Food for Thought: Courage

Go Forward With Courage

When you are in doubt, be still, and wait;

When doubt no longer exists for you then go forward with courage.

So long as mists envelop you, be still;

Be still until the sunlight pours through and dispels the mists

-As it surely will.

Then act with courage.

-Ponca Chief White Eagle

In all of our workshops, we have seen many students step onto the Shamanic Path. For some, their steps have been an easy, effortless transition. For others, it has taken Great Courage to begin this journey. As Practitioners and Counselors—as Human Beings—we hold great respect for and offer encouragement to those who are willing to stand, fall, and rise repeatedly as they grow and walk onward, willing to face their darkness and thus, become allies with their fears. These young practitioners embrace their fears, honor them, poke at them with the fingers of their hearts, and gain realization of their previously unknown or historically misunderstood courage. In the words of Chief White Eagle, there are actually some very powerful questions. This leads us to some Food for Thought….

  • Are you willing to become still?
  • Are you willing to wait when you are uncertain, or do you rush right in?
  • For you, what kind of Mist is Mist?
  • How long has the Mist been present? How dense is it?
  • How do you define Courage?
  • Is Courage within you or is it found more around you?

    When were you last tested for your Courage?
    When were you last tested for your Courage?
  • Did this test feel like it was a battlefield?
  • If so, upon which battlefield did it show itself? Who was the enemy?
  • To you, what is the opposite of Courage?
  • Who empowers your Courage? Who thwarts it?
  • What person, place, thing or situation calls upon your Courage?
  • How much Courage is needed to face this person, place, thing or situation? Why?
  • How much energy do you need to expend to become Courageous? How much is required to maintain it?

I see—in the Chief’s words—the Archetype of The Hunter: Patience, understanding, awareness, tenacity, diligence, discipline and knowledge. This does not imply that all hunter’s are courageous. Instead, these qualities found in the Archetype are the tools that, when properly applied and balanced, allow Courage to take root within us. Stand tall and grow! Experience, taste, tread, see, feel…our personal Courage resents itself in a myriad of ways. At the given moment, the test may seem challenging or even insurmountable, but what waits on the other side? Welcome to Life my friend.