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Off Topic No such thing as a bad/ "evil" knife , if it works !

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by DocJD, Jun 30, 2019.

  1. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002
    I think the issue is being put into too binary of choices, to be honest. Personally, I feel it is unreasonable to "fear" a knife based on what a knife looks like. I also wouldn't have cared if the young man in the video whipped out a fantasy bladed tonfa if it meant he saved a life. I don't have an issue with this kid using his edc to save the day. My point is that some knives look scary on purpose. Now "scary" can be an aesthetic. I get that. I have lots of wicked looking knives I bought because I liked that aspect of them.

    I guess my point isn't about the merit of should someone carry a knife that looks "scary". I personally have no problem with that. I edc a large ZT 303 with tiger stripes on the blade that opens with a thunderous "thwack". My choice in knife may upset some. My point is that some knives ARE going to be perceived as scary by most people. Not scary as in "I'm afraid of your knife". More as in it has an aggressive design, is modeled after a style of knife designed as a fighting/defense knife, or has been given further angular features to accentuate the "weaponiness".

    I've got a new Himalayan Imports Ring Knife on my belt as I type. It's a karambit. It's even more of a karambit than the karambit they have made for a decade and a half. Gone is the khukri-like shape and heavy weight and the faux/quasi sharpened clip. This knife is much lighter, much thinner and more fragile as it has been redesigned for more martial work. The whole back of the blade is razor sharp and it even has a bit of what looks to be jimping at first glace but is in reality fully sharpened flat serrations. It's a weapon and looks like it. It's a "scary" knife. Now I opened boxes with it all day...because I can:D My ZT would have been a better choice, but I wanted to play with a new toy, and I was making a new sheath for the Karambit. I'm sure any reasonable person would have questioned WHY I was using a 4" bladed, double edged knife to open up boxes of chemicals. It certainly didn't look made for the job.

    So in short, I don't have a problem with the kid carrying a cheap karambit as an EDC. Hell, what I have on me cost me $140:D I'm sure he pressed it into all kinds of service besides saving the life of a child. I still think it's a scary knife that is designed to look scary or at least "cool". I don't begrudge anyone finding to look that way, but I don't judge this kid for carrying it. He obviously made it work in the situation at hand.
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  2. BenchCo Spydermade

    BenchCo Spydermade

    Feb 10, 2014
    And your stuck fiddlin with that sak nailnick losing milliseconds...
    DocJD and David Mary like this.
  3. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    Of course they are , because of a few GD moronic fools who spoiled things for everyone else . And the politicos who's only knee-jerk response is to ban everything ! :mad::thumbsdown::thumbsdown:
  4. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    I agree. Even if you blow off a finger.... it was "your mistake" not the fireworks. Fireworks are not illegal in TN. Lots of places selling them here. In PA where I grew up, the cops actually will check cars for fireworks coming from out of state. Pretty screwed up priorities as far as I'm concerned.

    Oh, we're talking about knife choices and their use.... :D

    Fox News did in fact mention Logan (Chick-fil-A) incident today.
    BenchCo Spydermade and DocJD like this.
  5. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    There is nothing wrong with a SAK , but it does not capture the imagination of the young like a sexy badass dangerous Zombie Apocalypse thingy .

    I know of ZERO popular culture / entertainment exposure for the poor SAK vs all kind of tactical sexy fighting knives on tons of video games and movies .

    So , like it or not ...if knives have any future at all ...it will be what the youngsters want . Karambits rule ! :rolleyes:
  6. JParanee

    JParanee Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 23, 2006
    I don’t know much about mail ninja goofy folders being evil but

    Historically there have been many blades deemed evil

    These were mostly swords especially in the Japanese culture that bit their maker

    These swords had long history’s of being blood thirsty and would not only cut their maker but their owner than


    Long a staple of fantasy stories, the idea of magical or cursed swords is actually a pervasive one among the history and myths of many cultures throughout the world. One place where such tales have long been entwined with lore and historical accounts is the country of Japan. With its long history of feudal warfare and samurai warriors, the sword, usually referred to as the katana in Japanese, was long more than just a weapon, but rather a sacred, revered object and a way of life. For the samurai who wielded them, their katana were an extension of themselves, and were the result of the painstaking efforts of master swordsmiths who elevated their craft to the point that the Japanese katana became world renowned for superior quality, beauty, and lethality.

