In A Dark Wood…Shunngmanitu Thanka

The Lakota say that it is not uncommon
To hear something calling your name
In the stillness of a dark moonless night.
This is ‘shungmanitu thanka‘, the Great Wolf.

One night our pilgrim found himself walking deep in a dark wood; overhead a new moon disguised as its shadow self-juxtaposed to an array of stars, as the sound of spent leaves crushed underfoot sounded in the autumnal air. It seemed as though the wind was guiding him towards an expected destination as he found himself facing Sirius, the Dog Star. At this moment, his vision caught sight of a light moving swiftly in front of him in the shadows of an oak grove. Like a slow waxing moon, a white wolf appeared before his eyes lending a radiant glow to the maze of yellow, red, and green on the forest floor.

In silence, it’s believed
As though shouted
From the highest mountain
That this seer has witnessed
A vision and is in store
For a special kind of teaching.

“Through an open window in a thicket of shrubs, I saw his head turn up toward the dark velvet sky, and howl into the thin air, moving his head from left to right and back again. It was mournful and very moving like he was self-contained in a certain kind of grief reserved for a departed lover. We both sat there at a distance, careful not to startle the other, a meeting of heart and soul… a revival. And on the 3rd day, we took leave of each other, disappearing as suddenly as he came, I walked away embracing a deeper understanding of life, love, and compassion.”

The White Wolf, a native to Tibet is a spiritual presence in the Himalayas. Native Americans call on him as a teacher and pathfinders to unmapped territories of the forest and uncharted areas of the soul. Sirius, the dog star of the constellation Canis Major, home of the ancients, is his symbol, the brightest star in the night sky. Sirius is, in reality, two stars seen as one from its proximity to the Earth. Because of its binary nature, it represents the paradoxical nature of life.

The Pilgrim on his path is like a Lone Wolf, he’s not of a pack, he seeks knowledge for knowledge sake. It is not important to the wolf or the pilgrim if one or a thousand hear his meditations in the night. In his indifference to fame and fortune, only a few may hear his prayers, but as a pebble splash on the surface of a pond, vibrations will echo in these waters until the end of time.

©jc2019-9… Images by Pixabay

Published by

JC

I was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in October of 2012. These are my writings of life and love after the fall but during a time of deep creativity either because or in spite of my illness... Peace and Love... JC

5 thoughts on “In A Dark Wood…Shunngmanitu Thanka”

  1. Would you believe me if I say that I have a framed print near me where I sit now.
    The White Wolf is in the centre with one Native American who has been given the name of White Woof. On the top corners are pictures of Eagles.

    As this Wolf comes from Central Asia ( Tibet ) it is intriguing how it became such a symbol for the Lakota people. It is beautiful though.
    Sirius now, we can all see and it carries memories from childhood when my father
    and I were watching the sky and him teaching me. That is when I first learnt about its binary nature as I wondered why it seemed to blink in two or more colours.

    Miriam

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am glad to say that I haven’t become a skeptic even after all these years. The world or the cosmos is full of these epiphanies that sustained us in its magic for now until we are taken on that scared continuance to the next turn in the road. So I guess for me. I can see your father talking about the dog star and its blinking nature and you pass it along with the same thoughts to me that I wrote to you. The universe id definitely blinking tonight.

      Liked by 1 person

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