The Light and the Two Wolves
Dr. Kat's Positivity Blog, 12/09/2021
While driving through a small town on my way home a few days ago I saw a sign in a shop window that literally made me pull over and write down what I’d read.
“Keep the faith. The light always wins. Always.”
I sat there staring at the sign; its message spoke to the core of my beliefs, of who I am.
These days it seems like everyone lets the news consume their every waking moment. They let the news influence their normal way of thinking, their previous rational mindset, and drive friends, co-workers, and family members apart. It’s no surprise that this nation is now as divided as it was during the Civil War. And it’s not just the political scene; everywhere we turn there’s something bad going on somewhere. All of this combined makes it easy to feel dispirited and to be filled with fear and foreboding of what lies ahead. It’s enough to make a person want to hole up at home and never go out for fear that the sky is falling.
So, what can one do? There’s really only one way to keep from falling into that pit of despair. Do exactly what that simple phrase instructed. Keep the faith that life will get better. I recommend one more thing to keep you out of that pit of vipers – don’t watch the news. It’s full of doom and gloom. Other than to see an occasional story about an underdog school sports team winning a game against a larger, more talented team, you just don’t see anything positive on the news these days. Just think for a moment, wouldn’t it be nice if the media ran stories about people helping one another, about kindness, about people giving back, and all the joyful, wonderful acts of goodness going on all around us, every single day? Sure, they run such stories at Thanksgiving and at Christmas, but what about the rest of the year?
You have to wonder, how did we get to this crossroads, that negativity has become the norm? Then I remembered a story that I heard years ago and realized that is exactly what has happened. It’s an ancient tale called the Two Wolves thought to be of either Cherokee or Lenape origin. It goes like this:
An old Cherokee chief was 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, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, self-doubt, and ego. The other is good - he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. This 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 chief simply replied, "The one you feed."
I think that we find ourselves in our current state of pessimism and despondency because somewhere, at some point, our society chose to feed the evil wolf. I don’t know about you, but I have never chosen to feed that evil wolf; I’ve always chosen the good wolf. I believe that we all have a choice in life to decide for ourselves how we will live our lives, what kind of attitude we will have, and to take responsibility not just for our own happiness, but also to live honorably and honestly. I have never allowed anyone to decide my happiness or my destiny for me. This has been the foundation of my faith and why I have always believed in the light. To believe in anything less is to succumb to and get caught up in what the media and others are trying to shove down our throats – that we live in dark times, that we are inherently evil and racist and whatever else you want to allow someone to call you. Do you believe that about yourself? I certainly don’t believe it about myself. I know that I’m a good person and I know that when and wherever I can I step forward and do what is right and just and decent. I can’t live my life any other way.
Unfortunately, the evil wolf is running rampant these days in every corner of our society. That, however, does not have to be anyone’s fate. You can choose to feed the good wolf. Practice kindness every single day, especially toward people who are anything but kind to you. Don’t fall for their maliciousness and keep your perspective in check. A quote that I read the other day summed it up well. It said “Should you ever find yourself the victim of other people’s bitterness, jealousy, lies and insecurities….don’t be mad. Remember things could be worse. You could be them.”
Be bigger than that. Be better than that. Remember. The light always wins. Always.