Choosing the Wolf to Feed

We often feel conflicted over things that come up in our lives.  The truth is, we are made up of many “parts”, a collection of thoughts or beliefs that affect the way we react.

One of my favorite stories is the following:

An old Cherokee chief 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, 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.”

My shamanic self is a composite of many parts, each with a specific function, some in charge more than others.  I work and talk with my parts often.  I have a sense of balance when all of my parts are working together, collaborating to move me forward on my path.

When I am cranky, worried or angry, I ask myself “OK, who’s in charge now?”  The part responsible for the uncomfortable emotion readily steps up…after all, it’s using the emotion to draw attention to itself.

Talking to the part I can often discover the source of its concern.  Thanking it for its constant awareness and insight, we work together to find a way to react without the discomfort.

As I watch the news, full of stories about people and their actions/reactions, I wonder which wolf they are choosing to feed?

And it gives me comfort knowing that we have a choice!

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