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Thread: Monk visas: The nightmarish process....

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    24
    I have been reading your postings about your master and speaking to the what you call higher ups in JiLin province. Dont think that these people are really the higher ups. They are all connected to the so called boss employer of your master. They are all friends and business associates and everything you do and speak will get back to the head master of the academy you are working with. How do you think he is able to get the visa for his students? He has many friends in the police station.

    It is not aways China that does not want the people to travel that is only part of it. They have their reasons and you can not ask them why. It is just their governmental ways. But you are also working against the head master of an academy that does not want his master to leave. They can go out to other countries but you are not aware of it. The head master of that academy just a week or so ago was in Deng Feng and was taking one of his newer masters to Korea with him. Your master was denied by the head master even though he is the biggest master at the academy now. It is called keeping his workers in line. Even though the country of China is very big the shaolin community is very small and when you are a part of it you hear the scuttlebut and you know who had muscle and who does not.


    These masters are paid monthly and at times some academies dont pay every month. They give 100 yuan a month for small things and the rest of the money is given during chinese new year. So for a master to leave he leaves everything he has worked for behind ( meaning his money). There is much you dont understand and you really should take more time to understand it.

    You are naieve and you love your master I can understand that and they can be very persuasive when they want to be. But you best be careful with who and what you speak about. Just a friendly suggestion. You step on toes now trying to do things the fast way for someone and you can create problems for the future. Like in obtaining a visa for yourself to come to China.

    You have to be half politician as well as lawyer to get what you want and most of all being patient.

  2. #12
    I'm here in Beijing. The fifteenth trip. Amazing city. The change is incredible here.

    But nothing changes at the US Embassy in Beijing. Again, another attempt to get two Shaolin masters, Shi De Hong and Zhang Xue Min, three month visitor visas to come to the US. This time, with the help of the Henan government Shaolin Temple Wushu Guan. Something we didn't have before.

    A hundred dollar application fee, which, given the typical 250 USD monthly salary found in China, is a lot of money. But, hell, I paid for it. I was going to fly these individuals over to Vegas, put them up in my house, and let the students of the school benefit from their "being there". The masters would get a taste of American life, and learn some English. Then, they would go home, and we'd bring two other monks over. I set this cross cultural exchange program up last year, with the head of the Wushu Guan.

    But, everyone has to go through this interview. An interview, where one wrong answer, or, one wrong face, destroys your chances. And, a failure gets marked in your passport. One failure stamp, and generally, you never get a visa, regardless of how "good you look".

    Both of these master's documents were well in order. Shi De Hong, having left the monkhood years ago, had a good job, property, wife, children. All reasons for him to return to China, the major force behind the granting or denial of a US visa. Zhang, a young female, had property. But, both had the support from the Henan government. And, of course, our corporation had invited them.

    All was going well, until the interviewer, some Chinese American that worked at the US embassy, noticed that De Hong's marriage certificate was a copy, and not an original. I guess he's not aware that an incredible amount of business is conducted throughout the world by fax. The interviewer then asked Zhang if she was married. She, of course, said no.

    Interview was over. Two minutes.

    Neither got a visa. No explanations.

    US Embassy made $200.

    I've been here before. Quite a few times. Try to do something good for people both in the US and China, and this is the nonsense that you've got to deal with.

    Frustrating. Very frustrating.
    Experienced Community organizer. Yeah, let's choose him to run the free world. It will be historic. What could possibly go wrong...

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  3. #13
    Shi Xing Rui, just read your post. Not sure I understand what your saying. I think that there are misperceptions.

    Shi De Cheng now has his own school. He has no head master. He is a private individual, in fact, he is the head master of his school. It is not the Chinese government that stops these visas; it is the US govt. The US does not want Chinese emigrating to the country, for many reasons. We are not working in Jilin province, we are in Henan. And trust me, I'm not naive about getting visas for Chinese citizens. I've been dealing with these issues, on a very close, and expensive basis, for the past five years, for many different monks. I've also worked closely with immigration attorneys, and, US embassy officials. I've learned a lot.

