08 Jan The Mindset of a True Hunter
What is it to be in the mindset of a true hunter? Can we even begin to emerge into the mysteries of the ancestral hunters’ and gatherers’ mindsets? Some of us who have the ever evolving mental construct of morals and ethics of life and death through organic sustenance have strived for that very thing. There are many levels of participation with nature and sustaining one’s self through it. Widely and easily adopted ideologies or thought patterns (some good, some bad) have saturated the hunting culture for many years now. It can be mind-boggling trying to sift through the commercialized rubble and find the shining jewel of an epiphany or revelation that, typically, was staring you in the face the whole time, but quite often hidden from you by the blur of materialistic whirlwinds thrown about, leaving you baffled and confused about what that glimmer behind it all really is when the actual hunt takes place. Fortunately there can be a sign of hope if one strives for it….
With any discipline in life a good amount of leg work, literally and figuratively will have to be done. Such wisdom is earned and acquired in the wild bastions we have left, and with the passing of your time. It will mold and shape the ways you see yourself in nature and the role by which you participate in it. This brings me to the individualist hunter of today. Long lost stories and traditions of our ancestral tribes have slipped through our hands into the cracks of time. We have pieced some scenarios together from archeologists’ findings at prehistoric camps or kill sites, as well as wall paintings. We have other ideas handed down through muddled stories or legends, leaving our minds and imaginations to sift through it all. Basically our teachers never got the chance to introduce us to the mystical, spiritual, or divine aspect of taking life to sustain life. Handed down through word of mouth and rigorous apprenticeships, diving deep into the spirits, dare I say souls, of all involved in the act of the hunt about to take place. On today’s front there are several family traditions and stewards of nature with a conservational mindset that are trying to mold and shape young minds in the hunting culture. I have an uneasy feeling that there are too few who have reached the level of connection with nature that our predecessors achieved, much out of necessity, no doubt. Obviously that is heavily swayed by the current economic level of comfort and pampered culture we now live in,
but I can’t help but wonder, “Is that better for nature?” Or is it leading to an eventual catastrophic outcome for nature. We as individualist hunters cannot sustain a tribal hunting mentality with the shrinking of available resources, and there will always be competition instead of cohesion for the collective. Fortunately, we have banded together to form a lawful structure (not to be mistaken for a working cohesive tribe) to maintain and protect our wildlife resources, both flora and fauna alike. It still has its pitfalls and failures in many respects. This is where I think as individualist hunters, if we could collectively strive to relearn or grasp the lost knowledge of spirituality in nature, seeking to dissolve our own egos and putting the conscious beauty of creation on the same level as our own being, we could reverse or correct the path we are currently traveling toward (the thought patterns of greed and self-indulgence), and lead ourselves eventually to a sustainable balance? These are thoughts that have plagued me for several troubling years now.
As I close this, leaving my wandering imagination to drift off to those wild stories and legends of old, and placing myself in the cheers of pre-hunt celebrations, leading into the numberless cosmic events lining up and ascending to the flight of the arrow or thrust of the spear, finding its mark for a quick kill – I imagine myself marking my body with blood or scar to commemorate and honor the life taken; wishing it a swift, easy transition into the hereafter; perhaps even placing a handful of local browse in its mouth for the journey; lastly, sitting amongst my peers, all of one mind in peace and ease, the life-sustaining flesh and gathered organics spread before us for the feast, knowing that all is good, all is right, and mind and soul are content for the moment……