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Alan Armstrong
Black Belt
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Joined: 28 Feb 2016
Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:47 am    Post subject: Preserving Jeet Kune Do or let it die? Reply with quote

Should JKD be preserved or should it die with its creator?

There are those that have chosen to carry on Bruce Lee's vision, is this actually possible?

Here is one example of many:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lW31vtxTf2Y
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MatsuShinshii
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 1423
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Machimura Suidi Rokudan, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo, Judo

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:50 pm    Post subject: Re: Preserving Jeet Kune Do or let it die? Reply with quote

Alan Armstrong wrote:
Should JKD be preserved or should it die with its creator?

There are those that have chosen to carry on Bruce Lee's vision, is this actually possible?

Here is one example of many:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lW31vtxTf2Y


I know some that practice JKD. I have never taken it so I can not speak directly to your question however it still exists through his students so I guess my uniformed answer would be yes.

The reason I say this is because the context under which your question was asked, "since he's gone should the art be" is illogical to me. No art would exist if it just ceased to exist after it's founder died. We would all be learning that phony internet garbage that phony master perpetrate as effective and REAL just because they are alive. Oh I bet they would love that.

Think of what they arts would be if this was a reality. Everyone would be doing a cartwheel kick because some no nothing fraud created a new art based on his own crazy idea's of what looks good must work mentality.

No. JKD shouldn't be allowed to fade away. It is a legacy and even though I know pretty much nothing about it, the practitioners of the art obviously feel it's effective for it to be taught and for students to continue to return to class.

I think Dan Inosanto (not sure of the spelling) would strongly disagree with this premise.
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The person who succeeds is not the one who holds back, fearing failure, nor the one who never fails-but the one who moves on in spite of failure.
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Alan Armstrong
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Joined: 28 Feb 2016
Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 6:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Preserving or letting JKD die, that is the question.

Bruce Lee admitted that nothing about JKD is new.

Yet he pulled elements from everywhere and created something new, giving him a way to self expression; there is and was one Bruce Lee.

Only one Micheal Jackson; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Elvis Presley; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Mohamed Ali...

How can anyone put together a Bruce Lee JKD curriculum, then tell the student "Don't worry, what doesn't work for you, just discard it"

When Bruce Lee put his JKD together as a concept, he wasn't specific with the type of Boxing, Fencing, Grappling or Kung Fu, it was the idea that he could use what worked for him.

Each person to make the art, become the art, feel the art and express the art, in the moment.

Bruce Lee didn't say copy me, he promoted the opposite of, be yourself and chip away all the inessential, to reveal the truth.

Bruce Lee didn't hand over any keys to his martial art studio, to continue his legacy.

Bruce Lee, for my understanding, was fighting ignorance and prejudice, not much different than, what John Lennon and Muhammad Ali were preaching with their art also.
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singularity6
Pre-Black Belt
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Joined: 26 Jun 2017
Posts: 958
Location: Michigan
Styles: Jidokwan Taekwondo and Hapkido, Yoshokai Aikido, ZNIR Iaido, Kendo

PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alan Armstrong wrote:
Preserving or letting JKD die, that is the question.

Bruce Lee admitted that nothing about JKD is new.

Yet he pulled elements from everywhere and created something new, giving him a way to self expression; there is and was one Bruce Lee.

Only one Micheal Jackson; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Elvis Presley; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Mohamed Ali...

How can anyone put together a Bruce Lee JKD curriculum, then tell the student "Don't worry, what doesn't work for you, just discard it"

When Bruce Lee put his JKD together as a concept, he wasn't specific with the type of Boxing, Fencing, Grappling or Kung Fu, it was the idea that he could use what worked for him.

Each person to make the art, become the art, feel the art and express the art, in the moment.

Bruce Lee didn't say copy me, he promoted the opposite of, be yourself and chip away all the inessential, to reveal the truth.

Bruce Lee didn't hand over any keys to his martial art studio, to continue his legacy.

Bruce Lee, for my understanding, was fighting ignorance and prejudice, not much different than, what John Lennon and Muhammad Ali were preaching with their art also.


I don't think the Elvis or Michael Jackson comparisons are fair in this case. That'd be equivalent to saying anyone who's teaching martial arts is impersonating their instructor. We learn from our instructors so we can in turn pass this knowledge down to others, who will hopefully do the same. Martial arts styles do not die with their creators. They may evolve, but the spirit still lives on.
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Alan Armstrong
Black Belt
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Joined: 28 Feb 2016
Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

singularity6 wrote:
Alan Armstrong wrote:
Preserving or letting JKD die, that is the question.

Bruce Lee admitted that nothing about JKD is new.

Yet he pulled elements from everywhere and created something new, giving him a way to self expression; there is and was one Bruce Lee.

