There was once a young spirit warrior named Sati but he did not he was such. To him, he was feeling lost and confused in a world he didn’t understand. The elders of his tribe had been dispersed long ago along with the tribe. Now Children are raised by only their parents instead of by their whole tribe. The parents without the support of the tribe had to sacrifice traditions and ritual that guided young men and women into confident spirit warriors. Without these rituals the youth did not earn their place amongst a tribe and were left to figure out how they were to belong. And so too many spirit warriors have lost their way thrown into the sea of madness.
Shinob is one of the Great Spirits who used to present himself to young warriors, to lead them, guide them, and present challenges that enabled them to overcome and find their inner strength. He was the spirit that showed them the way to their inner spirit. Few youth however knew how to listen and see the signs anymore.
One day Shinob saw Sati walking in a park feeling frustrated and angry. His parents didn’t understand him and Sati felt he didn’t know what he was supposed to do.
Suddenly Shinob took the form of a large ragged Raven with bright amber eyes and began dive bombing Sati cawing loudly. Shinob then landed upon a branch close by. Sati was alarmed by the Raven’s behavior and even more entranced by his bright amber eyes. The Raven flew to another branch and then seemed to fall into the river flow by.
Sati ran to the river’s edge but when he looked in there was no Raven. Instead, he saw a reflection of himself as a strong and proud warrior. He saw not a confused boy trying to find his way but a confident man with an inner strength, with an inner knowing.
As he stared at the reflection, Raven flew down from behind him Sati and shoved him into the waters. As Sati entered the water he was transformed into brother Salmon. Then Shinob presented himself to the confused Sati.
“I am Shinob, protector of our tribe. You are a spirit warrior and the time has come to pass through the storm of your mind and arrive back into the sacred knowledge of your heart.”
Shinob continued “You be tested with three challenges. With each one you must listen within, overcome petty desires, and fears… you must stay the course.”
With that, Shinob began to disappear. Sati yelled “Wait!!! Which way do I go??? How will I know???”
“Listen within, feel it from within, all the answers to your questions are there” said Shinob as he disappeared like mist into a sunny sky.
The river’s waters seemed strong and fast. Other fish said “Hey swim with us down stream, it’s a wild ride!”
Sati was about to join them but then felt a strong pull to go up stream against the current.
“Don’t go that way!” said the other fish “Join us, go with the flow like everyone else!”
Sati hesitated but his heart propelled him up stream. He fought against the strong current, feeling exhausted, often wanting to give up but his inner voice and heart urged him forward.
At one point he came across brother Beaver. When Beaver saw Salmon Sati, he swam over and said “Don’t waste your time fighting upstream young salmon, I know all the magic plants of the forest and rivers. Come to my house and I’ll share them!”
Brother Beaver however was actually hungry and he fed off the young salmon he fooled with is “magic” herbs. They became addicted to their sweet flavors and they became relaxed. Brother Beaver fed on them until they cold go on no longer and then would through them to the side wasted.
Sati felt enticed by Brother Beaver’s offer and he was indeed very tired. “Maybe I should go with Beaver.” But once again he felt the voice of his heart pulling him, warning him, reminding him to stay the course.
“Another time Brother Beaver” said Sati, “I’m on a sacred journey and I must stay the course.”
Brother Beaver suddenly became very angry and tried to attack Sati, to devour him on the spot. Sati had grown strong swimming up stream, listening to his own inner spirit and calling. He tail thrust him up stream and he leaped powerfully out of the water and over a waterfall where he landed safely in a cool clear pool of water.
When he arrived in the new pool other young salmon swam over and congratulated Sati for come so far that so few ever make. Together they began to continue their journey swimming up stream. Suddenly, fellow Salmon were being snatched from the waters. A family of Osprey were striking from above the surface. They salmon couldn’t see them coming from the unknown.
Sati paid close attention and where others gave into fear and moved to the calm pools of water he dived into the fierce rapids and pushed forward.
Eventually Sati arrived in a clear deep mountain lake. Shinob appeared and said “You past the three challenges young Sati. You listen to your inner calling instead of getting persuaded by the other fish to go with the flow. You then overcame the temptation of brother beaver even though you were tired and wanted to rest. Then you overcame your fear as the osprey strike from the unknown.”
“In each instance” continued Shinob, “ It was I who manifested as the fish, as brother beaver and as the osprey to test you.”
Sati felt transformed, a true warrior who could now confront anything. He now knew he didn’t need to know what to do but if he listend within and honored his hearts calling he’d be able to stay the course no mater what challenges presented themselves.
Shinob then said “At every challenge in your life, it is I testing you, inviting you to tap your inner strength and exemplify the spirit of the warrior you are.”
“Always remember” said Shinob “Warrior means one how confronts.”
Sati then found himself in his human form back at the river’s edge. He walked away with a new inner strength as a warrior amongst the sea of madness.
OM OM OM!