Kung Fu (TV series)

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Kung Fu is an American action-adventure western drama television series starring David Carradine.


Season 1 Episode #1-2 - Pilot

Disciple Caine: Master, do we seek victory in contention?
Master Kan: Seek rather not to contend.
Caine: But shall we not then be defeated?
Master Kan: We know that where there is no contention, there is neither defeat nor victory. The supple willow does not contend against the storm, yet it survives.
Master Kan: Avoid, rather than check. Check, rather than hurt. Hurt, rather than maim. Maim, rather than kill. For all life is precious, nor can any be replaced.
"Weakness prevails over strength. Gentleness conquers. Become the calm and restful breeze that tames the violent sea." -Master Kan (may refer to TAO TE CHING #78 "The weak can overcome the strong")
Disciple Caine: Master, our bodies are prey to many needs: hunger, thirst, the need for love.
Master Kan: In one lifetime, a man knows many pleasures: a mother's smile in waking hours, a young woman's intimate, searing touch, and the laughter of grandchildren in the twilight years. To deny these in ourselves is to deny that which makes us one with nature.
Caine: Shall we then seek to satisfy these needs?
Master Kan: Only acknowledge them and satisfaction will follow. To suppress a truth is to give it force beyond endurance.
"Fear creates the victim.... I will survive if I can." -Caine
"Fear is never a part of a man, until it enters him." -Caine
"Fear is like a seed that grows. If you plant fear, then it will grow." -Caine
"When a fear becomes strong enough, it is like another being within you who fights to stay alive. It is not you who will die, but your fear." -Caine

Season 1 Episode #5 - The Tide

Caine: Is it good to seek the past, Master Po? Does it not rob the present?
Master Po: If a man dwells on the past, then he robs the present. But if a man ignores the past, he may rob the future. The seeds of our destiny are nurtured by the roots of our past.
Master Po: Seek not to know the answers, but to understand the questions.
Master Kahn: We do not punish for trust. If while building a house, a carpenter strikes a nail. It proves faulty by bending. Does the carpenter then lose faith in all nails and stop building his house?
Young Caine: Then we are required to trust, even when we are reminded of the existence of evil.
Master Kahn: Deal with evil through strength. But affirm the good in man through trust. In this way, we are prepared for evil, but we encourage good.
Young Caine: And is good our great reward for trusting?
Master Kahn: In striving for an ideal, we do not seek rewards. Yet trust does sometimes bring with it a great reward, even greater than good.
Young Caine: What is greater than good?
Master Kahn: Love.
Caine: Can a woman be happy alone?
Su Yen Lu: To be alone, without one to love, is a waste of the body. To be not alone, without one to love, is a waste of the soul.
Su Yen Lu: Love born of betrayal is better lost than lived.

Season 1 Episode #11 – The Praying Mantis Kills

[Caine has given another Shaolin monk a sextant that had belonged to his father.]
Master Po: You wish no longer to savor the memory of your father through that which was close to him?
Caine: Master. You have taught me to claim no possessions, that none may claim me.
Master Po: The sextant was only a memory, which you could keep not only in your heart, but in your hands.
Caine: I am of age. I must put away such memories.
Master Po: Between father and son, there is a bridge which neither time nor death can shatter. Each stands at one end, needing to cross and meet.
Caine: But he is dead.
Master Po: The bridge of which I speak, Grasshopper, is your love for him.

Season 1 Episode #14 – The Third Man

Noreen: You've learned to trust people, but doesn't it hurt you?
Caine: And you? Not trusting... Are you not hurt more?
Noreen: How do you go through all that and not get twisted.. out of shape by it?
Caine: I seek... Not to know all the answers... But to understand the questions.

