Once upon a time...a deeper meaning

Aug 03, 2018 by Maria Ritter
Johann Christoph Friedrich Schiller

Johann Christoph Friedrich Schiller (1759 – 1805) was a German poet, a philosopher, a historian, a playwright and a good colleague and friend of Goethe. Schiller wrote these words full of wisdom and truth. He ought to know, he was a good rat.

Deeper meaning resides in the fairy tales told to me in my childhood than in the truth that is taught by life.” (The Piccolomini, II,4)

These tall tales and fairy tales invite us into the realm of unbelievable events with exaggerations, projections, and fantasies we then imagine in our creative minds as real. Or we got suddenly swept away into the wishful world where animals speak and humans understand their words and purpose.

We practiced life calamities with happy endings, encountered unpredictable animals and strange looking gnomes. We discovered evil witches, sleeping princesses and knights. We were scared and then relieved when mistakes did not mean the end.

Do you remember your favorite stories while you grew up? I thought about the Brothers Grimm’s fairy tales I was read to, such as the Frog Prince waiting to be kissed and turning into a prince, or Cinderella who comes out of the ashes …

Our hero, Wilhelm, the rat, follows these personal and literary themes of life in his own time and in different places – a rich life experience, only to return home with a deep respect for all creatures, with pride, and an awareness of his own rattyness.

Warmly, Maria