Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Feeding the Wolves

 One hot day Mohe a small boy in an Indian Cherokee settlement came up to  his grandfather Salal the chief, in floods of tears. His grandfather took him on his knee and put his arms round him.

'What is the matter Mohe?' Salal smiled at his grandson and handed him a cloth to dry his tears.

' I hate Ahyoka she is horrible. I told her I want to marry her and she laughed and said I was too young for her, and my friend Kanuna won't play with me and took away the sticks that I had collected to make a fire, and then he called me names.'

The wise old chief took a breath.

'When I was your age my grandfather used to tell me stories and today I'd like to tell you my favourite story, I tell it to myself every day.'

The little boy sniffed loudly and then stared at his grandfather with enormous dark eyes.
'Go on grandfather I love stories.'

'Well a long time ago a young man came to a village and asked to speak to the wisest man there. He was taken to meet the chief of the village and they sat down together. The young man explained that a battle was going on his heart.  His brother-in-law had stolen his horses and also his wife and now he wanted revenge but was unsure what to do.'

The young man nodded vigorously and urged the chief to go on.

'The wise chief told him that in every man's heart there dwelled two wolves. One of the wolves was evil and full of anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, superiority, ego. This wolf was evil and very powerful.'

The young man nodded again and looked up at the chief.

' The other wolf was also powerful but had different weapons. These were joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.'

The chief paused and laid his hand on the young man's shoulder.

' Every day the two wolves fought, the battle long and hard.'

The young man interrupted, his voice was full of urgency.

' Tell me do, which wolf is the strongest? Which wolf wins the battle?'

The chief smiled again at the young man, his eyes were warm and full of kindness.

'The wolf that wins is the one that you feed.'

There was silence.  From the corner of his eye Salal could see Ahyoka and Kanuna peeping round the old hut. Mohe jumped off his grandfather's knee.

'Thank you grandfather. I like that story. It's always going to be my favourite too and I'll feed my good wolf every day.'

Ahyoka and Kanuna came towards them holding out bunches of sticks and pebbles, like peace offerings.

'Please come and play with us Mohe, we are going to build a dam in the small stream and we want you to come too.'

As the children skipped off Salal's wife Galilani appeared and put her arms round Salal. They watched the children. smiling at the sounds of their laughter.

Galilani held her husband's hand.

'Mohe and Ahyoka remind me of the two of us. I do hope they are as lucky.'

The old chief turned to her and put his hand on her cheek.

'Some may call it luck, but I 've just told Mohe my favourite story, may it weave its' magic on him.'

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