A wise Cherokee was teaching a group of children about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the children.
“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 all of you – and inside every other person, too.”
After a few minutes of silent thinking one the little girls asked, “Which wolf will win?”
The wise Cherokee simply replied, “They both win.”
“You see, if I only choose to feed the white wolf, the black one will be hiding around every corner waiting for me to become distracted or weak and jump to get the attention he craves. He will always be angry and always fighting the white wolf.
But if I acknowledge him, he is happy and the white wolf is happy and we all win. For the black wolf has many qualities – tenacity, courage, fearlessness, strong-willed and great strategic thinking – that I have need of at times and that the white wolf lacks.
But the white wolf has compassion, caring, strength and the ability to recognize what is in the best interest of all.
You see, the white wolf needs the black wolf at his side. To feed only one would starve the other and they will become uncontrollable. To feed and care for both means they will serve you well and do nothing that is not a part of something greater, something good, something of life. Feed them both and there will be no more internal struggle for your attention. And when there is no battle inside, you can listen to the voices of deeper knowing that will guide you in choosing what is right in every circumstance.
Peace is the Cherokee mission in life. Someone who has peace inside has everything. Someone who is pulled apart by the war inside them has nothing. How you choose to interact with the opposing forces within you will determine your life. Starve one or the other or guide them both.””