An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.” The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
There is a great fight going on in this country and right now it looks like the evil wolf is winning. As this nation implodes, I have hope that eventually we will find our way back to those fundamental values of compassion, equality, justice, respect, truth, and peace that most of us cherish. But right now it’s grim.
For so many of us here and around the world, watching this horror unfold daily has been like drinking out of a fire hose. Getting drenched with discouragement. And I’m reminded of the quote from the Tao Te Ching about letting the mud settle and the water become clear. These past months, especially my time in Ireland, have allowed both settling and clarity.
I am clear that, for me, too much focus on this unraveling of a nation engenders anger and fear and sorrow. And it feeds the evil wolf – my time, attention, passion, and creativity. Energies I would rather feed the other wolf. So now a shift in focus. A shift in engagement. A shift in my work. Yes, there will still be times to strongly resist what is going on, to offer shelter and support for our sisters and brothers who are suffering.
But for now it’s all about the wolf I choose to feed.
Judith – firstname.lastname@example.org