Today was the day. Yinney was on the move through the trees, covering about 13 feet per minute. Rain was a normal thing in the Amazon Rain Forest. He had never known anything different. Lots of rain, almost like all the time, and this day started the same way as he steadily hooked each limb with his claws. Normally the rain mattered not to him, but today it was somewhat of a problem.
The limbs of trees were Yinney’s roads and pathways. Once he chose his 7th Day Tree he would learn his area just like anyone learns where they live. He would know the best paths, the shortcuts, and places having the best leaves for eating. But today all he had was that flashing glint he saw yesterday. With today’s heavy rain, the sparkle had disappeared.
So far the urge to poo had not arrived, but it was like a ticking time bomb within. It could start at any moment, and he would only be able to hold it so long. Yinney the sloth would need to poo! And he needed a safe place. He needed his sacred tree. Was it just ahead? This would be the perfect time to panic, but he was of the “Old Ways”. He was of the three-toed brown throated sloth family, still faithful to soul, and something called faith.
Yinney had been taught that true faith is a state of rest. Fear, doubt, stress, discontent, greed, none of these states of mind are faith. They disrupt faith. Faith is a powerful force if not disrupted. But faith in what? Well… the Creator, of course. What else? His heart was still full of peace and joy for he knew his Creator loved him and always provided if he stayed in the Creator’s ways.
Actually, sloths of the three-toed family were highly sought after in the jungle, as spiritual teachers. Once Yinney had his tree, he would begin growing his algae mantle of green and hang out his simple shingle as spiritual teacher. The 7th Day Tree was so important to everything, his reason for being, his purpose in life.
As one of the Creator’s teachers, he found it hard to believe so many people live lives contrary to their own spiritual design, causing much harm to themselves and all around. It really made no sense, but greed, hunger, desire; these were powerful forces causing great storms in people’s lives, and the lives of others. Obviously these Predator Cities Lu-Lu spoke of, were full of and driven by such people. People having no respect for their own Creator, and as such, they often did not realize, but in such a spiritual state one cannot have proper respect for others either, nor the environment, nor their own life. It’s all very sad, Yinney thought, as he reached for the next limb, moving like a slow flowing river. He thought of it as a vicious circle that once one is caught, they may never find a way out. But with the help of teachers, such as he, one might yet find transformation.
The word “suddenly” is not really a sloth word, unless something “suddenly” springs upon them. So…just as Yinney was becoming aware of the urge to poo, he slowly pressed through a limb full of leaves and suddenly saw the reason for the glint! And it was just as he hoped! The Amazon is full of many rivers, but this sparkle had come from a large pond, or type of lagoon, the offshoot of some river somewhere! Now all he had to do was hope there was a worthy tree for him to choose! “Oh that it would be so!” he prayed to his Creator.
Yinney considered his urge to poo. It was growing stronger. The Creator would guide if he let him. If the urge is growing quickly, then the tree must be close, on this side, not any of the trees farther away.
Still hanging upside down he looked to his right, then he looked left, and yes, there was a massive tree holding incredible potential! He knew what he was looking for. You see, Yenny had a plan. Most people don’t know sloths are actually quite good swimmers. And, in a meditative state they can lower their heart rate to one third of normal and actually hold their breath underwater for as long as forty minutes!
Most sloths are aware of their water abilities but still spend all their time in trees. Yinney was a little different. He actually enjoyed the water. Not so much to live in it, but to enjoy upon occasion, and one more thing, to have it as a possible escape route when pooing! If the tree was located right, he would have two ways of escape, not just one. He could either try to regain a high place in his tree, or possibly slide into the water! This was his grand plan, and now, his prayer just might be manifesting right before his eyes.
It took another hour of persistent moving to get there, but the tree welcomed him with open arms. He felt right at home from the moment he slowly climbed into the embrace of her many limbs. He could see it was close to the water with branches actually reaching out and hanging over! So…location was excellent! He could check off that box. Now it was time to taste a leaf.
Yinney wanted to fully enjoy this moment. The urge to poo was still under control. Slowly he chose his leaf. Slowly he reached for it. Slowly he plucked it with tender care. Slowly he gazed at the marvelous green thing that sustained his life. Slowly he brought it to his mouth, but first paused to smell of it. Slowly he savored the aroma, and then tenderly fed it in, and gratefully chewed. The leaf was good. Only one test left. Where to poo?
It was time. Downward he began traveling. Jag was not the only beast to watch for. There were many to consider. All the jungle said a sloth pooing was an easy meal. There was also the Anaconda. The largest of Amazon snakes. His mother had said the Anaconda was rare in this neighborhood. Jag had killed one once. He liked snake meat. Maybe that kept them away, she didn’t know, but one never knew when another might move in.
Downward he went, out of the high places, towards the dirt, towards the earth, towards the predator cats and other dangers. The urge was growing. So far so good. Finally reaching the bottom by way of a vine, Yinney dropped onto the ground and did not move. He was even more motionless than a solid stone.
Nothing was leaping at him. He could smell no danger either. His sense of smell was actually better than his sight. Looking towards the body of water, and the urge growing within, he began moving again.
Now he felt as crippled. On the ground he could barely move nine feet in a minute. He clawed his way along and finally reached the side of the trunk facing the water. He discovered a very nice indentured area that could become his bathroom. The Creator had blessed him greatly with this tree, and the water was only ten feet away. He could reach it in just over a minute assuming water levels remained fairly constant. This was indeed a sacred tree, and now he would bless it with his poo, and claim it as his own.
It was a great relief when the release came. Once done, he scratched some dirt over it and knew it would nourish his great tree. The long seven day search and journey was over. Yinney had found his home. Now he could begin to “know” his home. His days would be filled with simple pleasures and joy. He could hardly wait to show Lu-Lu the tree he had found, and hang his little sign.
The calling of teacher is a great honor. As once was said, the pen is mightier than the sword. Wisdom and values must be taught. In this way kingdoms change, swords are put away for another day, and peace can fill a land, a people, and a person. As history has proven many times, it can start with one, one simple teacher, and their words.
<The story of Yinney is property of Don Allen, alias: Grandpa White Feather.>