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Gung Fu's Hidden Way of Life   The term Jianghu is linked to cultures other than those pertaining to martial arts in Wuxia stories only. It is also applied to societies where there is no law and order. This is a time of Jiang Hu

In the Forests of Jianghu: The "Hunter's Way"

A Hunter's Way: Shared Realities of the 2nd Attention

In the Jianghu environment there is very little that is what it actually appears to be. Deception is not a mere trait of a tricky few, here it is a lifestyle that all adhere to and practice. An in-grained habituation for sure. Always expected is the unexpected! Still waters always run deep with unseen currents and hazards. Remember this and trust no one. At times even your own senses must be questioned (not trusted) as per their veracity regarding this so called "reality". When the five senses are deceived, the secondary powers of intuition and clairvoyance step in. That "gut feeling".

There are true Masters of the legendary, text book variety living within the confines of Jiang Hu world. They have other, secondary lives outside of the martial arts. These are often "secret lives". One finds that usually where there is one life, there are also many. A person of legendary skill or notoriety (in their Jianghu personage) may be a simple potter, traveling merchant or itinerant priest in the "other secret life" they lead. For one who can think, speak and sign in the hidden language of fugue the subtle hints of who they might truly be (and the skills they possess) can be discerned. Each house has it's mark and means, a footprint of sorts. Whether it be intelligence gathering, trafficking of some type, smuggling of illegal items, assassination or physical martial training, each of the great houses of Jianghu leave indelible marks upon their charges of which the trained eye & mind can fleetingly glimpse. Thus giving accurate insight into an otherwise unfathomable situation. Only personal experience can fully answer the questions which arise when one is afield in the unique timescape of Jianghu. Always be the HUNTER if you must go into the wilderness of Jianghu. Nothing less will do! Hear my words now, save grief later.

The hunter does not always kill. The hunter observes first. He simply watches like the mountain lion is so famous for doing. All hunters are keen observers, professional watchers. Like a fighter pilot "head on a swivel" at all times. A hunter knows that he can be hunted while hunting. Often by several entities at once! Where ever goes the master hunter there is by necessity also "dangerous ground". To "Look before you leap" takes on a deeper meaning in matters of life and death when one is far afield from home. In the Jianghu fashion a taciturn sense of "giri" (duty) is far more valuable than risk taking gambles for glory.

A hunter such as I speak of is not a gun toting camo-clad lad. The hunter I refer to is the "mystic hunter" (hunter-shaman). This type of hunter needs no trademark clothing or gadgetry. He is what he is by his own hand and power of his will. Often this kind of hunter is nearly invisible outwardly because he leaves no signature of his being upon the world, no trace. Truly such a one is the master in this greater game and their way should be honored. Learn the "tools" that this man employs, they go far beyond weapons and go into the metaphysical realm of multi-functional, world spanning tricks of survival.

The hunter speaks through his weapon. His story is written in his victories (and his regrets). Only the master hunter can sing the silent savage songs that one's such as he knows. These songs sing tribute to his prey, these songs honor those he must slay. Those songs may often contain the hunters own "last song" as well. At times the hunter only wishes to see (scout), other times he wishes to take (bring back) and yet at other moments he hunts for the intangible aspects of "power" (energy to feed the warrior within). Throughout this time on Earth all that he does is first filtered through the mind of the hunter. For Earth is a place of hunt or be hunted. It has always been thus, and will always be so. You may be an accountant, a merchant or singer of songs, but first came the hunter. Lose the "hunter within" yourself and the world becomes threatening. To keep the hunter within alive, honed in and active is to have a true ally in life's ever changing spectrum of survival. Sometimes life can be frightening, but hunters are silent, they do not fear the fate of tomorrows dawn. No one knows what the hunter ponders inside his secret world within. It is a thing of the moment. Learn to be at ease with all of it. Allow it to spin it's harsh life-lessons upon you. You are now in the "forge of the gods". You will be shaped, refined and polished. It will leave indelible marks upon you, such is built what men call true "character". To discover the truths of life, to lead life as free men should, to ask no quarter, to give no quarter, to ply free trade, to value trust over contract, honor over law, to create kingdoms over states and to perform deeds over mouthing hollow words. These are the feats most great of which many kung fu "knight errants" aspire to manifest in the land of rivers and lakes (jianghu). An honorable hobby for honorable men, the two worlds are thus preserved for a little while longer.

Thank you all!  Your Humble Servant

Tarim Kim

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