- Were you aware that Bruce Lee’s philosophy extended beyond that of just teaching you how to throw a punch, or a kick?
- Did you know that most people these days fight to discover their individual identity?
- Did you know that the more you hone and train your body that you will also hone and train your mind?
Chinese martial arts originated back in the Xia Dynasty which dates back to about 4000 years ago. Martial arts are even older than this, but the martial arts have typically become recognized more with the fighting styles of East Asia.
Bruce Lee And Martial Arts History
Other fighting forms such as wrestling, Jiu-Jitsu, and Muay Thai can be seen up through history as major factors that all play into what we recognize as contributors of the birth of MMA today.
However Bruce Lee is credited as being largely the first instructor to openly teach Chinese martial arts to Westerners.
The thing that has always intrigued me about Bruce Lee, aside from his martial arts knowledge and skill, was his philosophy on life and training.
Bruce wasn’t afraid to branch out honing and learning many physical skills such as fitness, weight training, and nutrition to dial in his entire mind and body to perform at its peak. In fact, he has documented footage where he experimented with putting on muscle mass, using early forms for protein shakes, and even electric stimulation.
Additionally the more I’ve read Bruce’s life philosophy I found it has always aligned with my own beliefs and views of the world.
For starters, Bruce always talked about the importance of self identity and being an individual.
This certainly flies in the face of a lot of our societal norms these days particularly with much of the societal culture today involving social media and even the political arena.
Individuality is what life is all about…and Bruce was a huge proponent of this.
He spoke about this at length and if you do a quick Google search you can see all the quotes he tossed out into the world to communicate this very message.
Self discovery is vitally important.
This may sound silly to some, but the fact is that everybody faces this phase in their life at one point or another.
Bruce Lee On Self Discovery
You learn from others and keep what works for you while discarding what doesn’t apply in your journey towards self discovery.
Bruce said that…not me.
“Research your own experience. Absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, add what is essentially your own.”–Bruce Lee
What he’s saying is that obviously it’s ok to learn from others and to try other people’s ideas and experiences, but that when it comes to your own identity to take what parts apply to you.
This is how you learn and grow into an identity…this is the process of individual discovery.
As an example I can reflect on my own experiences in fitness and in martial arts. Sure, I practiced Muay Thai for years.
I didn’t invent Muay Thai, nor did I look quite like some of my friends when training in this particular fight form.
Sure, you can tell that I’m practicing Muay Thai when I throw a punch, a knee, or a kick, but my style, my movement, and my interpretation of the form is unique to me.
In other words, my expression of the movement is my own. It’s my own unique interpretation based on how I exhibit it.
Bruce Lee: The Takeaway
This is the point I’m trying to make.
This is the power of Bruce Lee’s message and it holds true in life, in training, and in how you view the world. Applying this principle to your own life requires you to take a journey. You MUST put in the effort.
It doesn’t take a village…it takes an individual willing to make the journey of their own self discovery.
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