The Museum of Hoaxes
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Actress who claimed she was kidnapped by puritans, 1950
Swiss peasants harvest spaghetti from trees, 1957
The Great Wall of China Hoax, 1899
Prankster causes volcano to erupt, 1974
Rare planetary alignment decreases gravity, 1976
The Olympic Underwear Relay, 1956
Dead Body of Loch Ness Monster Found, 1972
Iceberg floats into Sydney Harbor, 1978
The Great New York Zoo Escape Hoax, 1874
Paul Krassner's Stereophonic Hoax, 1960
90-year-old Kung Fu Master Does Finger Stand
Status: Fake
image Check out this video of Monk Hai-Tank (wmv file). He's 90-years-old, but he still has "finger skill." Which means that he can stand upside-down supported by only one finger. The video obviously has to be fake. I assume they're supporting him with invisible wires. Special effects like this are pretty standard in kung-fu movies. (via Ceticismo Aberto)
Categories: Photos/Videos, Sports
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jan 19, 2006
Comments (104)
I recommend all the people that dont believe this to watch the entire video that last 1hour and 30 min to understand the live and the incredible power of shaolin kung fu.

as a martial artist i can tell you that everything is true
Posted by Kondor  on  Sun Jul 09, 2006  at  01:53 PM
Hello,

I am a 23 year old Frenchman living in China since February 2006. I am very fit, a good runner and amateur bodybuilder (meaning I'm not a crank, just someone who keeps an attractive body).

I saw those guys on the stadium ... 80 yrs old +, total freaks. One of them could push some 120 Kgs 15 times in a row, I was like: "oh my f****** god !!!". Guys, as another poster said, just because Americans and Europeans are packs of shapless fat doesn't mean everyone is like that.
Posted by Julien Santini  in  Nanchang, China  on  Sat Aug 05, 2006  at  10:24 PM
I have seen this video in a jet li documentary. I'm not 100% convinced this is real, but I am more inclined to believe that it is true than not. After many many years of practice and training a specific muscle group, I would think it is possible to do this, esp. for monks, I've been to Shaolin temple several times, they probably have tons of free time lol.

There's alot of other "unusual" or seemingly impossible feats, of course it doesn't directly prove this particular one is true, but it does make the statement that certain feats which we think are impossible could certainly be achieved.

To those that think "chi" is a mythical thing and is about as real as as a leprechaun, keep in mind that while there might not be an actual unpalpable force moving through your body, alot of the results of "chi" can probably be explained in western/scientific terms such as contracting/relaxing of certain muscle groups.

When I saw the video I wondered why they didn't show him actually getting into the finger stand, my only guess is that he got into the stand with 1 hand then slowly placed his weight onto that 1 finger?
Posted by uh huh...  in  georgia  on  Wed Aug 23, 2006  at  03:29 PM
Could it be perhaps that this is video shot upside down, and that "platform" is really something stuck to the roof, and he's standing on something sticking out of the wall that is obscured by his feet? Consider...
Posted by Consider  in  Florida  on  Wed Sep 06, 2006  at  10:03 PM
all those comments are noob comments!
You just dont accept to be beaten by a 80 years old guy who can stand on 1 finger. It is pride because hes the only 1 able to do that and itsb thanks to his meditation damn noobs... Your just lowbie humans lol.
Posted by jonathan  in  belgium  on  Fri Sep 22, 2006  at  12:59 PM
The only thing I can say to you is LARZZZ!!
You Crazy...ofcourse it's true...
Posted by El Frelle  in  La Suede  on  Mon Oct 09, 2006  at  12:05 PM
This footage was filmed back in the mid-80s. Monk Hai Tang was around 80 at that time. He is not around anymore. So it is hard to confirm the validity of the finger stand in the footage.

I am not confirming whether the footage is real or not because I cannot, but the one-finger stand does exist and is possible. I have personally met and seen a number of masters doing many of these wushu feats. There are also chi kung competitions in China every year where people from around the world compete in all sorts of kung fu, such as throwing needles through glass, hard or iron body strength, breaking a stack of bricks without spacers, finger stands and push-ups, breaking pebbles or tiles with fingers, etc.

