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The Ancient One
By Bear Medicinewalker,
Ancient One sat in the shade of his tree in front of his cave.
Red People came to him and he said
to Red People, "Tell me your vision." And Red People
answered, "The elders have told us to pray in this manner,
and that manner, and it is important that only we pray as we
have been taught for this has been handed down to us by the
elders." "Hmmmm," said the Ancient One.
Then Black People came to him and
he said to Black People, "Tell me your vision." And
Black People answered, "Our mothers have said to go to
this building and that building and pray in this manner and
that manner. And our fathers have said to bow in this manner
and that manner when we pray. And it is important that we do
only this when we pray." "Hmmmm," said the Ancient
Then Yellow People came to him and
he said to Yellow People, "Tell me your vision." And
Yellow People answered, "Our teachers have told us to sit
in this manner and that manner and to say this thing and that
thing when we pray. And it is important that we do only this
when we pray." "Hmmmm," said the Ancient One.
Then White People came to him and
he said to White People, "Tell me your vision." And
White People answered, "Our Book has told us to pray in
this way and that way and to do this thing and that thing, and
it is very important that we do this when we pray." "Hmmmm,"
said the Ancient One.
Then Ancient One spoke to the Earth
and said, "Have you given the people a vision?" And
the Earth said, "Yes, a special gift for each one, but
the people were so busy speaking and arguing about which way
is right they could not see the gift I gave each one of them."
And the Ancient One asked same question
of Water and Fire and Air and got the same answer.
Then Ancient One asked Animal, and
Bird, and Insect, and Tree, and Flower, and Sky, and Moon, and
Sun, and Stars, and all of the other Spirits and each told him
Ancient One thought this was very
sad. He called Red People, Black People, Yellow People, and
White People to him and said to them. "The ways taught
to you by your Elders, and your Mothers and Fathers, and Teachers,
and Books are sacred. It is good that you respect those ways,
for they are the ways of your ancestors. But the ancestors no
longer walk on the Face of the Earth Mother. You have forgotten
your own Vision.
Your Vision is right for you but
no one else. Now each of you
must pray for your own Visions, and be still enough to see them,
so you can follow the way of the heart.
It is a hard way. It is a good way.
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