The Monkey Code, about kindness and consideration to newcomers. Story 1 for kids of 6 to 8 years old

   The Monkey Code

A story about kindness and consideration towards newcomers.

for children of 6 to 8 years old.    Story Number 1 of 2 stories

This story is ideal for children to turn into a play with some guidance from teachers or parents. Read the story to the children first and ask the questions posed at the end. Discuss with the children how they would like to act out the story and go ahead.

The monkeys were having a meeting, they were making a lot of noise and jumping up and down. There were monkey mothers and monkey children and some old grey monkeys too. Nobody could hear what anybody was saying.

monkey-playing001

An old grey backed monkey stood and reached his big hand up to a tree branch. He shook it hard. All the leaves rattled and made a swishing noise. The baby monkeys ran to their mothers and hid. The boy and girl monkeys stopped jumping about and looked at the old grey monkey. They knew he was the leader of the tribe and that what he had to say was important. Monkeys who had been swinging about the branches clambered down to the ground to listen. Monkeys who were grooming each other stopped looking for bits and pieces to pick off their friends’ coats. All eyes were turned to Grey Back.

‘We are all here today because there is some news. Now listen carefully. We’re going to have some new monkeys in our tribe. There are two young monkeys coming to join us. They have lost their families. There was a fire in their part of the forest and they lost their homes. I want to know how you will take care of them when they come. The monkeys looked round at each other. They were very quiet. They knew that this was important and they were thinking hard. They were just imagining how frightened and lonely their new visitors might be. Some of the monkey children replied:

‘I can be a good friend,’ said one.

‘I can show them our food trees,’ said another.

‘I can help them to build a nest to sleep on at night,’ said a third.

The monkey mothers nodded their heads in agreement. It seemed like the young monkeys had learned their lessons well. They had been taught to look after each other and to be helpful and kind.

‘Well done ,’ said Grey Back, ‘if you look after others then they will look after you, but if you are unkind, others will turn away from you, and your unkindness will turn to unhappiness. And that is against the Monkey Code. What do we want? Happy monkeys, helpful monkeys, that’s our code!’

Grey Back gave the branch one last shake then lumbered off into the trees.

‘Happy monkeys, helpful monkeys!’ chattered the youngsters as they went back to their clambering about.’

‘I’m off to find some fruit’ said a teenage monkey.

‘Fruit, fruit!’ whooped the youngsters as they all disappeared into the trees.

Questions

What name would you give to this story – what do you think it is about?

Why did the monkeys have a meeting?

Why were two young monkeys coming to join the tribe? 

How did the monkeys say they would take care of the visitors?

How would you look after new people in school?

Does the story remind you of anything in your life?

‘Poochie’ A dog story about keeping calm and not panicking, for children of 5-6 years old. 337 words, 2 -3 minutes to read

Subject Resilience

Poochie

poochie002

You know, being a dog is very interesting. Everything smells so different. You have to keep sniffing to see what’s been happening. You can tell a lot from sniffing.

My human, she is called Katie, she can’t tell much from sniffing. In fact the only time I see her sniffing is when she’s sniffing me! She cuddles me and sniffs my head. I hear her telling her mum that I smell nice – sort of warm and fluffy.

‘Are you dog sniffing again?’

‘Yes, I like sniffing Poochie!’

Poochie, that’s what they call me! My real name is Puccini!  I am quite small for a dog. I can fit onto Katie’s lap and fall asleep and she just sits there stroking me.

One day I saw a hole in the garden fence. I sniffed at it and smelt something different. I just had to squeeze through and look around . Katie saw me go. She screamed and shouted to her mother. What a terrible noise she made! I hid behind a bucket. I didn’t want to be with her if she was screaming.

‘Poochie won’t come back if you go on making all that noise. Now dry your tears and get a treat from Poochie’s tin. He’ll soon smell it and come back.’

Well, Katie must have done what her mother told her, because the next thing I knew I could smell my special treat from Katie’s side of the fence. And there was Katie peeping through the hole and calling gently ‘Come on Puccini, come and get your treat.’

poochie002

Poochie peeps through the hole in the fence, looking for treats.

