Manataka American Indian Council




Grandfather Robert Gray Hawk Coke Speaks

December 2010



Living in an Uncertain World

When this subject came to my attention, I thought my title would be, “Thoughts of living in uncertain times.’ I am aware that it’s not just my city or country that is dealing with uncertainty. Most of the world is facing uncertain employment and falling economy. Banks are closing and many cities, states, and even countries are going into bankruptcy. Events in one part of the world effect many other countries, some more than others. Although this type of thing is usually cyclical, it doesn’t often involve as great an area as this time.

What plan are you going to use to get through this uncertain time? We have several ways to deal with whatever happens. We can decide the big picture is too complicated or scary to understand and hope somebody else figures it all out for us. We can decide to face reality where we are and work on our situation, one day at a time. Or we have the old stand-by of sticking our heads in the sand and denying that the problem exists.

Personally, I believe the best choice is always to face reality with a plan to improve something. Let me be clear, I do not have the answers - for me or for anyone else. Nor do I believe that the same plan will work for everyone. One size does not fit all. With that in mind, I hope to give ideas here that will get you to think about what you might do to find your own answers.

Anytime our personal world becomes uncertain or starts to rattle, we have a tendency to grab whatever seems solid or correct and hold on to those beliefs and behaviors with almost a death grip. Human nature resists change, especially that forced upon us. We want the complexities of life to be simplified and to stay the way we want them. Many times this works for a while. When we insist upon an absolute way of seeing things these beliefs become stronger in our thoughts. This seems preferable to examining the growing tension of opposing forces and conflicting opinions.

However, problems arise when we view the world with fixed ideas and rigid dogmas. Some are positive and some are negative. Both leave no room for new insights and creative solutions to situations we face. I invite you to take time to answer this question for yourself.