Thursday, 22 March 2012

Castles Made Of Sand

Once upon a time there were three little pigs.

I guess most of us reading the above can fill in the blanks for themselves: you all know how the story goes.  A wolf comes along, tries to get some dinner and ends up in the pot himself. Along the way the three little pigs run into a variety of problems with building regulations and planning.

But on another level entirely you can take the story as an allegory of the worlds that we build for ourselves: and the walls that we surround ourselves with.  These walls are built from our own private truths, our experiences and our requirements in life.

It's only when life tests those walls that we find out how sturdy we are, how flexible we are to adapt and to change.  It's in those moments, when the world is falling around our feet that we can chose to enforce our walls, make them thicker and protect ourselves from the world outside - or to step outside and face the danger and take what comes.

In the story the pigs chose to build those walls ever stronger - but by doing so they ran the risk of isolating themselves from the world outside.  Did they even try negotiating with the wolf?  Did they talk about their problems?

Pink Floyd touched on what i'm trying to say here on The Wall album - effectively the story of a man who becomes so trapped in his own private world that he can no longer communicate with those around him.

Sometimes being British is a pain: we have this traditional thing going back generations that when trouble comes along we bury our heads in the sand and keep going: refusing to admit our inner feelings, even to ourselves.  It's in those moments that the lines are drawn in the sand: lines that become harder and harder to erase.

These are the lines that sometimes you don't even realize are there until its too late - perceptions that are formed around the "truth" of our own experience, of our beliefs and needs.  But what is truth?  As the old Jedi master once said "You're going to find that most of the truths you cling to depend largely on your own point of view"

So next time you're faced with a crisis, and before you start shoring up your walls and drawing those lines in the sand: take a step back - and keep talking.

For its in the silence when the lines are drawn the deepest


8 comments:

The Bug said...

Excellent post! But, yes, well we have Jerry Springer so I'm not sure that's any better.

By the way, when I was a kid my dad would start the story by saying, "Once upon a time there were pee little thrigs, Flopsy, Mopsy, Peter & Cottontail." And I would say, "Daadddeee - that's FOUR and those are rabbits anyway." Good memory :)

Stephen Hayes said...

A great post with some really good advice.

English Rider said...

My favorite version of the Three Pigs is by Roald Dahl and has one smart piggy making a call to a certain Miss R.R.Hood. "Red" turns up with a pistol in her knickers and ends up with a wolf skin coat. Of course a little later on we learn that she also had a custom made pig-skin attache case, so I'm not too sure of the moral of that story, other than "Be careful what you ask for!"
All jest aside, your post is relevant to many, many lives.
Folk-Poet heal thyself...

Argent said...

As the old British Telecom ad would advise: "it's good to talk".

But sometimes, silence is golden.

In general I'd agree that talking is better than not talking, but what's said cannot be unsaid, so we have to choose our words with great care.

... and if in doubt, call for someone with a pistol in her knickers.

Friko said...

You could call it "keeping the channels of communication open".

I'm not sure that bloggers aren't part of this great silence. all the chatter in the blogosphere, how deep does it actually go? How much do we hide behind the walls of the computer screen?

Would you have said what you said here to a real person, face to face?

Don't Feed The Pixies said...

bug - sounds like your dad was a good story teller

Stephen - cheers

English - Roald Dahl was undoubtedly a genius

Argent - certainly saying something in the heat of the moment is always a mistake, but a lot of the time more problems occur when people stop communicating

Friko - i admit that i am particularly bad in this area, as i find expressing any kind of feeling difficult incase i say something i dont entirely mean - maybe the post was for myself as much as anyone else

busana muslim said...

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Michael said...

I'm reading a book now about the truth of oneness. How we start life "connected," but eventually lose this connection because we are so busy building our house of ego. The house of illusion.

We're on the same page my friend.