So I followed my nose, didn’t I? Katie’s mum quickly blocked the hole in the fence behind me and there I was being stroked and eating my treats! Then Katie’s mum was stroking Katie’s head and saying, ‘There you see, it’s much better not to panic and scream and cry. Everyone feels better if they keep calm and get help.’

Questions 

What was the little dog’s name in the story?

How do dogs get to know what’s been happening around them?

What did Poochie mean when he says that Katie was his human?

What did Katy like to do Poochie when he was on her lap?

How did Poochie’s nose get him into trouble?

What did Katie do when Poochie disappeared through the fence?

What did Poochie do when he heard her screaming and crying?

What did Katie’s mum say when Katy was screaming and crying? 

How did Poochie’s nose sort out the problem? (Why did he come back through the hole?)

Does this story remind you of anything in your life?

Sometimes it is good to cry and shout and let your feelings out.  Then when you have done it, you can stop and tell people who love you about your problem, and then you feel a bit better about it.  In this story Katie’s mum came quickly to help, and that was when Katie needed to stop screaming and crying, so she did!

 

 

 

 

 

The Upside-down Cake, A story about kindness and empathy for children of 5 to 8 years

The Upside Down Cake

Upside-down cake painted

My name is Mark. I went to a small village school when I was a boy of your age. There were only 50 children in the whole school. Classes were small. We had the infants’ class, the middle-class and the top-class.

My teacher was called Miss Tweedy. She was very kind. She  noticed that every child was different. Some were  shy and quiet and some were loud and confident and there were others in between. Miss Tweedy used to joke about herself and make us laugh when she made a mistake. Sometimes I thought she made mistakes on purpose just to make us feel better about ourselves when we messed something up.

One day she came to school with an upside-down cake to share with the class who were the ‘winners of the month’. Every month one class was the winner. I did notice that we seemed to take it in turns to be the winner. It was called the ‘good behaviour prize’, and every month a different class won it, and shared out the cake between them. Sometimes it was chocolate cake and sometimes lemon cake. I used to like the cherry cake so if our class won I would always ask if we could have cherry cake for our prize.

‘Now let’s see, Mark, we could have a cherry cake, but only if everyone agrees. We could have some suggestions first and then count how many hands go up for each cake.’

We always voted like that and sometimes I was lucky, but not always. I didn’t mind because I like chocolate cake and lemon cake too.

I was telling you about the upside-down cake wasn’t I? Well, my class won the best behaviour prize, but we forgot to vote for what kind of cake to have. Miss Tweedy just got on and made one anyway.

She asked the class if they had ever heard of upside-down cake. One of the girls put her hand up and said her grandma made it sometimes.

‘Ah,’ said Miss Tweedy, ‘then I must tell you about my silly mistake. I thought I might get away without letting you know about it, but as Sarah knows what upside-down cake should be like, I can’t pretend can I?’

Miss Tweedy took the lid off the tin and showed us the cake.

 

Cherry cake 2Upside-down cake painted

I jumped up and down and clapped my hands.  Cherries were gathered at the top of the cake, so many that there was hardly any yellow cake to be seen! Everyone giggled and shouted, they all liked cherry cake too.

‘Can you guess what happened?’ asked Miss Tweedy looking embarrassed, hanging her head and sucking her finger; I thought she was play acting but Sarah went up to Miss Tweedy and patted her arm.

‘It’s all right Miss Tweedy,’ she said,’ don’t worry, we all make mistakes. I’m sure we will want to eat it even if all the cherries sank to the bottom and you turned it upside down.’

‘Yes that’s right Miss,’ we all chimed in, ‘don’t worry Miss, we’ll eat it!’

Delighted, we all sat round and had a piece of upside-down cherry cake. I turned mine the right way up to make sure it tasted as good as it usually did.

