By James Yimm Lee

In my thirty-four years of experience in physical culture coupled with various martial arts experiences, I think these miscellaneous comments may be of some help to one who is starting his first step on the path of martial arts maturity.

I started weight training at eighteen at a local YMCA.  Today, years later, I'm still trying to find full maturity in the martial arts via its practice. To me one can never be at a state where he's satisfied with his progress. All we can do is strive to fulfill our own potential. Can it be reached before the inexorable laws of aging takes its toll? That each individual must find out for himself.

In reality, you don't find champions in track, boxing, or wrestling at fifty or more years old. Is there some magic elixir of prolonging youth and stamina in the practice of Oriental self-defense? I agree that a sixty or seventy year old teacher may be wiser in imparting his instructions, but in the execution of the techniques he will be slower than his maturing students.

So in youth try for developing your skill to its full potential, in later years flow and live and be in harmony with the laws of nature, accept the process of life and be a living organism that is fully related to its environmental surroundings. After all, this is life.

"He was a man who considered the odds, and kept blasting."
    Closing epithet written by Bruce Lee in a letter to James's brother, Jon, in 1973.