MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “allegory”

Cracks in the dark

©J Hardy Carroll

It was pitch-black when he found the unlocked door. He hurried in without considering anything. All he could think of was to escape the cold and rain.

He didn’t need much to survive anymore.

He had nothing else left to lose.

When he left his home on a dinghy-boat, he had witnessed his co-passengers, many of whom he knew an entire lifetime, drown. In seconds, they simply stopped existing.

The only thing he noticed in the room was a crack in the ceiling.

 It was only in the morning that he realised that was from where the light came in.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Know your value

https://www.alamy.com/conceptual-ragdoll-cat-looking-at-bat-shadow-image279123972.html

In a packed lecture class, a professor held up a €20 note and asked his students who wanted it. Everyone in the room lifted up their hand. The professor then crumpled it and asked again: “is there anyone who still wants this bill?” Everyone in the room raised their hand again. He then threw the note on the floor and began to kick it, jump on it and make it as dirty as he could with his shoes. He then picked it up, crinkled, muddy and stained. He asked again: “Who wants this crinkled, muddy and stained €20 bill?” Every single student again raised their hand.

“My friends”, he said, “today you will receive a great lesson. No matter what I did to this bill, you still wanted it because it hasn’t lost its value. It is still worth €20!”.

“Many times in our lives, we are trampled upon, struck hard, thrown down and stepped upon…by both people and circumstances”.

“Do you believe that this reduces your value?”

“Your true worth does not change in the eyes of those who really care about you”.

“Even at our worse, our value remains intact…as long as we ourselves don’t forget it during both our good times and our hard”.

Know your worth. Stop giving yourself to people and situations that don’t deserve you, that don’t chose you and place you as a priority always. If you don’t appreciate your value, no one else will.

A forbidden apple and a box

https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/evil/images/2/21/Forbidden_Fruit.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20190429144114&format=original

It all started with an apple and a box. Both forbidden.

Because had Eva not eaten the forbidden fruit, disobeying God’s orders, she and Adam would not have been thrown out of Paradise – the Garden of Eden. Similarly, if Pandora had not opened the box she was given as a present on condition that she would never look inside it, the world would not have been filled with all the terrible things it contained: illness, misery, despair, malice, greed, old age, death, hatred, violence, cruelty and war. The only thing she managed to keep inside the box when she hastily closed it was hope. It can be likened to the way we as humans behave to the Earth that has given us plenty in abundance, yet we brought upon ourselves harm by destroying everything valuable and genuine that exists: nature, animals, humanity, even our own dignity. And all we have left is hope.

People are always enticed by the forbidden. They are tempted by everything prohibited and actually enjoy doing the opposite of what they are told. Perhaps it is out of curiosity, or a reaction, an act of revolution, a desire to stand tall and appear in control of things, a show of strength. For various reasons, we wish to dare what we are told we shouldn’t. We want to see for ourselves if the forbidden fruit is indeed the sweetest.

When something is prohibited, it registers in our mind as most important because we focus our attention on it, searching for the reasons why it is placed out of limits. It thus becomes something we ‘must’ do. At the same time, we believe that something that is not readily available and is more difficult to attain has also a greater value, so we are willing to reach extremes to possess it – e.g. consider the price paid for objects at an auction.

But, perhaps the most important reason why we like to chase after the non-permissible, is because we don’t like to be told what we can and cannot do. We don’t like to feel we are controlled in any way. This behavioural resistance explains why we stubbornly refuse to comply with various laws or our need to carry out rowdy and intense protests every so often.

Beyond that though, we actually enjoy the game of hide and seek, the adrenaline rush from hunting the theoretically unattainable, the yearning of wanting something that does not belong to you or that you are not entitled to have.

And here comes another issue of human weakness: we are rarely happy with what we have and we are always looking for something else or something different. We get bored easily and we are difficult to satisfy. Perhaps if we truly observe what it is we actually have around and inside us, we would realize that we are richer and more complete than we would like to believe. And that some of our possessions may be those which are forbidden to others.

