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A Bear's Dying Act: Killing the Hunter Who Shot Him

I'm not a hunter. (Except of MILFs! Heyyyooo ...) But by no means am I anti-hunting. On the contrary. The hunters I know tend to be among the most environmentally responsible people among us. Living close to the land. Controlling the excess population. Keeping the ecosystem in balance. Respecting their place on the food chain. Using every part of the animal. I respect them as someone who doesn't believe that my entrees come on a styrofoam tray covered in shrink wrap, and appreciate the good citizens who raise, harvest, butcher and sell my delicious dinners. 

That said, I'm also a big fan of Nature itself. Both its tranquil beauty and its brutal, violent, struggle for survival. The duality that is the very essence of the Circle of Life. The Yin and Yang of being a part of life on this spinning blue marble. In which man and animal both must compete, sometimes to the death. 

Source - A 62-year-old hunter has been killed in a revenge attack by the bear he mortally wounded in Russia.

Graphic pictures show the discovery of the man's body, in the Tulun district of Irkutsk region, Siberia, with the beast's carcass found 54 yards away. 

The unnamed hunter is believed to have shot and wounded the predator from a platform in a tree. 

Perhaps believing the brown bear was dead, he descended from the tree only to be attacked and killed by the beast in its final act.

This was when the animal is thought to have struck, with its fangs and claws, crushing the man's skull in the furious woodland attack.

We can all mourn these two and be sorry for the families of both the hunter and the bear, because they have lost a loved one. But the end comes to all creatures. All any living thing can hope for is a good death. And they don't get much better than this. Each of these majestic mammals died as they lived, essential parts of the great balance of nature, competing for resources under the vast indifference of heaven.

And while I'm a biased, typically rooting for my hometown species in these fights, I have to hand it to the bear here. That is an incredible way to shuffle off this mortal coil. Shot. Wounded. Knowing you don't have long to live. But clinging to life just long enough to exact vengeance on the one who did you in. Playing opossum to draw him close. Then springing your trap. That is how all your truly great revenge stories go. Confucius supposedly said that before you seek vengeance, you should first dig two graves, but this bear didn't have time for that. All he had was the fangs and claws evolution gave him, the motivation to crush a motherfucker's skull, and the comfort that comes from knowing he evened the score as the light left his eyes. 

The drama here is just breathtakingly harsh and at the same time, beautiful. The bear did the ursine version of Ahab's death speech: 

Ho, ho! from all your furthest bounds, pour ye now in, ye bold billows of my whole foregone life, and top this one piled comber of my death! Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee!

And so, died a hero's death. 

I can only hope that somewhere beyond this material world is an afterlife where these two old adversaries can walk the woods together as friends, recounting their fatal duel and sharing stories of their lives for eternity. Godspeed, to hunter and hunted both.