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Old Embers

Two Stories for Children
By Fritz Spencer
Nov 13, 2009 - 12:20:02 AM

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Average stories come and go, but ones with a valuable message live on. The fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm, for example, find countless screen adaptations. One story among these fairy tales is older than any other, leading us to believe it contains the most valuable lesson of all.

The story is called "Mother Hulda," and those who study such things believe it to be the oldest story on earth. It is certainly the most profound. I had better pause here to explain why a fairy tale should interest those who want a better understanding of politics. Fairy tales often hold a deep allegorical meaning; and they are subject to endless interpretations by psychologists and philosophers, and yes political activists.

Let us recount the story in outline form. The tale tells the story of Goldmarie, a little girl, who overworked by an evil step-mother, falls down a magic well into a parallel universe. There she is apprenticed to a kindly figure, Mother Hulda. Goldmarie learns to make the sun shine, the rain to fall, and the snow to blow, in a world of indescribable beauty.

After returning to the surface, Goldmarie is rewarded for her diligence with clothes spun from pure gold. One interpretation is that Goldmarie's journey down the well is a journey to the afterlife, where she is rewarded for the toil and pain of life. Another interpretation is that nature is essentially good, but man ruins everything. Yet another interpretation is that Mother Hulda is Mother Nature, who living deep inside the earth, causes the grass to grow and the sun to shine. Yet another insight is that the story is an allegory of marriage and childbirth.

To others, "Mother Hulda" is a reflection of the soul-life of the people who carried the story down through the ages, an embodiment of their outlook on the world. The story extols the beauty of nature, encourages diligence and industry, and praises kindness towards people and all living things. In Goldmarie's parallel world, each created being, whether an apple tree by the road or a bluebird singing in a rose bush, is worthy of love and respect.

Not so with Hollywood's horrifying "Coraline" a children's movie which Christians should have boycotted. The movie was directed by Henry Selick who made "Nightmare before Christmas" with Tim Burton. The images are disturbing enough to do permanent damage to a young soul. Let us just say in passing that the mother in the story blinds her children, replacing their eyes with buttons, a metaphorical action symbolizing the destruction of the soul in hell.

A good friend made the remarkable observation that "Coraline" is really a mirror image of Goldmarie's story, a dark counterpart to the bright world of Mother Hulda. Indeed, this terrifying tale reverses almost every aspect of "Mother Hulda." Coraline passes down a tunnel into a parallel universe filled with loathsome creatures. As bright as Goldmarie's world is, and filled with love, Coraline's world is filled with terror, darkness, and hate.

That America has fallen so far to allow such a movie to be shown to children is another matter. But what is the political significance of these two stories? Precisely this: many in Hollywood have a vision of the world terrifyingly unlike our own. Those who made "Coraline" are also likely to endorse the evils of abortion and homosexual marriage, and given a chance, could easily change America into a Soviet-style hell on earth. That is - if you will - Mother Hulda shows the soul of the Right, and Coraline, the tormented soul of the Left.

A side-by-side comparison of the two stories reveals that ours is much more than a political struggle. Ours is truly "a battle against principalities, powers, the rulers of the darkness of this world, and spiritual wickedness in high places."

Fritz Spencer

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