Kung Fu athlete Muhammad Junaid “MJ Li” Chafeker will launch his book KungFu: “The Untold History” Part 2, next month. The book describes the history of Islam in China and The Chinese Hui Muslim Legacy of Kung Fu Martial Arts. Chafeker doing sword training. Picture: Salmaan Chafeker.
Kung Fu athlete Muhammad Junaid “MJ Li” Chafeker will launch his book KungFu: “The Untold History” Part 2, next month. The book describes the history of Islam in China and The Chinese Hui Muslim Legacy of Kung Fu Martial Arts. Chafeker doing sword training. Picture: Salmaan Chafeker.

Kung Fu athlete to launch new book

By Amber Court Time of article published Nov 29, 2020

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The cover of Kung Fu athlete, Muhammad Junaid “MJ Li” Chafeker’s book called KungFu: “The Untold History” Part 2, will be released next month. The book describes the history of Islam in China and The Chinese Hui Muslim Legacy of Kung Fu Martial Arts. Picture: Cover design: Ash Lee Solomons and M.J.Li.

LOCAL professional Kung Fu athlete explores Islam in China and the Chinese Hui Muslim legacy of Kung Fu martial arts, in his new book KungFu: The Untold History Part 2.

The Hui are an east Asian ethno religious group, predominantly composed of Chinese-speaking adherents of Islam.

Muhammad Junaid “MJ Li” Chafeker will officially launch his second self published book next month.

Chafeker’s first book My Journey, The History, spoke of a young boy from humble beginnings, who went on to become a three-time world champion, last year.

The 36-year-old who grew up in Mitchell’s Plain, has been a Kung Fu and Tai Chi athlete for 22 years.

Although a qualified teacher, Chafeker specialises in traditional Chinese medicine, practices acupuncture and traditional dry cupping.

His first book was dedicated to his mother Salma Chafekar, who died in August last year; while this book was written when his dad Shaik Abdullah Chafekar died in February.

“When my father's health took a turn for the worst I started writing part two. When we went into lockdown in March it gave me sufficient time to write,” he said.

The book looks at the history of Islam in China when it arrived in the early sixth century under the Tang dynasty rule, he said.

“A very strong economic and trade relationship was established between the Muslim empire and the Tang dynasty who ruled China at the time,” he added.

The book discussed diplomatic missions that took place in China during the lifetime of the prophet Muhammad.

Chafekar focused on the Chinese and Muslim style of Kung Fu martial arts, which is known as Cha Quan Tantui.

This art of Kung Fu was introduced by the Chinese Hui Muslim, approximately 800 years ago, he said.

“That style became prominent during the Ming dynasty period. As a result of this, the Chinese Muslims produced many great grandmasters of Kung Fu and Chinese martial arts over the century,” he explained.

The inspiration for the book is drawn from events that he experienced as a South African athlete, training in China over the years. “I experienced interaction with Hui Muslims and also looked at a number of archives and sources within China’s libraries,” he said.

He hopes that readers find a lot of benefit in the unique history of Islam’s arrival in China and the major contributions made by Chinese Muslims to Kung Fu over the years.

His wife Salma Natalie Chafeker, said: “I’m so proud of my husband, MJ Li, coming from humble beginnings and achieving so much. Being able to share his story as a source of inspiration to youth in book form is a tribute to the hard work he put in over the years. Nothing comes without sacrifice.”

To pre-order contact Salma Doran or [email protected] or call on 081 711 1211 or 082 454 3027.

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