Meditation of the Trail-ness: The Hidden South and the Rhizomic Extension of Spiritual Geography by GONG Jow-Jiun

The soul of a trail — its trail-ness...lies in its function: how it continuously evolves to serve the needs of its users.

─── Robert Moor, On Trail: An Exploration

 

If someone asks me about the breakthrough achieved by The Hidden South in terms of its curatorial methodology, I would say that it has realized “the meditation of the trail,” which, in its case, that has its roots in the South-Link Highway. One is reminded of the advice that the protagonist in Jack Kerouac’s The Dharma Bums gives to his friend, “Try the meditation of the trail, just walk along looking at the trail at your feet and don’t look about and just fall into a trance as the ground zips by.” Never have I ever, in my experience of travelling on the South-Link Highway for dozens of times over a course of dozens of years, taken the time to stop and meditate on the road beneath my feet. The so-called “trance” I have experienced along the journey has been informed by the landscape with cars rushing by. This time, however, I myself as well as the audience were stopped by The Hidden South, and have begun gazing into the trail that never seemed to be our concern.

 

Starting with the former bus terminal, turning it into an information center, the exhibition has already occupied a node of modern memory. From Anne-Flore Cabanis’s prismatic writing in the form of her sculptural installation, Two Color Gradient, Wu Tsan-Cheng’s The South-link Sound Map, Cudjuy Malijugau’s Ina’s Garden of Memory, to Dexter Fernandez’s Vuvu & Vuvu, these works have unveiled one question from the four aspects of abstract line, local sound, plant ecology and graffiti—apart from Shen Baozhen, Yuan Wenzi and the road-builders in the Showa period, along the 100-km highway and after the nauseating section with the biggest curve and slopes with the highest gradient in Taiwan, what are the implications of these endless trails in Taimali, Jinfeng, Dawu and Daren that are extending from the South-Link Highway and leading to various indigenous villages, mountains and the sea? Who created them? Why do they exist? One could choose any of these trails and inquire about its existence. 

 

We would like to ask: in addition to the trail-ness of modern roads that have adapted to cars, what can we find in The Hidden South? In this essay, I discuss “the meditation of trail-ness” introduced by The Hidden South from four aspects – installation of trail-ness, trail-ness of collaboration, trail-ness of sharing and trail-ness of coexistence – to point out the unique value of “the hidden south” embodied by the exhibition. 

 

We began with the meditation installation of trail-ness, starting with the Kaling Diway’s Pulami in Nantian Camping Area at the end of the highway — “ The artist weaves clay pots, millet, and arrows with bamboo strips. The work symbolizes Paiwan’s modesty and their commitment to land ethics. With moderated use of natural resources in accordance with the natural cycle, a relationship informed with abundance, mutual respect and love is created among heaven, earth and humanity.” Also using bamboo strips for his woven work, Yu Wen-Fu’s Vector of the South was the continuation of sea waves. On Chiu Chen-Hung’s The Balcony, visitors could observe and meditate on the vast southern waters. Siki Sufin’s Wings stemmed from his meditation on the feathers of mountain hawk-eagles used in traditional rituals. We eventually arrived at Wu Sih-Chin’s multimedia AR installation, My Name? I Have a Lot of Names, which evoked the otherworldly presence of the disappeared Little Black People, ending with LuxuryLogico’s Rebirth that drew inspiration from reflecting on the cycle of natural disaster, material and landscape. Along this trail, we departed from Nantian, to Shangwu, passing The Hidden South Center, visiting the mural in Dawu Junior High School, and finally arrived at Pacavalj. The exhibition lured us into turning of our engine, stepping out the enclosed vehicle, or at least lowering the car windows and slowing down the cars. Then, we started to walk towards a sandy beach, trail, platform on the roadside or an empty small park, turning our eyes towards the mountains or gazing into the sea. The spatial-temporal transposition and the slowing down of physical pace introduced the first question: what had happened here? Aside from colorful road signs, could there be a different dimension of other forms of life here? How have humans shaped this road into what it is now, and what difficulties have taken place so far? 