Later on that day Timmy, one of the youngest in the class was writing some of his letters upside down. He was a shy, quiet boy and when Miss Tweedy showed him how to change them round he hung his head and sucked his finger and tears started to fall on his work.

‘Never mind Timmy, your letter is a bit like my upside-down cake isn’t it? It’s the right shape, it’s just upside down. All we have to do is turn it over, look. We all make mistakes sometimes. It’s how we learn isn’t it? We do it wrong until we learn to do it right!’

Timmy smiled and we all smiled, thinking about the taste of the delicious cherry cake and of how kind Miss Tweedy was.

Questions  Answers in blue

  • Does this story remind you of anything in your life?
  • What did Mark think of his teacher, Miss Tweedy?   He thought she was very kind
  • Why did one class get a cake each month?  They got it for behaving well – the best behaviour prize
  • What sort of cake did Mark like best?  Mark liked Cherry cake best
  • Why did Miss Tweedy turn her cake upside down? The cherries all sank to the bottom of the cake, so it looked prettier upside down. 
  • How did Miss Tweedy show that she was upset about her cherry cake? She hung her head and put her finger in her mouth.
  • What did Sarah do to stop MissTweedy feeling upset?  She patted her arm and told her not to worry…
  • When little Timmy wrote his letters upside down, how did he feel about it? He was upset as he had made a mistake.
  • What did Miss Tweedy say to make him feel better? She told him that we learn by making mistakes, and it’s OK to make mistakes.

 

A story about avoiding horror films for 10 years to teens, Special Needs and Parents

 

Voices On Her Shoulders

Voices on her shoulders 2

“The stars are dark on this moonless night. Although plenty of glass litters the room, no moonlight exists to glint off it. This place is as lifeless as my soul.”

Mary read the quote for the third time, or perhaps the fourth.

She had never experienced depression and this quote seemed to be a taste of what it might be like. Her homework, to develop the idea in the quote, created a streak of rebellion. She looked back at her childhood. Her father would always march out of the room and do something else if a play or drama was about to be broadcast.

‘I don’t want to hear about other people’s terrible lives,’ he said. ‘I want to be entertained. I would watch Tommy Cooper doing his magic tricks, but not this rubbish!’

In disgust he would depart. Mary tended to agree with her dad. What was the point of watching or reading about something that might give her nightmares? She preferred a light touch too. Certainly she wanted to be aware of the dark side of life, but not to be entertained by it. There are shades of black that she had no intention of ever exploring. Depravity and depression, disgust and decay, disillusionment and darkness, they all seemed to begin with a D and she wanted none of them.

As she sat wondering what could be done with the quote, she became aware of two voices, one coming from each shoulder. There was a mean, harsh, nasty voice coming from the left side, and a soothing, serene voice on her right.

‘Call me Jock,’ said the mean one.

‘I suggest you don’t listen to him and you can call me Serena,’ said the other.

‘Is that what you want? A really boring life? No thrills or spills or ills?’ Jock interrupted, ‘I could show you a few things. How about what a corpse looks like after a month underground? I got great pictures. They are all in your mind already, see? You just have to flick through the catalogue.’

Mary shuddered. Why would she want to see such things? At that moment the picture of the cool clear mountain cascade flashed through her inner screen.

‘Thanks, Serena,’ she said out loud.

‘Och away wi ye Miss Perfect Paws !’ growled Jock.

Mary glanced to her right and saw to her surprise a contented looking feline washing her feet with great delicacy.

Horror stories colour

‘Serena?’ she queried. The cat merely turned her attention to cleaning her ears.

‘How about a nice bit of blood and gore?’ asked Jock, ‘ A real life RTA?’ *

‘Go away!’ said Mary, ‘I don’t like your hideous pictures. How could they possibly improve my life? I like to sleep peacefully at night.’

The glimmerings of a blue flashing light, a body on the road and the sound of sirens started to impinge on Mary’s inner screen.

‘Get lost!’ she shouted out loud.

Stern faces looked at Mary over their copies of ‘The Times’.