    I have no problem getting single and multiple entry Chinese visas. For what usually takes most people a week, takes me an afternoon. This is my fifteenth trip to China.

    As for this current (and different) visa issue, we had the help of the local Chinese government this time, with these masters. It was still stopped at the US embassy, not at the Chinese govt level.

    I've yet to finish this story. You have no idea what has taken place over the years. I will get around to it when I have more time. It has been a very elaborate, and frustrating, journey...
    Experienced Community organizer. Yeah, let's choose him to run the free world. It will be historic. What could possibly go wrong...

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  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    64
    After you got them the O-1 you should have applied for Green Cards after the 1st year or so.

    The O-1 establishes that the person is one of extraordinary ability, which is also one of the things that makes you eligible for permanent residence.

    Of course, you would have to further reinforce and document the extraordinary ability claim. You could do that by having them publish a bunch of articles in martial arts magazines, and enter a few Wushu competitions where they are guaranteed to win 1st place anyway. Things like documenting the seminars they gave where people travelled from halfway across the country to learn from them etc would all help.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    256
    Just curious, would it be possible for an american to be a monk? Not myself, but if they completed the training? Might help if they were chinese. Hopefully, then it wouldn't be a problem to get them out of china then. I probably am ignorant, but with xy, being a businessman couldn't something be arranged?

    Doc, I think this should go in the monk chronicles section. I think you should write a book about your experiences bringing monks to america. Maybe you could recoup some costs.

    You would think our government would welcome shaolin monks to come over. You want to teach Shaolin Gung Fu to american's? SURE come on over. We would be happy to learn Gung Fu.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    24
    Doc, There is a misunderstanding about who I was talking about. I was not talking about Shi De Cheng. I know and understand him very well by his reputation and the fact that he is a shaolin brother to my uncle in law Shi De Qian. I was talking about a particular academy head master in the northern part of China. (which I will not name!) It was directed to a particular person (who I will not name). They got the meassage and all is well. If you really want the gory ugly details I will send you a private email. Lets just say that some how someone thought that the shaolin community was a very small and very stupid lot of people and that what they spoke publically was not seen or watched by those who would be impacted by them.

    The visa issues was a reverse issue. Not about going to america but actually for a student coming here to china.

    ok.. I will give you a brief overview of the situation...

    You have a school and you get an email and a potential student says Hey I want to train with you. You say okay when are you coming and how long you staying. They say 5 years and they want to learn and train so they can open a school and teach in their country. Then as time goes on they ask tons of questions. You answer as best you can. Then with all this new found information they decide they no longer want to train with you they want to open a school down the street from you and want to take your oldest and best master to his school and he tells you he is going to do this.

    The head master of that school has tons of friends at the police and visa offices that is how he manages to produce visa's for his students. So do you think that this head master will allow this to happen in his back yard. No he will not. So in a polite way I was trying to help someone udnerstand the politics in China. Just like you speak about the visa issues and the politics of going to America I too understand that process but I also have lived here in China for 3 years and understand a great deal of the politics and the smallness of the community under the shaolin umbrella. What ever happens in someones back yard here in China we always know about. It gets through the grape vines faster than the water here in china goes through your body.

    SO I do aplogize if there was a misunderstanding for you but the particular person that needed to understand it did and I had confirmation of that. I thank y ou for t he forum you have that allows us to speak honestly and upfront about things.

    I have my own stories of getting an immigration visa for my husband. He is Shi Xing Ming and he is the nephew of Shi De Qian. So I am very familar with what you must go through. It is not any easier to get immigration papers for your chinese husband even if you are an american citizen. It has been a year since i started the process and it is not finished as of yet. We still have not finished the INTERVIEW! It has been expensive to get all the documentation for the chinese citizen as well. They do not issue things like birth certificates and things at birth. YOu must do that and have it translated into english which they charge you 5 times more than the regualr service! We could compare notes sometime! We have a school here in Deng Feng that we teach foreignors at and we deal with some of the issues with visas as well. But Henan Deng Feng is one of the places that will help you less than any other place. This probably all doesnt make a bit of sense to you but thats okay. What you are to understand you will and what you are not to understand you wont. That is the way of the path. I accept that and live by it. IN the wake of your presence much good is done and the promotion of shaolin has been huge and you are to be recognized for that. Thank you
    I must take leave I bow to all. Amitoufou Shi Xing Ruei

  7. #17
    Understand what school you've been talking about, which is why I was confused. I also appreciate the nightmare that you're going through visa wise. The whole process is an extraordinary one, very painful, very disappointing, extremely frustrating. I've been through the process quite a few times, for various people, and in various ways. None have been easy, rarely have we been successful.

