It is mentioned in nearly every fiction on Shaolin Temple, but did it really exist? Wikipedia didn't mention it at all the last time I read, so I assume it's all fiction. But I haven't had a chance to read any serious literature on the Shaolin yet. And if it's purely fiction or legend, maybe you know how the legend started?
This post here pretty much sums up the widespread belief (or "claim") about the Shaolin Wooden Men labyrinth.
To be a Shaolin monk and learn the secrets of kung fu, you had to pass through a labyrinth filled with skilled warriors, creatures, and traps. At the end, they had to lift a 500 or so pound urn out of the way of a door, and while lifting it, their arms were branded with the symbols of twin dragons to symbolize that they had gotten through "initiation".
Once in the labyrinth, there was no way out but to get past the urn. Many died to become bona fide Shaolin monks.
Did such a labyrinth ever exist or is it just fiction?