She felt herself blush, ‘Oops, sorry. I got carried away with my book,’ she lied. She had completely lost track of her sense of place. She was in the public library reference section, where so many folk go to get a bit of peace or to do some writing or their homework.

She stood up and placed herself between two long rows of bookshelves. If the dialogue between the entities on her left and her right shoulders was to continue she had to give them some privacy. A sense of peace settled over her as she thumbed through a copy of ‘Gardeners World’. A snowfall of white plumb blossom seemed to engulf her.

‘Thanks, Serena!’ she whispered, giggling at her success. She had no desire to view a road traffic accident just for fun. What kind of fun would that be anyway?

She thought she heard the sound of splashing water. Puzzled, she looked about. It wasn’t raining outside and anyway there was a floor above her; she couldn’t be hearing rain. It became louder and the sensation of something like a shower curtain touched her face, she suddenly felt claustrophobic, then she saw the glint of metal, a blade piercing the curtain, a knife slicing downwards towards her.

‘Serena!’ she shouted out loud. Sounds of streaming shower water turned into a heavy, contented purr. The wet curtain morphed into the feel of warm fur, and the blade became a cats claw, gently withdrawing itself.

‘I’ve got to get out of here!’ she said to no one in particular. The librarian asked her if she was all right as she rushed past the desk.

‘Yes thanks, fine, just late for a lecture, sorry!’

Outside Mary recalled a scene from the one and only horror film she had ever watched; it had preyed on her mind for years.

‘Now I know who Alfred Hitchcock * was listening to,’ she said.

The cat purred. ‘You all have a choice, you know. You can choose beauty and truth or you can go for delusion, destruction and death.’

‘Those Ds again,’ thought Mary. ‘I agree Serena, I’m with you all the way, I’m not going to look at those D words, ever.’

As she walked along she pondered, ‘Hmm, delicious, delightful, delectable, desire, ‘oh well, some of the D s might be okay, but I will need to police them carefully or Jock will be back with his nasty pictures.’

‘You called?’ said a coarse Glaswegian voice.

‘No! Bu*ger off !’ shouted Mary.

She saw the very slightest twitch of a cat’s tail on her right shoulder and then there was peace.

* An RTA is a Road Traffic Accident

* Alfred Hitchcock made horror films, in one of which, ‘Psycho’, the shower scene was shown.

Questions to be added

Guidance:

My grandfather used to tell us stories about all sorts of things. Sometimes the stories were funny, sometimes a bit scary, but they never gave us bad dreams. They never made us afraid nor gave us fears. Grandad’s stories came from words from his mouth, but the pictures were the ones we found for ourselves. They formed from our imaginations and were as colourful and bright or as dim and hazy as our minds wanted them to be.

When it came to watching the television our parents were very careful about what we saw. They did not allow us to see scary, nasty or shocking programmes and I’m sure they were right.

When the mind sees pictures on the screen, it can be badly affected by those pictures. Unnecessary fears and worries can be created in children’s minds, and even in the minds of many adults.

I have listened to many conversations between young people and even adults, when people are discussing their fears. People can develop fears of all sorts of things such as spiders, snakes, birds, heights, open spaces, enclosed spaces and so on. The strange thing is that they seem to love to discuss their fears almost as if they are proud of them, or even attached to them. They do not want to let go of them it seems. Irrational fears can control the lives of some people, preventing them from doing things or going to certain places. They hand over their power to someone else who is then expected to take control of the situation – to move the spider, climb the ladder, or get rid of the bird.

When we watch frightening things on television we can begin to think that certain things are dangerous and will harm us. We may have nightmares about them. They start to control our lives. The pictures and situations seem so convincing that they create real fear in us and affect our everyday lives.

People can also pick up fear from their parents for no good reason. A mother who is afraid of mice may pass this fear onto her children.