For skeptics or outsiders, nothing you say can convince them, and there is nothing wrong with that. This ignorance cannot be blamed because there are so many swindler and fake masters out there that give Chinese martial arts a bad name. Also, the circle of wushu and chi kung, even in China, is relatively small, although it has been gaining popularity around the world in recent years. So for someone not interested or inexperienced in the field, standing up with one finger may not be a believable thing, and if he's skeptical, he probably wouldn't want to spend the time and/or money to find out.
Posted by A Wushu Guy  in  Hawaii  on  Thu Oct 26, 2006  at  11:24 PM
This is part of a 1 - hour long documentary of the monks of the Shaolin Temple, Hunan province, China.
Let me tell you, those of you who have not seen the whole thing, these men are tough. No, more than tough. They train since childhood to withstand physical punishments that would put us all in the hospital right now. Hai - Tank was not faking this. However, he is not the only one who has ever done the Finger Skill, but very few others have the discipline to do it.
Posted by Swatantra  in  Stillwater  on  Tue Feb 20, 2007  at  02:16 PM
Obviously most of you know nothing about real martial arts. If you did, you would understand why doing a handstand on one finger is such a feat. By being able to do a handstand on one finger shows that you can focus all of your power to a small area. It's done by alignment of the spine and I will leave it at that.
Posted by unknown  in  Illinois  on  Wed Feb 21, 2007  at  04:05 PM
Damn you are ignorant lot. This man's feat is well documented.

He practiced at the major Shaolin temple in China where children are tought martial arts skills, rigorous training and meditation from a young age. There are alot of training methods that are similar there such as finger push-ups and standing on few fingers but he's the only man to be able to stand on only his index finger. He probably was a Shaolin monk but each monk is hand-picked by the Shaolin teachers at the temple to make up the "elite of the elite" practicioners of Shaolin.

I actually first read about his feat in a local scientific journal called "New Science" in a column about "natural wonders". The theory there however wasn't about chi but that his finger has special anatomy.. I don't remember the details written there anymore. I also heard a reference to this man in a NBC documentary about Shaolin.
Posted by Sigur  in  Iceland  on  Thu Mar 22, 2007  at  09:21 PM
Sigur said:

"Damn you are ignorant lot. This man's feat is well documented."

Great way to start a debate, Dude You'll understand if I ignore you from this point on, I trust.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Mar 23, 2007  at  02:53 AM
unknown said:

"It's done by alignment of the spine and I will leave it at that."

Nice way to avoid explaning something that seems probably impossible.

"Alignment of the spine" in no way "explains" a VERY old man doing a handstand on one finger. Sorry. Yes, I realize I'm bound by my Western concept of reality and all that other nonsense people say when they try to justify the impossible and/or irrational, but I'm not buying it.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Mar 23, 2007  at  02:59 AM
Looks real to me. I don't know why leaning against the wall makes it look fishy. You want him to balance like that?
Posted by Eddie  in  Yer Mom  on  Mon May 07, 2007  at  12:43 AM
I'm reminded of the people in David Blaine's TV specials.

"I saw him doing something that resembled levitation. Clearly the laws of physics have been suspended and this is not a mere trick."

Just because you can't immediately figure out a trick could have been accomplished, that is no reason to jump to the conclusion that the impossible (or highly improbable) has occurred.

ALWAYS keep open the possibility that it's a trick.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Mon May 07, 2007  at  03:09 AM
simply put, you don't have evidence to prove it to be fake. Therefore it's real, by American standard.
Posted by mirrorzoom  on  Mon Nov 19, 2007  at  07:07 PM
"simply put, you don't have evidence to prove it to be fake. Therefore it's real, by American standard."

