Two Wolves

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The story of the Two Wolves is a popular legend of unknown origin, sometimes attributed to the Lenape[1] or Cherokee people[2][3] that is also known as "Which one do you feed",[4] "Grandfather Tells",[2] "The Wolves Within",[2] and "Tale Of Two Wolves".[5] It is a story of a grandfather using a metaphor of two wolves fighting within him to explain his inner conflicts to his grandson. When his grandson asks which wolf wins, the grandfather answers whichever he chooses to feed.

In media[edit]

The story is frequently quoted in various forms in media articles,[6][7][8] a podcast called The One You Feed,[9] and was summarized in the 2015 film Tomorrowland.[10][11] From Wikiquote:[12]

Casey Newton: "There are two wolves" ... You told me this story my entire life, and now I'm telling you: There are two wolves and they are always fighting. One is darkness and despair, the other is light and hope. Which wolf wins?
Eddie Newton: C'mon, Casey.
Casey Newton: Okay, fine, don’t answer.
Eddie Newton: Whichever one you feed.
Casey Newton: Good. Eat.

  • In the television series Luke Cage (Season 2, Episode 2, at time-index 48:06) a pastor tells the story of a "Cherokee Legend", with the metaphor of two wolves fighting, where the boy in the story asks "Which wolf is stronger?" and his grandfather responds: "It's the one you feed."
  • In an issue of the Daredevil comic series, the character Echo encounters Wolverine while on a vision quest. He tells her a version of the Two Wolves story he learned from the Chief, albeit referring to them as dogs.[13] Echo then reveals that her late father was the one who originally told that story to the Chief.
  • In Knightfall (TV series) (Season One, Episode Four, "He Who Discovers His Own Self, Discovers God) Godfrey tells the story to Landry in a flashback.

Likely references[edit]

The names and phrases from the following are likely referring to this legend:

Billy Graham's version[edit]

The earliest known version is a story told by the Reverend Billy Graham in his book The Holy Spirit: Activating God's Power in Your Life (W Publishing Group, 1978) about an Inuit with a black dog and a white dog.[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Native American Indian Wolf Legends, Meaning and Symbolism from the Myths of Many Tribes". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  2. ^ a b c "Cherokee Legend - Two Wolves". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  3. ^ "Two Wolves - A Cherokee Parable : Pearls Of Wisdom". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  4. ^ "Which One Do You Feed?". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  5. ^ "Tale of Two Wolves - Nanticoke Indian Association". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  6. ^ "Which wolf are you feeding? - Salisbury Post". Retrieved 9 February 2016.
  7. ^ "Editorial: A message of hope". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  8. ^ "Do You Feed the Good Wolf or the Bad?". 2015-08-27. Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  9. ^ "A podcast about feeding your good wolf". The One You Feed. 2013-09-15. Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  10. ^ Author Interviews (2015-05-22). "The Future Is Bright In The Time-And-Space Twisting 'Tomorrowland'". NPR. Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  11. ^ "Tomorrowland: Feeding the Right Wolf – A Clear Lens". 2015-05-26. Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  12. ^ "Tomorrowland (film) - Wikiquote". 2016-01-24. Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  13. ^ Daredevil vol.2. #54.
  14. ^ Graham, Billy (1978). The Holy Spirit: Activating God's Power in Your Life. W Publishing Group. p. 92. ISBN 978-0849900051.