Kung-fu has actually influenced some of his views and philosophies about BJJ and even some of his techniques. Now, you are probably thinking to yourself, "What the heck does Kung-fu have to do with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu"? See, that's exactly what you don't want to do. One of the things my instructor has drilled into my head is the importance of keeping an open mind: in BJJ and more importantly in life.
We were talking today, and he showed me this book on Kung-fu philosophy:
Actually, it was quite an interesting conversation. I can't say that I understood everything, but I got a clear idea of most of what he was trying to convey to me. The left hand side is a rough sketch of a ten step hybrid philosophy of Confucianism and Taoism. On the right hand side is my instructor's philosophy on BJJ influenced by Kung-fu. I was surprised to learn that some of his most fundamental ideas on BJJ came from his study of Kung-fu. I was even more surprised to learn that one of my best, most high percentage passes was something he learned/took from Barbosa and then built upon just a bit more with theories that he learned from Kung-fu!
As a grappler, I never want to fall into the trap of believing my art is the best, and that everything else is a waste of time. That doesn't mean that I'm going to start wearing funny looking shoes and start Tiger Clawing people's faces when I'm rolling. What I mean is, is that it is possible to learn things where you'd least expect it. The longer I do BJJ, the more I realize how much I don't know. The harder I work, and the more open I keep my mind, the more potential I have to grow as a martial artist and as a human being.