The monster under the bed

https://pre00.deviantart.net/96eb/th/pre/f/2013/150/0/1/the_monster_under_my_bed__by_jcmaziu-d5oebc3.jpgShe was there ever since he was born. Omnipresent in every aspect of his life. She allowed him to think he was autonomous and independent, but she was always just a step away.

She lurked in the shadows and clung onto him. But he failed to see it.

He may have matured in many ways but there was one thing he refused to see. His partner found her ever-presence over-bearing. But, the latter did not seem to care. And he didn’t seem to mind.

He couldn’t see the monster under the bed.

But it haunted his partner’s dreams and there was nothing she could do about it. Because it was not her battle to fight.

She tried to make him see, but every time he woke up, the monster had found a different hiding place.

He told her she was insane and imagining things. Because he refused to see what was before his eyes.

He insisted there was nothing of the sort. That the monsters were only in her thoughts. But she knew better. She saw it even when he was not there. Because the monster had a way of being everywhere some way or another.

When it became too much too tolerate, she gave up trying. And she just left. Leaving him alone with the monster under the bed.

She left him only a note that read, “There’s a difference between somebody who wants you and somebody who would do anything to keep you. Because, in essence, all you really want is someone who would put you first at all times, and who would make you feel important no matter who or how many others are in the room. If you truly love someone, you will never let them go no matter how hard the situation is. You try to work things out. And you fight to do so”.

It was up to him to choose to react.

The tree that continued to burn

burning_tree___better_by_schorschi19There was once a tree in the middle of the forest. It wasn’t just any tree. It was tall and sturdy, with its branches extending over an entire perimeter. In bloom, it was the most beautiful tree in the forest, visible from miles away. From above, pilots flew around it in circles as it appeared like a lily in a pond of frogs.

The tree knew it was extraordinary and that it was admired for its exquisiteness. It took care of its body, assuring enough sunlight and water reached its stem and leaves. Yet soon, attention gave into narcissism. And the tree became so vain it repulsed the forest animals and bugs. No one wanted to be around it anymore because it had become so obsessed with itself. With its looks, with its bushy appearance, with its dominance in the forest. The other trees were overshadowed by this one, as it stood tall and swayed in the direction of the light, hungrily consuming the sun’s rays, while its deep roots lapped up the majority of the water in the soil.

Soon, the tree had ruthlessly devoured most of the nutrients and elements required for growth and the forest was starving. The other trees had become feeble and dried to the point that they were withering away.

The forest was resembling a patched blanket as the trees perished leaving behind gaps of rubble where they once stood. Yet the conceited tree remained firm in place, concentrating for itself as many nutrients still remained.

One day, a mocking jay flew above the forest with a sparkle on one of its legs. The tree looked up and smiled, jeering at the bird for its meagre appearance. At that moment, the bird dropped its sparkle right onto the tree.

It was a small piece of burning coal.

With water being scarce in the forest, the tree too was becoming severely dehydrated and it was not long before it caught on fire. Its abundant branches ablaze, the tree could do nothing other than watch itself burn. The fire had rapidly spread across the forest gulping up any remnant of a tree that it found in its way. Now all that remained was a towering tree in the middle of scorched land, glaring from the intensity of the flames.

The tree was too proud to call for help. So it kept burning.

For days, weeks, and months it burned. It combusted even when it thought there was nothing left to consume.

When it decided to curb its egotism and finally call for help, it was too late. It no longer had a voice with which to yell. And anyone who saw the great tree aflame in the once forest, thought it was too late to save it. So no action was ever taken.

The tree learned the hard way that some things should be more carefully considered. And it vowed that if given a second chance it would do things differently. It would use its strength to protect the forest instead of contributing to its demise.

When everything seemed lost, the mocking jay returned.

