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The hummingbird parable with origins in the uechuan people of South America has become a talisman for environmentalists and activists who are committed to making meaningful change in the world In this inspiring story the determined hummingbird does everything she can to put out a raging fire that threatens her forest home The hummingbird—symbol of wisdom and courage—demonstrates that doing something is better than doing nothing at allThe parable is embraced by two of the worldís most influential leaders Wangari Maathai the Nobel Peace Prize winner from Kenya who launched the Green Belt Movement which you can read about here and His Holiness the Dalai Lama who has spoken widely about his commitment to preserving the environment This courageous little book features artwork by internationally renowned artist Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas His distinct and lively Haida Manga style engages perfectly with this inspirational story that encourages every individual to act on behalf of the worldís limited and precious resources


10 thoughts on “Flight of the Hummingbird

  1. says:

    Definitely interesting Good as a sort of intro to the idea of taking care of the environmentBook 13 of 30 for my 30 day reading challenge


  2. says:

    This book is so short it ualifies almost as a poem and is eually beautifulLushly illustrated each of the 5 short chapters speaks elouently to social and environmental responsibility While this may sound dry or preachy it is neither The beauty of the book is matched by the precise writing involved in each of the 5 short chapters the message thereinThe parable of the hummingbird how such a small and seemingly insignificant creature could take on a forest fire serves as a jumping off point for brief discussions thoughtful musings about how each one of us need not forget the power in simply trying to change our world or our situation for the betterMichael Nicoll Yahgulanaas Wangari Maathai and HH the Dalai Lama each contribute to this wonderful little book


  3. says:

    Short and simple story that carries a message that is both universally known and ignored which is that small individual deeds matter And collective individual actions of small members of the community can outweigh the doings of the few greater members The book added nothing new to me and probably everyone else But that doesn't mean that its message was not important I guess people will always have to state the obvious until other people finally consider it and that is the humble effort of this book The illustrations were good And I'm rating 3 stars even though I've gained nothing out of it just because I appreciate the effort And looking forward to read detailed books of this sort


  4. says:

    Short but powerful story about doing whatever you can no matter how small The hummingbird story itself was an inspirational poem with great accompanying artwork I enjoyed the inclusion of Haida uechua and Tibetan culture those three cultures are among the ones I admire most so it was fate that I picked this up in a tiny shop one day I longed to experience but alas it was only a 30 min read


  5. says:

    The smallest of the birds the hummingbird shows the rest of the jungle how to turn a tragic forest fire into an act of salvation When a huge fire starts to devastate the animal’s habitat all but the hummingbird flee to a safer spot to watch their home be destroyed With great speed and determination the hummingbird takes one drop of water after another to attempt to douse the flames As the parable ends the Big Bear asks the hummingbird “What are you doing?” Where the hummingbird responds “I am doing what I can”This book shows in strong graphics by Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas wisdom from the Dalai Lama and experience from 2004 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Wangari Maathai what can happen when the smallest or weakest are motivated into actionThe parable The Flight of the Hummingbird is perfect for children because it shows how the smallest with determination can outperform the strongest with none The book also tells the story of Wangarie Maathai a modern day Johnny Appleseed who started the Green Belt Movement in Kenya that has planted over 30 million trees


  6. says:

    This is a fable that we all need to take to heart As the Dalai Lama writes in his contribution to this book “In order to succeed in the protection and conservation of the natural environment it is important to first of all bring about an internal balance within human beings themselves” This is what the parable of the hummingbird serves to illustrate – the state of mind we must adopt if we are to prevent environmental disaster While I am not entirely sure that “right thought” must come before “right action” I really think it’s a chicken and egg thing I applaud the message that one must do what one can as well as staying optimistic despite seemingly overwhelming circumstances


  7. says:

    simply lovely beautiful art thoughtful story critical message a very fast read for such an important theme


  8. says:

    This is a beautiful little book which I particularly love because of the original Haida Manga artwork by Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas Besides the tale the book has wonderful afterwards by the Dalai Lama and Greenbelt Movement founder Wangari Maathai both Nobel Peace Prize winnersThe overall message is of course especially pertinent as Hummingbird Greta Thunberg has flittered into the scene In fact the Dalai Lama predicts in this book One of our foundational narratives describes a dark time when all the light in the universe is stored away inside the smallest container and is released only when the greatest hero becomes a small childYet the message of this book isn't that a loan child superstar individual can become a hero The message according to the Dalai Lama is that every one of us shares a sense of universal responsibility for both humankind and nature You can be like the hummingbird Dukdukdiya who explains why she works on the seemingly impossible task of putting out a forest fire one drop of water at a time I am doing what I canThe survival of life on earth as we know it is threatened by human activities that lack a commitment to nonviolence and humanitarian values writes the Dalai Lama Humanity–and every individual within that–must take the initiative to repair and protect our worldWangari Maathai brings to our attention the wonderful concept behind the Buddhist word mottainai it embraces the practice of not wasting resources and of using them with respect and gratitude She says it captures in one term the environmentalists' 'three Rs' reduce reuse recycle to which she wants to add to mottainai repair She is now working to build a global campaign around the wordSo what about you? Our polar ice sheets are at the point of no return Our you going to leave all the hard lifting to our beautiful butterfly Greta Thunberg and her friends? What are you doing with the rest of your day today?


  9. says:

    This simple parable which comes from the uechan people South America and the Haida North Pacific about the environment is further enhanced by the additional thoughts and teachings of Wangari Maathai and the Dalai Lama The beautiful illustrations that accompany the text by artist Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas makes this beautiful parable even accessible Proof that our understanding and perception of various issues is always made better whole if you will when we add in the the perspectives of people from a multitude of backgrounds and disciplinesMaathai refers to the Buddhist word mottainai the practice of not wasting resources and of using them with respect and gratitude as a way of reinforcing what this parable is trying to teach us Further she talks about the importance of adding another r repair to the three Rs reduce reuse recycle as suggested by Klaus Topfer the head of the United Nations Environment Program which is incredibly mind opening to consider on its own I really appreciated this tiny gem and the additional commentary


  10. says:

    “Those who are not afraid to act and who are aware of what is at stake can make the biggest difference”The actual story is very short of the hummingbird and beautifully illustrated It is sweet and I deeply believe it should be made into a children’s book if it’s not already It’s a story about a hummingbird doing what it can in a time of crisis as other animals watch in fear preventing themselves from doing what they can Although the hummingbirds contribution was small it still increased the likelihood of success and that if all the animals did what they could the chance of success would likely increase