The other day I was telling my kids the story of Gluscabi and the magic game bag – Its a North American Eastern Woodland – Abenaki folktale. Check it out if you haven’t heard it before.
In the story, the mighty Gluscabi captures all the animals of the world in a magic game back to avoid having to hunt every day but upon hearing the environment conservation wisdom from Grandma Woodchuck, of passing on the animal kingdom to his children, he releases all the animals.
After hearing the story my 7 year old asked, “Daddy, is this story real?”
I was stumped … for a few seconds.
My purpose in telling this story was to introduce the kids to the value of environmental protection which is a very real issue.
Also given the level of mendacity and hyperbole at play in current political season with whoppers such as the one by Donald Trump – “I will create jobs and the Latinos will have jobs that they don’t have right now. And I will win that vote.” – that seem as made up as the magic game bag, its not clear if truth telling is particularly important for people especially if it undercuts the message.
For the longest time when my 7 year old believed Santa was real, I felt under no obligation to correct her so why start now.
“Its a made up folktale from ancient american indians but the message is real”, I finally replied as the 7 year old drifted to sleep.