Oct 31, 2018
Bruce Lee’s The Tao of Jeet Kune Do was published posthumously in 1976 and the very first section is titled “On Zen.” While the Tao of Jeet Kune Do is an instructional book, it is not structured that way as it begins and ends with sections on philosophy.
This chapter “On Zen” was made the first section of the Tao because it is supposed to orient the practitioner to this mindset and also to infuse the practitioner with the importance of the philosophical approach to the art and not just the physical. This chapter orients the reader into having the right intention going into this practice. Like how the Be Water quote begins with “Empty your mind,” the chapter “On Zen” orients the reader in a similar way.
Zen has become slang for feeling peaceful and relaxed, or anything with an Asian aesthetic. In modern culture, zen has developed an insubstantial meaning. However, zen is a very substantial practice. For the Japanese Buddhist monks who practice zazen, which is the practice of sitting meditation, zen is a very deep and meaningful practice.
“The oneness of all life is a truth that can be fully realized only when false notions of a separate self, whose destiny can be considered apart from the whole, are forever annihilated.” - Bruce Lee
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