New Ecopsychology
or Spiritual Ecology

About “Double-Trouble” and the Destiny

Dobrynya was riding through the fields and forests. Meanwhile the spring came to the land and brought love and joy, an awakening of every living creature and a new birth for everything and everyone.

Spring brooks started babbling: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Birds in unison started coming back home: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Flowers started opening their corollas: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Fluffy forest animals began walking in pairs: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Beautiful spring, you are the awakening of love and a new birth for all living beings!

People welcomed the spring with a celebration. Damsels chose fellows, and fellows chose damsels. Joyful weddings were celebrated everywhere.

Dobrynya was also called to a wedding: to be a guest of honor and to wish good luck to the newly married couple.

He thought: “What haven’t I seen at weddings? Haven’t I drunk sweet honey? I truly never took wine in My mouth, since I didn’t need this! The Heroic Power doesn’t live in the one who drinks wine.”

He wanted to refuse, but God said to Him:

“Go! You will find woe and eliminate it!”

So Dobrynya rode.

Soon He saw a river flowing between steep banks. The water undermined one of them, and a huge rock fell in the river and blocked its flow. The water began to rise and flood everything around but could not move the stone or flow around it. Soon this water would reach a nearby village and flood the houses…

Dobrynya decided to help the river. He entered the water and pushed the stone with his shoulder. Once, twice… Only the third time the stone moved from its place. Dobrynya laid it on the other bank of the river, and the water started flowing freely again. The river ran down to the blue sea, carrying its spring waters.

Dobrynya lay down under a tree to take a rest and allow His horse to eat green, spring grass.

When He woke up, He heard a conversation. Evil people were devising a perfidious plan. They were discussing how they would come to the wedding, make everyone drunk with foreign wine, and when everyone fell asleep, abduct the bride and all beautiful damsels, take them away to other land and sell to the prince as concubines.

The bad people rode away and did not notice Dobrynya.

He saddled His horse and caught up to those villains.

He asked them:

“Where are you going?”

“We were called to the wedding.”

“I ride to this wedding too. What gifts are you carrying?”

“We are carrying expensive foreign wine,” — unkind people replied.

“And I am,” — Dobrynya said, — “carrying the Heroic sword. I know that evil people want to make all people drunk at this wedding, and in the morning, when everyone falls asleep, they will steal the bride and all beautiful damsels to sell them to the prince as concubines. This is when My sword will serve! When those unkind people start doing this, My sword will cut off their wicked heads!”

The unkind people became frightened and fell on their knees in front of Dobrynya, bowing to Him and asking to forgive them…

Dobrynya said:

“Thank God that your evil deeds have remained unfinished! Think in future what gifts you will bring to people and what you will reap from this. Your crafty plan could have been unknown to Me, but no one can hide anything from God, neither a thought, nor a word, nor an action! Whatever you do, the hour will come to answer for this. You will receive your reward and obtain what you deserve! Go now in peace, and tell people what has happened to you. If thanks to this, there will be less evil intentions on the Earth — this will mean that you have washed your guilt from your destinies.”

So they went through the land and began to tell people about All-Seeing God. People listened to them and became better.

… Dobrynya rode further.

He came to the well-built, beautiful house, where He was called to the wedding, and saw that it was full of guests. A joyous feast was in full swing. On the table were different kinds of sweet honey, freshly-baked breads, mushrooms, pickles, jams…

Dobrynya wished good luck to the newly married couple, bowed to the owners and guests, and wanted to go further.

But God said to Him:

“Wait! You haven’t explained anything to anyone yet!”

“But who is going to listen to Me at the wedding?”

“There is one person…”

“All right, I will stay,” — Dobrynya answered.

He saw a young but not beautiful girl, the bride’s younger sister, carrying a scoop with honey to Him. Then she stumbled and fell, spilt the honey, got herself dirty, got a bump, causing the guests to laugh.

Her mother and father told her:

“Sit down behind the stove, Double-Trouble! Don’t disgrace us before our dear guest!”

The girl wiped her face, put a copper coin on her forehead and sat behind the stove. She was sitting quietly and was unhappy — but not angry, joyless — but not offended.

The feast was in full swing around! Everyone was full of joy! They all suddenly forgot about Dobrynya.

He sat on the bench near the stove and asked the girl:

“What’s your name?”

“Alyona,” — she responded. — “But everyone calls me Double-Trouble. They don’t even remember my real name.”

“Let’s go outside, Alyona, and talk. It’s stuffy here.”

When they were coming out of the house, Alyona pushed accidentally a shelf with clay pots and all the dishes fell and broke… Her mother wanted to shout at her but didn’t, thinking “What can I say to such a clumsy girl?”

