View Full Version : Aiki spirit and Two wolves

Please visit our sponsor:

02-17-2004, 01:33 PM

An elderly Choctaw Native American was teaching his
grandchildren about
life. He said to them, "A fight is going on inside me...it
is a terrible
fight, and it is between two wolves.

One wolf represents fear, anger, envy, sorrow, regret,
greed, arrogance,
self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false
pride, superiority,
and ego.

The other stands for joy, peace, love, hope, sharing,
serenity, humility,
kindness, benevolence, friendship, empathy, generosity,
truth, compassion,
and faith.

This same fight is going on inside you, and inside every
other person, too."

They thought about it for a minute and then one child asked his
grandfather, "Which wolf will win?"

The old Choctaw simply replied..."The one you feed."

02-18-2004, 02:33 PM
Nice analogy...it seems this idea is universal huh?

Josh Bisker
02-18-2004, 05:00 PM
ooo, i like that.

Jamie Stokes
02-18-2004, 11:01 PM
The real hard part is trying to work out which one is which when things are calm and quiet. easy to see the unwanted one when they are fighting.....

(In Australia, would we say two dingos?.....;) )


Anders Bjonback
02-19-2004, 08:49 AM
I get the story, but how is it aiki spirit?

02-19-2004, 09:03 AM
Saotome once said to a group of Aikidoka after class I attended that the Spirit of Aiki

is to always strive to be better.

"Not just on the mat, but in each thing you do in life".

He said we will all have days that the right way will seem less easy that the wrong way, but the right way will, in the end, prove the easiest.

So, when I read the Two Wolves, I thought that the Spirit of Aiki is recognizing what is good and what is not good and having the strength to choose that which is good.

The story of the Two Wolves may not embody the Spirit of Aiki to all, but it did to me. That does not make it right or wrong....it is just what I felt. I hoped to share this with others as it stirred some emotion and self-examination within me....

02-19-2004, 09:29 AM
It is positive & negative thought form, we are the ones or ourselves/innerselves that will balance or chose the way we go. We have to ground or discharge negative energy and take more positive energy, but the power is on balance energy. so we have to weigh which is good and bad. thought is a form of energy or spirit, so it is aiki...

Anders Bjonback
02-19-2004, 04:44 PM
I guess I just interpreted this like how Tich Nhaht Hahn (I know that's probably spelled wrong) talks about watering our positive seeds. We have the seeds of anger, jelousy, etc, in us, but also seeds of love, compassion, etc. We should choose which seeds to water. I didn't see how making a choice of which seeds to water was making harmony with thought or emotion energy, or how it was discharging certain energy. Nor did I see how it was about having the strength to choose what was right over what was wrong. I thought it was more like deciding not to feed the negative energy, so as to not let it arise in the first place.

It's not that I thought that other people's ideas were wrong, and it's not that the story didn't touch me in some way (I'm likely to use this story in conversation sometime). I just wasn't quite sure where people were coming from on this.

Jack Robertson
02-21-2004, 07:08 PM
Very nice: )

I like it.

02-22-2004, 01:58 PM
Thanks Larry! That is a great one!!!!



Anders Bjonback
02-22-2004, 04:52 PM
Saotome once said to a group of Aikidoka after class I attended that the Spirit of Aiki

is to always strive to be better.

"Not just on the mat, but in each thing you do in life".

He said we will all have days that the right way will seem less easy that the wrong way, but the right way will, in the end, prove the easiest.
The more I think about this, the more I like it; the more I consider it, the more it makes sense.

This makes a lot of sense with the idea of karma--doing the right thing, in the long run, makes things a lot easier. Also, if one continues to do the right thing even when it is hard, it will make him or her stronger. The more one does what is difficult, the easier it becomes. There was this story of this Tibetan archetypal hero, and one of their sayings is that he would not nearly be so strong if not for all the things his archenemy did to him. And I think that doing a good job in whatever you do, in the long run, usually pays off, despite it being harder in the short run. One is known as a good worker sooner or later.

This just seems to go with the natural way of things, at least from my point of view, in a less conctual way than thinking about karma, etc. But then again, I'm putting my own ideas onto the statement without really knowing its context and the way Saotome Sensei thinks, so I'm probably way off from what he meant.

Jamie Stokes
02-22-2004, 11:26 PM
Wow, interesting thoughts.

I once heard a phrase that said if you always take the easy way, you will become all twisted and bent, and all your potential will merely be diluted by sloshing from side to side.

cant rember how it ends, but have always (kind of) remebered the first part.


Martin Ruedas
01-23-2005, 06:51 AM
I like this story:)

01-26-2005, 11:10 AM
i like it too! thanks for sharing.


01-26-2005, 03:40 PM
Although that is a truly excellent story, I would not be too quick to label the Thanatos wolf as evil and the Eros wolf as good.

Lachlan Kadick
01-26-2005, 06:53 PM
I loved the story, I might even tell it to my students ^_^

01-29-2005, 06:00 PM
It's not about winning. Even if the "good" wolf wins, that leaves you as half a person. We have a tendancy (well, at least I do..) to want to be able to "rest," to have a security, without conflicts. That is not reality. The key is to understand the necessity of both wolves. Freedom comes with the ability to dance within the chaos, to meet the violence head on and embrace it, realize that it's a part of you as well as the peace. "Only a warrior can choose pacifism- all others are condemned to it." The ability to embrace conflict without being destroyed by it is the heart of aiki. Of course, that's just my opinion.

01-31-2005, 08:18 PM
I like that Dillon...sums up my thoughts on the matter... ;)