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A Lifelong Minimalist

How Bruce Lee’s practice of fundamentals allowed him to live a fulfilled life

Photography by papers.co

Anyone who has ever tried to practice a martial art knows that it is no joke.

Within the walls of the training hall, common advantages in everyday situations are flipped and become disadvantages. Traits and attitudes such as aggressiveness, size, strength, and intensity become burdens. You are literally a loose cannon—unequipped and underprepared.

Instead of muscling on blindly, practitioners must learn control, cultivate awareness, and build capability to progress. You must start from zero and be humbled.

Bruce Lee, the renowned martial artist, actor, and philosopher, lived and embodied this attitude. He understood movement, fighting, and the fundamentals of learning.

Consider the following:

“The poorer we are inwardly, the more we try to enrich ourselves externally.”

This quote applies to everything.

If we have that internal control, we can be decisive, calibrated, and effective in life. We can help those who need it and more towards meaningful goals.

If we are internally powerless, however, we will forever be off-kilter, seeking that which cannot possibly make us happy or fulfilled. Science has shown us that additional income beyond simple arrangements does not correlate with more enjoyable lives and better states of mind. Luxury goods and an addiction to surplus cannot possibly sustain us successfully if we are deficient in our private worlds and thinking.

Bruce Lee understood the fundamentals. That is, to stand on the shoulders of giants, we must first understand. We must incorporate our origins. Only then can we build up from a position of integrity and enrich all around us.

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