“I claim credit for nothing! Everything is determined, the beginning as well as the end, by forces over which we have no control. It is determined for the insect as well as for the star. Human beings, vegetables or cosmic dust, we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible player.”
— Albert Einstein
“Be kind,” advised Plato; “everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”
Everyone we meet is privately fighting a hard battle. Wisdom, then, dictates I always keep in mind each man is nothing but a variation of myself. I strive therefore to judge no man, woman or child. After all, what do I really know . . . what do I really know? “For many people, the more you learn, the more you realize how little you actually know. Perhaps the highest wisdom boils down to this: show me a guy with a “big-head” and I’ll show you a guy with a “small-mind.” Be humble! Besides, who really knows?"
Dr. Ibrahim Jaffe
The only bird that will peck at an Eagle, is the crow. He sits on his back and bites his neck. The Eagle does not respond or fight with the crow. It doesn't waste time or energy on the crow. It simply opens its wings and begins to rise higher in the sky. The higher the flight, the harder it is for the crow to breathe. Eventually the crow falls due to lack of oxygen. Stop wasting your time with the crows. Just take them to your heights and they'll fade.
"The Natural Law is a spiritual law. Its powers are both light and dark." There are some characteristics that are evident in the system which the Creator made. He made balance, harmony, and polarity. In other words, every (+) plus has a (-) minus. Every positive has a negative; every up has a down; every problem has a solution. The Spiritual Law is the same - it has light and dark. Both are good, so both need to be honored. Lessons can be learned on both sides. Great Spirit, teach me the powers of the Natural Laws. -- Oren R. Lyons, Spokesman Traditional Circle of Elders
Cultures the world have passed down stories about stars and creation. Lakota people had regionally based beliefs called Star Knowledge. One of these stories tells how the stars give a spirit to a Lakota person at birth. When they die, that spirit returns to the sky and travels though the Milky Way.
According to Lakota tradition, every Lakota baby that is born is given a wanagi. A wanagi is like a spirit from a star. We live our lives here on this earth with that wanagi. Then when we die, that wanagi leaves our body and it goes to the cup of the Big Dipper.
The cup has seven stars. Four of them make the dipper part and three of make the handle. Those four stars that make the cup are called the carriers. When the wanagi leaves a person who had died, those four stars, they carry this blanket between them and on that blanket is this wanagi.
When that wanagi is taken to the Milky Way, it's accompanied by seven stars. The other three that make the handle are called the mourners and those seven stars together are called the Wicakiyuhapi. That's the Lakota name for The Big Dipper. Then this wanagi gets on that spirit trail and then that wanagi by itself then travels. The narratives say there's a fork in the Milky Way and it's at that point where that wanagi returns to a star.
In Lakota, you hear the phrase mitakuye oyasin, which means all my relatives, all my relations. A lot of times, we westerners think of that meaning all my cousins and all my aunts and uncles and we think of humans, but when Lakotas say this mitakuye oyasin, it means all these relatives of all the nations, not just the human nations. The star nation is one and that's this idea of relatives throughout the universe. So, all Lakotas are related to stars. All the research now is we are exchanging molecules all the time with our environment. This is this idea that it's these species are not finite. One specie versus another specie is that the plants, the animals, all other people, we're exchanging molecules with all of these living beings and that fits into the Lakota cosmology perfectly. That's not foreign. It wouldn't be strange to traditional Lakotas from 150 years ago to have been old that. They'd say, well, yeah. That's mitakuye oyasin, we're all related.
"Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing, nor upon tradition, nor upon rumor, nor upon scripture,
nor upon surmise*, nor upon axiom, nor upon specious** reasoning, nor upon bias toward a notion pondered over,
nor upon another's seeming ability, nor upon the consideration
'The monk is our teacher.' When you yourselves know:
'These things are bad, blamable, censured by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to harm and ill,' abandon them...
When you yourselves know:
'These things are good, blameless, praised by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness,' enter on and abide in them."