A Native American Lesson

A great chief was studying his people and noted that they needed to learn a valuable lesson. He gathered them all together for a great Pow Wow and treated them with venison, dancing, drumming & songs. Then he asked everyone to sit and listen to what he had to say. He took two arrows and called a young boy from the tribe and asked the boy to tell everyone what he observed about each. Were they the same? What about their size and color of their feathers, were they similar?

The young boy stated loud enough for everyone to hear that the arrows were in fact very different. While one  was thin and streamlined the other was a little bit larger in diameter and felt a bit more sturdy. The feathers were different in each, with the first having black feathers  and the second having the feathers taken from and eagle.

The great chief thanked the boy for his observations and agreed with his thoughts. He then asked the boy if he could break the arrows. The boy said yes, and with the chiefs permission broke the two arrows in front of all in attendance. The chief then thanked the boy and requested him to sit back down with his family.

The chief then asked for the two of the strongest warriors from the tribe to come forward. This they did and in front of the whole tribe the chief laid out 30 arrows. The chief asked these warriors if they thought that what the young boy had said about the two arrows was true of the 30. Were the 30 arrows each different? Did they each not have different feathers? The two strong men agreed that the
same traits that the young boy had found with the two arrows were true of the 30. The great chief then took the 30 arrows and put them together in a bundle.

He then handed the bundle in turn to each man asking them to try to break the bundle of arrows. Neither of the two strong men could break the bundle of 30 arrows. He thanked the two men and asked them to take their place once more back with their families.  He then addressed the whole assembly before him.

The great chief said, "Each of you are like one of these arrows, each of you are unique. Some of you
have different feathers, size or capabilities. Just as this small boy was able to break the single arrow or even two arrows together so it is with you. As individuals we can be broken. The lesson for us here is
that by sticking together in spite of our differences we can not be broken. Two strong men tried to break that bundle of 30 and could not, so it is with our people, we must stick together for by doing so we gain
our strength."

~Author Unknown~

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