    Considering this long tradition of supreme quality, reverence, and how intertwined with Japanese culture, history, and legend the katana became, it is perhaps no surprise that Japan also has its tales of mysterious swords said to be cursed, magical, or both. Here among the history of heated sword duels between battling samurai, and swordsmiths toiling away to forge their deadly blades, are accounts of katana that have become just as known for their mysterious alleged powers as they are for their craftsmanship.

    Among the greatest and most legendary of Japan’s famed swordsmiths was the one called Muramasa Sengo, who lived and pursued his craft during the Muromachi period (14th-15th century AD). Both Muramasa and his school of sword making were renowned for the extraordinary quality and sharpness of their blades, which made the weapons highly prized and sought after by warriors and generals. Indeed, Muramasa became well regarded as being one of the finest swordsmiths who had ever lived, but he also became notorious for his rather volatile nature and a dark curse that was increasingly believed to imbue his swords.

    Many of such rumors began with the abrasive, venomous personality of Muramasa himself. In addition to being obviously a brilliant swordsmith, he was also purported to be rather insane and prone to flying into sudden fits of violent rage, during which he would lash out at anyone unlucky enough to be nearby. This unbalanced mind, which teetered on the brink of total madness, combined with his relentless perfectionism and unbridled passion for crafting lethal swords to congeal into an unstable mix of genius, bloodlust, intense focus, and insanity, and these qualities were said to be passed on to the katana he forged. Adding to this was Muramasa’s alleged habit of feverishly praying to whoever would listen that his swords become “great destroyers,” and his swords gained a rather ominous reputation despite their popularity and high demand.

    Numerous dark and sinister qualities were attributed to the supposed curse of Muramasa’s swords. Perhaps the most persistent was that the swords had a tendency to possess their wielders in a sense, sending them into a berserker battle rage and in some versions granting them superior swordsmanship, and bestowing them with temporary superhuman strength and resistance to pain and damage. The cursed Muramasa swords were also said to have a thirst for blood, and that if they weren’t sated by that spilled by the enemy then they would turn on their owners, forcing them to commit suicide to appease them. Indeed, it was often said that as soon as a Muramasa blade was drawn it ruthlessly demanded blood before it could be replaced back into its scabbard, meaning almost certain doom for the wielder if there was no one else around to vent the sword’s bloodlust upon. Even when not drawn the swords were said to sometimes hungrily call out to be released, or to try and compel their owners to go out hunting for some poor soul to murder.

    Although undeniably potent weapons formidable in battle, this dark curse allegedly made the swords and their wielders dangerous for everyone around them. Many tales sprung up of Muramasa swords turning on their owners, lashing out to strike down and drink in the blood of anyone within reach, including not only enemies, but allies and even family members, which the wielder could do nothing to stop while held in thrall to the sword’s evil frenzy. Tales describing samurai armed with Muramasa swords lashing out at dear friends, allies, and family as they watched helplessly as their own bodies cut them down were numerous. At their most bloodthirsty and rage-fueled the swords were said to hardly discriminate between friend and foe, and used their owners merely as instruments with which to help them kill. It was not uncommon to hear of the owners of Muramasa swords slowly going insane as they were warped and twisted to their weapons’ demonic will, sometimes killing themselves to escape the dark, madness inspiring prison.

