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on 16 November 2001
This book is a collection of aphorisms, fighting know-how and philosophical insights that was compiled after Bruce Lee's untimely death in 1973, from work towards a book he was never to finish.
Considering the fact that it was not fully completed, it is remarkably coherent, and organised into sections covering literally every single area of combat. It is not specifically a book about Kung Fu - it contains grappling techniques from Judo and Ju-Jitsu, along with a great many techniques taken from western Boxing.
For the experienced martial artist, it will provide many dynamic and helpful points, and for the beginner, it will help to illustrate the enormous depth and fascination that the subject holds for so many people. For both beginner and expert alike, it will bring a clearer understanding of what Bruce Lee empasised in his martial art, what he calls Jeet Kune Do: the fluid reality of physical violence. Because of this, it is a revolutionary book, and because of this, simply to read it will make you a better martial artist, even only if it leaves you feeling humbled at the depth of Lee's intuition and brilliance, and inspires you to work harder.
Regardless of the martial style of the individual reader, this book is a work of unremitting genius. Buy it. Read it. Understand.
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on 16 July 1998
Tao of Jeet Kune Do is, in my opinion, the best martial arts book that has ever been written. This book is to be used as a guide on how to become a great martial artist. The first section of the book is a collection of various thoughts and philosophies the master wrote down which pertain to martial arts as a way of life. Then the book goes on into the qualities of Jeet Kune Do and guidelines on how to become a good fighter which includes excercise, quick seeing, plan of attack, and much, much more. If you read this book cover to cover it gives you the most information on how to fight than any other martial arts book I have ever read. It is a true masterpiece by a great master and I suggest this book for martial arts and Bruce Lee fans all over.
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on 7 December 2002
In his book 'The Tao of Jeet Kune Do'Bruce Lee was not teaching tecniques but more the philosophy to suceed in your Martial Art, which was to be achieved by expressing who you are honestly. He wanted us to take whatever Martial Art we practised, be it Japanese or Chinese or whatever, and utilise what is useful and reject what is not, thus taking the essence of that style. Bruce Lee never fully completed this book and had much more than written that he intended to express to his followers. Do not feel that this book is to teach you to bang someone up, that is the wrong attitude, why? "JKD is not to hurt, but is an avenue through which life opens its many secrets to us." JKD is not a style or system, it is a way of expressing our true self and feelings as well as serving as a vehicle for Martial Artists around the world to appreciate other cultures not to beat each other up!. Dont feel disheartend that there may not be techniques on ground fighting as he said, "your truth is not my truth and my truth is not your truth," so basically go and take up a Martial Art like jujitsu or whatever and utilise his ideas for you not what is written that worked for him. I strongly recommend this book for all Martial Artists or even if you are not that particularly keen but more so on philosophy 2 buy this, read it, re read and "absorb what is useful and reject what is not" for you!! Peace
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on 19 February 2002
Bruce was an incredibly driven man, sometimes too driven as he found out one morning after lifting weights without warming up he damaged his 4th (excuse is mispelled) sacral nerve. This made him bed ridden for approximately six months and in that time he basically wrote most of this book. Firstly this is not a step by step book teaching you techniques. This is much more. As everyone fights differently due to size, bone density, weight, flexibility, natural ability and so fourth you cant teach everyone the same thing and Bruce new this. Firstly JKD is NOT a martial art, it's a way of thinking. What Jute Kune Do is for someone may be totally different for someone else. So this book is helping you to realize what works for you and gives you ideas, insight, and various training routines. It gives you a better idea of how Bruce Lee ticked and what he was aiming for. If your learning martial arts for fitness, theirs no point you buying this. If your learning for self defense or any other combat reason it will help you. It may take you a couple of times reading it to fully understand it's potential.
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on 7 October 2003
I think that the Tao of Jeet Kune Do by Bruce Lee is what is written in the index it is not a learn to kung fu in 10 easy stages. It is a philosphical book and again as it says in the index it is the thoughts of one person. It also explains how to express yourself through the movement of martial art, as well as showing you exercises. It also helps you to improve all the areas of your martial art, by giving you examples of how inmprove balance, punching, and speed. It also explains through the philiosophy that you must empty your mind and "be like water", and also explains recommends that you use the techniques that can be landed successfully on an opponent and that anything ornamental is to be forgotten.
