Keep Nothing

Sitting Bull

Orlando Scott Goff, Sitting Bull, 1881.

“When the Lakota leader Sitting Bull was asked by a white reporter why his people loved and respected him, Sitting Bull replied by asking if it was not true that among white people a man is respected because he has many horses, many houses? When the reporter replied that was indeed true, Sitting Bull then said that his people respected him because he kept nothing for himself.”

–Joseph Bruchac: “Sacred Giving; Sacred Receiving,” PARABOLA, Summer 2011. This issue is available here.