Monday, January 22, 2007

The Ultimate Ideal

"This scroll of Broken Sword's isn't about sword technique but about swordsmanship's ultimate ideal. Swordsmanship's first achievement is the unity of man and sword. Once this unity is attained even a blade of grass can be a weapon. The second achievement is when the sword exists in one's heart when absent from one's hand. One can strike an enemy at ten paces even with bare hands. Swordsmanship's ultimate achievement is the absence of the sword in both hand and heart. The swordsman is at peace with the rest of the world. He vows not to kill and to bring peace to mankind. Your Majesty, your visions have convinced me that you are committed to the highest ideal of ultimate swordsmanship. Therefore I cannot kill you."
-Jet Li's character to Emperor Qin Shihuangdi in the film 'Hero'.
Some say that the film is apologistic to totalitarianism. This is a facile reading.

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