 

Next was the trail-ness of collaboration. The first time I visited the sites of The Hidden South was with Japanese curator Minato Chihiro on March 11, 2018. It was part of the course practice for the TNNUA Doctoral Program in Art Creation and Theory, titled “Contemporary Curation and Interpretive Anthropology,” in which I collaborated with Minato and organized a “curatorial lecture.” Through the assistance of artist Chang En-Man, we met with the curatorial team in Pacavalj. We realized that artists Akac Orat and Chang En-Man in the curatorial team were both in a state of “rediscovering the trail back to the village.” As indigenous weaver Yuma Taru stated in the first chapter, entitled “The Encounter and the Wait: On the Exhibition,” in Collaboration: Remembering a Tribal Exhibition of Old Atayal Objects, “this is, as a matter of fact, a process of waiting and encountering. After waiting for many years, I finally met my ancestors and the ancient spirits in my own tribe.” (p. 41) The curatorial team was indeed a patient and enduring one that could wait until the moment of encounter; and this has been one of the intellectual prerequisites when every member of the team decided to collectively embark on the “trail of collaboration.” According to what I learned, the so-called “waiting period” comprised collaboration and coordination among the public sector and all the other groups, which have become the internal framework to support the installation of meditation on the trail-ness as well as the foremost requirement to unfold and extend the spiritual geography. 

 

That night, we attended a workshop called “Vaqu a vawa & Lemon-flavored spirits,” organized by artist Huang Po-Chih, taking place at Sauniyau Bakery in Rulakes. When the village residents who made their millet wine in the village met the artist that made his own lemon-flavored spirits in his hometown, all predesigned programs dissolved under the influence of alcohol and gave way to an unexpected interchange of secret wine-making recipe. The young artist seemed fairly impressed when someone mentioned that one had to literally dream to make wine because the recipe had to come from the ancestral spirit’s instructions in the dream to create the brilliant make-up of the recipe. In the meantime, the brilliant banter and verbal charm of the village women that had a powerful presence, with the intoxicating effect of alcohol, soon emancipated the bashful souls of all the workshop participants, turning them into bacchanal walkers of “the trail of wine-making,” who uncontrollably tasted the homemade nectar from different households in a trance-like state while listening to how their wine was made. Also in Collaboration, Ho Tsui-Ping, the Director of the Museum of Institute of Ethnology, Academia Sinica stated in “Mutual Recognition: The First Collaboration Exhibition” that “‘collaborative anthropology’ is an anthropology that best fits the ethics of the 21st century. It is not only ethically conscious in research and study, but also methodologically attentive to diverse voices from different directions. It is the way to provide anthropologists in the future richer legacy.” (p. 17) After the various experiences offered by The Hidden South around March 11, I became convinced that the exhibition has mastered the essential spirit of “collaboration”: a mutual recognition at the site. Whether bamboo bracelet weaving, mural-painting workshop, cross-stitching or wooden plate carving, these programs all required mutual recognition through facing each other and lending each other a hand that dissolve the hindrances of time and space to render collaboration possible. 

 

The second experience of The Hidden South was the sharing of trail-ness. That day, a group of friends and I rushed to Jialun Industry Road to join the sharing reception of House of Time, co-created by Chen Shing-Hsiung, Liu Chin-An and Chen Wen-Yi. This open, streamlined house was packed with adults and children inside and outside when we arrived. Music and dance of blessing overflew. All those present were also invited and engaged in the fluid relationship of dining, sharing and dancing. We could clearly see that the dining classroom and various concerts and folklore lectures emphasized on the idea of sharing. However, sharing required opening up roads for sharing as well as the inherent trail-ness created when the roads were built. Food, music and dance were the means to sharing, which were brought back by the exhibition. The reason was that the food used local ingredients and involved historical exchange of life and the evolution of lifestyle between the indigenous villages and the outside world. Music denoted meditation and excitement on the road and in transportation, which manifested the rhythm of life; and dance conveyed the physical rhythm, which was the sharing of resonating frequency. If one is to point out unique quality of the spiritual geography informed by “the thinking of the South” enhanced by The Hidden South, such inclusive spirit of sharing that encompassed heterogeneous qualities could not be overlooked. Expressive forms of individualism and capitalism were all converted in such space. 