My advice would be do not watch horror films, don’t deliberately make yourself scared or uncomfortable. Be at peace, be rational, be calm and realistic. Certainly things can harm us, but the kinds of things that people fear will not normally be harmful at all. To be in control of your emotions is far better than being attached to your fears. That buzz of ‘dread energy’ that you get from fears could be achieved in different ways which are much more useful and constructive. When we challenge ourselves to achieve something and set about achieving it, the buzz that we get from our success will be far more satisfying and long-lasting than any fear induced adrenaline rush.

Being a good businessman. A story about honesty for teenagers

There was once a young boy named Ahmed.  He went to school and learnt his lessons.  He always tried to do his best.  He prayed to Allah that he might learn everything that he needed to know to become a businessman like his father.

When the time came Ahmed started to help his father in his work. Ahmed had a handsome face and people liked him to get them chai and to carry their shopping for them.  Life was simple, chai had a price, everyone knew it.  The sweet drink made customers happy.

Ahmed's customers liked his smiling face.

Ahmed’s customers liked his smiling face.

As for carrying cases some people were generous, others were not.  In the end Ahmed picked up about the same amount of money every week.

Ahmed had learnt the Holy Koran at the mosque.  He had learnt that it is important to be honest, but with time he started to notice that his father was not always honest with his customers.  Sometimes his father would say one thing and do another.  The customers would be puzzled and some would think, “Ah, this is a language problem,” or that the customs were different in Ahmed’s country.  But what Ahmed’s father did not take into consideration is that people have long memories and that people know other people.  When it came to recommending a taxi driver or a business man, for every customer who was cheated, ten customers might go to other business men for their trade as a result.

A person’s good name is worth more than silver or gold.  Silver or gold come and go,  but a good name, once it has gone will take a long time to regain and more usually, once it has gone, it has gone forever.  Other people are very willing to spread news of a bad name.  This is because they do not wish their friends to have a bad experience and be cheated, or because they themselves, if they are tradesmen, may benefit from work that might have gone to the dishonest businessman.

Ahmed had two choices.  He realised he could either try to make his father change his ways or he could set up in his own name resolved to be completely honest.  If a customer thinks they are being cheated they may become frustrated and angry.  They feel like they are ‘juggling with sand’, so they take their custom elsewhere for their own peace of mind.

Ahmed decided to speak to his father about his concerns.  His father said, “God does not expect me to be perfect, if I am honest ninety percent of the time,  God will not judge me to be a bad man?”

“I am not thinking about God judging you, Father.  I am thinking about our good name.  It is people who will be judging you right now.  If we cheat even only ten percent, they could easily ruin our reputation, and they certainly would not come back or send their friends to us.”  Ahmed’s father scratched his chin.  “I have never thought of it like that.  You could be right, son.  I think I will have to give this some consideration.”

Ahmed was pleased that his father was willing to change his dishonest ways.  He felt their future would be more secure if they were always dependable.  What do you think?

Questions

Do you know any traders or business people that you or your parents can trust completely?

Would you go to a different trader if you already knew one who would always be honest with you and everyone else?

Would you return to someone and ask them to work for you if they had cheated you or your friends before?

Not every one believes in God, those who do often think that God is watching what they do. Whether or not God is watching we can be sure that people are watching and noticing what we do. 

If we all act in ways that we would like other people to act towards us, what effect would that have on all our lives?

Gopi the generous cow. A story for children of 6-10 years old

Gopi was a cow. She had a happy life. Every day her master allowed her to roam in the village to look for titbits.  In the evening she returned home, warm and dusty and looking for a drink of water. In the morning her master milked and fed her and, patting her backside, he sent her off into the world.

“Go and see what you can find, Gopika”, he would say. “Get some nice tasty leaves, but don’t steal anybody’s vegetables.”

Of course, Gopi did not understand what the master said to her, but she knew  he was kind and that he loved her.

One day, when Gopi was wandering the streets, a young boy stopped her. He stroked her.  He was very thin. Normally Gopi did not allow anyone else to touch her except her master.  Somehow she knew that her milk belonged to him and that if anyone else tried to take it, she would keep on walking. This day the young boy with the skinny body touched her heart.  He had a little cup in his hand.  He stroked her nose and held the cup out to her as if to ask, “Please, Mrs. Cow, can I have some of your milk?”