I assume that was sarcastic, in which case I'm laughing along with you.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Tue Nov 20, 2007  at  02:46 AM
Actually your wrong on this assumption. This is actually real. Its called "Finger Skill" and he has been training it for a huge portion of his life. This
monk unfortunately is dead now but he has current successors that are training the finger skill. The current person can do this on 2 fingers. This clip is a portion of a Discovery Channel Documentary on Shaolin. Its NOT fake.
Posted by Shaun  in  MTL  on  Sun Dec 09, 2007  at  09:35 PM
Shaun said:

"This clip is a portion of a Discovery Channel Documentary on Shaolin. Its NOT fake."

Are you under the illusion that if something airs on The Discovery Channel, it MUST be real?

Sorry, I'm just not buying this whole thing. It would be fun to live in a world where 90-year-old men can balance on one or two fingers, but I don't think that's reality on our planet. I'd be happy to be proven wrong on this, but I'm not going to hold my breath (even though as a master of the martial arts, I can do that for hours at a time).
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Mon Dec 10, 2007  at  01:38 AM
No, its not a fake. Shao-lins are not normal people
Posted by mind  on  Thu Jan 03, 2008  at  11:11 AM
Mind said:

"Shao-lins are not normal people"

They have Super Duper reinforced fingers?
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Thu Jan 03, 2008  at  04:05 PM
http://www.ShowMeCables.com has listed this as their video of the week for their "Humpday Special" last week. Seems this video is still in the news!
Posted by James M  on  Fri Feb 15, 2008  at  12:58 PM
So if you cannot disprove the feat, and cannot prove it, how is it labeled on a Hoax site? That seems proven guilty until innocent.

Also, if you watch the entire biography, he has some other interesting skills. He has not slept on his back since he was 17 and always meditates on a chair at night.

There is a temple in China that was erected for his memory as mastering Chi. George Lucas was inspired by him to create the character "Yoda".

CrankyMediaGuy although I find your responses somewhat witty and humorous, they are as much unfounded in fact as the rest.
Posted by Ryan  on  Sat Apr 05, 2008  at  01:27 AM
Ryan said:

"Also, if you watch the entire biography, he has some other interesting skills. He has not slept on his back since he was 17 and always meditates on a chair at night."

So, a biography which claims that a VERY old man can stand on his finger also makes some other questionable claims. And that proves what, exactly?

Sleeping sitting up is not a particularly unusual or difficult thing to do; I do it frequenly myself. His (allegedly) doing that in no way proves that he can stand on his finger.

"So if you cannot disprove the feat, and cannot prove it, how is it labeled on a Hoax site? That seems proven guilty until innocent."

This isn't a court of law. There's no issue of guilt or innocence here. We're simply questioning the ability of an old man (or anyone) to stand on their finger for an extended period.

I think Occam's Razor applies here. The far more likely explanation is that it's bullshit.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Sat Apr 05, 2008  at  03:17 AM
ok you guys suck for hating and being douches.
It's not fake, yea he's against the wall. It would be damned near impossible not to, maybe he can do that too, who knows

why are you all so quick to disprove something you have never seen before? It's like the earth being round hundreds of years ago, have an open mind
theres a guy on youtube that did push ups with his fingertips, he's a monk too but way younger
Posted by MidNightCrimson  on  Sun Apr 06, 2008  at  04:38 AM
MidNightCrimson said:

"why are you all so quick to disprove something you have never seen before?"

Well, you've convinced me, Crimson. In fact, because of your convincing logic, I'm going to reveal something I've been holding back.

I can fly. No, I don't mean in an airplane or if I'm attached to wires or something, I mean fly just like a bird.

You may be skeptical, but you should have an open mind. I mean, just because you've never seen a person fly, that doesn't mean that I can't, right?

You DO have an open mind, don't you? You aren't one of those closed-minded people like the ones who didn't think the Earth was round, right?

As we know, if someone makes a claim on the Internet, no matter how unlikely it may be, it MUST be true. Please tell me that you believe that I can fly. I wouldn't want to think that you were closed-minded.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Sun Apr 06, 2008  at  03:56 PM
CrankyMediaGuy:

Mind said:

"Shao-lins are not normal people"

They have Super Duper reinforced fingers?

