It’s the 100th episode of the Bruce Lee Podcast! For this monumental episode Shannon and Sharon discuss freedom.
Freedom, both what it is and how we can work towards it, was very important to Bruce Lee. Within freedom rests peacefulness and harmony, and Bruce wanted to live in harmony.
What freedom feels like will be different for everyone because it is based on what makes you personally feel at peace.
“Although I can tell you what is not freedom, I cannot tell you what is because that you must discover for yourself.”
Freedom has to do with the practice of researching your own experience, self-knowledge, understanding oneself, and self-actualizing at a deep level.
“Free equals the absence of a feeling of constraint. Different people feel free in different ways, so the question is “how free are you?””
Where are you feeling constraint in your life and how can you examine that? You have to observe what your normally practice without condemning it.
Having freedom in its primary sense is to be not limited by attachments, confinements, partialization, complexities. You have to get to a practice of neutrality and observation to move towards freedom.
“Freedom is pliability of mind, neutrality of mind, and effortless of mind.”
Our minds are made for thinking, and sometimes we can be distracted by negative and/or limiting thoughts, so it is important to practice not letting those thoughts bog you down. But also thoughts or ideas can appear in your mind that energize you and you have the freedom to pursue those ideas. It is important to trust your feelings.
“Don’t think – feel! Feeling exists here and now when not interrupted and dissected by ideas and concepts. The moment we stop analyzing and let go is the moment we start really seeing and feeling as one whole. Stay with your feeling and feel it to the full without naming it. You and the feeling will merge and become one and there will be no other self than the oneness of that which is the moment.”
Many times when we feel strong feelings, especially painful feelings of sadness or anger, we have the urge to shut down that feeling. But what does it feel like when we feel that feeling all the way through? When you feel a feeling all the way through, then you can let it go, freeing yourself. Freedom is being fully present, having your body be fully sensing, and knowing yourself well.
“Freedom is something that cannot be preconceived. To realize freedom requires a mind capable of immediate perception without the process of graduation, without the idea of an end to be slowly achieved.”
Sometimes we can disconnect from our bodies to go into our mind. There, we can get stuck and ignore how we feel. This will interrupt your flow.
To achieve freedom you must stay in flow, with your mind and body connected. Trust your intuition.
“The truth lived and experienced in concrete and existential awareness is what makes us free.”
“There is no freedom if you are enclosed by self-interest and walls of discipline.”
When there is too much rigidity or ego there will never be freedom. But if you are disciplined about practicing openness, observation, experimentation, and sensing with your body, will lead you to a path of freedom.
Freedom has always been with us. You do not have to go on a great outward journey to find freedom it is within us all.
“One must practice freedom in order to understand freedom. Create immediately an atmosphere of freedom so that you can live and find out for yourself what is true, so that you can face the world with the ability to understand it. One can tell for oneself whether the water is warm or cold."
Practice freedom: Ask yourself, how free are you? Where do you feel the restraints? Where do you feel confined? See if it is possible to perceive your confinement in any other way.
We get many emails requesting advice with “What would Bruce Lee do?” and would like to start a “What would Bruce Lee do?” section of the podcast where Shannon and Sharon respond to your emails for advice. If you need advice and are wondering, “What would Bruce Lee do?” write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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