Alyona sat down under a tree, wiped away her tears, and asked Dobrynya:

“You help and save everyone. Save me too! It seems that woe and misfortune were born before me! I don’t have luck in anything! I don’t know how to live! Maybe, I should go and drown myself in a well! But I will probably fail in this too: I will stick in it and become an obstacle for everyone!”

“Only you alone can help yourself, Alyona! One alone, like a spinner, spins one’s own destiny. One spins the cloth of one’s life from the thread of one’s actions. Every action puts a milestone in the life of a person and influences his or her future during many years. The destiny is weaved from many former acts, that is why it’s not easy to change. The thread of human destiny extends for many lives. It stretches from the past to the future.

“Do you understand now how afflictions entwine themselves in a human destiny? Pain and sorrow that one person causes to others return back to that person as an unkind destiny. No matter how quickly or slowly they return back, to correct the evil that was done is harder than to try not to do it. If now something bad happens to you, don’t cry and don’t be sad, but say gently ‘Forgive me!’ to that person who suffered because of your evil deeds before. Thus the next dark knot in your destiny will be untied.

“As a smith forges iron and gold, tempers them in fire, and pours water over them — so one can change one’s destiny. To get rid of a bitter destiny, you must change yourself. For this, firmness is needed — and not for one day only!”

Here Alyona began to cry even more. Her handkerchief became completely wet:

“How did you find out about the smith, about my greatest affliction? I didn’t tell about this to anyone. I even tried not to think about him… I love smith Vavila!… He is a handyman: he can shoe a horse and make a wedding ring of a gold stick. His hands are strong but gentle. He can do any work, as if iron, silver, copper, and gold listen to him… But it can’t be possible that he loves me! Why would he love such a blunderer when there are so many beautiful girls around?”

“Why is it affliction if you love a good man? How can the love that you give be an affliction? This is the great happiness when love has awakened in the heart!

“Why are you crying and suffering? Probably, you don’t love smith Vavila but rather yourself as you are: awkward, unlucky, useless… You feel sorry for yourself and love yourself only!

“If you want to live without this affliction, you need to change instead of continuing to love yourself! You must transform yourself to get rid of this bitter fate!

“So, are you going to make good, gentle, able, beautiful, caring, and wise Alyona from a blunderer?”

“I have nothing to lose besides my bitter fate! It cannot be worse than this is!…”

“Then start! Go to a river, wash your dirty clothes, wash away your bitter tears, bathe yourself as well, and begin to live anew!”

Alyona bathed in the river — in the spring fresh water! She washed away her bitter tears and washed her dress, warmed up and dried her body under the sun and became like a newly born person!

Dobrynya told her:

“Alyona, with your heart love, thank the Sun that dried your body and healed you!”

Alyona raised her hands in gratitude to the Sun — and a stream of pure, goldish Light poured on her! She stood under it for a while and became full of this living Light! Now another Alyona stood! It was as if a bud of maidenly beauty blossomed suddenly! Shining with happiness, Alyona said to Dobrynya thankful words:

“Never before have I felt such a joy and well-being! Thank you, Dobrynya!”

Dobrynya replied:

“You are now that light which has kindled inside you! Send this light of love from your heart to the whole world! Love every being by it: your mom and dad, your brothers and sister, your fellow whom you love, the radiant Sun, the pure water, the fish moving softly in it, and birds flying in the sky!… Wish happiness to everyone: to all creatures on the Earth! In this case, the light and joy will remain in you!”

It was as if the sun began to shine in Alyona’s chest! She began dancing because of joy, stretched her transparent arms of the soul like wings and caressed all living beings with them! She was glad to share this happiness and love that were coming from her heart with all creatures!

Meanwhile Vavila came to the bank. Although he did not love Alyona yet, but he was worried, thinking: “Where has this Double-Trouble disappeared? What if something bad has happened to her again?”

Dobrynya did not stay to see how a happy girl’s heart lighted with love the heart of the young smith…

Dobrynya rode further. He was riding and thinking: “Everyone is a smith of one’s own destiny. Man is the crown in the whole Creation of God! Yet everyone must work hard to fulfill the plan of the Creator!”

… Dobrynya rides through the fields and forests. The spring came to the land and brought love and joy, an awakening of every living creature and a new birth for everything and everyone.

Spring brooks started babbling: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Birds in unison started coming back home: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Flowers started opening their corollas: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Fluffy forest animals began walking in pairs: “Hail, beauty of spring!”

Beautiful spring, you are the awakening of love and a new birth for all living beings!

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