50 thoughts on “The intellect continuously fights against the Spirit!

  1. Hello, thank you for sharing this proverb/aphorism. I love all things Native American and I have been told by a spiritual seer that a wolf is my totem animal. I often think about the relationship between my spiritual self and intellectual self and I have come to the conclusion that to set them up as opposites, that one is good and one is bad, does not feel right to me. I think that the ego (and all its emotions) have a place within because they help me to grow and they provide a kind of resistence that helps me make sense of the world and the parts of myself that need more love. The things that I am envious of indicate what I want to bring into my own life and so they serve a purpose. Also, my intellect helps me to make sense of the spiritual experiences that I have, without having the intellect to connect, explore and contextualize my spiritual experiences, they would be meaningless. I see the spirit, ego and intellect as more like cousins than enemies, and although one may lead us to darker feelings and thoughts, it is those very thoughts that allow us to appreciate the light. Thanks again, have a great day! xx


    • Thanks for your comments! Your observation is spot on. The intellect is not bad. It is a great endowment on mankind for him to anchor his spiritual volition on earth.Without the intellect, the human spirit would simply be floating in the air with no firm earthly experiencing. Therefore, the intellect is an absolute necessity for life on earth.
      However, the intellect is supposed to be the handyman of the spirit; a tool and not the sole decision maker.it is only when the intellect is placed above the spirit;when it lords over the spirit that it becomes a sin; a bad wolf. The intellect is attuned to externals while the spirit is attuned to the inner and finer values of life and seeks to manifest these values on earth. For this, it requires the complete co-operation of the intellect. Where this is lacking, the war begins.Thanks for your rich perspective and do watch out for our post on the intellect later this month!


  2. Since I have always admired the wisdom of the North American Indians I particularly like that about the two wolves and feeding – with the feeding aspect being very important and causal.
    For what it may be worth here is an extract of my book “The Milk Is White”:

    “Let us here differentiate between intelligence and intellect. Intelligence is an innate ability to perceive, comprehend, reason and understand whereas intellect is to do with the acquisition of knowledge of an academic nature. Intellect is dependent on intelligence but intelligence is not dependent on intellect. Many highly intelligent people are not intellectual, mostly because they have not had the opportunity of education and some because they have not had the inclination to study, and many highly intellectual people are not intelligent outside their specific sphere of intellectual study. Those with intellectual deficiency are actually highly intelligent. The proverbial “absentminded professor” would be an extreme example of this. Therefore, no one need feel unqualified to seek, or at a disadvantage in seeking the spiritual Truth. If anything, the intellectual has a greater tendency to experience mental blocks or tunnel vision than the purely intelligent person.”


      • My friend/s, I note that you are now following some of my writings and looking at others. You are most welcome as this material belongs to everyone. If you find anything you wish to post elsewhere feel free to do so, preferably with a link or reference to its origin. There is no need to mention me :-)
        My best wishes for a successful journey go with you.


      • No “Sir” thank you – I am just an ordinary fellow on the same path as everyone else. There is another response to you elsewhere :-)


  3. This story is a perennial favorite of mine, but I’m sorry that you read “intellect versus spirit” into it. If intellect and spirit can’t get along, there’s no hope for us.


    • Your perception is correct. There really should be no ‘versus’ but a ‘with’. This means that the intellect is expected to work with the spirit as an anchorage on earth; as a tool, messenger and handyman of the spirit. It is only when man leaves major decisions to and relies more and more on the intellect that the ‘versus’ creeps in and may degenerate to a ‘war’ within.
      Let’s take a simple example: a man has an opportunity to steal. His spirit, in a still small voice says NO, while the intellect says “go ahead boy, you are not going to get caught, every one including your boss does same; how do you think he makes his money? The spirit steps in again with another no. On and on the wolves argue.
      The hope for us is to sustain the natural order, which is: the spirit leading and the intellect following. That way, we would experience inner peace and harmony.


      • This way of dividing the psyche still puts intellect and spirit fundamentally at odds. In the account you’ve given, I see the dark side of the spirit as wielding the power of agency and intellect against a passive, sentimentalized figure of compassion and decency. The intellect can only ever be a tool of the spirit; the spirit needs to be nurtured and educated to accept it and use it wisely in the interest of the whole self, which is inclusive of its global significance, rather than the wounded self limited by fear and doubt.


  4. thanks for stopping by my blog. It’s really strange because I was listening to a story yesterday with the wolf saying in it and here it is today! I hope you don’t mind me using the quote above sometime but I’m working on a story about it. Nice to meet you virtually


  5. Pingback: Intellect versus Spirit | bardoinbetween

  6. Reblogged this on purplerays and commented:

    A war like the raging calm of the sea!
    A war with an ominous end!
    A war difficult for man to win!
    Since he feeds the wolves at both ends!
    Arming both friend and foe alike!

    Devout in prayer but wicked in deeds!
    Angel in words but evil at heart!
    How can he win the war and find peace?
    When he rides on the back of a tiger,
    And can only end in the belly of the tiger!


    • Yes Vesna, we all hope for that time but to make it happen will require the cooperation of we human beings! We should therefore strive to feed the good wolf only so that it can win over the bad wolf!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s