Today is Saturday, November 23, 2013.
A few days ago I wrote about the White Buffalo Calf Woman, who came to teach the Lakota people how to live. If you haven’t read the story, this is a really well-written version of it.
Here are some of her teachings, summarized in a poem that I have found in several different locations on the web.
Lakota Instructions for Living
Friend, do it this way – that is,
whatever you do in life,
do the very best you can
with both your heart and mind.
And if you do it that way,
the Power Of The Universe
will come to your assistance,
if your heart and mind are in Unity.
When one sits in the Hoop Of The People,
one must be responsible because
All of Creation is related.
And the hurt of one is the hurt of all.
And the honor of one is the honor of all.
And whatever we do affects everything in the universe.
If you do it that way – that is,
if you truly join your heart and mind
as One – whatever you ask for,
that’s the Way It’s Going To Be.
Passed down from White Buffalo Calf Woman
*** *** *** *** ***
It’s interesting that many of these concepts are also found in so-called “new age” spiritual teachings. Those of us who were not born to walk the Red Road in this lifetime have had to come to them in a roundabout way.
1. Do the very best you can. Excellence demands that we pay attention to our surroundings and ground ourselves in the present moment. It demands that we develop the capacity to focus and the ability to pay attention to the smallest details. It requires that we give 100% effort and see things through to a satisfactory conclusion. It requires that we do more than just the minimum necessary to “get by.” It means that we learn to thrive, and not just survive.
2. Work with both your heart and your mind. In this case, “heart” stands for much more than just feelings. It stands for direct physical experience, too. There has to be a balance among the different ways of taking in information about our world. We can’t afford to ignore our emotions, our physical senses, or our minds, because if we ignore one or depend too much on one, and pay too little attention to the others, that’s when problems crop up.
3. The Universe is just waiting to fulfill your needs – all you have to do is ask. We were given complete free will by the Creator and we are expected to use it. This means that when we do need help – and we all need help – we must ask for help before it is given, because otherwise it would be a violation of our precious freedom. We have to remember to take time to ask for the help that we need, but more than this, we must give Divine Spirit the freedom It needs to fulfill our needs. So often we tell God in prayer what we think we need, without realizing that we are, in effect, trying to tell the Creator what to do. Instead, we must submit to the Greater Wisdom of Divine Spirit, which works from a higher, more complete viewpoint that we can ever achieve by ourselves.
4. All of Creation is connected. Everything in Creation, animal, vegetable and mineral, is connected. Nothing happens without consequences somewhere along the line. We are not only connected in space, and in spirit, but also in time, and we must consider the consequences of what we do for generations to come. We must be proactive in co-creating a world where our descendants can live in peace, in health, and in plenty.
5. We must be responsible for our actions, our words and our thoughts, and cognizant of their consequences to ourselves, to other people, and to the all of Creation. We must learn to act responsibly with respect to other people, to the animals and plants that share this planet with us, to Mother Earth, herself, and to God. This means subsuming our will to that of the Creator, and working for the good of the whole, rather than only for our own selfish ends. 🙂