Saturday, April 18, 2009

Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee would at first glance appear to be an ideal candidate for the Early Celebrity Demise File except for the fact that he achieved immortality status as the world’s greatest martial arts master. Because of this I consider him to have been a Nietzschean superman .

While he died young and the cause of his death is still disputed and mythologized he is in my pantheon of total heroes. Bruce Lee is now an immortal which is the ultimate in active survival. The more mundane Active Survivalist probably shouldn’t follow Lee’s lifestyle to the letter however we can learn some things from his life and teaching.

Lee had an impressive body with almost zero body fat. He achieved this by eating a fairly standard diet that had a reasonable amount of carbohydrate and not large quantities of meat. “Lee believed in staying away from foods with empty caloric content and little nutritive value and found it especially helpful to avoid refined sugars, excessive fats, fried food and alcohol.” He considered the Western diet to have too much protein and too much fat. I think that drinking a little red wine would probably have done him some good though and maybe he would be alive today if he had done that. He was also known to eat egg shells which I would caution against – you could get the same benefit from eating canned fish with the bones. But to achieve a body like Lee’s you need:

"a lifetime of sacrifice, denial at the dinner table and tremendous dedication at the gym"

I’d say that Lee had phenomenal will power. Go here and here for some more reading.

Some Bruce Lee quotes gathered from GrumpyChimp:

"Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do."

"a man can be strong, but if he cannot use that strength quickly, he is not powerful".

"A goal is not always meant to be reached, it often serves simply as something to aim at."

"As you think, so shall you become."

"By adopting a certain physical posture, a resonant chord is struck in spirit."

"The less effort, the faster and more powerful you will be."

"Use only that which works, and take it from any place you find it."

"Using no way as way, having no limitation as limitation."

And my personal favourite in Lee’s own voice:

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