|",,,Thank you for
remembering women in your story. As for drugs, I don't get the
analogy. I'll admit that I can't get this story out of my
head. If only we had someone like Og around today. You know
what I think? I think they're all too pre-occupied with drugs.
Just kidding. I think I'm starting to get your point. I'm
Patricia Dorsey, A Mom with grown children
(Moms never retire)
"You made me cry
and I can't stop! Thank you for a timeless lesson on drug
Norma Safari, Drug Counselor
thought that a simple story about water could teach us so much about
drugs? A real eye opener for me!"
David Lantern, Elementary School Teacher
The Story of Og
Many thousands of years ago, a great rainstorm raged
upon the land of a very powerful tribe.
For countless nights and days the rain kept falling into the valley
and massive gray clouds had swallowed the sky and the mountains to the
north. The small creeks
overflowed and by the time the rainstorm was over, the land was flooded,
food was scarce, and many from the tribe had died.
For the people of the tribe, rain was a bad omen; floods were a bad
omen. They believed that the
water was punishment and so they blamed the youth for conjuring up the
rain with their wildness and noise. They
noticed that to the north, the once high mountain that they worshiped for
providing them with protection from the cold now appeared to have been
engulfed by a frozen white substance that they knew would bring even more
flooding, the magnitude that they had never seen before.
No one from the tribe knew how to swim.
They learned from experience that the water which was normally good
to drink would bring about sickness as it always had in such abundance.
One little boy from the tribe named Og, was curious about the water
and went to explore it one day with other boys from his tribe.
They were told to stay away but that didn’t stop them.
It encouraged them, for if they were brave enough to face the
water, then they would have the same freedom as the elders.
Og leaned over the water from a small sandy cliff and saw his
reflection. He began laughing
with pleasure as he moved and the figure in the water did as he did.
He had found a friend. Closer
and closer Og got to his reflection until the cliff gave out and Og fell
into the water. Kicking and
screaming, Og tried to fight the liquid monster, but the force of the
water underneath was like some sprawling giant and he was trapped, forced
downward as his friends watched helplessly in fear.
The adults of the tribe didn’t know anything about
swimming. Several of them tried to
stop the others from rescuing Og. They were convinced the
young boy was gone forever. One of the braver men
jumped into the water only to find that he too had become pulled along by
the current, only for the man who weighed more and had more body mass, he
was being dragged under and downstream faster that Og, passing Og by and
still trying to fight. As Og
watched his would be hero go under, he realized that there was nothing he
could do and his body went limp. But rather than sinking through the
fluid, Og floated upward to the surface of the water. He was holding
his breath and then he began to breathe slowly, keeping his eyes partly
opened in the blinding sunlight. Soon, Og found himself
floating to the shore. When Og could
see how close he was to his friends and the adults of the tribe, he rolled
over onto his belly. He could feel his legs drop and his feet hit
the sand below. Og ran through the water as the tide pushed him in
and then further back. He survived! This made Og a hero. He
had overcome the water while his would be rescuer was swept downstream and
Immediately, the people of the tribe were forbidden
to go near the water. The
tribe itself relocated away from it and barriers made from tree trunks
were placed along the bank of the now sprawling river.
No one from the tribe was allowed to trespass beyond the barrier.
Anyone who did was punished. Eventually,
a few tribe members began to trespass the barrier.
They invented organized hand strokes to navigate through the water.
But when they were caught, they were tied to tree trunks and the
members of the tribe were free to vent their anger on these rogues of
society until the chief felt they had been punished enough.
Only the privileged heroes of the tribe were allowed to go to the
river and conduct their investigation.
They never thought about learning from the rogues who trespassed.
Og was a man of about 30 and held a high position in the tribe when
he saw a trespasser swimming across to the other side.
This was indeed a bad tribe member but Og thought for a moment and
leaned over the edge of the water and saw his reflection.
He remembered how much he wanted to be with his friend in the
water. Og smiled. Maybe the
water wasn’t such a bad thing. Og
waited until the interloper returned and when he came ashore, Og stepped
out of the bushes where he had been hiding.
The trespasser was scared and started to run, but Og knocked him
down and communicated with the trespasser that he wanted only to learn how
to control himself so that he too could fearlessly traverse the water.
The trespasser taught Og and they practiced every night when no one
was watching. Then Og thought, this could be a great source of pleasure if
one knew how to control themselves in it. Og brought his newfound friend
to the chief and told the chief about the water.
The chief was adamantly opposed to such idea.
But Og pointed out that water was actually a good thing.
It wasn’t bad as everyone from the tribe came to believe.
Og wanted to make up for turning the river into a source of pain
and did everything he could to convince the chief to let him demonstrate
to others that they too could enjoy the water.
But the chief remained stubborn and at one point had Og stripped of
his position in the tribe and tied to a tree for two weeks.
Og recovered but now he had lost his position and was without any
power. That’s when he
discovered that the only reason why the chief wouldn’t let him
demonstrate to the others that the water was beneficial was because the
chief – a very insecure man – had used the river as a way to control
the people of the tribe. If Og
were to demonstrate how to safely navigate through the water, others would
learn and the chief would be powerless over the tribe.
Og contemplated for a long time what it would take to
convince the chief, and then he came up with a plan.
Og left the tribe where he was already an outcast and convinced a
few other rogues to join him. Og
and the others quietly built a trench along the back end of the tribe that
extended for six miles until it rejoined the river.
Then during the rainy season, the team watched as the river broke
though, filling the diverted route with water.
Now, the tribe was surrounded by water on all sides. Og went back
to the chief and told him what they had done.
The chief had Og and the members of the team tied to trees with
orders to have them stoned. Og
smiled as the citizens of the tribe were about to hurl rocks at him and he
communicated to them that they were killing their only chance of survival.
He told them that what he had done would now protect them from
other enemy tribes. Soon, the
women of the tribe told the men to stop.
Og was right. Yes, Og
had created a danger but if there was a way to educate their young to be
like the rogues, they now had a strong barrier that they would learn how
to get them across the rivers and yet no other tribe could threaten them
again. The women untied Og and
the other rogues and Og told them that he had seen wood drifting down the
river and how a vessel could be made to transport them across.
By working with the rivers and not against them, they could use the
water as a barrier. Everyone
agreed that Og was right and they stripped the powers from the chief and
gave them to Og. From then on, the tribe became even more powerful.
By accepting the rivers instead of working against it, the river
led them to realize their capabilities even more than anyone had thought.
Eventually, they expanded the village by diverting the river far
beyond the first and it was many years before the neighboring tribes could
figure out how to navigate the rivers. By
that time, Og had diplomatically made peace agreements with all of the
neighboring tribes. Eventually,
the neighboring tribes came to navigate the rivers for entertainment
rather than to pillage the land between the rivers.
These neighboring tribes in return protected their neighbor and
banded together into a peaceful happy existence.