An old Cherokee told his grandson, "My son, there is a battle between two wolves inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, jealousy, greed, resentment, inferiority, lies and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, humility, kindness, empathy and truth."
The boy thought about it, and asked, "Grandfather, which wolf wins?"
The old man quietly replied, "The one you feed."
So who knows where this story really came from. And from my perspective, it doesn't really matter.
What I find strikingly true in the story is the moral - where do we spend the bulk of our thinking time? What motivates our actions? What are the effects of our actions?
We have a unique opportunity at the moment to look at the national stage and watch this being played out - the fear, the ego, the self serving. We have a unique opportunity to see the end result in terms of the suffering, of people, of this planet. It's pretty easy to see.
We can spend a lot of time discussing the "over there" - what someone else is doing - how they are acting - and to start that might be the easiest way to recognize it... but more difficult and far more interesting - can we look at that piece inside ourselves? Where is our anger? Our jealousy? Our lies? Our ego? To think we can ever simply get rid of these very natural human emotions is silly. But we can begin to examine ourselves and notice when they flare up. We can begin to notice when our actions are motived by fear. We can begin to notice that with even some of our best intentions the net result is harm.
This is yoga. That recognition. That ability to both be fully engaged in the world and yet also observing ourselves - so that we can act in joy, we can act in peace, we can speak only truth.