Happy Birthday Bruce Lee

Seventy three years ago in the year of the dragon (1940) during the hour of the dragon a martial arts legend was born. Bruce Lee, nicknamed the Little Dragon, has joined the pantheon of mythic and pop heroes like Hercules, Achilles and Superman.

Bruce Lee is undoubtably the most famous martial artist that ever lived. Why?

Bruce Lee had “it”. He had magic.

His bi-culturalism and blending of athlete, entertainer, educator and innovator and dedication to spread his passion to the world has made his name synonymous with martial arts.

And that’s it. Bruce Lee popularized the martial arts. His charisma, intensity, extraordinary skills, innovative modernization of the centuries old secret art of Chinese kung fu, has inspired the world wide renaissance of indigenous fighting arts like pankration, systema, krav maga, and savate.

Just watch Lee move. It’s a zen slap. Though his fights are totally make believe, his artistic genius crafted his authentic skills, our heroic fantasies and cinematic technique to convey an experience that talks, profound philosophy books and great martial art demonstrations may not.

The martial spirit – what ever that means intellectually – explodes from the screen and strikes to the core or our being. We feel it in our guts..

Lee transmits the “it”. So the guy – certainly one of the greatest – who inspired me decades ago is still wowing others to the martial arts.

Martial artists argue whether or not Bruce Lee was the greatest martial artist that ever lived. Read our TanDao newsletter to learn my take this. JKD is one of the three styles that comprise my TanDao System.

Keep Practicing and Exploring,

Lawrence Tan

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