Learning to Give, Philanthropy education resources that teach giving and civic engagement


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Generosity of Spirit
Myths and Folktales
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From earliest childhood we are captivated by the sounds of the human voice telling a story. There is an elemental, magnetic pull to hear the myths, fables and parables that are a part of our varied cultures. We learn early life lessons from these wise folktales with their colorful characters and episodes.

The Fetzer Institute's mission is to foster awareness of the power of love and forgiveness in the emerging global community. In collaboration with the Institute's Generosity of Spirit project team, Learning to Give brings you stories which speak to the gifts and challenges of leading a generous life. Whether teacher, parent, youth worker or religious instructor, these folktales form a cultural memory of who we have been. . . who we are . . . and who we might become.

Deceptively simple, these stories become amazingly wise, rich and deep upon discussion and reflection. To enrich your experience, a companion Reflection Guide has been developed. Lessons are also offered, created specifically for high school students or adults.

Tell me a story…

Alphabetical by Title

Aina-Kizz and the Black-Bearded Bai   

Banyan Deer   

Beth Gellert   

Blossom Tree (The)   

Bokwewa or the Humpback from the Odjibwa   

Both Friend and Foes the Saints Adore   

Boy and His Donkey (A)   

Brave Little Parrot   

Calabash of Poi (A)   

Circle of Life and the Clambake (The)   

Clever Wife (The)   

Clothesline (The)   

Collared Crow (The)   

Couple of Misers (A)   

Cruel Creditor and the Judges Wise Daughter   

Defending His Property   

Drum (The)   

Earth Cakes, Sky Cakes   

Even Her Taking Was Giving   

Evil Allures But Good Endures   

Fairy Shilling (The)   

Flowering Tree (A)   

Gratitude: The Hunter and the Antelope   

Great Joy the Ox   

Harvest Birds (The)   

Hog (The)   

Hopis and the Famine (The)   

How the Kangaroo Got Her Pouch   

How the Selfish Goannas Lost Their Wives   

King Who Was Fried   

Kogi the Priest   

Lime Tree (The)   

Little Boy Who Talked with Birds (The)   

Loosening the Stopper   

Lord of the Cranes   

Lo-Sun, the Blind Boy   

Luck of a Child   

Lute Player (The)   

Maruf the Shoemaker   

Magic Bear (The)   

Magic Pomegranate (The)   

Man Who Transgressed a Taboo (The)   

Mon-Daw-Min or the Origin of Indian Corn   

Mullah in the Turkish Bath   

Mullah's Miracle   

Old Alchemist (The)   

Old Woman Who Was Kind to Insects   

Ostrich Egg Wife (The)   

Padmasumbhava and the Felicity Scarf   

Sayed's Boots   

Secret of Dreaming (The)   

Sedge Hats for Jizo   

Selekana & the River of God   

Sheem: The Forsaken Boy from the Odjibwa   

Silk Brocade   

Soup of the Soup   

Special Gift (A)   

Steadfast Parrot (The)   

Story and a Song (A)   

Story Bag (The)   

Story of the Two Old Women   

Stubborn Husband, Stubborn Wife   

Tatema (The)   

The Three Fayes   

Three Fridays   

Three Laughs   

Thunder Deputizes Eagle   

Tiggak   

Treasure (The)   

Trouble With Helping Out   

Two Jeebi-ug or a Trial of Feeling from the Odjibwa (The)   

Where Love Is, God IS   

Wise Quail (The)   

Woodcutter (The)   

Young Man Who Refused to Kill (The)