Only one Micheal Jackson; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Elvis Presley; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Mohamed Ali...

How can anyone put together a Bruce Lee JKD curriculum, then tell the student "Don't worry, what doesn't work for you, just discard it"

When Bruce Lee put his JKD together as a concept, he wasn't specific with the type of Boxing, Fencing, Grappling or Kung Fu, it was the idea that he could use what worked for him.

Each person to make the art, become the art, feel the art and express the art, in the moment.

Bruce Lee didn't say copy me, he promoted the opposite of, be yourself and chip away all the inessential, to reveal the truth.

Bruce Lee didn't hand over any keys to his martial art studio, to continue his legacy.

Bruce Lee, for my understanding, was fighting ignorance and prejudice, not much different than, what John Lennon and Muhammad Ali were preaching with their art also.


I don't think the Elvis or Michael Jackson comparisons are fair in this case. That'd be equivalent to saying anyone who's teaching martial arts is impersonating their instructor. We learn from our instructors so we can in turn pass this knowledge down to others, who will hopefully do the same. Martial arts styles do not die with their creators. They may evolve, but the spirit still lives on.
In the long history of martial arts, the instincts to follow and imitate seems to be inherent in most martial artists, instructors and students alike.

This is partly due to human tendency and partly because of the steep traditions behind multiple patterns of style.

Consequently, to find a refreshing, original, master teacher is a rarity.

The need for a "pointer of the way" echoes.

Bruce Lee
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MatsuShinshii
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 1423
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Machimura Suidi Rokudan, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo, Judo

PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alan Armstrong wrote:
singularity6 wrote:
Alan Armstrong wrote:
Preserving or letting JKD die, that is the question.

Bruce Lee admitted that nothing about JKD is new.

Yet he pulled elements from everywhere and created something new, giving him a way to self expression; there is and was one Bruce Lee.

Only one Micheal Jackson; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Elvis Presley; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Mohamed Ali...

How can anyone put together a Bruce Lee JKD curriculum, then tell the student "Don't worry, what doesn't work for you, just discard it"

When Bruce Lee put his JKD together as a concept, he wasn't specific with the type of Boxing, Fencing, Grappling or Kung Fu, it was the idea that he could use what worked for him.

Each person to make the art, become the art, feel the art and express the art, in the moment.

Bruce Lee didn't say copy me, he promoted the opposite of, be yourself and chip away all the inessential, to reveal the truth.

Bruce Lee didn't hand over any keys to his martial art studio, to continue his legacy.

Bruce Lee, for my understanding, was fighting ignorance and prejudice, not much different than, what John Lennon and Muhammad Ali were preaching with their art also.


I don't think the Elvis or Michael Jackson comparisons are fair in this case. That'd be equivalent to saying anyone who's teaching martial arts is impersonating their instructor. We learn from our instructors so we can in turn pass this knowledge down to others, who will hopefully do the same. Martial arts styles do not die with their creators. They may evolve, but the spirit still lives on.
In the long history of martial arts, the instincts to follow and imitate seems to be inherent in most martial artists, instructors and students alike.

This is partly due to human tendency and partly because of the steep traditions behind multiple patterns of style.

Consequently, to find a refreshing, original, master teacher is a rarity.

The need for a "pointer of the way" echoes.

Bruce Lee


You are right in the beginning of your training but dead wrong in the instructor years.

The techniques passed down are as in any art, the foundation of that art. If you do not mimic or imitate the instructor you do not learn the proper way to perform/execute the techniques/applications. This is a natural learning process, to learn the techniques/applications of the art.

However once these are learned the student begins to morph (to an extent). They make the applications and techniques there own. In 35+ years I have never met a senior instructor with the exact same style of teaching. The curriculum is the same, the techniques and applications are the same but the way it is transmitted to the student is not.

The scenario you are speaking of is found in most Modern Dojo where conformity is mandatory. If you ever travel to Okinawa you will find a much different learning atmosphere where the individuals critical thinking and individual learning process is fostered rather than quelled. Essentially we learn from each other. One student/instructor will see an application totally different from another and instead of penalizing them for this we test it and apply it in real life applications to see if it works.

If this is not done the art WILL become stagnant once you reach a certain level and then I would agree that you are just parroting what your teacher taught you.

Having said this, the teachings of those that went before us holds wisdom and should not be ignored.

If your statement, "refreshing original master teacher" means someone that doesn't teach the arts techniques and applications as it was passed down then I take back my previous statements as we do pass down the founders teachings. However if you mean allowing students to think on their own then my statements stand.
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The person who succeeds is not the one who holds back, fearing failure, nor the one who never fails-but the one who moves on in spite of failure.
Charles R. Swindoll
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Alan Armstrong
Black Belt
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Joined: 28 Feb 2016
Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MatsuShinshii wrote:
Alan Armstrong wrote:
singularity6 wrote:
Alan Armstrong wrote:
Preserving or letting JKD die, that is the question.