 

The third time I visited the sites of The Hidden South was around the overture of “Migratory Music Gathering” in Tjuabar by Dazhu River at night. The musical event began with getting to know edible plants collected in the wilderness and learning the cooking of traditional Paiwan delicacies, including rice-cooking, pig-blood sausage and barbecue, before moving onto learning and exchanging craft skills. Participants were encouraged to bring their own food and drinks and to swim in the river before the main concert commenced, which featured live music performances by Chang Bulayoyaung, dakanow, Yu Hsin-Liang/Luo Wang-Sheng, Lin Ming-Chao, Viktor, Chu Shu-Chuan, Galesges, Balai as well as Japanese musicians from Okinawa. The event drew in many people from northern and western Taiwan, bringing the relationship of sharing to a ritualistic climax. From then on, Provincial Highway No. 9 would become a road of joyful reunion and sharing rather than a simple tarred road. 

 

The last time I came to The Hidden South was already the late autumn of 2018. I thought I was attending a workshop about indigenous huntsman’s tracking skills, but I later realized that it was to discover the trail-ness of coexistence demonstrated by “the mountain trekker.” After coming home and inheriting his family’s traditional hunting ground, hunter Darasong realized that it was a mountainous area where the hunting trails passed down from the family have been kept. Along these hunting trails, some of the rubbles in the soil contained moisture that contributed to the preservation of clear footprints. Whereas ordinary people like us could not tell whether a trace was created a few hours or a few days ago, a skilled huntsman like Darasong, who specialized in tracking could easily distinguish different marks and traces with a single glance because the footprints, for him, were like different musical notes that resonate with each other. In On Trail: An Exploration, the author mentioned that “Australian indigenous people are the greatest tracker. They almost start teaching children tracking skills shortly after they were born … The indigenous mothers teach their babies by putting a tiny lizard in front of them. As the lizard runs away, the baby chases after it, carefully tracking it back to where it hides.” Starting with lizards, children become better and better at tracking “until they can identify traces of light-footed animals and insects, such as beetles, spiders, ants, centipedes, scorpions, etc.” (p. 152) In order to capture Formosan muntjacs, goats and boars, hunters must be able to predict the direction of their movement. The first step is to find out their habitual trails and place traps there, such as laying down rocks or logs, digging holes, placing noose traps, etc. However, these only constitute the first lesson for the “mountain trekkers.”

 

Louis Liebenberg states in The Art of Tracking: The Origin of Science that “tracking is a science that fundamentally requires the same intellectual abilities as a modern science such as physics and mathematics.” “In the Kalahari Desert in South Africa, the Kungs encourage little boys to set up traps to capture small animals, and by doing so, learn about the tracks of animals.” (On Trails, p. 152-153) Lou led us into his family hunting ground, a site where generations of his family members have matched their strength with muntjacs, goats and boars. Nonetheless, in what way can we equate such tracking skills with “art”? 

 

We entered the hunting grounds respectively during the day and at night. Aside from reporting and praying for the blessings of the ancestral spirits, Darasong also pointed out that the essence of the hunting trail was not about the game but “coexistence.” First of all, the ecology revolving around flora and fauna in a hunting ground is also the ecological indicator that shows whether or not the indigenous village could continue and survive in a place. Therefore, a hunter that excels at tracking also plays the role of an ecological guide and assessor. In other words, the hunter needs to consider if the hunting might be excessive and hurt the seasonal cycle and rate of propagation. He must evaluate the migratory direction of the animal communities and the balance in their number to take what is necessary and hunt what is needed. If the family’s hunting ground becomes depleted, the entire village faces the possibility of migration for survival. The next point of concern is the potential changes in the overall environment. Different animals feed on different plants or insects, so examination of their feces naturally become signs based on which one can infer where certain animals might appear or gather for certain plants and insects. Plants, insects, animal and hunting trails naturally form an ecological entirety. Consequently, the tracking hunter and ecological assessor that emphasizes on lasting “coexistence” must take into serious consideration whether a hunting rifle is needed, whether hounds that might easily damage the environment are necessary, whether the number of traps should be increased to the extent that he could not check them all in time, and whether the prey might be too young or pregnant that the entire population might be affected if they were hunted. 

 

All animals make trails. Wild boars are particularly good at creating deceptive, disruptive ones, whereas sambars are very careful in deciding their feeding trails. From the viewpoint of “all beings are equal,” whereas boars’ trails create limited damage, concrete bridges and roads created by humans along Provincial Highway No. 9 are more catastrophic and create an uncertainty far exceeding the making of animals. Therefore, Darasong’s emphasis on the trail-ness of coexistence as well as his hunting and ecological ethics eventually showed in his sensitivity and disdain for the man-made “roads.”

The most poetic and artistic moment I experienced in The Hidden South was when Darasong led us to quietly sit next to a Lagerstroemia subcostata that was at least one century old, with our head lights turned off. After the darkest moment passed, floating fireflies began surfacing like spirits. As our bodies immersed in the tranquil air, leaves above our heads rustled, and a patch of starry sky appeared beyond the tree tops while fine and delicate glistening beads of dew could be seen around us. Specializing in tracking, the hunter told us that sambar deer usually appeared on a near slope when we quietly waited like this. It was their trail. As birds flied by in quietude with occasional cries and fireflies swam amidst trees in serenity, Darasong said he always thought of the innumerous times when he and the elders in the village walked these hunting trails in the past. In this meditative moment, all beings coexisted whereas the self became minimized, merging with the rhizomic roots sprawling across the mountains and streams and flying with the birds amidst the flowing air streams. We seemed to have entered a dimension, in which everything has always remained unchanged and all beings have enjoyed equality. For Darasong, this was his favorite moment and the trail-ness that he cherished the most. At that moment, I felt like telling him that it was mine, too.

 

 

路魂的冥想:

「南方以南」與精神地理的根莖延展

 

文 龔卓軍

 

我發現一條路的精神,也就是它的路魂,在於它如何根據使用者的需求持續演化。

───《路─行跡的探索》,羅伯特.摩爾(Robert Moor)

 

如果要我說「南方以南」有什麼策展方法上的突破,我會說,它實現了一種立基於南迴公路的「路徑的冥想」。猶如小說家傑克.凱魯亞克(Jack Kerouac)在小說《達摩流浪者》(The Dharma Bums)中,主角建議朋友「走路時牢牢盯著腳下的路,不要東張西望。地面快速後退的同時,讓自己進入一種出神狀態」。從來沒有。我走過南迴數十趟、數十年,但從來沒有好好停下來,盯著腳下的路,我的出神從來都是在汽車快速掠過的地景中完成的。但這一次,「南方以南」讓我、讓觀眾們停了下來,開始凝視過去從來不在乎的腳下的路徑。

 

從原本的公路轉運站出發,轉置為服務站,這個展覽就已經掌握了一個現代記憶的節點,安.芙羅瑞(Anne-Flore Cabanis)的淡色七彩線條書寫《線性空間》,吳燦政的《南迴聲音地圖》,謝聖華的《Ina的記憶花園》,戴克斯特.菲南德(Dexter Fernandez)的《Vuvu & Vuvu》,從抽象線條、在地聲音、植物生態、自由塗鴉四個方面,打開了一個問題:全長100公里的公路,經過全台灣彎度與坡度最大的暈車路段之後,除了沈葆禎、袁聞析、日本昭和年間的開路者之外,太麻里、金峰、大武、達仁四個鄉,由南迴公路所延展出來這些永無止盡、通向部落與山海的小路,究竟有什麼意涵?誰創造了它們?它們為什麼存在?你可以選任何一條路,去追問它為何而存在。

 

我們要問:除了現代道路適應汽車的路魂之外,關於「南方以南」,我們還有什麼?以下,我想要從路魂的裝置、共作的路魂、共享的路魂、共生的路魂四個方面,討論「南方以南」帶給我們什麼樣的路魂的冥想,指向這個展覽所指的「南方以南」,究竟體現了什麼獨特的價值。

 

首先是路魂的冥想裝置。從公路的盡頭,南田露營區的陳勇昌的《豐饒》開始,「藝術家以竹片編織陶壺、小米以及弓箭,象徵排灣族人懷著謙卑的心、謹守著土地倫理,隨順著自然時序有限的利用自然資源,孕育出天、地、人之間互敬互愛的豐饒關係。」游文富同樣以竹條編織了《南方向量》,持續著未竟的海的波浪。一直到邱承宏的《陽台》,向廣大的南方海域進行遙觀與冥想,希巨.蘇飛《翅膀》對於傳統儀式中熊鷹羽毛進行的冥思,最後是吳思嶔多媒體AR的《名字嗎?我有很多個》對於消失矮黑人的冥契介面的設置,以及豪華朗機工的《在屾》對於災變、材料與地景的循環冥思,我們從南田、尚武,經過「南方以南」服務站、大武國中的壁面,到達了大鳥部落。這個展覽誘使我們停下引擎、走下封閉的汽車體,或至少搖下車窗,減慢速度,開始走向路邊的沙灘、小路、平台或是了無人煙的小公園,視線指向山,凝望指向海。這種時空的轉置與身體的減速,打開了第一道的探問:這裡曾經發生了什麼?在顏色鮮豔的路標以外,是否存在著不同的生靈時空尺度?人類是如何把這條路塑造成現在的模樣,中間又要經歷過什麼樣的磨難?

 

然後是共作的路魂。我是在2018年3月11日與日本策展人港千尋第一次到達「南方以南」的現場的。南藝大藝創作博士班「當代策展學與詮釋人類學」課程實作,協同港千尋舉辦的「策展講座」,透過藝術家張恩滿的聯繫協助,我們在大鳥部落與策展團隊做了近身的接觸。我們發覺,策展團隊中的藝術家陳豪毅與張恩滿,都處於一種「找尋回返部落之路」的狀態之中。就像織者尤瑪.達陸在《共作:記「她方的記憶」──泰雅老物件的部落展示》一書中第一章的〈遇見與等待:記「她方的記憶」展〉一文的開始所述:「其實,這是一個等待與相遇的過程。經過多年的等待,終於在自己的部落,與祖先和老靈魂相遇……」(頁41)這個策展團隊是一個善於等待、能夠耐得到相遇的那一刻的團隊。這是強調大家共同走上「共作之路」時,不可或缺的心智條件。就我所知,這個「等待期」所經歷過的公部門與各團體間的協調工作,才是路魂冥想裝置的內裡支撐物,也是精神地理得以延展開來的第一要件。

 

於是,在那一天晚上,當我們參與藝術家黃博志在壢坵部落少妮媱手工烘焙坊舉辦的「當檸檬遇上小米.酒想認識你」工作坊時,在部落釀小米酒的族人遇上在家鄉釀檸檬酒的藝術家之後,一切流程在酒精的作用下都失效了,一種意想不到的釀酒秘方交流形式,在有人提到釀酒必須要作夢,而配方必須要靠祖靈在夢中的指示,才會有妙方的產生時,似乎震懾了年輕藝術家。與此同時,部落裡能量強大的女性,在帶入了飲酒作樂的酒神精神催化之下,連番的妙語與挑逗,讓全部參與工作坊的成員,似乎都被按下了解放靈魂的按鈕,成為一種狂放出神的「釀酒之路」的行走者,在眾魂出竅的狀態下,欲罷不能地品嚐各家美酒,同時聆聽他們的釀酒之方。同樣在《共作》一書中,中研院民族學研究所博物館主任何翠萍曾經在〈相認:記第一次共作展示案〉一文中說:「『共作人類學』是二十一世紀最符合倫理的人類學,不僅在研究上有倫理意識,同時在方法上更由於其重視多元和多方發聲,做它能為未來世代的人類學者留下更豐厚的遺產。」(頁17)在3月11日前前後後的「南方以南」體驗中,我相信這個展覽深切掌握了「共作」的精髓:當場的相認。不論是手環竹編、壁畫工坊、十字繡手作課程、木盤刻雕體驗課程,透過當場突破重重時空障礙的面對面、手接手的相認,共作才有發生的可能。

 

第二次對於「南方以南」的體驗,便是共享的路魂。那一天,我與一群朋友趕路到佳崙產業道路上,參與藝術家陳幸雄、劉晉安、陳文意的《家屋食間》落成分享會。這個一個開放的、流線型的家屋,到場的時候,裡裡外外充滿了部落的大人和小孩,也充滿了音樂和舞蹈的祝福。所有到場的人,也被邀請加入共食共享與共舞的流動關係之中。我們可以看到,「南方以南」的共食學堂和種種的音樂會、民間譚,強調的是共享的關係。然而,共享需要的是共享道路的開闢,以及開闢這些共享道路時創造出來的內在路魂。食物、音樂、舞蹈便是這個展覽重新打開的共享之道。因為,食物涉及了在地的食材,也涉及了部落與外部生活的歷史交界與型態轉換;音樂涉及了在道路上的、在交通載具上的冥想與昂揚,是生命韻律的呈現;而舞蹈則是身體律動,一種共振頻率的共享。如果「南方以南」強化的「南方思維」精神地理學有何特異之處,那是不可能少掉這種包容異質的共享精神。個人主義式的、資本主義式的表現型態,在此得到轉化的空間。

 

我在第三次到達「南方以南」的現場時,已是「洄游音樂聚」在夜晚的土坂部落大竹溪畔展開的時刻。這個音樂聚先在白天認識野菜、學習如何製作排灣族傳統美食:山地飯、豬血腸、烤肉,然後進行工藝交流學習,並鼓勵參與者帶食物與酒水來、下水參與洄游,最後才展開包括張布拉優揚、達卡鬧、尤信良/羅王生、林明昭、Viktor、朱淑娟、黑妞、巴賴等人的現場音樂分享,並邀請日本沖繩音樂家進行交流,吸引了許多由北部、西部聞風而來的朋友們,把共享的關係提升到接近祭典式的高潮。台九線至此不再只是一條路過的柏油路,而是一條歡聚共享之路。

 

最後一次抵達「南方以南」,已經是2018年的深秋了。原本以為來參與的是獵人追蹤術工作坊,後來才領悟,這是一次「走山的人」共生的路魂展示。獵人羅安聖回到家族傳統獵場,那是一片山,山上有家族傳承下來的獵人路徑。這些獵徑上,土壤中的碎石、有些帶著水份,常常可以保存清晰的腳印,我們無法分辨一道痕跡是幾小時前留下來的,還是幾天前留下來的。但是對擅長追蹤術的獵人安聖來說,四面八方都有蹄印,像不同的音符交互鳴響,安聖只要看一眼,就能輕鬆分辨不同的痕跡。在《路──行跡的探索》這本書中提到,「澳洲原住民是最厲害的追蹤高手。他們幾乎孩子一出生,就開始教導追蹤技巧。」「原住民母親必導寶寶的方式,是在寶寶面前放一隻小蜥蜴。蜥蜴倉皇跑走,寶寶追上去,小心翼翼地一路追蹤到牠的藏身之處。以蜥蜴為起點,孩子的追蹤技巧越來越熟練,『直到甲蟲、蜘蛛、螞蟻、蜈蚣、蠍子等腳步輕盈的動物走過的地方,他們也能辨認蹤跡。』」(頁152)為了捕捉山羌、山羊與山豬,你必須能夠預測牠的動向,首先就是要找出牠習慣出沒的路,把陷阱放在獸徑上,例如讓石塊或木頭倒下、挖出坑洞、置入腳套等等。然而,這只是「走山的人」的第一課。

李本伯格(Louis Liebenberg)曾在他的《追蹤的藝術:科學的起源》中提出:「追蹤的藝術是一種科學,需要的是智力跟現代物理學與現代數學一模一樣。」「在南非的喀拉哈里沙漠,坤族鼓勵小男孩設置陷阱捕捉小動物,藉此了解動物的足跡。」(《路》,頁152-153)安聖帶我們進入他的家族獵場,宛如進入了他的家族世代與山羌、山羊、山豬相互較勁的場域。然而,這樣的追蹤術,何來的「藝術」之有呢?

 

我們分別在白天與夜晚,分兩次進入獵場,除了進入時向祖靈之魂報告與祈禱之外,安聖指出的獵路之魂,其精神不在於獵取了多少獵物,而在於「共生」。首先,獵場中的動植物生態,其實也是部落是否得以在此地生存下去的生態指標。因此,擅於追蹤術的獵人,同時扮演的是生態的嚮導與評估者的角色。換句話說,獵人要考慮的是過度的獵殺是否破壞了季節的循環與繁殖的速度,他必須估量動物族群的遷移方向與數量上的平衡。取所當取,獵所當獵,如果本家的獵場被自己消耗殆盡,勢必得要考慮整個部落的遷徙,才能存續下去。其次是大環境的整體變化。不同的動物,會以不同的植物或昆蟲為食,因此,從動物糞便的分析,當然可以推斷牠可能會在哪些植物與昆蟲群體聚集之處現身,植物、昆蟲、獸徑、獵徑於是渾然形成一個整體的生態,就此而言,是否必要一定要用獵槍,是否一定要帶著容易破壞環境的獵狗、陷阱是否必要做無止盡的擴張以至於來不及巡視檢查、眼前的獵物是否太年幼或正在懷孕期而殺之可能造成族群滅絕,都成為一個強調長久「共生」的追蹤術獵人、生態評估者必須累計觀察列入評估的原則。

 

各種動物都會造路。野豬最會造出欺敵的、破壞性的路,而水鹿也可能審慎地安排自己進出覓食的路。從萬物平等的觀點來看,野豬破壞的路仍然有限,但人類造出的像台九線這樣充滿混凝土橋樑的路,所具有的破壞性與不安定性,恐怕遠遠超過所有動物不知道多少倍。安聖對於「共生的路魂」,對於獵狩的生態倫理的重視,最後表現在他對於眼前人造之「路」的敏感與不屑。

 

「南方以南」這個展覽為我帶來最詩意、最具有藝術性的一刻,就是安聖帶著我一行人,關掉頭燈,安坐在那棵少說也有百年的九芎樹旁的夜裡。The Hidden South。在最黯黑的片刻過去之後,眼前出現了有如靈魂飄浮的螢火蟲之光,身軀受靜止的空氣中沙沙的樹葉聲的籠罩,頭頂有樹冠層以上透出來的星空,而腳邊則有細密反映著微光的水珠。擅於追蹤術的獵人羅安聖說,這樣安靜的等待中,水鹿會出現在不遠的坡上,那是牠們的路,山梟山鳥會靜靜地啼鳴飛掠,螢火蟲也會無聲地浮游在樹木之間,而他會想起千百次與部落長輩共同走過的這一片遍佈著獵路的經驗,而這個冥想的時刻,萬物共生,自我縮小如虛空,既如根莖蔓延於山野溪流之間,又如鳥羽漂搖於大氣遷流之上,這一刻,我們彷彿進入了一個千年未曾改變、萬物生而平等的時空裡,這便是他最珍愛的時刻、他最珍惜的獵人魂之路。當時,我很想輕輕地說:我也是。

 

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本文收錄於《a firetime story》(「南方以南」群記),2021年3月出版。
This article is featued in the book, a firetime story (notes to The Hidden South), published in Mar 2021.
 

Photography Etang Chen
攝影 陳藝堂