“Sharbenau the squirrel” by Miriam Pia
Sharbenau realized at some point that he was not like the other squirrels in some ways. In most respects, he was a normal chipmunk. It grew at the same rate, it liked almost all the same foods, its tail was furry like all the others. His temperament was also not that different from many of the others in his tribe.
Sharbenau lived in a large squirrel colony. They had 3 tribes, 2 of them had 15 families and the other tribe had 9 families. The elders taught the young how to live and do well in the forest in which they lived. Like it or not, it became clear that some of the older squirrels seemed to “do better” than others.
Do you feel strange?
There were moments that made Sharbenau very sad. When he was young, this happened more when he saw another get injured or sick. He hated to witness his suffering, but he didn’t want to walk away from them; he knew that would make him seem cold when he wasn’t. Well, that problem caught Sharbenau’s attention for quite some time.
Once, when another squirrel was injured, he tried to help it. In part, he just gave the other animal comfort and somehow, he wasn’t even sure how; he tried to change things. Sharbenau wasn’t sure it would do any good, but then his grandmother mentioned it to him once. She congratulated him. She told him, “Boy, that was very creative and quite nice. This is a very rare thing, but it’s something you should feel good about, rather than feel bad about.”
Sharbenau thought her grandmother meant well, but she was a bit strange. The thing is that she had been nice to him when she was feeling a little sad or lonely or something, she remembered the incident. The Squirrel Kids found that they often had enough time to play and have fun, as well as having time to learn how to take care of themselves and others. Most of the time, they were told to stay home when it was dark. The real reason for this was to protect them from danger. There were other animals. The way they saw things made it difficult for the squirrels to identify danger during dark weather. It made it easy for the young people to stay close during these times. Sharbenau felt this made sense and he didn’t fight back. In reality, he was a very well behaved child squirrel. Most of them were, but some of them seemed different. For what seemed like a long time, he noted what happened to different individuals depending on what they did. There seemed to be 2 main effects among the more adventurous squirrels. Some met sad fates: they were often injured, and many died young in tragedies.
Others had happy fates. It seemed that they were wounded with great energy and talent and were experts at surviving. So, Sharbenau developed a new understanding of that kind of squirrel. Still, he didn’t stray far from his elder. He didn’t seem to be in his nature to disobey or go against good advice.
Sharbenau and a Raven
One day, when Sharbenau was climbing a tree in an area where he was allowed, he had a very unusual experience. A large raven, at least twice his size, got close enough to him: they met his eyes. The bird lowered its head and moved it slowly towards the squirrel.
Sharbenau saw this big, sharp, dangerous beak approaching him, but for some reason he didn’t feel the usual fear and didn’t move away. Suddenly, he extended one of his front legs and hit the bird on the beak.
Well, after that happened, they both panicked. The squirrel withdrew his hand from her very suddenly. The bird jerked its head back; This has never happened before! The bird cawed. The squirrel was terrified by the giant dangerous open mouth and the horrible sound. Sharbenau started screaming and running through some branches and fled to safety. There he gasped, calmed down, resumed his daily life. The experience stayed with him. Because he remembered it so well, he felt that it might have a deep meaning.
After his experience with the raven, Sharbenau tried to help others when one was injured or injured. He didn’t do this every time no matter who he was, but he tried. Over time, the others began to talk to each other about it. They were beginning to think that he might have some kind of power to help them. They wondered if he would work if they tried the same things, if he would work in the same way that his elders could show them how to find food and what to eat. They also wondered if maybe it was Sharbenau.
One day, Sharbenau went on an excursion. He felt more mature and quite proud because he was alone again. In truth, he hadn’t gone far from home. He found a berry bush. He was happy because he found his own food without help for the first time in a long time. On this special occasion, Sharbenau brought with him a small quantity of the branch. Some time after that: it seemed like a long time, but it may have been two weeks, Sharbenau was with a squirrel who wasn’t feeling well. Spontaneously, Sharbenau hit the other squirrel with the berry branch, screamed 3 times and danced for half a minute. Then suddenly he just stopped. He suddenly felt ashamed. He looked at the other squirrel and found that the other one was smiling at him. Sharbenau felt the fur on his tail stand on end. He stuck his tail in and around. Then, quickly, Sharbenau found a way to leave.