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on 3 January 2001
I had the opportunity to see Bruce Lee in action at an East Coast karate tournament in 1969. He wasn't competing but was there as a celebrity guest.
I stood with others at the back of the tournament hall and listened in awe as he talked about having just finished filming Marlow and his plans to leave soon for Hong Kong to begin filming a movie.
Later, I watched him warm-up a great tournament fighter named Luis Delgado. Lee's speed was absolutely incredible. His backfist was nearly imperceptible and his footwork for closing the gap was a blur.
What a loss to the martial arts world that he left us so soon. But we still have this book of his notes. It a wonderful bible, if you will, that will make any martial artist look at his own training to see how some of Lee's ideas can fit.
There will always be the Jackie Chans and Jet Lis who will come along and dazzle us with their screen antics. But Bruce Lee was a seeker of knowledge, a true master of the fighting arts and philosophy. Some of it is in this wonderful book.
As an author of 13 books on the martial arts, I highly recommend this book for every MA library.
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on 2 August 2005
This book is truly incredible. If you're a martial artist there is something to be gained from this book. It contains a wealth of inspiring quotations from the man himself.
The book is presented in the form of short quotations and jottings taken from Bruce Lee's writings. The main chapters are Philosophy, Preliminaries, Qualities, Tools, Preparations, Mobility, Attack, Circle with no circumference and It's just a name. Each chapter is neatly arranged in an easy to read fashion. There is a variety of sketches by Bruce included in some of the text that makes for interesting analysis.
If you want to understand the essence of Jeet Kune Do you should read this. No one can explain it better than Bruce Lee himself.
The words of Linda Lee (Bruce's wife) capture the nature of this book. 'He did not intend it to be a "how-to" book or a "learn kung-fu in 10 easy lessons" book. He intended it as a record of one man's way of thinking and as a guide, not a set of instructions.
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on 5 July 2001
I myself am not one of the obsessed masses that seems to haunt everything about Bruce, but a martial artist who is interested to hear what he had to say in one of the few books he genuinely wrote himself. This book does indeed open a classical mans eyes to the 'formless form' of Jeet Kune Do, but there is no way anyone who reads this could actually become a real student of JKD without a qualified instructor. My suggestion would be to start any martial art (preferably something comparable to Bruce's art, like Wing Chun or even tae kwon do), and then buy this book. Applying parts of JKD to any martial artists training is easier than you may think, and will help more in your mental development rather than physical. It certainly opened my eyes to some aspects of the arts I had never even considered before.
This book is truely astounding, but anyone interested in Bruce Lee or JKD must be careful. Ignore people who say 'this book made me the ultimate fighter', and avoid unofficial JKD schools with instructors who read this book and think they know everything. Just read this and make up your own mind on what to do, taking care to follow the principles, and not boast about your knowledge of them.
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on 5 December 2001
The 'Tao' is perhaps the style of book that should appear more often. Instead of telling the reader the techniques, this book is mainly concerned with the attitude of the Artist and the strategy behind the conflict.
The book does contain useful techniques, but its major defining aspect is the philosophy and overall completeness (with regards to actual combat) that make this book a 'must have'. Informative and easy to follow, the book deals with the information that is usually left out of other martial art books.
Well worth the money and the time spent in reading.
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on 21 October 2002
I have been studying Lau Gar kung fu for a year. I bought this book six months before I started studying martial arts. This book helps to create a better understanding of martial arts whatever stlye you study.For all you Bruce Lee fans out this it is not a manual that gives you step by step instructions of how to fight like Bruce Lee. It is one's study of the different ways people of different sizes, flexibility, speeds can express themselves in a combative form. It gives an in introduction to Bruce Lee's theory's and philosphy's. I strongly recomend this book to martial artists.The more you read this book the better you understand it. I would recomend that it would help if you do martial arts this book will greatly benfit you. An excellent read!
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