Which wolf are you feeding?


Which wolf are you feeding ?

One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.

He said, “My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.

“One is evil, which is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”

“The other is good, which is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”


It happens with all of us. We all have both a good side and a bad side. Sometimes we are so angry  that we keep on feeding our anger more with our thoughts and hence making the angry wolf win whereas  at other times  our kindness and love take over  and  the  good wolf wins. If we are a little more conscious of our thoughts/actions  then we can  always make sure that  our good wolf(good side) always wins.

“Always remember that ALL(no exceptions) OF US HAVE A GOOD  WOLF INSIDE US. Just remember to feed it. ”

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24 Responses to Which wolf are you feeding?

  1. Amit sahai says:

    That is so right that everything boils down to controlling one’s thought. Control your thoughts and you control your life. I will try to feed my good wolf little more now :)

    Thanks for sharing this.

    Reply to this comment

    shweta Gupta reply on March 10th, 2010 8:24 am:

    You are absolutely right ” Everything boils down to one’s thoughts”. Controlling thoughts is however not at all easy.

    Reply to this comment

    Sanjana reply on June 13th, 2010 8:24 pm:

    true…but with practice thought control becomes easy..yoga and meditation are awesome practices that help…

    Reply to this comment

    Sikander reply on May 22nd, 2010 1:36 pm:

    At sometimes our mind go in that position where we can’t think..if someone has done bad with us in the past the feeling of hatred devlop itself.Controlling is Good,feeding the brain with positive thought is good but how can we be saint or mahatma all the time,its human nature….

    Reply to this comment

  2. Manish says:

    Yeah, although we are aware of them, invariably we tend to feed the bad one…..another great post Shweta, do keep them going as they help in reinforcing & feeding the good wolf!

    Cheers to life

    Reply to this comment

    shweta Gupta reply on March 10th, 2010 8:26 am:

    Thanks. IMHO reminding yourself of good stuff surely helps.

    Reply to this comment

  3. Rakesh bajaj says:

    You know what? My good wolf has been complaining that she is hungry. Looks like I need to feed it more often :) BTW interesting post.

    Reply to this comment

    shweta Gupta reply on March 10th, 2010 8:25 am:

    Rakesh don’t let your good wolf complaint of hunger anymore :) Good luck !

    Reply to this comment

  4. Rajeev Gandhi says:

    Manifestation of feelings is natural and so is the reaction. IMO, the basic truth and only possible attribute to the flesh is Karma – Karma driven by conscience. Buddha’s teachings (Curb your desires) are anti-natural.

    I presume you are a Hindu and most of us have never taken the initiative to read the Gita. I strongly recommend you to read this crash course on Gita:
    read it complelely (hardly 30 pages)

    Focus more on Arjuna’s questions then on Krishna’s answers.

    Reply to this comment

    shweta Gupta reply on March 25th, 2010 10:23 am:

    Thanks Rajeev. I have read Gita and I truly feel its probably one of the best scripture available.

    Reply to this comment

  5. Manas Garg says:

    Hi Shweta,

    I’ve been following your blog and it’s interesting to see the evolution of your thought process :)

    Keep it up.

    Ps: By the way, this is also called thought cultivation.

    Reply to this comment

    shweta Gupta reply on March 25th, 2010 10:24 am:

    Thanks Bhaiya. A lot of it is coming from the stuff recommended by you. I will continue the process of cultivation :)

    Reply to this comment

  6. will smith says:

    very nice story , with help of a Master of caliber one can lead a moderate life.

    Reply to this comment

  7. very good story and great explanation…true if we are conscious of our attitude we can be that good wolf

    Reply to this comment

  8. jaideep singh says:

    There r not even two wolfs
    one which becomes angry in one moments becomes love in another

    Reply to this comment

  9. Kiran says:

    It is really good one shwetha…
    I’m feeling very happy after reading this section.
    If every one on earth just understood this, the words evil, anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego… can be seen in only in Dictionaries and movies…. I’m really thankful to you forsharing this….

