Welcome to the archived web site of
Will Joel Friedman, Ph.D. Psychologist (1950-2013)
California License No. PSY 10092
 
Specializing in Presence-Centered Therapy
balancing mind and heart, body and spirit

Now in memoriam - This website is no longer being updated
While Dr. Friedman is no longer with us, there are still many helpful resources on his site. Articles and resource links have been relocated to the top. His family hopes you might find them helpful. But since this site is no longer being updated, some links may no longer work.

 


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Articles by Dr. Friedman (except where noted otherwise)

Categorized by Process | Topic

From His Book | Meditations For Life | The Flow of Money, Business and Innovation | Transpersonal/Mind-Body | Approaches, Worldview and Will-isms

Skills For Life: The Core Playing Field | Free the Ego, and You Are Free | Feeling, Thought, Communication & Action

Strategies/Distinctions For Life: The Core Playing Field | Free the Ego, and You Are Free

Awakening Stories/Metaphors For Life: The Core Playing Field | Free the Ego, and You Are Free | The Way It Is

Holiday Family Gatherings | Cartoons, Jokes and Humor | Poems and Quotes | Song Lyrics, Wit and Wisdom

Song Lyrics, Wit and Wisdom

The World According to Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee (1940-1973) was a Chinese American actor, martial arts instructor, screenwriter, film director and producer, founder of the Jeet June Do martial arts movement and philosopher. He is widely considered a cultural icon and one of the most influential martial artists of the 20th century. He stared in five feature-length movies: The Big Boss, Fists of Fury, Way of the Dragon, Enter the Dragon and The Game of Death. Lee's philosophy seems to be summed up in his creed that any knowledge ultimately led to self-knowledge and that his chosen method of self-expression was martial arts.

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Be formless... shapeless, like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You pour water into a bottle; it becomes the bottle. You put water into a teapot; it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow, or creep or drip or crash! Be water, my friend...

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All types of knowledge, ultimately leads to self-knowledge.

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Use only that which works, and take it from any place you can find it.

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Do not deny the classical approach, simply as a reaction, or you will have created another pattern and trapped yourself there.

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Quick temper will make a fool of you soon enough.

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I always learn something, and that is: to always be yourself. And to express yourself, to have faith in yourself. Do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate him.

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It's not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.

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The primary reality is not what I think, but that I live, for those also live who do not think.

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The "moment" has no yesterday or tomorrow. It is not the result of thought and therefore has no time.

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The Now is indivisible. Completeness, the now, is an absence of the conscious mind to strive to divide that which is indivisible.

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What IS is more important than WHAT SHOULD BE. Too many people are looking at "what is" from a position of thinking "what should be."

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All fixed set patterns are incapable of adaptability or pliability. The truth is outside of all fixed patterns.

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If you always put limit on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.

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I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.


George Demont Otis     Autumn Pageant Lagunitas Creek

 

I am learning to understand rather than immediately judge or to be judged. I cannot blindly follow the crowd and accept their approach. I will not allow myself to indulge in the usual manipulating game of role creation. Fortunately for me, my self-knowledge has transcended that and I have come to understand that life is best to be lived and not to be conceptualized. I am happy because I am growing daily and I do honestly not know where the limit lies. To be certain, every day there can be a revelation or a new discovery. I treasure the memory of the past misfortunes. It has added more to my bank of fortitude.

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Simplicity is the key to brilliance.

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If you make an ass out of yourself, there will always be someone to ride you.

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The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering.

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A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer.

Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending with the wind.

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If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you'll never get it done.

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Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them.

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A quick temper will make a fool of you soon enough.

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To hell with circumstances; I create opportunities.

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When there is freedom from mechanical conditioning, there is simplicity. The classical man is just a bundle of routine, ideas and tradition. If you follow the classical pattern, you are understanding the routine, the tradition, the shadow-you are not understanding yourself.

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I am not teaching you anything. I just help you to explore yourself.

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The less effort, the faster and more powerful you will be.

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Obey the principles without being bound by them.

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If you want to learn to swim jump into the water. On dry land no frame of mind is ever going to help you.

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It's not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.

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Take no thought of who is right or wrong or who is better than. Be not for or against.

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To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person.


George Demont Otis     Northern California Coast

 

Let the spirit out-Discard all thoughts of reward, all hopes of praise and fears of blame, all awareness of one's bodily self. And, finally closing the avenues of sense perception, let the spirit out, as it will.

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As you think, so shall you become.

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Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.

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What you HABITUALLY THINK largely determines what you will ultimately become.

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I'm not in this world to live up to your expectations and you're not in this world to live up to mine.

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Man, the living creature, the creating individual, is always more important than any established style or system.

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Take things as they are. Punch when you have to punch. Kick when you have to kick.

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Use only that which works, and take it from any place you can find it.

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Forget about winning and losing; forget about pride and pain.

When there is freedom from mechanical conditioning, there is simplicity.

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Do not deny the classical approach, simply as a reaction, or you will have created another pattern and trapped yourself there.

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Running water never grows stale. So you just have to 'keep on flowing.'

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If one loves, one need not have an ideology of love.

'Being' is more valued than 'doing'.

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The man who is really serious, with the urge to find out what truth is, has no style at all. He lives only in what is.

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Make at least one definite move daily toward your goal.

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Emptiness the starting point. - In order to taste my cup of water you must first empty your cup. My friend, drop all your preconceived and fixed ideas and be neutral. Do you know why this cup is useful? Because it is empty.

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The meaning of life is that it is to be lived, and it is not to be traded and conceptualized and squeezed into a pattern of systems.

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The aphorism "as a man thinketh in his heart so is he" contains the secret of life.

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Meaning is found in relationship.

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Life itself is your teacher, and you are in a state of constant learning.


