Former WEC champion Urijah Faber is one of the more well-known and popular fighters in the world of mixed martial arts. Known just as much for his sunny, upbeat personality outside the cage as he is for his skill and desire to be the best in the world inside it, it’s easy to imagine the California-based fighter would have some interesting ideas floating through his head. Well, he does and he puts those thoughts and ideas to paper in his book, The Laws of the Ring.
If you are expecting Faber’s book to be a boring autobiography of how he went from being born and raised in a Christian commune to becoming a top mixed martial artist, you’ll be surprised at what you find. While it is true the book is, for the most part, a story of Faber’s life and times he doesn’t just recount those experiences in a point-A-to-point-B journey, instead he takes what life gives him and molds those experiences into what he wants. In short, Faber takes life and controls it, instead of letting life control him and that is what The Laws of the Ring hopes to get across to the reader.
Now you’re probably thinking, “oh, so it’s a self-help book.” I’d be hard pressed to tell you otherwise. It is part self-help book and part autobiography, but the relentless positive vibe Faber exudes throughout is hard to resist. Even the most hardened and jaded reader who has no time for what they perceive as new age, touchy-feely positive vibes will find themselves sucked into Faber’s world. The guy is that positive about all things without coming across as preachy or sanctimonious. It’s hard not to believe in some of the messages he imparts.
Inside the pages of The Laws of the Ring Faber talks about his MMA fights, his wrestling upbringing, the hard times some members of his family have had, how he chooses what people he wants to surround himself with and how, most importantly, you can always take a positive out of every situation.
What’s nice about the message here is that it’s different from most books like this. Most writers that try to impart a positive message are so vague in that message that everyone can easily buy in to what they are selling, but that’s only because they are telling the reader what they want to hear. Faber doesn’t do that, he takes a real-life scenario, like the fear of being beaten to death in a Bali bar/street fight and takes a positive from it. It’s that kind of message that connects him to the reader.
In the beginning of the book Faber recalls one of his favorite sayings, “There are only two things you have to do in life: You have to die, and you have to live until you die. The rest is up to you.” By the end of the book he adds another take on that message, “Until you stop living, you will not fail. Life is nothing but second chances and new opportunities.”
The Laws of the Ring is an interesting read from an interesting fighter and if you ever wanted to know what made “The California Kid” who he is today, this book is for you.