Later, just 2 days later, there was a new view. Sharbenau was at the nearest stream to get water. She saw the squirrel with which she had danced and touched the branch. The other’s health seemed much better. Sharbenau the squirrel just watched silently from the shadows. He was beginning to wonder if he had some kind of power after all, and he wasn’t just imagining it.
Actually, the other squirrels in the tribe really noticed. It seemed to everyone that Sharbenau had helped cure the other squirrel. They all started looking at Sharbenau some more, to see if something more ‘amazing’ or ‘amazing’ could happen or not. At first, this made Sharbenau very uncomfortable. Later, he realized that he could use it as encouragement to try things out sometimes. So after that, he was more likely to go ahead with his ideas about healing or resolving things. Now it seemed that if he did something peculiar, the other squirrels would also say, “Well, that’s Sharbenau. That’s why.”
One day Sharbenau was away; again, he was standing a bit apart from the rest of his group. He really hadn’t left the group, or anything like that.
I was on the side of a tree one day, upside down in a large oak tree, when another one of these ‘strange occurrences’ took place. Sharbenau felt the presence of another life form. It was a big creature, very big. The smell was noticeable but not unpleasant. He didn’t know what kind of creature it was from the smell. There was a sound of movement, but the entity moved slowly. Sharbenau decided to stay put. He looked down. He looked down at his front paws and felt the strong grip he had on the thick oak bark. This was a very stable situation as far as he could tell. Once again the great creature moved.
This time, Sharbenau was able to look up and see a part of him on the ground. It was unlike anything he had ever seen before. He swished his tail from side to side. He sniffed the light breeze. There was more movement. Sharbenau knew he was taking a big risk by not running away. He had a curious feeling both in his body and in his mind. This time, another large part of the creature appeared. It turned out that it really was gigantic compared to a squirrel, but Sharbenau still thought it was much smaller than the tree it was in. Still, though his tail was trembling slightly, Sharbenau did not chuckle and did not run.
What happened was that the creature began to make noises; when Sharbenau was not yet running, there was a small miracle when the creature touched him without causing any damage. Sharbenau wasn’t sure how to react. He was quite pleased, but he wasn’t sure why, probably simply because this kind of event had never happened before and may never happen again.
The entire experience lasted just a few minutes. Then the large creature made a different set of sounds and began to move rapidly. The squirrel felt a new kind of pressure on his back and then suddenly he crawled forward, down and then around and away from the strange creature. It climbed much higher and far. In fact, Sharbenau never looked back.
He told the other squirrels in his tribe. Well, there was so much talk about it that the old folks found out about it. Finally, Grandma Squirrel told 2 of them that she thought the creature she had seen and that she had touched could have been a human.
Sharbenau’s new life
From that moment on, no one treated Sharbenau like before. It was strange because the change was somewhat subtle but in other ways obvious. Sharbenau wasn’t exactly sure what he was. Neither did the others, but it was something and everyone knew it. After a long time, the squirrels developed a word for it and began to call Sharbenau shaman. Slowly, they tried to share this information with the other tribes.
Sharbenau himself felt a bit peculiar. After all, he was just trying to be himself, he was just this squirrel. He loved his family, liked his life very much, and enjoyed the tribal lifestyle. For some reason, he was a bit different from the others. He even worried if he would ever heal someone with the berry stick again, after he had worked once.
The most surprising thing was double. First, when Sharbenau returned to the tree where she had encountered the giant creature one day, he would sometimes find offerings. The other surprising fact is that, for the first time in history, a human being realized, but he did not understand why he came up with this idea, that animals could have their own healers.