Martial Arts Davie, Kung Fu, Muay Thai

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Ken Gurin, born Carlos Fernando Londono, began his training in the martial arts at the young age of 7. Starting with a brief stint in Judo for a year and later forming his foundations in Taekwondo under Mr. Andy Silva; at the age of 15 he abruptly refused to return to the school after nearly fatally injuring a friend in a full contact match. Startled at having gone into an altered state during the match and nearly causing his friend serious harm; he became intrigued with searching for answers regarding the state and how to control it.

Although very young, the shock led him to begin studying philosophy and meditation techniques from around the world and to search for a martial art which could help him understand and somehow achieve this heightened state of awareness but without necessarily causing harm to anyone. A quick learner, he became knowledgeable in various mystic paths and also became familiar with several different external martial arts including Shoalin Long Fist, Wing Chun, and Praying Mantis.

At age 18, he came upon an art which, in his mind, by its very description, seemed to be the best chance to find the answers he was seeking. He began to study Aikido, a martial art, whose name translates roughly to "way of peace", under Stephany Yap Sensei. One day, after nearly a year in training, he was practicing a difficult technique requiring diving at full speed into a very high gymnastic-like jump and roll and a slight miscalculation caused him to nearly break his neck. Only a last moment reaction prevented the possibly life threatening injury, but the full force of his body weight landed on his right shoulder, crushing every ounce of cartilage in the joint. Upon reviewing his X-Rays doctors stated that there was essentially no way of ever recovering normal movement in his shoulder, and he would most likely suffer from chronic pain in the joint for the rest of his life. Not able to lift his arm, let alone apply any amount of pressure without feeling the most excruciating pain, he accepted it as punishment for being reckless and began to come to terms with never recovering normal movement in his arm again.

Months later, while attending classes at Broward Community College, a series of coincidences led him to meet a well-known psychic named Iris Saltzman. Saltzman, the psychic mentioned in Dr. Brian Weiss' international best-seller Many Lives, Many Masters, predicted that Weiss, then chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Mt. Sinai Medical Center in Miami would write the book and later become famous worldwide. Although there were no visible signs of injury, upon meeting Carlos, she described the injury in detail and stated that he should find a teacher to instruct him in the art of Tai Chi. She stated that the manner of manipulating the energy of the body in this specific art would heal his shoulder completely and provide answers to many questions he had been seeking. Carlos had coincidentally just recently bought a small book on Tai Chi and kept it in his back pocket to read in between classes. She also left him with a disturbing prediction. He may not be able to survive the emotional and psychological turmoil of the next four to six years of his life. Saltzman stated very plainly that the upcoming years would force him into a confrontation with his worst fears and experience the darkest moments of his life. She added that " if " he survived to reach the age of 27, he would then be equiped to share a depth of understanding rarely aquired in life and would have insights profoundly valuable to the people he would come in contact with throughout the rest of his life.

Although deeply unsettled by the encounter for some weeks, he decided that contemplating the prediction was pointless and focused instead on seeking a teacher to instruct him in Tai Chi and seeing if the more concrete aspects of the whole experience could be proven. After studying with several teachers, he finally met Sifu Andrew Chung and only months into his training began to experience sensations of intense heat and cold accompanied by an intense electric-like current circulating through the joint and the rest of his body. After six months of dedicated practice his shoulder healed completely. It was as if he had never been injured.

He later went on to study Chen style Tai Chi and the Lao da Jia form for over 10 years under the instruction of various teachers within the lineage of Chen Fa Ke but not before the rest of Saltzman's predictions came to pass. At the age of 24 , despite all he had studied, Carlos was unprepared to deal with the series of romantic and professional catastrophes, which left him on the verge of suicide. Late one night, sleepless after several months of battling the darkness that had enveloped him, a book his brother had left on the kitchen counter caught his eye. It was called "The Power of Now", by Eckart Tolle. He opened it to a random page and what he read on that page expressed a very simple truth he had read in many different books and heard from many different teachers but this time it struck him like a bolt of lightning. "You are not the memories of the past and who you are does not depend on any future reality you can imagine. Your true self lies outside the mind and resides only in the Now....". Suddenly, all the emotional and psychological pain vanished. He laughed in astonished at the obviousness of this simple truth and was awed at the difficulty at never having really grasped its importance.

He survived Saltzman's prediction by a mere thread, but that thread of truth proved to be just enough. Tolle's book served as a doorway to a completely new level of practice in his meditation and his Tai Chi. He began to read everything he could on non-dual approaches to meditation including Zen, Tantra, and Advaita. He studied in earnest and met many new friends and various teachers from around the world. And although his understanding of the deeper meaning behind movement-based meditation and enlightened awareness in general began to broaden, something at the heart of it all was missing. After year or so of study, the depth of peace he had felt began to fade into the daily routine of life. One day, a friend he had studied Zen with related that a reclusive Zen master named Victor, had extended a rare invitation to Carlos to come and study with him in Moscow and as long as he could arrange to pay for the plane ticket. After weeks of doubting the legitimacy of the whole arrangement and some very convincing arguments made by his friend, he finally decided it would at least be an interesting vacation. He sold his G5 computer on E-Bay, bought a plane ticket for Moscow and left six days later - the day before his 27th birthday. The trip that was supposed to last a week, turned into five of the most bewildering and extraordinary weeks of his life. They paradoxically changed everything, yet left it all exactly the way it had always been. On arriving back home, to all outside appearances nothing had changed, but the Carlos that had left, never returned.

The name, Ken Gurin, under which Carlos teaches is derived from the term Ken in Japanese, which has many meanings, one of which is sword but most importantly it refers to the union of opposites into a singular point of being merged into non-duality - essentially the union of past and future into a present awareness. Gurin is derived from the term for a crimson lotus or "blood" lotus, which refers to a human being's potential for awakening and eventually actualizing their deepest hopes and dreams. He maintains that "Ken Gurin" is actually who we all are: luminous non-dual points of awareness deciding from one point to the next wether or not to allow ourselves to bloom and open or wilt and contract. Ken relates, "Each living moment is a new opportunity to relax and flow into the stream of life; an opportunity to harness the boundless energy available to us to heal, nurture, and protect ourselves and those we care for. The fascinating thing is that it seems like a choice but in reality it is simply existance at play; there is no other reality but that in which all things are seemlessly flowing in perfect harmony"


Today Ken writes, directs, and produces independant films and projects through his company, ZSV Media Group, and teaches Tai Chi and various other forms of meditation.