On his opponents…
Frank Bruno: “How dare these boxers challenge me with their primitive skills? It makes me angry. They’re just as good as dead.”
Tyrell Biggs: “I could have knocked him out in the third round but I wanted to do it slowly, so he would remember this night for a long time.”
Lennox Lewis: “I’m coming for you man. My style is impetuous. My defense is impregnable, and I’m just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat his children. Praise be to Allah!”
“It’s ludicrous these mortals even attempt to enter my realm.”
You’ll never know what freedom really means, until you’ve been pinned against the wall with no hope for escape.
Google defines freedom as “the condition of being free; the power to act or speak or think without externally imposed restraints.” Popular culture and public schools promote this childlike view of freedom, wherein our supposed inherent rights are actually another person’s liabilities.
James Barton writes in,
I thought that you might be interested in the alternative martial art that I am developing. It is quite unusual and has a strong focus on character improvement. I would value your questions, comments and criticisms.
Readers, I encourage you to visit the Virtue Science website, read some of James’ material, and formulate your own opinions before proceeding to my commentary below.
Land of the Free, Home of the Brave?
Trenchant and timely words from Eric Hoffer, one of Bruce Lee’s favorite philosophers:
There is always a danger that the suppression of a specific clearly defined evil will result in its replacement by an evil that is more widely diffused—one that infects the whole fabric of life. Thus, the suppression of religious fanaticism usually gives rise to a secular fanaticism that invades every department of life. The banning of conventional war-making may result in an endless undeclared war.
A Fake Interview with Real* Quotes
Credit: Mark Hirschey
Martial Development: First of all, congratulations: a recent surge in Berkshire Hathaway’s stock price has made you the richest man in the world. $62 billion dollars, I hear. According to my estimates, you could literally buy up all the tea in China.
Warren Buffett: I drink Coca-Cola.
Martial Development: Fair enough. You know, kung fu is all about profitably investing time and effort. As one of the world’s greatest investors, I thought you might have some unique insights to share with us.
Warren Buffett: I’ve never even made a hostile acquisition! What do I know about kung fu?
Martial Development: More than you realize.
Philosophers and scientists have long been interested in how the mind processes the inevitability of death, both cognitively and emotionally. One would expect, for example, that reminders of our mortality—say the sudden death of a loved one—would throw us into a state of disabling fear of the unknown. But that doesn’t happen. If the prospect of death is so incomprehensible, why are we not trembling in a constant state of terror over this fact?
Psychologists have some ideas about how we cope with existential dread. One emerging idea—”terror management theory“—holds that the brain is hard-wired to keep us from being paralyzed by fear. According to this theory, the brain allows us to think about dying, even to change the way we live our lives, but not cower in the corner, paralyzed by fear. The automatic, unconscious part of our brain in effect protects the conscious mind.
But how does this work?
Shi Yongxin, Abbot of Shaolin Temple, speaks on the greatest benefit of studying martial arts:
The ultimate Shaolin Kung Fu is to train to have a mind that does not stir. If you develop a mind that does not stir, then you won’t be afraid of death. Not being afraid of death does not mean not loving life. In contrast, you will love life even more. To love life is the real purpose of learning zen! What kind of life is worth loving? Only a life without worries and pain is worth loving. To reach a state where there is no worry and pain, one must practice to have a mind that does not stir. Martial arts zen is a path towards a mind that does not stir.
Translation provided by Kah Joon Liow, author of Shaolin: Legends of Zen and Kung Fu
A Fight to Become the Top Dog
Final Fu, a martial-arts themed reality show, made its debut in July. According to the producers’ description:
Final Fu is an unprecedented series that will pit the best practitioners of their respective styles against one another in an arduous competition of challenges and stand-up, tournament point fighting to determine which art is capable of producing the definitive martial arts champion.
Does this show deliver on its promise? Is it informative or entertaining? Will Final Fu have a positive or a negative impact on the public perception of martial arts?