Gopi stood still and allowed the boy to fill his cup. When he stood up again, she looked back at him. He patted her rear and off she went. She made her way to the pile of vegetable leaves outside the market.  It was her lucky day! One of the stall holders saw her coming and threw her a lovely leafy stalk from a cabbage.  Gopi munched contentedly at the treat.

All day long Gopi wandered. A group of well-fed children ran after her. One had a bucket.  “Hey, nice cow, give us some of your milk,” one shouted.

Gopi kept on walking. Finally she returned home.

Her master patted her and stroked her udder which was filling up nicely with milk.  “Ah, Gopika, I see you have had a good day. Well done! You don’t seem to be at all hungry. Your hay will keep for another day.

Gopika looked lovingly at her master as she nibbled on a stalk of grass. If she had been able to speak, what do you think she might have said?

QUESTIONS:

  1. How did you feel when you heard the story?
  2. Did the story remind you of anything in your own life?
  3. How did Gopi and her master co-operate? What did they do for each other?
  4. What ways do other animals and people co-operate?
  5. How did Gopi’s master show respect for Gopi?
  6. How did the skinny boy show respect for Gopi?
  7. Why do you think Gopi gave milk to the skinny boy?
  8. Why do you think Gopi did not give milk to the children with the bucket?
  9. What name would you give this story?

The Initiation of Grey Wolf. (story to illustrate the base energy centre)

In the days when men and women roamed the plains and young people had to go through an initiation ceremony before they were accepted as adults, there was a young man. He was Grey Wolf. Now this young man was a gentle person who never wanted to hurt anyone or anything. This made life rather difficult for him, because the Red Man survives by cooperating with animal life, respectfully asking permission to kill, and then killing for food and clothing.

The time came for Grey Wolf to perform his initiation. He had to kill a buffalo. There were many ways to tackle this challenge and Grey Wolf decided that he would get us, his family, to dig a pit on the edge of the forest. His plan was to drive the buffalo into the pit. We dug, all of us. It was a huge pit. My father said it was big enough to catch the whole herd, but he was exaggerating somewhat. We covered the pit with branches and leaves so that it looked just like the rest of the forest floor. It was time for my brother to go. Now he was a very fine horseman. He and his horse moved as one. The horse could tell from the angle and the slightest pressure from his body where he was required to go.

A few hours later we heard a great crashing through the trees. It was Grey Wolf. He was driving two buffalo towards the pit! We looked on in amazement. Certainly and surely they neared the hole in the ground, and one after another they fell into it .

The buffalo charged into the pit.

The buffalo charged into the pit.

The first one died instantly, the second he quickly dispatched. Pale and shaking he emerged from the pit. We were all very proud of him. The Chief came to inspect his work:

“I see you were not content to prove you were as strong as one man, you have completed the work of two here, on this day. Well done! You are indeed fit to join the ranks of the men in the tribe.”

And the Chief bestowed an eagle feather head dress upon him. We all looked on in admiration. My brother may not have enjoyed killing, but he knew what had to be done for the survival of the tribe. We must eat, and buffalo is our main source of food. My brother, after that, used to be chosen to do the chasing, and left the killing to the others, but it is all one really. He who eats meat is acknowledging that it is part of Gods plan both in the animal kingdom and in man’s domain.

The base energy centre is situated at  the bottom of the spine.  It is associated with survival, bravery, hunting to feed oneself etc.  To learn more about this centre go to  yogastories.co.uk and look at information on the base chakra in the contents page.

A story about the solar plexus centre ( Native American Indian)

A STORY FROM CALLING HORSE TO ILLUSTRATE THE SOLAR PLEXUS CENTRE

The solar plexus is below the ribs and above the naval.  It is the main energy distributor in the body, it helps in the thinking processes (gut feelings) and it connects us to others.

