The Stallion Story

Recently, I’ve been spending more time then I’d like to admit, ruminating about tomorrow’s election and the future of my country. A friend put into words a good descriptor of what the last week (months!?) or so has felt like, when she said, “it’s as though we are all waiting for the results of a biopsy.”

No matter who wins this election, a large swath of Americans are going to soon hear some disappointing results to their “biopsy.” Should I be included in that group, I’ll be leaning heavily on a parable that has recently provided my days with a lot of value.

The parable is called The Stallion and it follows below. I first heard of its message while attending a Positive Intelligence training by Shirzad Chamine.

While I doubt this story will be a magic elixir to your pre/post election worries, I have found the message to provide some needed hope and optimism as I work to maintain focus on my mission/purpose in light of a pretty (VERY!) turbulent time.

Much love to you, my fellow Americans, and all people around the world who may find themselves struggling to find the opportunity or gift, when an outcome or circumstance hasn’t appeared to have gone their way.

The Stallion…

And old farmer lives on his farm with his teenage son. He also has a beautiful stallion that he lovingly cares for.

The farmer enters his stallion into the annual country fair competition. His stallion wins first prize. The farmer’s neighbors gather to congratulate him on this great win. He calmly says, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?” Puzzled by this reaction, the neighbors go away.

The next week, some thieves who heard about the stallion’s increased value steal the horse. When the neighbors come to commiserate with the farmer, they find him again very calm and gathered. He says, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”

Several days later, the spirited stallion escapes from the thieves and finds his way back to the farm, bringing with him a few wild mares he has befriended along the way. To his neighbors’ excited rounds of congratulations, the old farmer once again says, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”

A few weeks later, the farmer’s son is thrown off one of these new mares as he is trying to break it in, and his leg is fractured. As the neighbors gather to commiserate with the old farmer, he once again reminds them, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”

The following week, the imperial army marches through the village, conscripting all eligible young men for the war that has just broken out. The old farmer’s son is spared due to his fractured leg. The neighbors no longer bother to come to the old farmer to congratulate him. By now they know what his response will be: “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”


Author Bio: Dan started Fired and Free in 2017, to provide his “truth” after being fired as CEO of the company he started and led. After a diverse 17-year career in management consulting and entrepreneurship, Dan now leads 3Sixty Leadership, where he provides coaching and consulting to business owners with 5 to 500 employees, helping them to work “on” their business not “in” their business.

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