Since “middle way” plays a significant role in the anime series Hell’s Paradise: Jigokuraku, it’s not surprising that viewers took the quoted concept as the most memorable lesson in the show. However, the middle way would probably not have been born if it weren’t for the understated themes of the story; at least, that’s what Yuji Kaku (the manga author) probably means when he discusses the emergence of the middle way to Crunchyroll. Those understated themes may come from the lifestyle of each character. Although some of us may already know those styles, we sometimes have a hard time using them. But would you be inspired to apply those typical life hacks if you learn that your favorite Hell’s Paradise characters diligently use them? Let’s look at them one by one.

1. Bear the pain: Gabimaru the Hollow

It must have been an “Aha moment” for Sagiri when she found out the solution to her agony of killing convicts by watching Gabimaru forthrightly slaying the offenders who wanted the hollow to be dead. It seems that Sagiri’s realization of bearing the pain has been the lifestyle of Gabimaru ever since he became a ninja, and the twelve-in-rank asaemon was inspired to live the same for her job. In real life, Hollow’s lifestyle may be relevant in situations that require tough love.

2. Think of the why: Gabimaru the Hollow  

Viewers of the show may probably agree that every time Gabimaru faces new challenges, he thinks about his wife, and maybe that’s a reminder for viewers to deliberately make their ‘why’ more powerful than any setbacks they’re facing.

3. Remove obstacles to attain your goal: Gabimaru the Hollow

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when someone tells you, “Remove those obstacles that are hindering you from achieving your goals”? Perhaps you think of your outside obstacles, but sometimes, before you can control the outside, you must first manage the inside, just like when Gabimaru (in episode 9) realized that he needed to lower his independent attitude to kill the Tensens.

4. Judge your action: Yamada Asaemon Sagiri

Indeed, we have felt Sagiri’s devastation when her seniors doubt her ability to do the job at Shinsenkyo. For so many reasons, it’s easy to give in to their doubt, but Sagiri did not. Her secret? Well, she doesn’t let go of her self-judgment. Despite that, she is still humble when receiving constructive criticism – as proven by her conversation with Genji in episode 5.

5. Grateful for the challenges: Aza Chobei and Tamiya Gantetsusai

Hell’s Paradise Characters
A still from Hell’s Paradise

Are you tired of being scared because of setbacks? Why not try Aza and Tamiya’s reaction whenever challenges come? They smile and smirk while saying, “Interesting” or “Why not?” Inquiring to yourself, “How is this a good problem to have?” is how successful people react to setbacks (source: inc.com)

6. Use charm to get your desire: Yuzuriha

“Five people are better than three, right?” is what Yuzuriha said to Gabimaru after the former failed to charm the latter. If the female ninja had done her charm right, her teamwork invitation might have been a great example of Kevin Daum’s (a 500 entrepreneur) view about Charming people: “Charming people attract opportunity and can more easily engage others to their cause.” (source: inc. com) Instead, Yuzuriha’s flamboyant moves illustrate creepiness – it’s the result of over-using charm, according to Daum. At the same time, we shouldn’t follow the exact way of Yuzuriha when charming people; we should still be grateful to her as we have learned about the benefit of charm and its adverse impact.

7. Compliment those who mock you: Yamada Asaemon Tenza 

There’s an old saying: “When someone throws a stone at you, throw bread back to that person,” which means give love (or compassion) to the person who hurts you, and that’s what Tenza did to kill the slightly mean side of Nurugai. In episode 5, when Tenza and Nurugai were on the boat, the latter kept insulting the former, but the tenth-in-rank asaemon returned the criticisms with a compliment. Do you have Nurugai in your life? Do you think you can slay their mean side just like Tenza?

8. Choose the middle way: Yamada Clan

Of all the virtues stated above, this is the best, as it is related to mindfulness and meditation. Most people are probably aware that mindfulness and meditation are helpful to one’s mental health. However, neuroscientist Dr. Britton found (through research) that some people experience unfavorable physical and mental health effects after excessively using mindfulness and meditation (source: very well and insider.) As Shion said (to Sagiri,) “If you use too much (tao), it could cause abnormalities in your spirit or body.” So, be cautious when using the middle-way technique.

WWHPCD? What would Hell’s Paradise characters do? Maybe a good question to ask yourself – sometimes to remember the above life hacks from Hell’s Paradise. Although the latter can be used in real life, one should not forget to divide reality from fiction.

Read More: Hell’s Paradise Complete Season 1 Recap

Hell’s Paradise: Jigokuraku Links – IMDb

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