White Owl and the Bear

In times when men and women lived in teepees on the plains and in the forests of North America, there was a young warrior, we shall call him White Owl. He was a brave young man, never afraid to get others out of trouble, whether he had to fight off adversaries or wild animals. One day this young man and his friend Grey Wolf were deep in the forest. They were hunting for the wild bears who roamed freely in those days. These are very fierce animals. They were required for their coats for the winter bedding especially for young children. Winters were very cold indeed and the animals had to be sacrificed to keep us humans alive.

On this occasion Grey wolf was climbing a tree having disturbed a bear, thinking that the bear would not dare to climb as high as he could. He hoped the bear would use his solar centre –  his mind centre, and realise that he would not be safe on the fine, high branches. However the bear continued up and up and Grey wolf began to think that he would soon run out of tree!

The bear looked down and saw White Owl

The bear looked down and saw White Owl

Now White Owl his friend saw the dilemma and decided to act as a decoy for Grey Wolf.  He shouted and threw sticks at the bear who looked down and saw a second adversary at the base of the tree.  The bear had been starting to get a gut feeling that it was about time to turn round and go down again.  Now he had even more reason to do exactly that.  With a huge bellowing roar he reversed down the tree.  This was a slightly slower process than climbing up. White Owl looked at his weapons, he had a tomahawk and a bow and arrows. He and Grey Wolf had spent many a long evening practising their tomahawk throwing by the light of the moon, and he was very accurate. He decided to risk throwing the small axe, which is what it was, planning the throw to coincide with a difficult part of the descent of the bear. He did not have time to think of any other solutions. That he would leave to the Great Spirit.
The tomahawk made a direct hit, straight through the skull of the enraged bear which fell like a stone to the base of the tree trunk. Grey Wolf descended carefully, trembling somewhat and surveyed the dead animal. He clutched his belly and said:

“Well, I think one bear is quite enough for one day, don’t you? Probably enough for one year for me. It’s going to take me a while to recover from this!”

The young men skinned the bear on the spot, leaving the carcass for the wild beasts which would surely find it. They carried the skin home to their families, proudly presenting it to be shared by their mothers for the youngest children in each family. They had been happy to risk their lives in this way for those with whom they had close ties, another solar plexus connection.

For a fuller description of the functions of the solar plexus energy centre go to www.yogastories.co.uk and click on the contents list.  Go down to the last chapter and click on ‘information on the solar plexus chakra’.

Throat Centre Story (The Young Brave Chants to the Great Spirit)

This is one of a series of 7 stories on the human energy centres, given to me in meditation by Calling Horse, an American Indian Chief of days gone by. This one illustrates the use of the ‘Throat centre’

The Young Brave Chants to the Great Spirit by CALLING HORSE

In the days when men hunted for food and women harvested leaves to add to the value of the flesh, sometimes it was difficult to find enough wild plants. This was certainly the case if the season was poor or the weather inclement. At these times we would appreciate the stores of dried plants which had been gathered and preserved for the winter by the older women in the tribe. On one occasion I remember times were particularly hard. I was a small boy and I was very hungry; we all were. The winter had only just started and the elders knew that they must eke out their stores for several months to come. The men had not had a lot of luck with the hunting. They had only managed to catch a few small animals; the buffalo were nowhere to be found.

The chief was on the point of deciding to move camp. He wanted to consult the Great Spirit and he wanted us all to pray to make sure we got the right answer about whether and where to go. The adults all sat in a circle around the camp fire. The chief stood by the totem pole holding his staff in his hand. It was very impressive to me as a small child. This staff had great plumed feathers tied to it in several places and a bunch of eagle feathers was attached to the top. The chief would stamp the ground with his feet and then pound the staff onto the earth.

