RZA Pays Tribute to Bruce Lee With New Song 'Be Like Water'

"It inspires the idea that in adapting to life situations, sometimes we have to flow smoothly as a stream, while other times we have to crash like a tsunami."
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Martial arts legend Bruce Lee died young and he died over 40 years ago. Still, his pop culture legacy has endured, both through continuing love for his movies and the work of famous fans like The RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan—a musician so devoted to Lee he starred in his own martial arts-themed movies, The Man With The Iron Fists 1 and 2.

RZA isn't done with honoring Lee's legacy. Of the new song featured in the video above, "Be Like Water," the rapper said "Lee’s teachings extended beyond physical martial arts."

RZA in "The Man With the Iron Fists 2."

RZA in "The Man With the Iron Fists 2."

Lee "was full of philosophy and mindfulness," according to RZA. 

"[Bruce Lee's] quote 'Be Water my friend' is profound and multi-tiered in definition," RZA notes, "It inspires the idea that in adapting to life situations, sometimes we have to flow smoothly as a stream, while other times we have to crash like a tsunami."

RZA was also inspired by ESPN's upcoming 30 for 30 doc about the icon, titled simply, "Be Water."

Lee's full quote:

Don’t get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water. Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup; You put water into a bottle it becomes the bottle; You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.

As a group, the Wu-Tang Clan has been vocal about their love for Lee ever since their 1993 debut album Enter the Wu-tang (36 Chambers).  

The 30 for 30 episode "Be Water" premieres June 7 (Sunday) at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN.