Indiana Jones and the Secret of Survival
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But what if a person really could live and survive like Indiana Jones? Harrison Ford, who played Indy, taps into this at times in later movies such as The Fugitive.
What is it that makes him so skilled at survival and able to dispatch enemies that are after his life? He escapes danger again and again.
Is it possible to pick up a few survival tips from Indiana Jones? Yes.
Indiana Jones and the Secret of Survival: How to Read and Respond to DangerOne of the things that makes Indiana Jones so good at survival is that he knows how to get away from danger. He doesn't always dispatch his enemies. Sometimes (or often) he simply makes a run for it.
Sometimes he has to be a bit creative. He knows how to use his head and think outside the box -- and he's decisive.
It's important to be decisive - hesitation will cost a person to miss a window of opportunity; they simply don't seize the opportunity to escape. Hesitation can be a killer.
What would Indy do?Let's step into his shoes for a moment and see what Indy would do in the following situations:
Hot pursuitRaiders of the Lost Ark opens with one of the most famous action scenes in Hollywood history ... shortly after Indy retrieves the idol (for readers who remember, replacing the idol with a small bag of sand), he springs a trap, dropping a large round boulder from the ceiling, and has to run fast for the exit to the cave, many dangers and additional traps along the way.
He escapes from the cave and the boulder chasing him down and then stops suddenly -- a hundred armed tribesmen are waiting for him outside the cave, along with a Nazi who had somehow tracked Indy's progress for the sole purpose of letting him steal the idol. The tribesmen see the idol, fall to their faces in worship; Indy seizes the opportunity to make a run for it.
An airplane and pilot are waiting a couple hundred yards away, the plane resting on pontoons on a small lake. It's a plane specifically built for water take-offs and landings. Indy races down a hill toward the plane, tribesmen in pursuit, and gets to the plane in time to take off and fly away to safety.
What can we learn about survival from Indiana Jones?Always have a get-away vehicle or simply a pre-planned escape route if you're traveling on foot. You don't have to be an archaeologist on the hunt for ancient artifacts to put your life in danger. You might be living in a time of widespread disaster, or worse -- a time of societal collapse -- where resources are hard to come by and now every day for you is a fight for survival and a race to get away from the many dangers that are present.
If you have to do some scavenging, anything you're lucky to find might attract the attention of other scavengers out looking for food, water, items -- so have a get-away planned. If automobiles are hard to come by (simply because there's no gas stations still operating in the apocalypse or "Great Tribulation" or whatever you want to call it), consider using a bicycle, horse, or even a boat / kayak as a means to make a get-away.
A lot of people think things like, well, if society falls, I'll just turn to hunting and fishing. First of all, good for you if know how to hunt and fish. Second of all -- a lot of people don't know how to hunt and fish, and some of these people are very bad people and would be willing to kill you and simply take your catch from you, if they can do so.
You might have a plan to go fishing, but do you have a plan to now get back to your camp with that fish?
Or you might have a plan to drop into a town or city to seek resources, but do you have a plan to then get out of Dodge once you've retrieved those resources? You might be looking for a hammer, can opener, roll of wire, candles, lighters, medicine etc. Now that you've got what you're looking for, how do you get out of the danger zone?
Have a plan - and have a get-away vehicle (bicycle, horse, canoe, kayak, make-shift zip line) whenever possible. If a canoe or kayak, have it hidden in the brush near the water. Build yourself a couple hidden trails to it -- should you have to run through the woods, create obstacles (even a maze of sorts) in advance, and then practice running the trail following the route you know so well. This way if anyone chases you into the woods you'll have a route planned and may be able to easily confuse them and make your escape.
Being taken captive and making an escapeIndy escaped the tribesmen on sheer luck. Or was it really luck or simply quick thinking? Rather than give up all hope of escape when confronted with a hundred armed tribesmen -- like some people would have done due to sudden panic and overwhelming fear -- instead, at the first chance he bolted -- catching the tribesmen off-guard and getting enough head start that he was able to make that get-away and get to the waiting plane.
In kidnapping situations, such as those faced by tourists, diplomats and business people in foreign countries, victims are advised to try to make their escape immediately, at the first sign that they're about to be kidnapped. The moment they're being restrained, and then try to resist, it now becomes dangerous -- this is when the beating starts. Attackers have time to pull weapons, etc.
Your window of escape is when you first spot danger. If you wait just a few seconds too long danger will overtake you and that window of opportunity has vanished.
Early warning system - red flagsIndy, and people who have a strong survival sense, develop an early warning system in the brain from previous exposure to danger. Now red flags go off in the mind at the first hint of danger. In the military and law enforcement this is referred to as situational awareness and it's something that can be learned through extensive training.
But "situational awareness" isn't something only learned in a military or law enforcement class on defensive tactics. Street kids learn situational awareness at a young age and many are able to adapt and improvise to survive. Just ask several of the poor kids living in third world countries in South America and Africa for example.
On the streets, a person who has an early warning system usually means that they faced dangerous situations from an early age and developed a stronger than normal fight or flight response than the typical person growing up in the modern age, who simply doesn't face danger.
I know this system well. I was in several semi-dangerous situations at a young age growing up and I became a "runner". I learned how to run from danger and how to lose pursuers. Run, Forest, run! Well, it wasn't quite like that. I was usually running from the police, even as young as 12 years old, I hate to say. I lived on the wrong side of the tracks. By the time my folks moved to a better area I had already learned the ways of a kid who grows up on the streets. Fight or flight became a way of life all through my teens. The police, the courts, the juvenile authorities, were not high on my list deserving respect.