In response we would chant “Aa ee ee ohh” again and again. Now I was disturbed by the urgency of these cries to God. I recognised that we all felt that we were in trouble and I started to cry. My mother held me to her breast and smoothed my head. She said I should not waste my voice in selfish pity, but I should use it to ask for Gods help which would be for all of us. I joined in with the chanting. The chief stamped around the circle facing each member in turn. When he came to me he almost smiled and he lowered the eagle’s feathers to the level of my head. He touched me with them to encourage my efforts at chanting. I felt very proud. My father called me his good brave and I chanted louder and louder. At the end of the ceremony the chief announced that we would move on the next day. The gods had shown him where to find the buffalo. Indeed after two days travelling we found traces of them and set up camp.

My brother was the first to find and kill a buffalo on that occasion. There was much celebration and again we gathered round the camp fire to chant, this time in joyful thanks. The sound was different, it had a happier quality and every one was smiling, even the chief. This time he had a different staff. It had the horns of a buffalo attached to it. Again he brought it round the circle as we chanted. When he came to me I was sure I saw him wink at me. He was certainly smiling and we all felt very proud of my brother ‘Fleet of foot’ who had lived up to his name yet again.

The Chief's staff had the horns of a buffalo

The Chief's staff had the horns of a buffalo

The Bamboo House, a story about respecting animals (children 6-10 years)

The Bamboo House:

cockeral-lit

Susie lived in Malasia. When she was six years old something happened in the family which she would never forget.

Susie’s house was made of bamboo. Long poles of wood were used to hold up the roof, the walls and the floor.The house was built above the ground so that people did not get wet and a higher house was not so easy for the  wild creatures to get into.

There were three children in the family: Susie, her brother Sam and her sister Tali.

Their mother and father used to grow fruit for the family and to sell in the market.

One day, Father loaded up the baskets on his bicycle and set off to market. Mother stayed at home to look after the family. She was not feeling very well and she was tired.Mum fell asleep on the mat in the bedroom.

Sam was the eldest and he said he wanted to go and play in the garden. Susie didn’t think he ought to do that while their mum was asleep, because he should stay in the house and look after Tali who was only three years old. Tali could be a bit naughty sometimes.Sam went out to play and Susie looked after Tali while Mum as asleep.They played with their dolls made of palm leaves. They were very quiet so as not to wake Mum up.

After a while they heard some shouting. It was Sam and someone else.

“Stop. Come here,” said the voice.

“Go away!,” said Sam.

Mum woke up.“Whatever if the matter?” she asked. “What is Sam up to now?”

Sam appeared up the ladder and climbed in to the house. He was looking guilty.

“Whatever have you been up to, Sam?”

“I didn’t mean to frighten Mr. D’s chickens,” cried Sam.

Then Mr. D appeared below us, shaking his fist at Sam.

“That boy of yours, Mrs! He’s been shooting peas at my hens. They have all flown off into the jungle.  Wild animals may catch them and eat them if they are too frightened to come home.”

“Oh dear, oh dear!” said Mum.“This is the last thing I need today. Come on, all of you. We have to go and bring back Mr. D’s chickens. Sam, I am very cross with you.”

The houses were in a clearing in the jungle. The chickens had run away to hide in the trees. 

Cockerel in bushes

A cockerel was hiding in a bush.

It took a long time to find them and shoo them back.

Mum and Susie were very tired and cross when at last the chickens were all in their pen.

Sam felt bad. He had frightened the chickens and because of him everyone felt cross and tired, especially mum.

“I’m sorry, Mum. I won’t do it again. I didn’t mean to hurt the chickens. I was just practising my shooting.”

His mother sighed a big sigh.  “All right, Sam, but why don’t you hang some big leaves on the washing line and get your sister to pull it up and down. Then you’ll have a target that won’t get hurt.”

Susie enjoyed helping Sam with his target practice and he used his pea shooter to frighten away snakes and any other animals which were careless enough to climb up to the house.

  • What name might you give to the story?
  • How did Susie try to help her Mum at the start of the story?
  • Sam did several things which were not helpful and not good.  Can you remember what he did?
  • What did Sam do with his peashooter?
  • What might have happened to the chickens in the jungle?
  • What do you think about hurting or frightening animals?
  • Do you think Sam’s mum was kind or unkind? Why?
  • How did Susie help Sam at the end of the story?