Bird Droppings March 2, 2021
We need LOVE
Sometimes we so easily use the word love. It gets used daily by many folks and yet do we truly have any conception of what it is we speak. I was just in a conversation and the word love came up, I responded how we each have our own understanding and definition of love. One of my favorite actors for many years has been the late Chief Dan George. He was a very devout man with a powerful faith and belief. I would like to share with you a passage in his words.
“My friends, how desperately do we need to be loved and to love. When Christ said that man does not live by bread alone, he spoke of a hunger. This hunger was not the hunger of the body. It was for bread. He spoke of a hunger that begins down deep in the very depths of our being. He spoke of a need as vital as breath. He spoke of our hunger for love. Love is something you and I must have. We must have it because our spirit feeds upon it. We must have it because without it we become weak and faint. Without it, our self-esteem weakens. Without it our courage fails. Without love, we can no longer look out confidently at the world. We turn inward and begin to feed upon our own personalities, and little by little we destroy ourselves. With it we are creative. With it we march tirelessly. With it and with it alone we are able to sacrifice for others.” Chief Dan George
I will always remember this great man for his role as Lone Watti, sidekick to Josie Wales played by Clint Eastwood in the film, The Outlaw Josie Wales. I was reading an email on our high school group website several years back and I recalled this message from one of my former classmates. He was speaking about his father and his father’s death at 46 many years ago, and how he remembered now even though he is 56, his father always as being older than himself. I was thinking back to my father who was in his eighties when he passed away and yet if I was asked to recall an image it would be in Pennsylvania many years ago I was maybe twelve or so and my father and I raced around the house. So many years ago, and he was younger than I am now at that time.
It has been a few years since closed a portion to a year of graduate studies at Piedmont College. We were sitting around a room reflecting, a very powerful tool for teachers and non-teachers alike. Dr. Julie asked us to respond to cards we had written nearly a year previous. There were twenty in our cohort group. One by one she would read the cards we wrote those many days ago. We were to reply with our thoughts today. Had they changed? What was different? As a rule, I tend to be very monastic. I do little socializing outside of the family. For the past few years at that time, my spare time had been in graduate school but even aside from that, I tend to not seek others company. But in reading and communicating that day to responses and often tearful ones at that so much had happened within our group in a year’s time. I go back to Chief Dan George’s words:
“With love we are creative. With it, we march tirelessly. With it and with it alone we are able to sacrifice for others.” Chief Dan George
It is so easy to say, love. But it is far more difficult to truly show it. We went from a group of various sundry individuals to a very creative, tireless, and willing to sacrifice for others cohort. Was it love that bound us together? I put together a slide show for a presentation. I said in my ten-minute talk such things as friendship, philosophy, and cohort, all big words in and of themselves. But as I look at the effects of a year’s interaction I do believe Dan George had it right it takes love.
I was sitting earlier outside wondering about the next few hours and moments, thinking about the days ahead and beyond. It was quiet outside virtually no sound and no breeze so still. I could hear my own breathing and almost hear the smoke from my sage and sweetgrass floating off towards the sunrise. It has been many years since a friend left me a gift of a smudge stick essentially incense, made of sage and cedar which got me started. I was watching the smoke waft for lack of better terms it would go up and then circle and then almost pause with no wind or air current it hung near almost in a protective sort of way. I would blow on the embers and in doing so move the smoke.
I had started writing this today before I went outside but as I thought love is like that smoke it is there awaiting our interaction, our acknowledgment, and acceptance. However, it is through our example others than we can experience love. I am wandering a bit pondering as usual. Please keep all in harm’s way on your mind and in your heart namaste.
My family and friends, I do not say this lightly,
(We are all related)