Avoid wishing on a star at all costs. Instead, embrace the reality of a real life on a dangerous road.
As a kid, I always watched the ‘The Wonderful World of Disney’.
Sunday nights we would gather as a family and we would be swept away to some faraway magical place where there was always a happy ending. Then that memorable tune would creep into our lounge like a
Then that memorable tune would creep into our lounge like a warm cuddly blanket.
When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come true.
Sounds like a great marketing message doesn’t it?
It really stuck too, but looking at it now, and the rest of the lyrics, all I can see is a lot of sentimental jelly.
Can you see Jesus singing this song as walked the road with his followers?
Yet don’t we live in a world where we are marketed to for our deep inner need of jingle wishing and hoping and fairy tale endings.
Hollywood superstar Jamie Lee Curtis says this
I believe that life is hard. That we all are going to walk through things that are hard and challenging, and yet advertising wants us to believe that it’s all easy. Jamie Lee Curtis
In my last post, we discussed that we are not ‘ordinary people’ or ‘mere mortals’ as C.S. Lewis would say.
I have met many people who seem to have a fairy tale spell woven over their thinking. They keeping look for a magic wand to be waved over their lives.
Perhaps some forms of spirituality offer a spiritual bypass to supposedly avoid the tough places of life.
Instead, Jesus describes life as being on a journey, and a dangerous one at that.
In one of his most famous parables, Jesus starts with these words
“A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho”
Now if you know the rest of the story we find the very next words describe exactly what happened to that man. He was robbed, beaten and left half dead.
This was a journey of descent from Jerusalem to Jericho. This was a road notorious for its dangers of robbers and thieves. This was not a road of cutesy jingles and happy ever afters. There was no escapism to dreamy delights.
This was a journey of having to have your wits about you and to keep focused on the here and now.
Perhaps J.R.R. Tolkien writes a better description of life than Walt does.
In a Lord of The Rings dialogue between Frodo and Sam he writes
‘It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out of your door,’ he used to say. ‘You step into the Road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to. Do you realize that this is the very path that goes through Mirkwood, and that if you let it, it might take you to the Lonely Mountains or even further and to worse places?’ He used to say that on the path outside the front door at Bag End, especially after he had been out for a long walk.”
Oh yes, and if you look up this quote on the internet, for the most part, people leave out the sentence about Mirkwood, the Lonely Mountains and to worse places.
The reality of recovery, healing, and rebuilding your life out of Mental Illness, or any other thief or vagabond encounter, is that it will be taken through Mirkwood and Lonely Places.
Those that keep wishing on a star, stay where they are.
Mental Health is … relinquishing Disneyworld and
embracing the paths of Jerusalem to Jericho.
The good news is that we are not alone on this path. Others have walked it before and brave and courageous people walk it today.
We, you and I, are going on a journey I am calling ‘The Man in the Ditch’. So strap on the sandals and let’s get on the road.
Quotes to consider
- We all like a nicely padded delusion, only to find eventually that it comes with a sting in its tail. Stay in reality to stay safe. D. Riddell
- The journey into total mental health begins with a commitment to come out of delusion into reality, no matter what the cost. D. Riddell
- Although incredibly seductive anything that promises the light without acknowledging the shadow isn’t telling the whole story. Ingrid Mathieu
Questions to Answer
- Why are fairy tales and ‘happy ever after’ stories so inviting?
- Does living in a ‘wish upon a star’ delusion promote such things as gambling and risk taking?
- What do think is the greatest need if you are going to travel the dangerous inner journey roads that will take you to ‘Mirkwood’ and ‘Lonely Places’?