Animal Tales and The Lessons They Teach Us

Susi Wolf presented Animal Tales and the Lessons They Teach Us on March 8 in the Sandia Room. As a part of Women’s History Month, this event was co-sponsored by Hispanic Affairs and NMHC, New Mexico Humanities Council.

“We are not superior to anything in this world,” said Wolf, a traditional storyteller. “There is energy in everything and we are all related.”

Centuries ago, storytellers were very revered throughout their communities. However, today more and more people forget about stories and their power and those who possess wealth, power, and social status have taken their place.

“Story is powerful,” said Wolf.

Wolf said she told animal stories all over the world and these stories taught us about morality, the family unit, trust in a person, good and bad perspectives of people and life.

“If you tell people what they should do, it seems like you set a higher level above them,” Wolf said. “[We] could tell these lessons from consequences of animals to encourage them to live a better life,”

Wolf said that in every culture, there will be a certain trickster to their stories, such as rabbit, coyote, and spider and so on. “These evil beings are actually a mirror of us,” Wolf said, “some bad sides of ourselves.”

“It was a very nice presentation,” said Steven Reese, Office Assistant of International Affairs. “Wolf is a great storyteller. She can grab your attention with energy and passion.”

Sometimes, some valuable lessons can be learned through fables.

“My job is telling the story not preaching,” said Wolf. Therefore, it is also important to tell vivid stories with open endings so that different people will get different ideas from the same story.

“Story plays a big role in our life,” Reese said. “It is underplayed, not apparent. We learned from stories before realizing them.”

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