    This sinister reputation eventually ended up being further fueled when the Tokugawa Shogunate, which was the last feudal government in Japan, was established in 1603 by the shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu, who firmly believed that Muramasa blades were cursed, and blamed them for the deaths of many of his friends, allies, and relatives. Indeed, apparently the shogun’s father, Matsudaira Hirotada, and his grandfather, Matsudaira Kiyoyasu, were both cut down when their retainers were overcome by a murderous trance while wielding such swords. Tokugawa even claimed that he had been badly cut by a Muramasa katana that was being carried by one of his samurai guards as he inspected his ranks. In later days his own wife and adopted son were allegedly excecuted using a Muramasa blade. All of this stoked rumors that Muramasa swords had it in for the Tokugawa family, and that they had a special affinity for killing members of his clan.

    This notion became so prevalent that Ieyasu Tokugawa eventually banned Muramasa katana in his domain. Many of them were subsequently melted down or otherwise destroyed, but since they were so revered for their sheer quality others were hidden or had any distinguishing features altered or removed, even in the face of severe punishment for owning one, typically the forcing of the guilty party to commit ritual suicide, or seppuku. Despite this, Muramasa katana continued their trajectory to legendary status. Considering these katana were thought to be able to seek out and kill the shogun and his family, there was also a renewed demand for the swords among Tokugawa’s enemies, which resulted in some enterprising lesser swordsmiths forging clever fake replicas for profit. In fact, because of the number of such forgeries crafted during this era it is to this day difficult to reliably tell if a purported Muramasa katana is authentic or not.

    Often directly contrasted with the cursed, chaotic evil of Muramasa swords were those of another renowned swordsmith and priest who lived several hundred years earlier by the name of Gorō Masamune (1264–1343 AD), who is considered to be perhaps the greatest who has ever lived. Masamune’s reputation couldn’t be any more the polar opposite of Muramasa. Whereas Muramasa was seen as an impulsive, violent, and psychotic madman, Masamune was mostly described as patient, wise, clear-headed, and even-tempered. His creations were famous for not only their supreme sharpness, durability, and quality in an era when steel imperfections were common and the technology primitive, but also their elegant beauty; as much works of art as they were weapons of war.
  7. JParanee

    JParanee Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 23, 2006
    Perhaps it was the more benevolent, honorable qualities of Masamune that led to stories that this was channeled into his katana, much as it was rumored that Muramasa’s chaotic bloodlust had been passed on into his own. It was often said that rather than cutting, killing, and maiming indiscriminately, a Masamune katana would only cut what the owner wished it to. If one were to strike out at something and decide they didn’t want to do it any harm, a Masamune sword was said to fail to cut it, despite its legendary sharpness. The swords would also allegedly not cut into anything that was undeserving of it, and would not kill the innocent. In essence, Masumune’s katana were more like blessed swords as opposed to Muramasa’s cursed ones.

    One old mythical tale illustrates this perception. In it, the two swordsmiths are together one day, impossible considering that they lived centuries apart but it is just a tale, and they began to debate who could make the finer katana. They agreed to a competition of sorts, in which each of them would place their swords into a fast moving stream to see which one cut the best. Muramasa’s katana cut everything that came into contact with it, including twigs, branches, leaves, and fish, indiscriminately cleaving everything with perfect precision. Masumune’s blade, on the other hand, cut twigs and leaves but spared the fish, which bounced harmlessly off its edge. Masamune gleefully declared himself the winner, as his blade was clearly better at cutting things up, but a monk who had passed through and begun curiously watching the whole thing pointed out that it was in fact Masamune’s sword that was better, as it did not cut anything that was undeserving of it, in this case living things, whereas Muramasa’s displayed a cold and blind desire to kill. This particular story is all mere legend, but it displays the difference between the two swordsmiths and the juxtaposition of the powers commonly associated with their creations at the time.

