If you are a hunter that keeps their finger on the pulse of this world and the news that follows, you would understand that hunting is under attack more and more every day.  All over this great nation, a group of politicians combined with anti-hunting organizations are pushing to remove hunting opportunities and eventually hunting all together as a whole.  As Clay Newcomb would say, we need to stay vigilant and active in order to “Guard the gate.”

 While standing united and actively involved to protect our hunting heritage and our right to procure our own food, we also get to celebrate the successes and feel good stories that more often than not go unnoticed.  As the saying goes, “bad news travels fast, while good news takes the scenic route.”

 On my podcast, The Soulful Hunter, I stand upon the belief that mentorship is conservation and that you can never out give good in life.  What we put out into the world or universe, naturally boomerangs back into our lives delivering blessings that we could never imagine.  Some might know it as the “Law of Attraction.”  The blessings that we receive from giving good might not always return in a timely manner or look in a way that we would expect, but nevertheless end up rewarding us in some unexpected fashion.

 As this world is constantly trying to divide us into categories and labels, I would like to see all of us return our focus back towards love.  Love for one another and an attitude of win-win rather than a divisive win-lose attitude.  Leading with a heart of love and standing in ownership of action and words, allow us the ability to change the world for the better one moment at a time.  In the words of Mahatma Ghandi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

 So how does celebrating the wins, sharing the good news and leading with love go hand in hand?  Great question!  If we as humans are the sum of the people that we surround ourselves with, then we could also reword it to say we are the sum of the news we fill our minds with.  Putting our intention on the “good” of this world helps usher in a better public persona and message for hunting while standing firm as we advocate for an activity that is so life transforming and powerful.

 At the end of December, a pack of bear dogs in West Virginia got lost as they chased a bear that led to a cave where the dogs fell over 100 feet, becoming injured and trapped inside with the bear.  After much discussion and the gravity of the situation setting in, the hunters called for help in support of the rescue.  In true fashion of bad news traveling fast, the word of the situation reached Governor Jim Justice, an owner of hunting dogs himself, was uncompromising on doing whatever was needed in the rescue of the bear dogs.  The local volunteer fire department, EMS and the Natural Resource Police all responded in a collective effort.  The fire department’s Chief ended up rappelling roughly 70 feet down where he met the bear loitering on an edge approximately 15 feet below him, while the bear dogs were another 30 feet below.

 After an intense standoff and a hair-raising encounter, the bear took off as the Chief was able to reach the two dogs who were found alive and banged up.  One dog suffered tissue damage around their eye, while the other ended up with a broken pelvis.  With the dogs returned to the owner after almost an hour long rescue, it was nice to see the community all the way up to the Governor, step up and support hunters in need.

 This story is a perfect example of humanity rallying around one another and leading with love.  It is important for us to remember and know that we not only represent ourselves and our families, we also represent hunting and the community of hunters as a whole wherever we go in this world.  The more we as hunters can share the good news of humanity, the more that hunting will continue to have a positive light shined upon it.  The concept of someone never out giving good can also be backed up with the idea of ROI, or better known as “return on investment.” 

 I am a firm believer that humans who are successful and or fulfilled in life more often than not, tend to have somewhat of an understanding of the concept of ROI, even if they are not aware of it.  As hunter’s we know that the more effort we put in during the off season, the better the reward will be in the fall.  We may not recognize this effort or work as being an equation of ROI or even as the reward for putting good out into the world, but it is.  When we look back in time, I’m sure there are several examples of this scenario playing out to be true in all of our lives.  Intentionally putting good out into the world, is paramount to the advancement of society as a whole, not solely something just for the hunting world. 

 To unpack this further, let’s use an example that you have five dollars and you could either buy a hamburger or a book.  Depending on your circumstances of dire need, the book would yield a greater return on investment because of the knowledge in which you would gain and long term application of use that would not just end with you.  Compared to the instant gratification and sustenance that the hamburger would yield lasting only a short while. 

 Being intentional and present is a hard thing to start practicing if you have never done it, but it will lead towards endless rewards when put into action.  In this coming year and in future hunting seasons, the more focus and intent you put on the good in life, the more you will reap.  Just like the Good Book says “what you sow, so shall you reap”.  The law of attraction is undeniable and is something that you can start applying to your life today as we continue to guard the gate and be ambassadors for what we love.  Always remember to celebrate the good, focus on the positive and always stand vigilant while leading with love and the knowledge that you can never out give good.  Stay soulful!