Season 1 Episode #15 – The Ancient Warrior

Caine: Master, what is the best way to meet the loss of one we love?
Master Kan: By knowing that when we truly love it is never lost. It is only after death that the depth of the bond is truly felt and our loved one becomes more a part of us than was possible in life.
Caine: Are we only able to feel this toward those whom we have known and loved a long time?
Master Kan: Sometimes a stranger known to us for moments can spark our souls to kinship for eternity.
Caine: How can strangers take on such importance to our souls?
Master Kan: Because our soul does not keep time; it merely records growth.

Season 2 Episode #7 – The Tong

Master Po: There is much evil in the world, grasshopper. It has always been thus. ...
Master Po: Violence became their tool for combating violence. ...
Master Po: Two hundred years have passed. The Manchus are still sitting upon the throne. The tong still kill, no longer for a noble cause yet they are the children of the five Shaolin priests who went to Fukien long ago ...
Caine: Master, must we not do more than mourn this wrong? We must right it.
Master Po: How, grasshopper?
Caine: Strike down this tong. Take away from our children the power to do wrong.
Master Po: That is what they said in Fukien 200 years ago.
Master Po: No, grasshopper, evil cannot be conquered in the world. It can only be resisted within oneself.
White Missonary: Matthew 5:39, "Resist not evil but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also."
Caine: I do not know your Bible, but our sage Lao-tzu has written: "A wise man does not contend therefore, no one can contend against him. Yield and overcome."
Wing: Could you teach it to me. I will never tell anyone.
Caine: You think wisdom is like a flower for you to pluck. It is a mountain and it must be climbed.
Wing: I am not worthy.
Caine: You are not willing.
Young KCC: He calls me "Oil and Water' because I have white blood. ...
Master Po: And you wish it were not true. ...
Master Po: Time is carving you, grasshopper. Let yourself be shaped according to your true nature.
Caine: No man has fear until fear comes to him.
Wing: Do you know some magic that is stronger than death?
Caine: If a man lives it is a certainty he will died. Therefore, it is foolish to think of death as if he were a foe to be vanquished. He will come when he will come. That's all.

Season 2 Episode #12 – The Gunman

Master Po: That is what you risk, Grasshopper: great pain, or great joy.
Caine: Master, if I shall love others, how can I be sure that they in return will love me in return?
Master Po: Do you seek love or barter?
Caine: But, if I love others and they do not love me, I shall feel great pain.
Master Po: That is what you risk, Grasshopper: great pain, or great joy.

Season 3 Episode #2 – A Small Beheading

Captain Gage: I am Brandywine Gage. Captain Gage. Ashore from the ship Peking Lady. Rump-sprung and calloused where no man nae'ouught to be calloused.
Captain Gage: [after being defeated by Caine] I never met a man like you. [laughs] I swear, I admire you more than I can say but... I wouldn't be you for anything in the world.

Unknown Episode

Caine: I have been in the marketplace. All of the men there argue and fight. There is no peace.
Master Po: Why does that trouble you, when your home is here?
Caine: I want all men to know peace.
Master Po: It is written in the 'Tao Te Ching', "Under heaven, all can see beauty as beauty only because there is ugliness. All can know good as good only because there is evil. Therefore, having and not having arise together. Difficult and easy complement each other. High and low rest upon each other. Front and back follow one another."
Caine: But Master, do we not want all men to know our peace, our joy?
Master Po: Would you make the whole world a temple? Be like the sun, and what is within you will warm the earth.

Miscellaneous quotes

  • "Be nothing, and you will have everything to give to others." – Master Po
  • "Avoid rather than check. Check rather than hurt. Hurt rather than maim. Maim rather than kill. For all life is precious and cannot be replaced." – Master Kan
  • "When you can take the pebble from my hand, it will be time for you to leave." - Master Kan
  • "To suppress a truth is to give it force beyond endurance." — Master Kan
  • "Yet, it is eyes which blind the man." — Master Po
  • "Because a man can see, he does not look." — Master Po
  • "There is dignity in all work." – Caine
  • "I do not seek answers, but rather to understand the question." – Caine

External links[edit]

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