    Of all of the swords that Masamune forged, by far the most famous is the one called Honjo Masamune, which was owned by a well respected general of the Uesugi clan named Honjo Shigenaga (1540-1614 AD). During the fourth battle of Kawanakajima in 1561, an enemy allegedly attacked Honjo with the sword, managing to cleave his sturdy helmet cleanly in half, yet remarkably leaving Honjo’s head totally intact, without even so much as a scratch. Both combatants were doubtlessly surprised by this unexpected outcome, but it was Honjo who would use it to his advantage to vanquish his aggressor and thus claim the sword that had spared him for his own. When he retired from war, Honjo fell on hard times and sold the katana that bore his name to the powerful Toyotomi clan, who then passed it on to the shogun Ieyasu Tokugawa when they fell under his rule, the very same one who would interestingly enough ban Muramasa’s swords.

    The Tokugawa Shogunate held onto the legendary Honjo Masamune for generations, passing it down to each new shogun until the shogunate fell, when it was transferred into the private collections of the ousted Tokugawa family. When World War II came rumbling over the horizon, and the Allied forces emerged victorious, all family-owned katana were ordered to be handed over, which were still treated as revered and almost sacred heirlooms by the Japanese, especially those descended from the once great samurai families. Most of these weapons were destroyed or unceremoniously passed out to American soldiers as trophies, and the legendary national treasure, the Honjo Masamune, so steeped in history and lore, was one of these.

    The Tokugawa descendant Iemasu Tokugawa handed over his family’s entire, priceless sword collection, dropping them off at a police station in Mejiro in December of 1945, after which they were collected by a mysterious sergeant of the US 7th Cavalry known only as “Coldy Bimore,” before seeming to vanish off the face of the earth. The sword has not been seen since. Considering the importance of this particular cultural artifact, it was probably recognized as valuable and spared from being melted down, but no one really knows. Although many other Masamune swords have survived into the present day, all we know is that this revered, possibly magical sword and national sacred treasure of Japan known as Honjo Masamune has faded into history, possibly in some private collection somewhere, its great legacy buried under a coating of dust. Avid sword enthusiasts have spent a lot of time and effort trying to track the Honjo Masamune down, but it has never been found and its ultimate fate remains a mystery.
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  8. JParanee

    JParanee Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 23, 2006
    One sword with origins more decidedly cloaked in pure legend is the one known as the Kusanagi, also known as the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi, or “The Grass Cutting Sword,” or its even more impressive original name of Ame-no-Murakumo-no-Tsurugi, meaning “Sword of the Gathering Clouds of Heaven.” According to the lore, a god of storms by the name of Susanoo engaged in combat an evil, eight-headed serpent called the Yamata-no-Orochi, which he eventually defeated and then began cutting off each of its heads and tails. Within one of the fearsome beast’s tails was found a fabulous sword which he called the Ame-no-Murakumo-no-Tsurugi and gifted to the sun goddess Amaterasu. In later centuries this sword came into the possession of a warrior named Yamato Takeru, which he carried into battle and discovered to have rather amazing powers.

    In one incident, Yamato is said to have been ambushed while on a hunting trip by a group of warriors who killed his horse and set the field of long grass on fire with flaming arrows. Thinking that he was doomed to a fiery death and frantically cutting at the burning grass to staunch the incoming spread of the fire, Yamato was surprised to discover that his sword, the Ame-no-Murakumo-no-Tsurugi, had the power to control the wind to aim powerful gusts in any direction he lashed out at. This enabled him to push the fire in the direction of his enemies and allow him to escape his ordeal, after which he rechristened his magical sword the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi.

    This tale is very prevalent in Japanese folklore, and appears in the ancient 8th century text the Kojiki, or “Records of Ancient Matters,” which is a tome of historical myths, as well as the Nihon Shoki, also called the “Chronicles of Japan,” which is an 8th century text of more factual historical records. Although the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi, with its bizarre origin story and purported wind powers, seems like it must be a purely mythical construct, it has long been considered to be an actual real sword. According to the Nihon Shoki, which is a largely reliable record, this sword did exist and was moved from the Imperial Palace to the Atsuta Shrine in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, in 688 because it was thought to be somewhat cursed by that time and was blamed for Emperor Tenmu’s deteriorating health. Despite this newfound sinister reputation as a bearer of illness, the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi nevertheless was considered a precious national treasure, one of the Imperial Regalia of Japan, and was sequestered within the shrine for safekeeping.

