Great Stories

By | March 6, 2023

[March 6, 2023]   Since a young age, as far back as I can remember, I was fascinated by stories told by my mother and grandmother (Bigmama, as we called her).  But also those told by the many military veterans who lived in the small town where my family settled.  I would call them ‘great stories’ in my unsophisticated and uneducated way of thinking.

And while those stories I loved to hear may not have been great, they somehow stuck with me throughout life, and I took joy and also valuable lessons from those great stories.  The more I think back to my time growing up and being attracted to great stories, I realize now that those that affected me the most were ancient stories of the Bible.  There is a reason for that, which I never understood.

Humans have been collecting stories for, well, we don’t know how long.  We know that societies that go back before recorded history have captivating stories, rituals, and mythology.  And we have ancient written stories like the Sumerian story Enūma Eliš, the oldest written story known to us, perhaps 4,000 years old and based on an oral tradition that could be more than 20,000 years older.

We’ve been collecting stories for a long, long time.  What do they mean?  What are they good for?

Imagine this: tell your friend a story you saw that was interesting.  Imagine you collect a thousand interesting stories and condense them to a hundred very interesting ones.  And then imagine you had a thousand years to gather those most interesting stories and come out with the best, most interesting, perfect story you could tell.  That story is what a myth is, the most interesting story you can tell.

That myth will contain a structure common to all those great stories you possessed.  That myth is more than just interesting; it is compelling in some deep sense.  That is why great stories captivate us.  We pay money to see stories played out in a movie house or play theater or buy great books.

As a parent, one thing my kids remember most was the pleasure they derived from the stories I told them.  Each night I would tell a story or read a short story from a book.  Those stories also sparked their imagination, and I enjoyed telling them stories.

Learn the great stories.  Be good at telling great stories.


Please read my books:

  1. “55 Rules for a Good Life,” on Amazon (link here).
  2. “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” on Amazon (link here).
Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I provide one article every day. My writings are influenced by great thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Jung, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Jean Piaget, Erich Neumann, and Jordan Peterson, whose insight and brilliance have gotten millions worldwide to think about improving ourselves. Thank you for reading my blog.

20 thoughts on “Great Stories

  1. Hank Wasserman

    Learn great stories, be able to tell them in an interesting way, know why they are important, know the symbolism, know the history of the story, and learn to appreciate and love great stories. You will be better for the sacrifices you make for this.

  2. Under the Bridge

    I was attracted to your website by the title of this article. You have some ideas that made me think hard and that is always a good thing. We think in order to be good folks. Oh, I see you have a book out called 55 rules for a good life. Good luck with your sales.

      1. Guns are Us

        Yep and a great moniker too “Under the Bridge” …. what the heck? Oh well, wish I’d chosen more carefull. But, alas, I like mine better.

  3. Veronica Stillman

    Excellent story about great stories. The best collection of stories, one after the other, and I do mean great is the Bible. Never forget that.

  4. Lynn Pitts

    “As a parent, one thing my kids remember most was the pleasure they derived from the stories I told them. Each night I would tell a story or read a short story from a book. Those stories also sparked their imagination, and I enjoyed telling them stories.” If only all parents read to their kids and spent time telling them great stories, we would be a much calmer, educated, respectful country. Today, nearly half of all kids in High School are functionally illiterate.

  5. Ayn Jālūt

    Once again, I say this to all my good friends. Bless General Satterfield, for he has given us important and moral ideas.

  6. Grover in the Grove

    Hey folks, don’t forget to read the DAILY FAVORITES in the next tab. Gen. Satterfield picks two great articles each day (…. a great story) that he believes is worth reading. Today’s has one in it by the great historian Victor Davis Hanson. I highly recommend it.

      1. Wendy Holmes

        Grover makes an excellent point here. There are many other tabs that we can explore and learn from on this leadership website. Gen. Satterfield has tabs each for his two books, daily favorites, Vietnam Vet ideas, reading lists, etc. Take advantage of them.

  7. Obama Cash

    Wow, excellent article. Gen. Satterfield nails it again. Let us know when you plan on having a new book out, Gen. S. We all look forward to reading it.

  8. Rev. Michael Cain

    The Greatest Story Ever Told is about Jesus Christ. And who does not know this?

    1. Emma Archambeau

      Interesting how that worked out that way. The most known, most interesting, most informative, most useful stories are from the Bible. Nowhere else can we find such a collection of the greatest stories of mankind.

      1. Liz at Home

        Thanks Julia. Just what I was thinking. Read Gen. Satterfield’s books and learn about great stories.

        1. JT Patterson

          Always a fan of Gen. Satterfield and always will be.


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