    Reply to this comment

  10. Shweta Shah says:

    Hi Shweta

    Very nice story to highlight the differnece between good and bad characteristics of human being.

    It’s very true that we all have good wolf inside us but sometimes situations and incidents create evil wolf inside us but is is up to us how we overcome it.

    Reply to this comment

  11. Gogineni says:

    Perspective : two brothers sitting next to each other and waiting to help each other in need when the time is ready

    Reply to this comment

  12. ankita says:

    its just wow but how should we do that its my question

    Reply to this comment

  13. dhivya says:

    short, sweet and on the point!! how do you think we can cultivate this habit with kids??

    Reply to this comment

  14. Hajra says:

    I heard this in a movie too..though for me it is all a matter of relatively perceiving it. Though one can’t undermine the power of positive emotions and actions not all negative emotions are “bad”…it is sometime necessary to be selfish…keeps danger at bay!

    Reply to this comment

  15. atul says:

    Hi Shwetha
    Incidentally my blog name is same as yours , hence I end up sometimes on your blog, then landing in my owns nest.
    Interestingly, I am also an entrepreneur like you, who left a cosy MNC job to try an international venture like you. So, we have quite a few things in common.
    Anyway, coming back to your post on Feeding The Wolves : Now, what happens, if someone feeds the two wolves equally to keep the balanced human being in you. In a rather assymetrical world, there is value of greed ,anger, temptations, etc and there is a value for peace , love , kindness. I guess, one has to keep a good balance . But to find that thin line which supports war against evil and love against hatred is then the reflection of a ruler. Otherwise, we simply become followers where courage is subdued to the extent of cowardice , whenever challenges have to be made to fight the wrong around you. Both wolves equally fed, keep the evil away and keeps the love growing.

    Reply to this comment

  16. charu says:

    I browsed to an atheist website and pondered upon the question mentioned in that: the question is ===>

    One of the more interesting ethical dilemmas is posed by the old story about how early Inuits behaved. When a tribe was in difficulty in bad weather and there was barely enough food to go around and someone old or sick was holding the tribe back, the sick/old person would walk off into a blizzard to certain death. This was portrayed in the 1960 movie Savage Innocents starring Anthony Quinn as Inuk and the person was an old grandmother. Her decision to sacrifice herself for the good of the tribe was accepted and no-one risked their life or the lives of the rest of the tribe to try and reverse her decision. A Christian would not have a solution to this problem – suicide is a sure way to lose one’s soul and would never be allowed. Only god can decide – or put another way, we must not decide for God. I would guess that in this situation, if the tribe were Christian, they would all perish.

    The Savage InnocentsWould an atheist agree with the suicide solution? It would depend on the details. If the old person did it on her own, she would be a hero. But our inbuilt sense of morality says that you must not decide whether another person should live. It’s not God who decides – but it’s also not someone else who decides for me. Perhaps (in this case) they are not really holding everyone back. If I remember the film, no other person told the grandmother what she should do – they all loved her and did not want to lose her.

    But Christians will tell you that our morality comes from God. Some will say that it comes from the 10 commandments but that list is way too short and incomplete to be of much value. Others will say it comes from knowing that God created us and so we have value. But we have value anyway – irrespective of the existence of any god. All Atheists I have ever met have a strong ethical sense – in fact there are many Christians who are a lot less moral – think abusive priests, abortion doctor killers and anti-gay hatemongers to name a few. I don’t have a strong answer as to where this ethical sense comes from – but I know it is unrelated to God. There are billions of atheists, agnostics, Hindus, Buddhists and others who have approx. the same set of moral values and they don’t attribute them to anything related to a god.

    But if you have an ethical question and you would like an answer (e.g. abortion, capital punishment, violent political protests etc.), then how do you choose a solution? Sam Harris suggests we turn to Science and he may be right. But relying on ancient texts written in dead languages which need interpretation by people who believe they were inspired by a god who never actually speaks to us, will not work. As a minimum we need to use our ability to reason and apply logic.

    Reply to this comment

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