Bruce Lee admitted that nothing about JKD is new.

Yet he pulled elements from everywhere and created something new, giving him a way to self expression; there is and was one Bruce Lee.

Only one Micheal Jackson; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Elvis Presley; everyone else are impersonators.

Only one Mohamed Ali...

How can anyone put together a Bruce Lee JKD curriculum, then tell the student "Don't worry, what doesn't work for you, just discard it"

When Bruce Lee put his JKD together as a concept, he wasn't specific with the type of Boxing, Fencing, Grappling or Kung Fu, it was the idea that he could use what worked for him.

Each person to make the art, become the art, feel the art and express the art, in the moment.

Bruce Lee didn't say copy me, he promoted the opposite of, be yourself and chip away all the inessential, to reveal the truth.

Bruce Lee didn't hand over any keys to his martial art studio, to continue his legacy.

Bruce Lee, for my understanding, was fighting ignorance and prejudice, not much different than, what John Lennon and Muhammad Ali were preaching with their art also.


I don't think the Elvis or Michael Jackson comparisons are fair in this case. That'd be equivalent to saying anyone who's teaching martial arts is impersonating their instructor. We learn from our instructors so we can in turn pass this knowledge down to others, who will hopefully do the same. Martial arts styles do not die with their creators. They may evolve, but the spirit still lives on.
In the long history of martial arts, the instincts to follow and imitate seems to be inherent in most martial artists, instructors and students alike.

This is partly due to human tendency and partly because of the steep traditions behind multiple patterns of style.

Consequently, to find a refreshing, original, master teacher is a rarity.

The need for a "pointer of the way" echoes.

Bruce Lee


You are right in the beginning of your training but dead wrong in the instructor years.

The techniques passed down are as in any art, the foundation of that art. If you do not mimic or imitate the instructor you do not learn the proper way to perform/execute the techniques/applications. This is a natural learning process, to learn the techniques/applications of the art.

However once these are learned the student begins to morph (to an extent). They make the applications and techniques there own. In 35+ years I have never met a senior instructor with the exact same style of teaching. The curriculum is the same, the techniques and applications are the same but the way it is transmitted to the student is not.

The scenario you are speaking of is found in most Modern Dojo where conformity is mandatory. If you ever travel to Okinawa you will find a much different learning atmosphere where the individuals critical thinking and individual learning process is fostered rather than quelled. Essentially we learn from each other. One student/instructor will see an application totally different from another and instead of penalizing them for this we test it and apply it in real life applications to see if it works.

If this is not done the art WILL become stagnant once you reach a certain level and then I would agree that you are just parroting what your teacher taught you.

Having said this, the teachings of those that went before us holds wisdom and should not be ignored.

If your statement, "refreshing original master teacher" means someone that doesn't teach the arts techniques and applications as it was passed down then I take back my previous statements as we do pass down the founders teachings. However if you mean allowing students to think on their own then my statements stand.
Everything highlighted in blue, is Bruce Lee's not mine.
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Alan Armstrong
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Joined: 28 Feb 2016
Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The secon-hand artist blindly following his sensei or sifu accepts his pattern.

As a result, his action and, more importantly, his thinking become mechanical.

His responses become automatic, according to set patterns, making him narrow and limited.

Bruce Lee
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Alan Armstrong
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Joined: 28 Feb 2016
Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Truth has no path. Truth is living and, therefore, changing.

It has no resting place, no form, no organized institution, no philosophy.

When you see that, you will understand that this living thing is also what you are.

You cannot express and be alive through static, put-together form, through stylized movement.

Bruce Lee
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Alan Armstrong
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Posts: 2122


PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To do JKD to Bruce Lee's standard, the student would need to be exceptional fit.

This rules out many people from becoming a JKD martial artist, for many reasons.

Bruce Lee's JKD is not intended for hobby or sport minded people, as it is street fighting or urban combat based.

JKD is continually changing, developing and evolving, therefore what worked today might be discarded tomorrow, because of that, katas and forms could not be designed, because soon after being designed they would become quickly obsolete.

Bruce Lee's art was to wow audiences in movies and to develop his personal style of combat that wasn't flashy but on the contrary, his off screen methods were to get to the point of beating an opponent in a few seconds; or less if possible.

JKD wasn't there for the masses, so as to build a martial art empire, like many be fore him had done.

JKD was the life's work of one martial artist; that is now up in the air for anyone to take and do with it as they please, without Bruce Lee's consent, permission or blessings.

Do not deny the classical approach simply as a reaction, for you will have created another pattern and trapped yourself there.

Bruce Lee
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