    After the sword arrived at Atsuta Shrine, it was hidden away from public view, allegedly wrapped up within a wooden box with a stone embedded in it. It is supposedly only brought out for very special occasions, such as Imperial coronation ceremonies, and even then it remains ensconced within layers of wrapping and secured within its box. The sword is kept so secretive that very few have ever even seen it, and indeed it is unclear whether it even truly exists at the shrine or not. The Shinto priests of the shrine refuse to display it, and even most of them have never laid eyes on the actual sword itself, only its box.

    Those who have gazed upon the sword are said to have met with great misfortune, as is the case with the Shinto priest Matsuoka Masanao and some companions, who claimed to have stolen a glance at it while replacing the sword’s box during the Edo period. Although they were able to describe that the wooden box held within it another stone box lined with gold, as well as what the sword itself looked like, with a blade shaped like a calamus leaf and of a metallic white in color, everyone who looked upon it purportedly fell violently ill and died, and the only survivor would be Matsuoka. This is the last known time that the sword was seen outside of its box, and even within the box it is rarely glimpsed. The last time this box was seen by anyone is apparently during the ceremony in which Emperor Akihito took the Imperial throne in 1989.

    Although for the most part it is known that these legendary swords exist, with Masamune and Muramasa katana still on display in museums or private collections, and historical records suggesting that the great Honjo Masamune and Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi at least did exist in some form, it is hard to say if any of these swords ever had any of the purported powers or curses that were attributed to them. Many of these tales have potential truth to them that has become so married to legend and myth that it is hard to untangle the two, and even fairly reliable historical accounts from the era are not always clear on how much they have been perhaps colored by folklore. Nevertheless, these tales and accounts provide a fascinating look into the world of alleged magical swords and the history of these objects within the lore of Japan. Whether their powers were real or not, our fascination with such stories and the intriguing, mysterious nature of them certainly are.

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  9. JParanee

    JParanee Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 23, 2006
    I’ve commissioned a few very good swords that have bite their makers

    One was the last Katana Phill Hartsfield ever made

    I commissioned the sword for a special occasion and in Phill’s hast to ship it to me while he was wrapping the sword up it bite him

    When I unpacked the sword the brown paper that Phill would wrap his swords in had dried blood all over it

    Kind of shocked I called him and he said oh yea it got me it’s blood thirsty be careful :)


    Recently the Dragonfly Cutter that Mirabile made me bite him while sharpening ..... a few times :)


    So needless to say when using it at full speed I’m respectful

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  10. YellowSwiss


    Sep 28, 2015
    I like knives
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  11. ScooterG

    ScooterG You mean Ireland? Yeah, it’s mine. Gold Member

    Mar 15, 2016
    Reported for calling me insane.
    marcinek likes this.
  12. T.L.E. Sharp

    T.L.E. Sharp That's right, it's genuine Velveeta... Platinum Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    I've read through a good portion of this thread and genuinely can't figure out what's being argued...

    Should one carry a "scary" knife? Is that it? Who gives a shit? Should you listen to rock or pop, like men or women, have a burger or a salad... whatever floats your boat cupcake. It's all fair game.

