Who are some celebrities you have taught yoga to?

Sting, Madonna, Björk, Christy Turlington, Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Shiho, and so many others.

What do your tattoos signify?

My childhood memoirs, basically, and more specifically different names for “god” and “love.”

For more information about Duncan Wong, see www.yogicarts.com or www.yogicarts.jp.

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4 Comments
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"spiritual super athlete"?? Whatever...

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Well, as long as the celebs love him, he's alright in my book...

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I read the website as Yogi Carts.com . Anyone else?

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I was almost dragged to his class at a Tokyo yoga studio by wife's friend. saw his pamphlet and everything. the photo of him flexing his tiger/dragon/wtf? tattoo on his yoga mat beside a waterfall was particularly inspiring. Definitely no flakiness going on there, i can assure you. And the streetfighter/nature guru bit...well, let me tell you, it's all real, and is in no way intended as a mere chic grabber. He is THE standard for new-age renaissance men, proven by his lyrical meets mystical lineage Chinese/Irish. Were it not for that, he would not be something the rest of us mere mortals should really and truly aspire to, and i honestly mean that. Honestly.

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