>
Actually, yes they do. Via training, and bone growths, they have stronger fingers. If you watch the video closely, his first joint is hideously big due to the bone growths.

If you have done _any_ physical training (which judging by your need to argue with everyone in the world tells me no), you would know that you can gain strength through training. Yes! Even in your fingers.

Iron Palm is the training of the palm, whereas you can break large bricks with your palm impact. This is done by making the hand more resilient via training.

Why did you not argue the temple in his name, or any of the others facts? Why haven't you tried to research and prove to all of us that it's wrong rather than spouting what you "think"? You can sleep in a chair, but you can't sleep in a chair for 8 hours for 70 years of your life.

You are just proving the arrogance of your heritage with every word. Educate yourself, then make fact based retaliations so that you are not just a humorous critic as your name suggests.
Posted by Ryan  on  Mon Apr 07, 2008  at  11:04 AM
Ryan said:

"Via training, and bone growths, they have stronger fingers. If you watch the video closely, his first joint is hideously big due to the bone growths."

Um, could that be due to arthritis or another condition, especially since he appears to be a very elderly man?

"If you have done _any_ physical training (which judging by your need to argue with everyone in the world tells me no), you would know that you can gain strength through training. Yes! Even in your fingers."

Ah Ye Olde Personal Attack. I have no idea whatsoever how you go from my alleged propensity for arguing "with everyone in the world" to the notion that that somehow indicates that I have done no physical training. Seems like a non sequitor to me.

"Iron Palm is the training of the palm, whereas you can break large bricks with your palm impact. This is done by making the hand more resilient via training."

Wouldn't strength be more useful than resilience in this matter? I don't know specifically about "Iron Palm," but I do know that some of the usual martial art-related demonstrations are essentially tricks, like the board breaking things we've all seen. Basically, because of the way they're always staged, anyone of normal strength can perform them, no special training needed.

"Why did you not argue the temple in his name, or any of the others facts?"

Huh? I have no idea what you're trying to say in that sentence.

"Why haven't you tried to research and prove to all of us that it's wrong rather than spouting what you "think"? You can sleep in a chair, but you can't sleep in a chair for 8 hours for 70 years of your life."

Well, that's probably true, but who says he's actually done that? I guess you missed it when I pointed out that anyone can say anything on the Internet but that doesn't prove it's true.

"You are just proving the arrogance of your heritage with every word."

"Heritage?" Oh, you mean being a white Westener? I have to kind of laugh at people like you who seem to automatically assume that people from another, perhaps "exotic," culture automatically possess magical knowledge that we poor suckers from the First World do not and can not.

It is certainly possible (and desirable) to try to learn from other cultures, but it's just silly to unquestioningly accept the notion that people from far-away lands are inherently superior to us. Do you also think that the world is going to end in 2012 because the Mayan calendar doesn't go beyond that year?

"Educate yourself, then make fact based retaliations so that you are not just a humorous critic as your name suggests."

Despite whatever inference you may make based on my screen name, I assure you that my questions about this old guy standing on the tip of his finger are genuine. I just ain't buying it.

I'll continue to believe that this is a trick until I can see the stunt done in front of me where I can check for hidden wires and/or camera tricks.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Mon Apr 07, 2008  at  07:47 PM
oh - please - they don't show the soles of his feet. I mean "feat."
Posted by Alex  on  Thu Apr 17, 2008  at  03:34 PM
ok, if anyone can prove to me that THIS is a fake, I will gladly award you $100 (One-hundred dollars) in cash. But please, really, i triple dog dare you

Posted by MidNightCrimson  on  Wed Apr 30, 2008  at  12:09 AM
ok, now I am with those guys that says it is shady. I think the video SHOULD have shown how he got up there, from step one to finger 1. BUT there's still room for debate
so, the battle continues....
i really want all of you to give me your opinion of this pic, so i shall post it again:

Posted by MidNightCrimson  on  Wed Apr 30, 2008  at  12:13 AM
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