    As for people being afraid of some knives: people are also afraid of dogs, heights and holes. I've got two dogs, have been bungee jumping and often use a sponge to clean things. I don't consider the phobias of stangers in any other aspect of my life, why would I consider them when choosing my knife?
  13. rover

    rover Basic Member Basic Member

    Jul 9, 2004
    This forum has some wierd threads sometimes.
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  14. ScooterG

    ScooterG You mean Ireland? Yeah, it’s mine. Gold Member

    Mar 15, 2016
    I’m afraid of empty Chick-Fil-A’s on Sunday afternoons.
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  15. T.L.E. Sharp

    T.L.E. Sharp That's right, it's genuine Velveeta... Platinum Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    Just buy a pair of cheap glasses and paint a crowd on the lenses. Wear them on Sundays and it'll seem like the chikfila is full! The service will be garbage though.
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  16. David Mary

    David Mary KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jul 23, 2015
    It's not really been about knives, it's been about the perceptions that should be expected from people based on a combination of behavior and characteristics of the knife chosen for public or social use, and whether we care about projecting perceptions that are nonthreatening or threatening to people in general.

    Some people are more considerate, and some people are less. One of these two dispositions is more selfless, the other more selfish. One is more conducive to a peaceful and harmonious society, the other is less. We all know whether we gravitate more towards the one or the other disposition based on how much we care about others' peace of mind, and what steps or actions we take or omit to respect, or disturb it.
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  17. James Y

    James Y

    Feb 18, 1999
    Speaking of 'cursed' (or haunted) katana, I recall back in the early '80s reading an article in one of the martial arts magazines (possibly Black Belt or Karate Illustrated), in which an American Iaido expert, who was a familiar fixture in the traditional forms divisions in the U.S. karate tournament circuit (IIRC, his name was Dale Kirby), mentioned that one day, while practicing alone in his dojo, an antique katana that was displayed on the wall flew across the room, sticking tip-first into another wall. I don't know if the sword had been displayed in its scabbard or not, and if so, if it came out of its scabbard by itself in order to stick into the wall. IIRC, he said that afterwards, he either moved that sword into another, more secure location within the dojo, or maybe even removed it from the building. I do believe he mentioned he had practiced with it in the past, but stopped doing so after that incident.

    I had a friend from Japan who told me about a cursed antique katana that was kept on display high up on a wall in a Buddhist temple in Japan, as a way of containing the negativity that had been embedded into the blade. He said that the sword had been tested to cut through condemned criminals' bodies to see how many it could cut through in one stroke, and IIRC, he said it was a "5-body sword." He said he had seen the sword, and that the blade had a bluish tint to it, and gave off an evil vibe. I can't confirm any of this, I'm just sharing what I can recall him saying about it once.

    Personally, I wouldn't discount the possibility of some weapons like swords, knives, axes or whatever, that were used to kill, having some negative energy attached to them. But then, I'm sure I've gone way OT for this thread.

    Last edited: Jul 2, 2019
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  18. David Mary

    David Mary KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jul 23, 2015

    Items used for the commission of evil can be given over to the influence of evil spirits. It's why I choose to "bless, and curse not." I don't want my mouth to be given over to those spirits.

    Speculation: A sword used for killing in a just war or rightly condemned criminals against true justice would likely be a different story.
  19. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    Great post and hits the mark. The one variable is emotion and that can change from hour to hour, day to day (and so forth) and it impacts how we react, want "harmonious", feel rebellious, simply don't give a crap what other people think, or care a lot about perceptions.

    It is kind of like.... I always treat a knife like a knife to cut stuff.... then one day you are playing around with a sledge hammer and have some cut logs and trying to "baton" them using the sledge and knife risking breaking the knife or personal injury. You know you shouldn't do it, but you do it anyway.
    BenchCo Spydermade likes this.
  20. craytab

    craytab Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 26, 2012
    A karambit is a weapon first. To deny so is ignorant. I carry weapons all the time. I don't deploy said weapons unless they need to be used as such (never, thankfully). To cut things I use a knife designed as a cutting tool.

    I'd much rather cut a seatbelt with a SAK than a Karambit, but I'm no trained ninja. Perhaps those folks are better at that sort of thing. I've got dedicated seatbelt cutters for seatbelt cutting.

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