New Ecopsychology
or Spiritual Ecology

How Dobrynya Became a Hero

Morning! The night passed, the day has come!

Morning! The sun is rising above the land!

“Morning! Morning!” — an owl hooted and flew to sleep.

“The sun is rising and giving life to everything!” — a robin is singing.

A snipe flew to the sky, and its song began to flow from there:

“The sky is pure! The land is beautiful! I see the endless expanse!”

The snipe flew down, singing with its tail:

“I love my land!”

… Every day is like this from century to century: the sun rises, the day comes!

… This happened in ancient times. Dobrynya was born on the land and endowed with infinite power and kindness. When Dobrynya grew up, he began to prepare himself for the road and asked the permission of his mother:

“Permit me, my dear mother, to set on a journey to find out why I was born on the Earth, how to protect everything and everyone from evil, and how to help those who are good.

Dobrynya’s mother let her child go. She said to him in her farewell speech:

“There is one Mother for all people — Mother-the-Earth. Wherever you are — It will be with you, because Its loving heart beats with my heart simultaneously! Protect our beloved Earth!

“And all people have one Father — God. He is the Creator and the Parent of all creatures. Wherever you are — He is always with you! Observe His commandments, listen to His advice, and fulfill His instructions!

“In the world, there is a great and kind power called love! There is nothing more powerful than it!”

Dobrynya embraced his mother and started his journey.

… He was walking and saw a beautiful mare galloping in a meadow; a free wind was caressing her mane. Her movements were light and free. It seemed that she was flying over the earth, without trampling down thick grass. A colt, as beautiful as his mother, was with her.

Dobrynya bowed to the ground before the mare and asked her:

“Let your son go with me: he will be for me not a servant but a friend!”

The mare looked in Dobrynya’s eyes and sent her son with him. Yet she asked Dobrynya not to sit on the colt during one year until he became stronger.

Dobrynya and the colt became friends. They walked together along the fields and forests, bathed together in clean rivers, and smiled together at the sun!

The colt grew up and became a horse. That horse could understand Dobrynya without words, cross strong rivers, and gallop tirelessly day and night.

Dobrynya was riding across the land, but in each place he visited, he saw only unhappiness and afflictions! Everywhere there were only sad, cheerless and sickly people, who forgot ancient laws and unselfish love!

Dobrynya saw that people became unkind. He saw widows and orphans shedding their tears, old men cursing their fate and quarreling, the youth showing their disrespect for them, old women swearing, crying, and lamenting over their wasted lives. Maidens forgot what the beauty of the soul is. The daring of fine fellows began to decline. Children were rarely born, and even those who were born — were ailing and weak. One clan waged war against another clan! People were destroying themselves! Princes lived in enmity, seeking only glory and riches! They did not respect the peace…

Dobrynya started thinking how he could help people in their troubles but could not find it out. So he began to ask people why they lived in this way and what for.

He asked one of them:

“What do you live for, oh man?”

“I don’t know… I live because I live…”

“And what do you do?”

“I work, eat and drink…”

“And what can you do?”

“I can carry stones, and I receive food and drink for this.”

“But what for do you carry these stones?”

“I don’t know…”

Dobrynya asked another man:

“What do you live for, oh man?”

“I don’t know…”

“And what can you do?”

“I can beat others with my fists…”

“And what do you beat for, and whom?”

“I beat everyone whom I was told to beat! I receive a lot of money for this…”

Dobrynya saw that people did not know what they lived for and why they were so unhappy.

So he began to ask Mother-the-Earth:

“You, beloved Mother-the-Earth, carry all of us on Yourself. Tell me why your children live in troubles and afflictions, how I can help them, and how I can overcome this misfortune.”

Mother-the-Earth answered Dobrynya:

“It is not easy to help my children! And not everyone can do this. The great power is needed for this, pure love is needed, and endless patience…”

“Teach me how to find this love, power, and patience,” — Dobrynya asked.

“Look, do you see how the River of the Living Light is flowing above Me like a living solar wind? This is the gentle Flow of the Divine Love! Become this Light and embrace all My children! And remember My main precept: everything is born by love, everything can be healed by love, and everything can be changed by love!