    I'm surprised that you're having trouble with a spouse, that is, unless, you have a Chinese marriage certificate, as opposed to an American one. Both here in Thailand, and in China, the US Embassy does not recognize national marriage certificates; they only recognize marriages formed in the US. Which, is a problem in itself, if your loved one is in China or Thailand. I've heard of people going to other countries, such as Europe, to formulate a marriage, which is then more readily recognized by the US Embassy of that country (China, Thailand, etc). It's one way to get around the catch 22 that they've created.

    As for my presence doing good for Shaolin, I appreciate the thought, but I'm going to have to deny that I'm doing much good. The current Shaolin "situation" no doubt does not appreciate what I've done in the past. We're in a new world now over there, one in which people with money can buy their recognition, and subsequently market themselves as Shaolin for themselves. It's a new world there, one in which I won't lower myself to, and one in which I'm slowly losing ground in.
    Experienced Community organizer. Yeah, let's choose him to run the free world. It will be historic. What could possibly go wrong...

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  8. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    24
    amitoufou,

    Well it is not anything to do with the marriage certificate. We have a notorized and translater version that is accepted by the american embassy. They have not questioned the marriage. What has happened is that with the events of 9-11 in New York and the war in Iraq the American embassy has pretty much either stopped or slowed teh visa process to a very slow crawl. I was basically told that when we were going to apply for just a tourist visa so that we could go to have holiday t here that the embassy was pretty much not giving out visas and that if we thoughts that any time in the futire we were gonna go to live in teh US to apply for greecard status. So that is what we are doing. The process is just very slow. I'll give you an example. Once you have handed in the petition to register a relative it took 2 months before we heard anything. Then you had to comly with what they needed to have fo rteh interview. So that took a couple of months for us to get together. Then we mailed that in to the embassy and it took them 5 months to reply that we had an interview appointment. The war has put a great deal of pressure on the embassy's all around teh world and you feel the impact. It was published in teh papers and internet saying that they were slowing everything down and even not giving visa at all for the country of China. There are even students who applied for schools and have been granted scholarships but the embassy is not issuing visa fast enough fo rteh students to get to the school on time. SO tehse students are now going to different countries for their education. It has caused a great deal of problems for many people not just immigrants and spouses situations. In addition there are problems with some chinese embassies as well like in England they dont like to issue visa there for China. I have had many students that want to come and train here that when they applied for visa they were either denied or given extremely short term visas.

    I understand what you mean about money, you can buy anything here you are correct in many ways but there are a few places where you can not buy your way in and they are kept pretty much sacred by those who know. That is why we are building our school here to be as old shaolin. We are truely trying to and beginning to succeed at teaching the old methods and training in the quiet of the mountains and not in the city where too much can disturb the thoughts and training. SO many have trouble leaving old lifestyles behind and here they have no choice. IT is a inner self defining way to practice and live. We keep prices low to accomodate as many as we can. Room food and training. Classes are taught in chinese and english. So we are trying to do our bit as you are trying to do your bit.
    Wishing you peace on your journey and path amitoufo brother shaolin
    By the way we are having a meditation that is geared toward bringing the origins of life and chan back to the temple it will be on August 21, and at 8:00 beijing time. Please join us if you like. This is our second meditation for the return of true chan and life to the temple.

  9. #19
    If you thought getting "monks" into the US was hard (and I haven't finished this story yet", check this out.

