Native American Legends
A Cherokee Legend
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.” 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.”
Here is the same story, but it is called, “Grandfather Tells”
which is also known as “The Wolves Within”
An old Grandfather said to his grandson, who came to him with anger
at a friend who had done him an injustice,”Let me tell you
a story. I too, at times, have felt a great hate for those that have taken
so much, with no sorrow for what they do.
But hate wears you down, and does not hurt your enemy. It is like
taking poison and wishing your enemy would die. I have struggled
with these feelings many times.” He continued, “It is
as if there are two wolves inside me. One is good and does no harm.
He lives in harmony with all around him, and does not take offense
when no offense was intended. He will only fight when it is right
to do so, and in the right way.
But the other wolf, ah! He is full of anger. The littlest thing
will set him into a fit of temper. He fights everyone, all the time,
for no reason. He cannot think because his anger and hate are so
great. It is helpless anger,for his anger will change nothing.
Sometimes, it is hard to live with these two wolves inside me,
for both of them try to dominate my spirit.”
The boy looked intently into his Grandfather’s eyes and asked,
“Which one wins, Grandfather?”
The Grandfather smiled and quietly said, “The one I feed.”