"Grandfather says this: 'In life there is sadness as well as joy, losing as well as winning, falling as well as standing, hunger as well as plenty, bad as well as good. I do not say this to make you despair, but to teach you reality that life is a journey sometimes walked in light and sometimes walked in shadow.
"Grandfather says this: 'You did not ask to be born, but you are here. You have weaknesses as well as strengths because in life there are two of everything. Within you is the will to win as well as the willingness to lose, the heart to feel compassion as well as the smallness to be arrogant. Within you is the way to face life as well as the fear to turn away from it.
"Grandfather says this: 'Facing the storms of life, knowing loss, feeling sadness and heartache, and falling into the depths of grief can give you strength. You must stand up in the storms. You must face the wind and the cold and the darkness. When a storm blows it is not trying to knock you down, it is really trying to help you be strong.
"Grandfather says this: 'Being strong means taking one more step towards the top of the hill, no matter how weary you may be. It means letting the tears flow through the grief; it means to keep looking for the answer though the darkness if despair is all around. It means to cling to hope for one more heartbeat, one more sunrise. Each step takes you closer to the top of the hill, closer to the light of the next sunrise, and the promise of a new day.
"Grandfather says this: 'The weakest step toward the top of the hill, toward sunrise, toward hope, is stronger than the fiercest storm."
-Joseph Marshall III
Joseph Marshall III is a member of the Sicangu Lakota (Rosebud Sioux) tribe. Raised by his Lakota grandparents, he spoke Lakota as his first language. A teacher, lecturer and writer of several non-fiction books, novels and essays, he has been published worldwide. In the Lakota tradition, he has also learned the ancient art of oral storytelling.
The Sacred Hoop, ancient teacher of the four holy powers and seven directions.
The Four Winds, Father Sky, Mother Earth and the Center of All, divine and
holy. Timeless Lakota wisdom and knowledge of the four changing seasons,
elements, and life stages. The Medicine Wheel, sacred instructor for life.
Have a wonderful and safe 4th of July weekend. We could be celebrating independence from the troubles and anxieties that prevent us from enjoying life to its fullest!