An old Cherokee told his grandson, “my son, there is a battle between two wolves inside us all.
One is Evil. It is anger, jealousy, greed, resentment, inferiority, lies and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, humility, kindness, empathy, and truth.
The boy thought about it, and asked, “Grandfather, which wolf wins?”
The old man quietly replied, “The one you feed.”
- author unknown
I came across this beautiful, brief bit of native American folklore very recently. If you’ve been reading my recent posts, you could predict that it would immediately find a permanent home in my psyche.
This confrontation that the old Cherokee speaks of has churned inside me virtually everyday for quite a while. And everyday, I consciously struggle to find a way past, through, under, or around the negativity. It’s so very hard for me – an uphill battle – like the one Sisyphus faced.
It’s a fine line I walk. For me, the preferred path to being an informed, engaged, responsible citizen, both of our country and of our world, leads me directly into that evil wolf’s den. And the feeding frenzy begins. I am confronted with an opinion contrary to mine and the sparks of anger begin to ignite, the embers of jealousy enkindle, resentment begins to seethe. And I find myself feeding the big bad wolf! Not my intention, at all…but there I am. Much of my innate response is born of fear…fear of what could be…fear that I have no control over critical influencers in my life…fear that what I love and cherish will be taken from me and my entire life would need to change.
Have you watched Ted Lasso on Apple TV? I fought against paying for another streaming service but couldn’t hold out against the booming applause and accolades I was hearing from everyone about this show. So I caved and signed up for a trial subscription. Wow! I’m loving Ted Lasso!!
Though totally out of his element, and in an environment where just about everything and everyone is programmed to work against him (think Sisyphus) Ted manages to turn it all into positives. No heavy thought processes, no tricks, no special skills or education. Just an ever-pervasive, all encompassing, incontrovertible confidence that all will turn out well in the end.
Ted has become my personal therapist. Crazily, my self-talk now includes such probing dialogue as “what would Ted do?” or “how would Ted respond?” (I know I’m revealing a previously well-concealed side of myself. But upon introspection, I concluded that this is what Ted would do).
Now I’m convinced we need more Ted Lassos in this world. We need his idealism, his vision, his belief in the good wolf. We need to un-complicate things, simplify, get back to basics, smile more, help more, to love more, to reach out more.
I gladly pay the streaming fee for this show. Actual therapy – into which I was most assuredly headed – would prove to be much more costly!
There is an abundance of joy, peace, love…in our beautiful world. So many good people are successfully starving that evil wolf. We need to pay attention to all these Ted Lassos.
I pray that the interior wolf you chose to feed, the one that eventually wins, is the one that brings us all hope, love, comfort and peace.