As soon as it flew over the tree, the flames were miraculously exterminated. And by the time the tree thanked its dear friend to whom it also apologized for being so inconsiderate before, a green shot bulged from the carbon-infested tree trunk.

The tree was given a rare second chance. And it was determined to live up to its vow this time.

Words of the wise

roller-coaster“Do you remember what it was like the first time you got on a roller-coaster? The excitement you felt when standing in line, the thrill that engulfed you as you took your seat, the adrenaline rush, the fear and the nausea, and the pleasant relief at the end? Life is like that. Like a roller-coaster. Love is like that too. In time you learn to become stronger and wiser. But that does not mean you stop loving. Or living”.

Grandma May always had a way with words. Her voice was as soothing as a hot cup of chamomile tea. And she always knew exactly what to say at precisely the right moment. Tricia could think of no other person to turn to whenever she needed a word of advice, a shoulder to cry on, or simply a hug.

Ever since she was a young child, she would run to Grandma May whenever she scraped her knees and needed consolation, whenever she would fight with her parents for some reason or other, whenever she felt betrayed by her friends, and, above all, whenever she experienced a heartache. The latter was Grandma May’s specialty. It was not everyone who could mend a broken heart. But Grandma May knew all too well what it felt like, enough to be able to convince even the most heartbroken of creatures that they will survive. She never told Tricia what she herself had gone through in life. Even when she outright asked, Tricia would never get a clear response, only some sort of wise-person talk, like something Yoda from Star Wars would say.

“How can you be so sure that a love like that will come again? What if that was it? If you had your chance and you missed it? Where will I ever find someone who loves me as much? Who will care for me so? Who will I find to match with so perfectly?”

Tricia was firing out questions as if her torso was a machine gun that had been kept silent for too long. Tears were rolling down her cheeks as she lay in Grandma May’s arms and wondered how life can go on after such intense pain.

Grandma May had brought tissues, tea, cookies and a blanket. And she decided to tell her a story.

“A long time ago, when there were enough women and men to form communities, the first heartache appeared. For now, people were free to choose who they wanted their partner to be. When a pair was formed it was usually for life. But on rare occasions, the couple split. They simply decided they could not continue on the same path together because their thoughts were heading on two different trains. I know you’re probably wondering what these prehistoric people were thinking about, but I’ll have you know that ever since our hearts began to beat, our minds began to think. The couple who split up ran to their own families and asked exactly the same questions you do now. It is natural. Everyone does. It is part of the process. The wisest man in the village – he also happened to be the eldest – took each aside on separate occasions and told them this: In our lives, we all must pass through different stages in order to grow. Just as we go through extreme jubilation when we are happy, we also go through severe depression when we are sad. But our minds and bodies have developed their own mechanism to deal with these roller-coasters. It is something you may know as the Kübler-Ross model, or more simply the five stages of grief. It consists of the stages we go through in order to, in a sense, mourn for a period of our lives that has passed. In these five stages we go through denial (refusing to accept that this phase in our lives is over); anger (at everything and everyone for having led to this); bargaining (in an attempt to make things right if something else where to be done or if we tried harder); depression (because you begin to realize that you have to go on alone, no matter how much you may miss your previous life phase); and acceptance (when you truly acknowledge the fact that life goes on and you must rejoice the memories and become stronger through the experience). It is our process for recovering, becoming more resilient and moving one. Above all, however, it takes time. And just like every heartbroken soul that came after this couple, we all survive. It takes time and patience and lots of strength, but it does work. Keep yourself busy – but don’t forget. Learn new things – but don’t regret. Become tougher – but don’t stop being kind. You will get through this. Everyone always does.”

Tricia was watching Grandma May dumbfounded. She had stopped sniffing and sat there mesmerized by her words. She had nothing to say. No words could come forth to be uttered at this moment. Maybe it was better that way.

So, she got up and brought a board game for her to play with wise Grandma May.

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