George Demont Otis     The Vista 2

 

Reality is apparent when one ceases to compare. - There is "what is" only when there is no comparison at all, and to live with what is, is to be peaceful.

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One should be in harmony with, not in opposition to, the strength and force of the opposition. This means that one should do nothing that is not natural or spontaneous; the important thing is not to strain in any way.

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When we hold to the core, the opposite sides are the same if they are seen from the center of the moving circle. I do not experience; I am experience. I am not the subject of experience; I am that experience. I am awareness. Nothing else can be I or can exist.

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Taoist philosophy ... is essentially monistic. ... Matter and energy, Yang and Yin, heaven and earth, are conceived of as essentially one or as two coexistent poles of one indivisible whole.

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Like everyone else you want to learn the way to win. But never to accept the way to lose. To accept defeat-to learn to die-is to be liberated from it. Once you accept, you are free to flow and to harmonize. Fluidity is the way to an empty mind. You must free your ambitious mind and learn the art of dying.

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Instead of dedicating your life to actualize a concept of what you should be like, ACTUALIZE YOURSELF. The process of maturing does not mean to become a captive of conceptualization. It is to come to the realization of what lies in our innermost selves.

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Life is better lived than conceptualized. - This writing can be less demanding should I allow myself to indulge in the usual manipulating game of role creation. Fortunately for me, my self-knowledge has transcended that and I've come to understand that life is best to be lived - not to be conceptualized. If you have to think, you still do not understand.

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Choose the positive. - You have choice - you are master of your attitude - choose the POSITIVE, the CONSTRUCTIVE. Optimism is a faith that leads to success.

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Cease negative mental chattering. - If you think a thing is impossible, you'll make it impossible. Pessimism blunts the tools you need to succeed.

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A goal is not always meant to be reached; it often serves simply as something to aim at.

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Don't fear failure. - Not failure, but low aim, is the crime. In great attempts it is glorious even to fail.

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Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.


George Demont Otis     Late Summer Marin County

 

Not being tense but ready.
Not thinking but not dreaming.
Not being set but flexible.
Liberation from the uneasy sense of confinement.
It is being wholly and quietly alive, aware and alert, ready for whatever may come.

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The great mistake is to anticipate the outcome of the engagement; you ought not to be thinking of whether it ends in victory or defeat. Let nature take its course, and your tools will strike at the right moment.

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Be self aware, rather than a repetitious robot.

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The stillness in stillness is not the real stillness; only when there is stillness in movement does the universal rhythm manifest.

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Art calls for complete mastery of techniques, developed by reflection within the soul.

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If there is a God, he is within. You don't ask God to give you things, you depend on God for your inner theme.

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A good teacher protects his pupils from his own influence.

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Ever since I was a child I have had this instinctive urge for expansion and growth. To me, the function and duty of a quality human being is the sincere and honest development of one's potential.

If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves. Moving, be like water. Still, be like a mirror. Respond like an echo.

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If you don't want to slip up tomorrow, speak the truth today.

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The spirit of the individual is determined by his dominating thought habits.

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Question: "What are your thoughts when facing an opponent?"
Bruce: "There is no opponent."
Question: "Why is that?"
Bruce: "Because the word 'I' does not exist."

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The point is the doing of them rather than the accomplishments. There is no actor but the action; there is no experiencer but the experience.

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The man who is really serious, with the urge to find out what truth is, has no style at all. He lives only in what is.

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Give up thinking as though not giving it up. Observe the techniques as though not observing.

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Truth has no path. Truth is living and, therefore, changing. Awareness is without choice, without demand, without anxiety; in that state of mind, there is perception. To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person. Awareness has no frontier; it is giving of your whole being, without exclusion.

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Turn into a doll made of wood: it has no ego, it thinks nothing, it is not grasping or sticky. Let the body and limbs work themselves out in accordance with the discipline they have undergone.

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The localization of the mind means its freezing. When it ceases to flow freely as it is needed, it is no more the mind in its suchness.


George Demont Otis     Sleepy Hollow Trees 2

 

The perfect way is only difficult for those who pick and choose. Do not like, do not dislike; all will then be clear. Make a hairbreadth difference and heaven and earth are set apart; if you want the truth to stand clear before you, never be for or against. The struggle between "for" and "against" is the mind's worst disease.

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To obtain enlightenment in martial art means the extinction of everything which obscures the "true knowledge," the "real life". At the same time, it implies boundless expansion and, indeed, emphasis should fall not on the cultivation of the particular department which merges into the totality, but rather on the totality that enters and unites that particular department.

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Voidness is that which stands right in the middle between this and that. The void is all-inclusive, having no opposite - there is nothing which it excludes or opposes. It is living void, because all forms come out of it and whoever realizes the void is filled with life and power and the love of all being.

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To see a thing uncolored by one's own personal preferences and desires is to see it in its own pristine simplicity.

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Wisdom does not consist of trying to wrest the good from the evil but in learning to "ride" them as a cork adapts itself to the crests and troughs of the waves.

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Do not run away; let go. Do not seek, for it will come when least expected.

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In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.

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It's not what you give, it's the way you give it.

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Out of chaos, find simplicity, from discord, find harmony.

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Showing off is the fool's idea of glory.

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The less effort, the faster and more powerful you will be.

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The mind is like a fertile garden in which anything that is planted, flowers or weeds, will grow.

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Real living is living for others.
 


George Demont Otis     Flowering Shores

 

 


Home | Dedication/Orientation | Articles by Dr. Friedman | Video and Audio Clips | Annotated Resource Links | Psychology Professionals

Dr. Will’s Perspective on Practicing Psychology: Dr. Friedman's Practice | Dr. Friedman's Approach | Therapeutic Purposes | Credentials | Experience | Brochures | Interview | Events and Workshops | Website Disclaimer | Contact