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Thread: Accepting the deaths of your favorite wuxia characters.

  1. #1
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Sep 2002

    Default Accepting the deaths of your favorite wuxia characters.

    Over the years, I've read a number of hopeful remarks from fans regarding the speculative longevity of their favorite wuxia characters. Some have mooted that Yeung Gor and Little Dragon Girl might have lived to the time of HSDS, at which point they would have been around 150 years old. Some have speculated that Gwok Seung might also have been alive at the time of HSDS, which would have been a more reasonable (but still rather improbable) 115-120 years of age.

    The source of such improbable hope is likely Cheung 3 Fung, who was around 115 years old and still going strong at the end of HSDS. Centenarians aren't unknown, especially in today's world wherein modern medicine and knowledge of nutrition and sanitation enable people to live increasingly longer lives. In pre-modern China, however, most people were lucky to make it to the age of fifty.

    Some would also point out that Cheung 3 Fung wasn't the only centenarian in Jin Yong's universe: by the end of ROCH, the remaining senior Greats were either past or approaching 100 years of age, and goodness only knows how old Teen San Tung Lo from DGSD actually was. It's owed to their high inner power cultivation, some would say.

    Personally, I call "BS" on the idea that large numbers of wuxia characters can attain an age of 100 and higher. I think this should be something that's extremely rare and is not so much the product of inner power mastery alone as it is that plus good nutrition, good general health, good personal habits, good genetics, and yeah...some good luck.

    The wuxia characters, for all their incredible abilities, were not *actually* gods. They were still mortal beings and their lifespans had reasonable limits. *Occasionally*, you have special outliers such as Cheung 3 Fung, but I don't think it's realistic to expect *every* high-level martial artist to live to 100 or longer. Gwok Jing, my favorite wuxia character, died in his seventies or eighties in combat...and I'm *good* with that. His death wasn't depicted in any of the stories, but knowing Gwok Jing, I bet he didn't go out like a punk (and that's all that matters for a wuxia hero, even if he dies in his thirties like Kiu Fung did in DGSD). I did *not* nor did I ever hope that Gwok Jing would be alive during the time of HSDS (or within fifty years of its beginning). I actually prefer that wuxia characters have somewhat normal human lifespans (which, using modern lifespans, would be extraordinarily long for people who lived in pre-modern times) and meet their ends within a reasonable amount of time rather than all outlive tortoises and redwood trees.

  2. #2
    Senior Member mawguy's Avatar
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    Apr 2006


    agree. but then again, i survived the death of gandalf, and that preceded my wuxia-reading days, so no wuxia character's death, even the untimely ones, can shock me. :P

    JY had such buddhist leanings, esp. in DGSD, that i just assumed the long-lived characters were able to do so because of their life philosophies and meditative practises. of course, TSTL rather debunks that assumption.

    by tradition, most wuxia characters probably wouldn't want to live such a long life because there was a chance of outliving the kids and grandkids. C3F saw a lot of loss in his lifetime, so i'm sure he considered longevity a mixed blessing.
    nostalgic for wuxiasociety?

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Aug 2005


    well sort of off topic but it think xiao long nu should've died when jumping off the cliff. its sort of stupid she healed eating honey n eating fish. i mean she also used the ice cold water to mediate her internal energy revered, but the honey n fish how will that heal her poison that was in her vital organs etc?

    but yeah i agree with above post. i always thought if you had strong internal energy it lets you live longer bc it seems like there using more of their percentage of their brains, it enables em to live longer then regular humans. especially when practicing martial arts etc is suppose to keep you living longer etc.

  4. #4
    Senior Member devilz91's Avatar
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    Feb 2007


    The Divine Condor was also likely way over 100 if you wanna count that. :P

  5. #5
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Sep 2002


    Quote Originally Posted by devilz91 View Post
    The Divine Condor was also likely way over 100 if you wanna count that. :P
    That it's not human (nor any kind of bird known to science) helps, but I'm still not a big fan of the idea. I suppose if tortoises can live past 100, and some redwood trees live thousands of years, it's not absolutely out of the question, but I wouldn't go to that well too often.

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