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The Good Little Spirit


Source: Indian Legends Retold

Perhaps you have wondered why some men are wise and do good, while
others in their ignorance do nothing but harm. If so, I will tell you
a secret.

In a cave not far from the homes of men there dwells a good little
spirit. He is very old, his hair is long and white, and he is about
as tall as a child three years old.

Now every child, when it reaches the age of three or four, sometimes
wanders away out of sight of home, and the spirit is constantly on the
watch for this to happen. He comes out of hiding, takes the little one
by the hand and leads it away to his cave. There he makes it choose
one of three gifts: a knife, a bunch of poisonous flowers, and a
handful of healing herbs.

If the child takes the knife, he will do only harm all his days. If he
is misled by the beauty of the poisonous blossoms, he will never be
wise; but if he takes the good medicine, he will be a wise man and a
healer, who will bless and help his people.

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