Which Wolf Wins?

A story I found today:

293533_203577999700349_152312078160275_552605_4193526_n“One evening, an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.

The grandfather said:

“My son, the battle is between two wolves. One is evil. It is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute. He then asked his grandfather:

“Which wolf wins?

The old Cherokee simply replied:

“The one you feed.”

“Words – so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them.”
~Nathaniel Hawthorne

“The conscience of children is formed by the influences that surround them; their notions of good and evil are the result of the moral atmosphere they breathe.”
~Jean Paul

“Compassion alone stands apart from the continuous traffic between good and evil proceeding within us.”
~Eric Hoffer

Tomorrow, my mother’s clothing will be picked up. I am donating it to the Westchester Coalition for the Hungry and Homeless.  It’s been weeks since everything was bagged, it just took me this long to find the strength to call them with an actual pick up date and time. It feels weird and unsettling, but it is something that had to be done. Not a job anyone wants to have, I’m sure.

She would have fought this tooth and nail, no matter that the majority of the clothing had not been worn or seen in ages. For me, it is part of the cleansing that needs to go on here. I know that I’ll be helping a lot of women in desperate need of warm &/or good condition clothing. Through me, my mother-willing or not-is helping them as well.

I hope that thought, its energy, finds its way out there. I’m feeding the good wolf here, and to me that is a win.


About StuHN

I am a creative individual with many areas of passion: Professional Storyteller; NYS Certified Drama Specialist/Educator; Professional Development Coordinator & Facilitator; Workshop Leader; sometime Puppeteer; Playwright; Director; Performer; Teaching Artist; and sometimes more.

Posted on February 13, 2013, in Anger, Caring, counseling, Family, Friends, Grief, Healing, Inspiration, Love, Mindfulness, Spiritual, Support and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Yes, choosing to feed the good wolf! I love this Cherokee tale, and I’m sure your mother’s clothing will be a blessing to many.

  2. Feed your good wolf and I’ll feed mine.

  3. That parable is one of my favorite examples of life. I know next to nothing about your mother and her personality. Were she alive and you were sending her clothing,off I can imagine most anyone fighting that; even if they were too ill to need them. But I wonder if, as spirit, she might not recognize that she has no need of mortal goods, that they are just taking up space, serving no purpose, and that by donating them they will again serve a purpose by helping those in need. Just a thought. Either way you are doing what you need to do for you and the here and now. And you are helping others at the same time: feeding the good wolf.

    • Uber, I’m not ready yet, if ever in this space, to write about my mother entirely. Just let it stand that she was loathe to toss or donate just about anything. I think a lot of it stemmed from her childhood, the last of six children (only girl) and growing up as a child of the Great Deperssion.

      She saw me donate a lot of my stuff over the years. Anyways…Yes, I know it is a good thing, and will help many others. I am hoping, if she is a spirit observing this, that she feels some of the good that is happening with it.

  4. I have heard this powerful little story a number of times Stuart and it’s a good one to sit with a while. It gets more and more powerful I think the longer and more often I think on it. Thank you for bringing it round again.
    I agree with Allan Stuart. You can either worry about what your mother might have felt at one time or give her the blessing of faith that she would find joy in her un-needed things helping others.
    Either way I hope you hold onto the fact that your strength and struggle will end up bringing help, kindness and joy to those who are on the end of this. After all, isn’t that what life is really for?
    Blessings to you on this tough day.

    • I had never read nor heard this before. It touched me when I read it, and felt it was appropriate for the here and now.

      I am not fixating on how she would have felt; I know it would not have gone over well. I am happy with my decision to do this with this group, and not make it a Goodwill or Salvation Army donation: they’d sell it. This group will give it to those who truly need it. I know that is help that is far and away the most useful.

      Thanks Bonnie. Yes, it is a tough day.

  5. Great parable, and very meaningful. I hope that donating the clothing is a way of turning something “bad” into something “good” for you. Just as important as the opening of doors is the closing of a few.

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