Bruce Lee's Guide To The Universe

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The failure today in politics is a failure of people in not understanding why two opposing forces have evolved and how beautifully these two entities could work together for something useful.


I have learned a secret to the universe that helps me to understand more.  This secret has even helped me to understand the chaos we see in politics.   Moreso, I better understand other situations . . . from my personal relationships to the design of the universe.   In fact, I can't think of one situation this philosophy doesn't describe.  Exciting right?  So I thought I'd share with you.


Take it away Bruce . . . 


Uhh . . . Good try Bruce, but too vague.   How about this . . . 


You all drive cars perhaps.  Inside that car is an engine.  Inside that engine is gasoline.  The engine vaporizes that gasoline and ignites that gas (called gasoline vapor) with a spark.  A violent explosion occurs.  You don't notice those explosions because the engine is controlling and containing that explosion and turning that explosion into a motion.

Ever try igniting gasoline vapors without an engine?  I hope not.  It could be fatal.  Doing this would bring to you great chaos.


We, engineers, have learned that vaporized gasoline, uncontained, can be very explosive and potentially destructive on its own.  So what did we do?  Well, we took a big glob of metal and some moving parts, then organized them very precisely and with very structured rules.  We then wrapped this device around the gas cloud and then added a spark (created an explosion).   We created chaos (explosion) that is wrapped in order and logic (the engine).  Consequently, we produce something very useful by wrapping chaos in order. . . motion!


However, we engineers were merely copying what the universe has already done.  It is not just that the universe had already done this . . . the universe is always governed with order while containing chaos.  This is the universe's formula for progress and is a natural and fundamental law of the universe.  Bruce Lee's law.


The universe can be viewed as a massive, marvelous engine.  13.8 billion years ago, something lit a spark and fueled an explosion (Big Bang).  Fortuitously, if that is your presumption, there was rules and order which contained the explosion.  These rules and this order we have only discovered in the past 400 years.  This discovery is what we call science . . . the knowledge of the rules and laws of the universe.  These rules contain and control this massive release of chaos (energy).  This chaos coupled with pre-structured rules creates new things.  You, me.  The planets.  Stars.  Galaxies.  Everything!


If there existed only rules and order, there would be nothing to experience.  If there was only energy there would be no organization.  Only chaos.


Chaos is motivation.  Rules guide chaos and produce things that are meaningful and productive.  I didn't invent this yin-yang of contradictory opposites . . .  the universe did.


The Chineses philosophy of yin-yang was very close to accurately describing how and why everything exists.  However, it was not developed into a pragmatic theory.  The difference is that yin-yang says two contradictory things always exists together . . . but stops there.  The philosophy I described here says that yes, there exists two contradictory forces.  However, the difference is that order must contain chaos in order for progress.  Furthermore, chaos is absolutely necessary for motivation.  Rules control chaos and produce something new and useful.



I can apply this to philosophy to most everything!  

--- Our relationships with opposite personalities.  If we have mutual respect and solid bonds, opposites can work together to do amazing things.  The ideal formula is that one person is the emotional motivation and the other is the pragmatist.

 --- In our own bodies.  We have emotions (chaos), but we also have logic, rules, and reason which, most of the time, controls these emotions and gets us moving to accomplish something.

--- The political left (chaos) vs the political right (order).

--- Liberty.  Liberty is the chaos.  Laws are the order.  Great societies are built this way.


In conclusion.  As this article started with politics,  when one side becomes greater than the other, one of two things happens.  Either society becomes chaotic or . . .  motivation is stifled and no progress occurs.  And quite frankly, human emotion will never be stifled and always find an outlet (hence revolutions).


As two different entities, we are, in essence, now finding relationships across the divide which we can again trust.  At some point, this must happen.  We won't spiral into never-ending political turmoil.  Chaos will dominate for a time, but that only motivates society to change.  Eventually, we will see the positive results of this truly marvelous machination.  


Thanks, Bruce!