    Here‘s a believe it or not story. Talented foreigners around the world are flashing their skills to get into this country, of course. But very few have the assets of Argentine bombshell Dorismar. The former “Playboy” playmate was rounded up by immigration authorities and deported with her husband on January 5 after living illegally in Miami for five years.

    Now her attorney is trying to get the calendar pinup back into this country by classifying her as, quote, “an alien of extraordinary ability.”

    Tucker Carlson was joined by Dorismar‘s attorney, Michael Feldenkrais, to discuss this quest for special immigration status.


    TUCKER CARLSON, HOST 'THE SITUATION': What exactly is Dorismar‘s extraordinary ability?

    MICHAEL FELDENKRAIS, DORISMAR‘S ATTORNEY: Well, the INS has already considered her as an extraordinary ability, and that‘s probably her looks, her singing abilities, and her looks, I guess.

    CARLSON: You can‘t see the screen, but we unfortunately have—we‘ve blotted out her extraordinary ability that you‘re talking about. And that‘s her rear end, of course. She was named by “Mirror” magazine as a woman who possessed one of the top 25 rear ends in all of entertainment. You‘re saying that because this girl has a cute butt, she should be a U.S. citizen?

    FELDENKRAIS: Well, not necessarily U.S. citizen. But she should be allowed to be able to work in this country. She should be allowed to come in and do her performances, do whatever it is that she needs to do to proceed with her continued dream of becoming a, quote unquote, supermodel and so on and so forth. Absolutely. She should have the right to work, come in, maybe even leave, go in and out of the country. Absolutely.

    CARLSON: So that—you think that that‘s a valid criterion for entry into the country, having an extraordinary body, having a cute butt. That‘s sort of—you know, all the girls with the dumpy butts don‘t get in. But the ones with the cute ones do.

    FELDENKRAIS: In reality it‘s not a matter of her having a cute butt and somebody having a bad butt. But the reality is there is a classification for people who have risen to the level where she has in the scenario of...

    CARLSON: Risen to the level. She stars in “Latinas gone Crazy.” Now, no offense. I haven‘t actually seen the video. But I mean, it‘s not like—I mean, she‘s not Barbra Streisand. You know what I mean? “Latinas Gone Crazy.” Do we need more “Latinas Gone Crazy” actresses in this nation, truly?

    FELDENKRAIS: Well, I don‘t know if we need them or we don‘t need them. But the reality is that she is—that‘s her job. That is our job like my job is to be an attorney. Your job is to be—and each one of us has our own abilities. Her ability is to become a model that shows what men like to see in magazines like “Playboy” and so on.

    CARLSON: Do you think—is there a porn shortage in this country, do you think? I mean, is there a lack of homegrown porn actresses? Is this a crisis?

    FELDENKRAIS: I do not believe it‘s a crisis. There‘s definitely a lot of talent out there. And but that doesn‘t stop us from...

    CARLSON: Why should we flood the market with cheap foreign imports, thereby forcing our own porn actresses out of work and oppressing their wages?

    FELDENKRAIS: I don‘t think we‘re flooding them. I think one person, two people. This is not an area where you‘re going to have 200 million people coming in as porn actresses. But you will have a select few, a very good few, that will be able to do what she does. And you‘re not necessarily letting the floodgates and allowing half a million people come in just because they have a cute butt. No.

    CARLSON: Let me just stop you, because we‘re out of time. But also just to stand back in awe of you, Michael Feldenkrais. If I am ever in trouble in the state of Florida, I‘m going to hire you.

    You have cracked not a single smile. You are arguing with a straight face that your client ought to be allowed into the United States because she has a good body? You‘re unbelievable. You‘re a lawyer‘s lawyer, and I appreciate your coming on our show. Thank you.
    Personally, I think she has a fat ass.

    Keep her out. We got enough of that here.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Experienced Community organizer. Yeah, let's choose him to run the free world. It will be historic. What could possibly go wrong...

    "You're just a jaded cynical mother****er...." Jeffpeg

    (more comments in my User Profile)
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  10. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    1,500
    Doc, are you shittin me? This coming from the man who said "The only thing that matters is the body"?
    Becoming what I've dreamed about.

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