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, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
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 Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
We choose whether to follow with love or fear in every moment. This is a small sampling of topics and questions to illuminate which is getting most of your attention:
Disasters Such as 9/11, the Holocaust, Civil Rights Issues, or Natural Disasters
- Do I focus on the heroes who helped or the people who created the problem?
- Do I do something to help or get caught in the blame game?
- Am I inspired to act by the people reaching out to help others or the ones filled with hate and rage?
- Do I focus on the people and families who have been affected by the tragedy or the people, government, races or religions I want to blame for it?
- Am I touched by my love and compassion for humanity as a whole, or I am stuck in anger, fear, and despair?
- Am I happy with where my life is now or desperately want it to be filled with another person?
- Do I allow space for a healthy partner to present themselves or do I allow anyone in who shows interest?
- Do I stay because I have the love I want, or do I stay because I am afraid of their not being someone else?
- Do you love myself or do I do I feel like someone else’s love for me will make me feel better?
- Do I see myself as a whole person, or do I think I am missing a part of me if I don’t have a romantic partner?
- Am I inspired by the loving actions of the figuresI follow or do I fear the wrath?
- Do I believe that every life has value or only the ones who follow my ideals and beliefs?
- Can I show compassion to any human who is suffering, or do I rationalize human suffer with anger and hate towards how the person is choosing to live?
- Does love for humanity dictate how I treat people or does my judgments about a sinful lifestyle?
- Do I understand that loving yourself is a part of the journey or do I feel my life has no value in my religious practice?
Work or Career
- Do I see the value and importance of every position and person, or do I see others and myself as greater or less than someone else?
- Do I believe in myself and take pride in the work I produce or do I come from a place of not enough?
- Do I strive to do my best no matter what the task, or do I think, “I don’t want to be here” and let the work suffer?
- Do I see my opportunities to make a difference or do I shrink to fit into a box?
- Do I stay in a situation because I love it or because I am afraid to see what would happen if I followed my passion?
Overall Interactions with People
- Is it more important to show compassion or be right?
- Am I open to look at the situation from a different perspective, or Do I have to judge other people’s journeys?
- Am I happy for other people when they are successful or do I find a reason to attack them?
- Do I see my own beauty or attack other people’s imperfections?
- Do you I responsibility for my own choices or blame others?
- Which is an easier list to write, what I like about myself or what I hate about myself?
- When I make a mistake, I learn from it and move on, or I beat myself up?
- I can look in the mirror and smile at the reflection in the mirror or I judge the reflection in the mirror?
- I understand and accept that I’m not perfect or I expect myself to be perfect?
- I can choose to be better or I am stuck in a vicious cycle of self-abuse?
Remember, there is no reason to beat yourself up for ANY time you have chosen to live out of alignment with love. We all make that choice sometimes, it is one of our greatest teachers when we can see it and take a step in a different direction. Understand that we are all humans and will choose based on what we feel is best at that moment. If we are not showing ourselves love, it will be easy to slip into fearful actions.
Try not to judge those who choose fear, because then you are choosing it too. Instead, see the opportunity to learn from the situation and figure out how to inspire love in the given situation. It will have amazing benefits for you and the other people involved. Your hate, anger, fear, and judgments are signals. If investigated and transformed into loving thought and actions they have the power to make wonderful changes in your own life and the lives of those around you. The ripple effect will go on and on. Does the ripple you choose inspire love or fear? Every word and action matter. Do the best you can.
Sometimes fear will get the better of us. If we get past that, forgive ourselves, and move on, we will have so much more to contribute to our world and our humanity. If we can stand up for what matters from a loving place, we will be able to see so many more opportunities and ways to fix the things that are hurting us. Together our love will heal the world. Divided we will suffer and struggle. Which path will you choose today? I choose love.
With love and gratitude for all,