Ari Silverstein Added Aug 30, 2017 - 8:14am
While Bruce Lee was one of my favorite actors; Taoist philosophy predates him by thousands of years.  So the credit for the quote belongs elsewhere, as all Bruce Lee did was repeat what’s already been written.  Still not sure how to apply it to politics.  Is there a specific issue whereby everything would work out well if we applied the philosophy? 
Charles Frankhauser Added Aug 30, 2017 - 11:06am
Interesting take on explaining politics because politics depends on the actions of politicians and actions are driven by multiple motives, e.g., honesty, leadership, to name a few.  Free on Kindle 8/30 to 9/3/2017 is a novel I wrote that has an honest person (taxi driver) being forced into publishing industry by motivational speaker in biker bars eventually leading to managing the campaign of a dishonest candidate willing to do almost anything for a vote.  Genre is humor; title is Slush Pile Inspector and world-wide link to novel is
William Stockton Added Aug 30, 2017 - 11:57am
Ari, The application of this philosophy is that instead of rejecting chaos in our lives, we accept chaos as a useful force for good.  If we find chaos is destructive in our personal lives, we must build more rules to contain the chaos.  This seems evident because we naturally do this.  
However, it is incorrect to make rules to eliminate chaos.  Rather we should employ rules to contain the chaos.  
Raising kids is a good case for this.  Many parents will govern their household in ways that attempt to eliminate chaos.   The better approach is to make rules to contain the chaos.  Allow for chaos as a productive force.
When we view politics this way we also can positively accept political chaos thereby bridging the two parties.  This acceptance and appreciation of both sides can bring us back together in ways that could be productive.
William Stockton Added Aug 30, 2017 - 12:31pm
Charles, I will try to find some time to read your book.  Thanks!
I view the two sides of politics where emotional people mostly gravitate to one side while the "structuralists" the other.  This seems to be the predominant factor in determining which political position a person will take.  Emotion vs Structure (Chaos vs Rules)
wsucram15 Added Aug 30, 2017 - 1:25pm
Alright, Ill bite. Not a bad article William, its philosophy and I can agree that this is a palliable theory, ie; flexible.
Please remember that theory and lets discuss this when you read my next article.  I like discussing things with you.
William Stockton Added Aug 30, 2017 - 2:06pm
Biting is fine.  Not too hard please!
Yes.  We can have and have had good discussions.  Awaiting your next publication!
Thomas Napers Added Aug 31, 2017 - 12:35am
Yin and Yang philosophy does not mean the result is something “beautiful.”  It means there are forces which push and pull on each other resulting in balance.  Think pleasure and pain, masculine and feminine and predator and prey.  So I suppose the same could be said for politics: Democrat and Republican, higher taxes and lower taxes, more military spending and less military spending, etc. etc.  When things get unbalanced is when one side of the political divide has way too much power such as what happened when the Democrats had filibuster proof majorities and used their power to push the liberal agenda.  The Republicans, to their credit, don’t behave like lemmings, so getting them to decide on anything as one is much more difficult.  That’s why I’d argue there is a lot more balance today, despite those Republican majorities. 
William Stockton Added Aug 31, 2017 - 12:55am
Thomas, thanks for reading . . . the yin-yang philosophy is not the same as what I described.  
The Chineses philosophy of yin-yang was very close to accurately describing how and why everything exists. However, it was not developed into a pragmatic theory. The difference is that yin-yang says two contradictory things always exists together . . . but stops there.
Yin-yang philosophy is what . . . a thousand years old?  Way before anyone understood how the universe worked.   Of course, my twist on this philosophy couldn't possibly be the same as a thousand-year-old-old view of life.   However, yin-yang was pretty good for its time.
Ari Silverstein Added Aug 31, 2017 - 9:58am
I don’t follow why you’re talking about chaos with me.  I was simply pointing out that fact you gave Bruce Lee credit for reciting Taoist philosophy.  As far as bridging the two parties is concerned, who decided that’s such a good idea?  I have no interest in doing anything the Democrats desire.  Taking from the rich so that the poor get more free stuff is not something I will ever appreciate.    
William Stockton Added Aug 31, 2017 - 11:05am
Sorry Ari.  Perhaps I am not communicating well.  So, forgive me but I am going to be direct now.
I don’t follow why you’re talking about chaos with me. 
Because that is what this article is about.  Have you read it?
 I was simply pointing out that fact you gave Bruce Lee credit for reciting Taoist philosophy.
Yes, because Bruce Lee actually recited the Taoist philosophy.  Why point out the obvious?  What is your point?
As far as bridging the two parties is concerned, who decided that’s such a good idea?
Nobody decided.  These two parties have been working together, in disagreement, for a long, long time.  I think you still don't understand how even opposites indirectly work together while one shakes their head and the other nods.
"Bridging" the parties is not the same meaning as "agreeing" with each other.  Bridging can be an understanding, with some respect, that both sides of the argument are necessary for progress.  The Lame Stream Media wants people to believe that it is an all or nothing proposition.  This has been the left's message for some time and is so corrupted right now, I'm not sure the left can be salvaged.  Even if the Democratic party dissolved, we still must have two opposing voices always in the government.
I agree with you, Ari . . . the chaos and message from the left is so extreme, I certainly can't agree either.  But that doesn't mean that opposing voices should be silenced.  Rather, I can respect the difference only for one value . . . it is the chaos (energy) that will motivate change.  
