Huang Dafa is hailed as a living personification of the myth of Yu Gong, 'the old man who moves mountains'. Erik Nilsson explores his world in Zunyi, Guizhou. (Source: China Daily)
By Erik Nilsson
The villagers he led only had hand tools－and explosives. He's the stuff of legend－but real. Huang Dafa is arguably an actual, modern incarnation of the ancient myth of Yu Gong.
The saying yu gong yi shan－or "the old man moves mountains"－is a parable of persistence that seems foolhardy in the face of unimaginable odds.
Fable says two peaks separated Yu Gong's home from the village.
So, he decided to dig them away.
Another elderly man mocked him. Yu Gong responded that while his descendants could dig for generations, the mountains wouldn't grow any higher.
The gods were so moved by his determination that they moved the mountains for him.
Huang enjoyed no such divine intervention.
He had to rely on pure will.