The Fifth (and final) part
So that’s four different truths which aren’t. What are they- fables, stories, myths, legends? The point of the exercise for me is that they are in fact all ‘true’- but a different kind of truth, not literal.
St Francis exemplifies a loving care for all of nature through which he teaches humanity. His ‘prayer’ neatly exemplifies this. If Farmer Fleming didn’t save Sir Winston Churchill, only for his son to benefit and then save Churchill again, as a legend it’s heart warming and suggests to us how patterns of gifting and support without expectation of reward improve the world. A fable indeed.
Chief Seattle is known to have made a speech along the lines suggested. The idea that a ‘civilising’ culture out of touch with the bounty of nature needs to question the basis of its supposed moral superiority is with us today. Indigenous people implies a lot more than ‘they came from here’- it is the intimate connection with the living world and the spirit of a place which enhances their rights to the land. A moral guidance for us all to increase that connectivity wherever we are.
Desiderata gives a fine portrait of how our civilisation might behave and think if we achieved those goals.
Permaculture suggests the power of diversity. This parable suggests there are many paths to the truth. Beware all dogmas, seek kindness, consideration and care wherever you can and give it wherever you can. Oh. And never give advice!