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The 6 Most Important Things Martial Arts Taught Me About Life

https://breakingmuscle.com/fitness/the-6-most-important-things-martial-arts-taught-me-about-life

breakingmuscle.com

The 6 Most Important Things Martial Arts Taught Me About Life
When I think of the word martial arts, I think of that old song Kung Fu Fighting . I think of the kid in my neighborhood who thought he was a ninja and would play incessantly with nunchucks and throwing stars. Martial arts makes me think of David Carradine, Bruce Lee, and Chuck Norris.

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Breathing Is Everything

How you breathe will dictate everything from the type of athlete you are, to how you sleep, to how your body feels and looks.

At the core of breathing is connecting with our core. Our breath does not originate in our lungs or in our chests, but from deep within.

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Slow It Down

Slow It Down

Being proficient at anything at full speed takes the willingness and patience to first go slowly, literally and figuratively.

 Any professional athlete will tell you that the ritualistic nature of slowing down your craft is the key to success in that craft. You have to walk before you can run.

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Words Only Have the Power We Give Them

Words inspire, words inform, and words can destroy - if we let them.

The martial arts will teach you not to react to other’s problems, but to pay attention to your own. Learn not to react to words that are meant for harm.

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Awareness Is Everything

The ability to be present in a given circumstance means the difference between success and failure and potentially life and death. 

Nothing brings you to the present moment quite like a fight, whether it’s a practice fight or a real one. The difference from a practice like meditation where you slow down and find awareness, is that the martial arts not only slows down, it speeds way up.

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The Greatest Battles Are Fought Within

The Greatest Battles Are Fought Within

Even in actual fights, the greatest obstacle we face is our own fear, our own breath, or our own tension.

Battles will be won when we’re willing to face ourselves.

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The Journey Is What Matters

In our culture, we tend to focus on outcomes. Winning versus losing.

In the martial arts, process is growth, regardless of outcome. As we grow old we need not stop growing. 

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Self-discovery

Martial arts was not merely a competitive sport for Bruce Lee, but in essence a means of self-discovery and self-expression.

By learning to fight, he was able to better understand who he was...

Be like water

Bruce Lee saw life as being in constant change.

Unless we learn to adapt to it, we’re bound to experience tremendous resistance that will entrap us in a constant state of suffering.

Kick dogma out of your life

Bruce didn’t subscribe to a dogma of any kind.

Although he was an avid reader of religion, philosophy, and martial arts, he viewed religious or philosophical ideologies at best only as signposts pointing to the truth, but not as the truth itself.

The truth for him was multi-sided and beyond what words can express.Therefore, it can't be named, packaged, and presented in a certain way without losing its essence.

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Bruce Lee as a philosopher

He studied poetry and philosophy in school. He focused his studies on Asian and Western philosophy, incorporating elements of Jiddu, Buddhism, Taoism, and Krishnamurti. 

This helped h...

Bruce Lee's impressive life

  • He wasn't a master of any standard form of martial arts. He was closest in mastering Wing Chun.
  • He invented his own style of martial arts. He based his style on the teaching of Man and what he learned of Wing Chun. He called his style Jeet Kune Do "the style of no style"
  • He starred in 20 films in Hong Kong before the age of 18.
  • He popularized the "1 Inch Punch" as seen in Kill Bill Vol. 2
  • He was a prolific poet and philosopher. He studied poetry and philosophy in school and was even published several times.
  • He was so fast, his moves were often too fast for a camera to catch.
  • He only made 5 feature films in the US, his last released posthumously.

Bruce Lee

“Like everyone else, you want to learn the way to win, but never to accept the way to lose, to accept defeat, to ..."

Bruce Lee

The Art of Dying

“The Art of Dying” is a metaphor and describes the Zen idea of letting our ego die. The ego is the whole set of experiences, accumulations, and memories that make up our view of ourselves. The ego holds our prejudices and distortions.

Death of the ego means we are open to criticism. We are embracing the process of learning to develop our abilities.

Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee

“Do not think about winning or losing, do not think about pride and pain. (…) The biggest mistake is to anticipate the outcome of the fight. You should not think about whether it ends in victory or defeat. Let nature take its course, and your weapons will be used at the right time.“