Dobrynya merged with this Light, flew over the land, and saw how the Light was washing all living beings. Those who responded to the Light with love — received tenderness and affection in return. But those in whom malice and sadness lived were as if being gnawed by the worms from inside. They did not feel the Light of God, did not radiate the light themselves, and were rejecting all God’s Grace…

“Now cling on to My chest, listen to the beats of My motherly heart! Understand where My power and patience come from…”

Dobrynya began to embrace Mother-the-Earth and listen to the pulsation of Its Heart in Its depths. He merged with all Its Power and filled himself with Its deepest shining Light and wisdom. Now he could hold everyone on his palms and know the entire destiny of any person!

Mother-the-Earth told him:

“Now go to the Holy Mountains and meet there Svyatogor. He has a special weapon for Heroes. Not everyone can raise it. Only that one who is ready to dedicate all his life, up to its last minute, to the Heroic service can use this weapon. Ask for the transforming sword and the reflecting evil shield — he will give them to you.”

Dobrynya came to the Holy Mountains, climbed them, and reached the blue sky. Svyatogor-Hero met him. He himself was like a huge Mountain, filled with unbelievable power.

Dobrynya bowed to Svyatogor-Hero:

“I was sent to you by Mother-the-Earth. I want to serve God-the-Father: to protect the Earth, defend the truth and good, and help people. Mother-the-Earth told me that you guard the arms for Heroes that not everyone can raise.”

“Well, Dobrynya, your thoughts are pure, your hands are strong, and your heart is full of shining fire! Choose a sword and shield for yourself!”

Dobrynya chose the transforming sword and the reflecting evil shield.

Svyatogor wondered:

“You have chosen well! Now, to overcome the troubles on the Earth, you, Dobrynya, should temper both the shield and the sword and fill them with great power.”

Suddenly, a terrible black cloud, with enormous power inside it, swooped on Dobrynya.

Dobrynya raised his shield, gathered his strength, and repulsed the attack, cutting the blackness with his sword.

The sword blazed up with red fire! The black cloud parted and turned into the rain that watered the earth.

Dobrynya did not have time to take a breath and admire the new shining sword, because another black cloud was approaching him, bigger than the first one. It fell upon Dobrynya with all its terrible force… Dobrynya raised his shield to repulse this onslaught. His body sank to its waist in the earth, but he recalled how he merged with the Power of Mother-the-Earth and repulsed this pressure with his shield, repelling this onslaught too. Then he cut the black cloud with his sword, and the sword blazed up like radiant golden lightning! The black cloud parted and dispersed. The sky lit up the land with the tender light.

Dobrynya stood still, admiring the beauty and majesty of the sky. His sword was shining with the golden light.

But he did not have time to admire this beauty for long: a third black cloud came. Tremendous evil power was in it, with no end in sight! Dobrynya raised his shield, but he did not have enough power to withstand this might. It was impossible for Dobrynya alone to resist that pressure… Then God-the-Father revealed for Dobrynya His Great Power. Dobrynya merged with that Power, and his shield began shining like a mirror that reflects the light; his sword shone with the Divine Fire! Dobrynya struck with his sword and the black cloud dispersed. The sun appeared and lit up everything with its light!

Then God-the-Father blessed Dobrynya:

“Go now and perform your Heroic service: protect your Mother-the-Earth from afflictions, help to the kindness in everything and everywhere, root out evil, and transform people with love and wisdom!

“And don’t forget to ask for My advice!

“Remember: that enemy is dangerous which is inside and not outside!

“Remember also that there exist good and healing words of wisdom. If these words are said in time — then their great power changes what a sword has no power to change! If you tell people why they live on the Earth — then sadness and anger will leave them, and happiness will blossom! Everyone then will feel everything living, create harmony and joy, cognize the laws of love, become the shining Light, live under My laws of life, and create life on the Earth in love and joy! And you can accept those who will be able to learn all this to My host of Heroes!”

Then God-the-Father gave Dobrynya the magic bread. This bread of God was special: it did not decrease if one shared it with others!

Dobrynya set off, walking a long road, of the length of the entire life, the road of Heroes!

Svyatogor wished good luck to Dobrynya and asked him to seek new warriors-Heroes on the Earth, those warriors who could protect Mother-the-Earth and would maintain the glory of the warriors-Heroes for centuries!

… This was how Dobrynya became a Hero.

He began to travel around the world, performing his Heroic service, driving off misfortunes and healing human souls.

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