Later in my twenties, living in the "civilized" world, I found out what it means to have an "early warning" system. I was able to stop a bar fight before it could even start, typically by grabbing the wrists of my opponents right at the moment they were going to throw a punch. In a bar fight the guy to throw the first punch usually lands it. If red flags go off you can read a person, recognize that they're working themselves up to throw a punch -- that's when you step into their range and grab their wrists. Usually their arms will still be at their sides, where your arms are, and they're not watching your hands -- they're glaring at you. If you're swift, you can grab their wrists. Hold tight. Talk them down. Usually bystanders will intervene, the person who's wrists you grabbed may become belligerent, and the bouncers will walk them right out the door. Nighty night, buddy.
These were usually people I knew -- not strangers. Strangers I would have duked it out with. Friends of friends I preferred not to fight for reasons I don't quite remember today. Thank God I found Jesus a few years later in life and put that chapter behind me.
Indy's early warning systemFor Indiana Jones to avoid capture and avoid death again and again, he's got an incredible early warning system and a heightened fight or flight response -- making Indiana Jones one of Hollywood's greatest survivalists, right up there with John Rambo in the movie First Blood, and maybe even beyond John Rambo. In some of Indy's harrowing escapes I don't think Rambo would have been so lucky.
How do we adapt this into our survival game? Learn to pay attention -- learn to notice details that point to trouble. Spot dangerous people, make a mental note of who they are, and then be aware of all their movements. If you grow up on the streets this will keep you from being jumped or someone striking you from behind. If you're living in the apocalypse you'll be able to spot a robber -- possibly a murderer -- before he can get into range to take your life.
If you're a Native American living in early century America, and picking berries near a lake, your ears are listening for the birds and frogs to stop making noise; for crickets to stop chirping, for a twig to break in the distance; an enemy tribe may be stalking you and your early-warning system will keep you alive another day if you are simply paying attention to little details that trouble is brewing.
During a time of collapse people will be smart to learn from early century Native Americans -- learn the sounds of the environment, of the forest, and be ready for flight, or be ready to fight. Don't be caught off-guard.
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Learning to read signs of danger and respond earlyAmerican outlaws from the Wild West days of the 1800s were notorious for being able to read signs of danger (those that stayed alive, anyway) and notorious for spending many hours training themselves to be quick to the gun to shoot back in self-defense, or simply to shoot first. (The same can be said for several of the local authorities that would eventually hunt many of them down and bring them to justice for their crimes.)
If you're living during a time of collapse or if you're just a tourist or diplomat traveling overseas, watch your back and know your surroundings at all times. During a time of collapse kidnappings and robbery and sometimes rape and sex slavery (a cruel and utterly horrific crime that is taking place today in several dangerous regions of the world) are likely to be a constant threat just as they are now in many countries that westerners travel to.
Be able to get to your weapon quicklyHave a weapon for self-defense and be able to get to that weapon quickly. Practice it for many days, hours, and weeks. As the years pass, continue to practice from time to time, don't let the skill get rusty. A gun, a knife, a baton, crow bar, pepper spray, or taser -- all of these can be helpful against a sudden ambush -- specifically when you're assumed to be unarmed.
In Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom, early in the movie Chinese gangsters after an artifact attempt to ambush Indiana Jones but Indy makes a get-away. To the person watching it may look like luck -- but if Indiana Jones is the true survivalist we see on the screen he's got himself one heck of an early-warning system and he knows how to spot trouble and he's already calculating a means of escape at the first hint of danger.
At the same time in the back of his mind he knew the possibility for trouble existed and he was ready for it.
Chinese gangsters may have made the mistake of thinking Indy is just a typical archaeologist -- and he catches them by surprise.
Surprise your attackers with bold and even terrifying moves and you can create a few seconds of time to make an escape.
Raiders of the Lost Ark ... Newsflash ... Ark Has Been LocatedRaiders of the Lost Ark focused on the Nazi hunt for the Ark of the Covenant from the Bible that contained the Ten Commandments handed down to Moses.
People have wondered and searched for the Ark of the Covenant from the first Indiana Jones movie for quite some time, thought to be lost somewhere in the Middle East, it's last location as written in the Old Testament of the Bible. How come no one has found it yet?
In the last chapter of the Bible, Revelation, it's said to be in Heaven, with God (Revelation 11:17-19). So at some point in human history God did something yet again defying what we know about science and transported it to his "Heavenly kingdom" (or "realm" or "world" or whatever word you want to use). That's what the Bible shows in this passage in Revelation.
The next time you're watching the History Channel or Discovery Channel and there's an episode about the "lost Ark" from the Indiana Jones movies, you can laugh and know that they'll never find it. Not on earth anyway. It's not here anymore.
In a dangerous world, be on your toes, don't be taken by surpriseIn a dangerous world you need to be on your toes. God can look out for you from up above, but that calls for living by faith, repentance, and understanding what that means. If you're not ready for that and think you've got what it takes to tackle the dark, dangerous days ahead coming to this world -- the "Great Tribulation" as it's known in the Bible, which is the wrath of God on the nations -- or the "apocalypse" or "coming collapse" as it's thought of by everyone else who doesn't believe in the Bible -- well, start learning to think a lot like Indiana Jones and develop situational awareness, survival tactics, and an effective means for self defense.
The only way you're going to survive long is to keep yourself out of danger as much as possible and also be ready to escape danger should it take you by surprise -- or should it just face you one day and you have no where else to run.
On that day you're unable to escape danger it just might be the perfect day for you to start praying. Maybe faith will come to you that day and you will be delivered safely. Looking at the Bible God has delivered his people many times when up against impossible odds and incredible danger.
Remember that the next time you think all hope is lost. You have hope.
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