Windigo living

It’s a grand thing to get leave to live.*
Nan Shepherd

Your big break. Some people get one. Most people don’t. But if you’re reading this, it means that you’ve received more than one, perhaps a countless number of, little breaks.**
Seth Godin

I guess we’d all agree on how
it’s important to live before we die,
Given the biggest break of all –
That of being here.
The odds were stacked against us, but here we are
with daily options on how we want to live.
The Windigo is a Anishinaabe legendary monster that
exists to consume and consumes to exist,
But the more the Windigo ingests the hungrier it becomes:
Windigo is the name for that within us
which cares more for its own survival
than for anything else.^

Robin Wall Kimmerer sees the Windigo’s footprints
in all of our corporate and personal destructiveness:
industrially-blemished lakes, deforested
hillsides, coalmine-wasted
countryside, poisoned
New kitchens replaced with
newer kitchens, Clothes
we never wear, food
going to waste.
The Windigo does not live, perhaps does not even survive, but
only exists:
What native people once sought to rein in,
we are now asked to unleash in a
systematic policy of sanctioned greed.^

None of us have failed to be taken in by this monster, but
there’s another part to our story –
Perhaps we have noticed how we recover when we give,
When we notice our talents, energies and values, turning
these outwards in giftedness to others, we find
life is richer.

*Philip Newell’s Sacred Earth, Sacred Soul;
**Seth Godin’s blog: Your big break;
^Robin Wall Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass

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