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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


February 21, 2004 - Issue 107


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The Eagle and the Snake – Redman Speaks – Part 4


Peace symbolThe Tribe of the Eagle knew that they must always remain in obscurity, hidden from everyone, especially the hated white man. However, occasionally the tribe would send out small forays for provisions. They were becoming masters of stealth and camouflage. They would always eliminate people that they came in contact with, but as time passed, some white women were brought back to become servants to the tribe and some odd looking, yellow skinned men with narrow, slanted looking eyes were brought back alive, as they certainly were not white men. The yellow skinned men were from far away countries including China and Korea. They also harbored a great dislike for the white man, as they had been used and abused as laborers. The white man had been cruel and hateful toward them and their families.

An interesting revelation was introduced to the tribe by the Asians. That was the introduction of the martial arts, which fascinated and amazed the Native American people. One day, one of the Korean's, who was called Kim was seen doing some martial arts form training during the very first light of day as Raven Spirit happened to be walking by. The Native American leader asked Kim to show them all what he had been doing, and being a bit of a showman, Kim expanded his demonstration by asking one of the tribe's warriors, through his actions and arm motions to shoot an arrow at him.

At first, the warrior refused, thinking the man to be insane. But, through Kim's charm and humor, he was able to coax the warrior to actually shoot an arrow directly at him. The whole tribe gasped in awe when Kim deflected the arrow in flight with his right hand. Just before the arrow was going to strike him in the heart, Kim swiftly moved his hand to parry the arrow and knock it harmlessly to the ground. Kim encouraged the amazed warrior to shoot again, and this time, the warrior felt challenged and was determined not to miss again. He shot the arrow perfectly, but this time, Kim actually CAUGHT the arrow in mid flight in his swift right hand.

The Native Americans were astounded. At this point, Half Moon determined that the Asians were sent by the Redman to help them with their mission. From that day forward, the bond between the Asians and the Native Americans was very strong. Starting with that day, a portion of every single day became dedicated to the practice of martial arts training.

As time went by and the Native Americans began to excel at the martial arts, a few Native Americans began to create new variations, based on animal movements that they were familiar with. The Asians were impressed and an interesting blend of their Korean, Chinese and Native American movements became the standard for everyone.

The Asians and the Native Americans got along together well. Initially, verbal communication was impossible. However, ultimately, each learned the others language. There was no inter-racial marriage type of relationships, except for the marriage of white women occasionally to Native Americans. The Asians became a tremendous asset to the tribe as their work ethic was remarkable.

In some instances, the Asians had actually saved the lives of various members of the tribe. Many will never fully understand the capabilities of a true martial arts master. Even though the Native Americans recognized the incredible skills that the martial artists possessed, it wasn't until a truly significant event occurred that their level of understanding was taken to the appropriate level.

Grizzly BearOne day in early summer of the fourth year of the Tribe of the Eagle, Raven Spirit's wife "Song of Waters", was in a field near a stream foraging for food. She inadvertently disturbed a mother grizzly bear with three cubs. The mother bear became enraged that Song of Waters had strayed too close to her cubs. The mother grizzly let a blood-curdling roar that Kim heard from his position not too far away.

Kim knew that Song of Waters was very near the sound as he and she had seen each other minutes earlier and had exchanged greetings. Kim immediately realized the danger and ran as fast as he could to the sound. As he came out of the woods, he saw the mother grizzly preparing to charge Song of Waters, who had become frozen in fear.

Kim let a blood-curdling cry that momentarily diverted the huge bear’s attention. Kim immediately ran to Song of Waters to try to rescue her. The agitated bear attacked. Kim quickly moved into a position between the bear and Song of Waters and assumed a defensive stance. The huge bear stood up on her hind legs and Kim immediately and swiftly moved toward her. With lightning like speed, he struck the huge bear’s chest.

His hand broke her ribs at first contact and she let out an awful roar. In a second move as quick as the first, Kim drew his fist back and struck again, letting out a loud yell at the same time. Song of Waters could not believe her eyes. As Kim drew his fist back the second time, he held the great bear’s heart in his hand!

The bear fell to the ground completely lifeless. Song of Waters did not know what to think. She immediately ran back to the tribe in a state of shock. As she approached Raven Spirit, her eyes burst into tears and she passed out of consciousness. Raven Spirit immediately sent three warriors to see what had happened. As they approached the field, they saw Kim kneeling down next to the great bear with his back toward them. He appeared to be praying.

As they approached, Kim stood up and slowly turned his head toward them. As Kim slowly turned towards them, the warriors saw the blood all over Kim's right arm and the front of his shirt. As they got closer, they saw the bear’s heart laying on the ground in front of Kim in a puddle of blood. They were uneasy and did not know how to respond.

Kim was not in his normal happy mood. He seemed very serious. Slowly, they approached, and Kim began to explain with gestures and crude sign language what had occurred. The four returned to camp, where Song of Waters was in a deep state of shock and unable to speak. As she lay on the ground, her eyes looked straight up at the sky in a blank stare.

Mother RavenRaven Spirit asked Kim what had happened, and Kim again tried to explain. Raven Spirit immediately signaled that he wanted to be taken to the field where the attack had occurred. The three warriors and Kim took him there. Raven Spirit could not believe his eyes. The huge bear was dead, and its heart lay on the ground in a puddle of blood.

At this point, the three grizzly cubs began bawling from their hidden position just inside the woods. The tribe decided to adopt the cubs and the meat of the dead mother would serve as food, while her fur and bones would serve as important materials for the tribe. Nothing of the mother bear would be wasted.

Raven Spirit made a special necklace for Kim out of the great bear’s claws. It was his token of appreciation for Kim's efforts to save Song of Waters from the huge bear. The grizzly bear cubs became an interesting part of the tribe. They were young enough that they craved attention and the men, women and children of the Tribe of the Eagle were all happy to accommodate the young bears.

The spiritual leaders had mixed emotions about keeping the baby bears, but ultimately agreed since they did bring joy to the group, and after all of the hardships that been endured already, a little positive action seemed to be favorable. The tribe named the bears. One of the bears, which seemed to be much louder than the other two was named "a-ha-le:-n(i)(a)", which means "loudmouth" in Cherokee. Another bear, who would eat anything was called "su-li", which means "Buzzard" in Cherokee. The other baby bear, which was a female was called "a-da-we'-hi", which in Cherokee means "angel", because she was so sweet and loving.

The Native Americans did not know exactly how to feel about what had happened with Kim and the mother bear. Song of Waters never returned to a normal state of existence. The rest of her life she remained silent and listless. The blank-stare never left her beautiful face. The experience had been too much for her. Raven Spirit nonetheless took great care of her.

Kim meanwhile had become a true legend to the tribe. His bravery and power were almost incomprehensible. Half Moon decreed that Kim was a visitor from the spirit world, sent to help the tribe with their important mission, and the tribe revered him from that day forward.

End – Part 4 – To Be Continued

© 2003 Geoff Hampton

Geoff Hampton is an internationally known author, speaker, motivator and business consultant. Hampton is the Executive Director for St. Mary's Health & Fitness Center in Powell, TN and is also a regular columnist for the wellness/fitness Website as well as Canku Ota. He can be reached by E-mail at His national anti-obesity/diabetes campaign, The Wellness Wakeup Challenge can be reviewed at

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