Counting Crows

“One crow for sorrow, two crows for joy, three crows a letter, four crows a boy.”  Does that poem sound familiar?  My mother taught me that poem when I was very young and it is something that I always find myself saying in my head when I see a crow, or a group of crows.  I’ve since taught my daughter this poem, with a totally different flare!

When I actually googled the poem, since I could only remember the first four lines of the first stanza of the poem, I found out that the poem that my mother taught me at a young age, was actually not the true poem.  She had taught me that three crows meant a letter, yet, the actual poem on Google said that three crows really meant a girl.  This actually makes WAY more since, since the four crows stands for a boy.  Where my mother got the letter idea, I will never know.  Probably from her mother, or whoever taught her the poem.  They obviously had a different perspective on the poem and learned it a little skewed from the original poem.

Since my childhood, and my spiritual journey, I love crows.  I feed them my scraps.  I admire them on my lawn and perched in the trees.  I love seeing them in groups and honestly, when I see them I still think of the poem that my mother taught me decades ago.  However, now, I don’t say the same thing, or think the same way.  If I see one crow, I just admire it and realize what a cool creature it is.  I don’t think that sorrow is on its way.  I don’t think negatively anymore, so this poem has been redeveloped in my mind.  But, I do LOVE seeing two crows together!  Then I think, “Yay!  I’m going to have joy today!”  If I see three crows, I still think the same because now I see two crows and an extra.  I don’t look at the group of crows like the poem at all anymore.  If I see four crows, then my mind is programmed to think, I’m going to have double the joy today!  Whoop!  Whoop!!!  And this is the version of the poem I taught my daughter.  Now, my daughter is trained to see the group of crows in my way of thinking.  I’ve changed the perspective of this poem to focus totally on the joy part.

Funniest thing happened while I was teaching my ten year olds the other day.  I was at the front of the class teaching a lesson, when out of no where a crow appeared.  Perched on a power line looking right in my classroom window.  It was like he was talking to my kids and trying to steal their attention.  Of course, I had to acknowledge this fine creature as he was cawing at my class. Then one of my sweet little girls started reciting the same poem that I was taught by my mother, only her poem was again, totally different than mine, or the one I researched on google.

Funny isn’t it?  How could one poem can be changed so many times?  What we are taught as young children is what forms our core beliefs.  If we were taught that Muslims are bad people when we are children, we are going to believe all Muslims are bad people.  If we are taught Germans are mean people, we are going to believe that Germans are mean people.  If we are taught that there is only one way to go to heaven, and the rest of the world is going to hell, then again, that is what we are going to believe.

Are any of these statements true?  Well.  If you believe them, then I guess, in your world they are, but not to me.  I feel they are the farthest thing from the truth!  There are one or two Muslims or one or two Germans that may be super passionate and have a different perspective on life, but that doesn’t make them bad people.  Is there only one way to heaven?  I think God loves all his creatures great and small, and heaven isn’t a fancy country club for only one religion.  No person is a better than another.  No nationality is superior to another.  No religion holds the golden key to paradise.  All human being were created equal!  It is judging and discriminating that is the horrible thing in this world.  It is teaching young minds these horrific beliefs that is unhealthy!

We all have to realize that what is inside of us, is what comes out of us.  I love this quote by one of my favorite writers, Eknath Easwaran, “For in almost all human relationships, we see others not as they really are but as we are.  To a suspicious person, everybody seems suspect; to a resentful person, every action is worthy of resentment.  Similarly, to a loving person, everybody is worthy of love; every occasion is an opportunity to practice love.”

If you have love in your heart, you will see others as loving beings.  If you have hatred in your heart you will see others as hating others.  If you have bitterness in your heart, you will only see bitterness in the world.  Why would anyone want to see the world through eyes of superiority, hatred and bitterness?  We have to change our perspective and realize the world is nothing but love.  Even if you were taught differently as a child, it is never too late to learn a new poem.  It’s never too late to rewrite what has been embedded into your psyche!  Love is all there is in this world, and once you realize that, life is an amazing ride, filled with joy, joy and double the joy!  Try out my poem on the crows and realize every crow is really just a sign that you are going to have an amazing day filled with joy!