Don't misunderstand, please.   That change could be that the US wakes up and becomes more aligned with conservative values . . . which I think that is the case now.  But the motivation for the change is coming from the left (chaos). 
Thomas Napers Added Sep 1, 2017 - 3:32am
I’m not sure if I follow your “twist” on Taoist philosophy and what makes it different than the philosophy without.  Frankly I don’t think it matters that we know more about how the universe was created.  In my opinion Taoist philosophy is immune to human progress and I’m not a Taoist.  So are you saying Bruce Lee developed this “twist” and that’s why you quoted him or are you saying these ideas are yours? 
William Stockton Added Sep 1, 2017 - 10:29am
 Thomas, "Frankly I don’t think it matters that we know more about how the universe was created."
The design of the universe supports this philosophy and is different than Taoism. 
So are you saying Bruce Lee developed this “twist”
No.  He quoted the Taoism philosophy.  Bruce Lee would have said very loudly that this philosophy is not the same as Taoism.
Bruce Lee is just a prop to introduce Taoism.  While being similar, Taoism is not the same as what I have described.  The article attempts to describe how these two philosophies are not identical.  Perhaps I should have made this clearer.
Dino Manalis Added Sep 1, 2017 - 11:03am
That's why Trump should emphasize bipartisanship and triangulation, even within the GOP, to move legislation through Congress and pass his agenda with centrist policies!
William Stockton Added Sep 1, 2017 - 11:06am
I agree Dino.  
William Stockton Added Sep 1, 2017 - 11:10am
Jordan Peterson touches on this chaos/order . . . yin-yang.
Video here
He references Taoism as I do in terms of chaos and order.  However, he is introducing, like I am, an extension of this philosophy with modern knowledge and modern examples.
Katharine Otto Added Sep 1, 2017 - 11:35am
The underlying philosophy behind Taoism is not yin-yang but "qi" or "life force," the idea that life pervades all things.  This is an approach that is virtually unknown in the West, with our fixation on the mechanistic view of the universe.  And while you link the "polarity" to American politics, I would say the "left" and "right" are more alike than different, because both sides presume a federal government is desirable.
Also, modern physics, quantum physics, has moved beyond the Western mechanistic notion, to the realm of a living universe, not a dead one.  "The Tao of Physics," by Fritjof Capra, an astrophysicist, is an excellent book showing how quantum physics approaches Oriental mysticism in its appreciation for a dynamic tension that allows for "spontaneity," not "chaos," in the atomic realm.  
Also, in the symbolism of astrology, the sign of Aquarius is co-ruled by Saturn and Uranus.  In the New Age, the Aquarian Age, which we are just entering, Saturn--planet of limitation, government, and structure--and Uranus--planet of sudden upheavals and chaos--must work together to embrace innovation and change, as you suggest.
In other words, astrology supports your notion of embracing and containing chaos, hopefully in a way that evolves our collective consciousness in life-reinforcing ways.
I do find your article thought-provoking and agree that the concept of yin and yang presupposes balanced forces, but it doesn't begin to explain the many colors of the rainbow.  
Charles Frankhauser Added Sep 1, 2017 - 5:37pm
I am not too sure about "balanced forces."  The comments are definitely "thought-provoking," but can the theory be expressed as one of "good vs. evil?" When good exceeds evil, good usually wins.
William Stockton Added Sep 1, 2017 - 9:15pm
Katharine,  Great additions and expert comments on Taoism.  I'm an amateur on that theory.  I'm sure that was obvious.  Thank you for your insight!  I am a scientist and an engineer so I look at this theory from that perspective and derive my own variation.
I also have limited knowledge about astrology but am keenly aware of the coincidence of the beginning of the Pisces era (fish/food) and the current beginning of the Aquarian age (water bringer).  I am convinced the beginning of the Aquarian age will bring a new enlightenment for humans.
The biggest difference between Taoism and the philosophy I described is regarding balance.  I don't prescribe entirely to a naturally balancing theory of opposing forces as Taoism prescribes.  Things do get out of balance regularly but I think the correction mechanisms are absolutely about the increased containment of chaos rather than only increase in the opposing force.  It is not a coincident that opposing forces to chaos advocate rules and order . . . and visa versa.
Saint George Added Sep 1, 2017 - 11:27pm
One of the interesting points about Taoist philosophy and its model of "two coexisting poles", is that the very center of one pole suggests the existence of the opposite pole.
This is even true geographically on earth. If you stand at the center of the North Pole, any direction in which you take a step, by definition, is "south" (there's no other direction you can travel when you're at the center of "north"); and, of course, vice versa when you stand at the center of the South Pole: any direction in which you take a step, by definition, is "north."
So there's something about the nature of polar opposites that contain within themselves part of each other.
This might be the reason that in the iconic yin-and-yang symbol (a black swirl wrapped around a white one), the center of the black swirl has a white dot (suggesting the opposing white swirl), while the center of the white swirl has a black dot (suggesting the opposing black swirl).
Saint George Added Sep 1, 2017 - 11:31pm
Emotion vs Structure
Or as author Robert Pirsig might have suggested in his famous book from the 1970s, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance:
Romanticism vs. Classicism.
William Stockton Added Sep 3, 2017 - 10:59am
SG, Good points about Taoism.  Thanks for reading the article.

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