Posts Tagged ‘martial arts’

3
Apr

Wu-Wei @ 8%

by adminadam in articles

“If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.” – Loren Eisley

Water is a metaphor for both power and humility, bending around obstacles, seeking the path of least resistance. Water always seeks to lower itself below all else, flowing downhill to appease gravity. It this way it gains power from humility. Water is thus the prime example of wu-wei in nature.

The best human equivalent of this is a person that acts along the path of least resistance, applying wu-wei, not forcing his or her will upon the world. We as individuals can also draw great power from humility by training our minds and bodies.

When I tried Aikido my second year of college, I could see the power in moving with the forces of the universe, instead of pushing against them. Here we see Steven Seagal applying the wu-wei type principles inherent in Aikido to subdue his multiple attackers. To me his demonstration of non-doing is very effective.

Quotes by Morihei Ueshiba, founder of Aikido:

“If your opponent tries to pull you, let him pull. Don’t pull against him; pull in unison with him.”

“Though surrounded by many enemies, view them as a single foe and so fight on.”

Quotes by Alan Watts on Water & Wu-Wei:

“Wu-wei is the lifestyle of a person who follows the Tao and should be understood first of all as a form of intelligence — that of being aware of the principles, structures and tendencies of the human activity and of the natural phenomena so well that you could use a minimum amount of energy when you have to deal with them.”

“To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float.”

“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”

15
Mar

Bruce Lee, The Dragon

by adminadam in articles, home

Bruce Lee

Accomplished Martial Artist and Athlete:

Just consider some of the things that no one else had ever done before. Until he came along that is:

  • Lee performed 50 reps of one-arm chin-ups.
  • Lee could take in one arm a 75 lb barbell from a standing position with the barbell held flush against his chest and slowly stick his arms out locking them, holding the barbell there for 20 seconds.
  • Lee could thrust his fingers through unopened (steel) cans of Coca-Cola.
  • Lee could break wooden boards 6 inches (15 cm) thick.

He developed his own unique and effective fighting style, known as Jeet Kune Do, which is still taught today. It is meant to be the style of no style and exist outside of the limits of traditional martial arts. He used it against many an opponent. Here’s just one of his many amazing fight stories:

In 1962, Lee knocked out Uechi, a Japanese black belt, in 11 seconds in a full-contact match in Seattle. The time keeper had this to say: “The karate man arrived in his gi, complete with black belt, while Bruce showed up in his street clothes and simply took off his shoes. The fight lasted exactly 11 seconds–I know because I was the time keeper—and Bruce had hit the guy something like 15 times and kicked him once. I thought he’d killed him.” The fight ended by Bruce knocking Uechi the length of the gymnasium. (source:wikipedia)

Here’s his famous one inch punch, with some bonus athletic feats at the start.

To be this amazing of an athlete and competitor, it’s no wonder he was also a nutrition expert of sorts. He ate 4 to 5 meals spread out during the day, ate tons of fruit and vegetables (usually fresh, raw, or juiced), and avoided processed foods, starches, dairy, and anything else that would slow him down. He was all for the competitive edge, and this included his training too. He would run sprints, long distance, and varied pace routines everyday, rock the abs while watching TV, weight train, flex and stretch to the max, jump rope, and practice, practice, practice his art.

The Mind of the Dragon:

Bruce was known to have a library of over 2,500 books. His personal eclectic philosophy combined elements Taoism, Buddhism, Jiddu Krishnamurti-school, and many others. He claimed no belief in god but professed a spiritual and superbly well-demonstrated meditative and focused life. His ideas were one with his every movement, and his every movement apparently followed from his beliefs. A few quotes serve to give us a glimpse into the mind of the dragon, may he rest in peace:

“Be formless… shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle; it becomes the bottle. You put it into a teapot; it becomes the teapot. Water can flow, or it can crash. Be water, my friend…”

“All kind of knowledge, eventually becomes self knowledge”

“As you think, so shall you become.”

“To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person.”

“Do not deny the classical approach, simply as a reaction, or you will have created another pattern and trapped yourself there.”

“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.”

That dragon sure knew how to thrive… Indeed, he was also an actor and family man, and was named one of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century by Time Magazine!