One of my favourite ever stories is ‘The Snow Queen’ by Hans Christian Anderson.
An enchanted mirror
On listening to a re-telling of this story recently, I had forgotten about how it all started. A wicked goblin put an enchantment on a mirror so that whoever looked into it, saw only bad and nasty things about themselves. Any blemishes already there are exaggerated.
This is the mirror that shattered sending tiny shards of the glass across the sky. Some fell into people’s eyes and hearts. Some larger shards were used to make spectacles and even window panes. Whatever its destination, each splinter or piece of glass, affected the person in the same way.
A splinter in Kay’s heart
The story then continues with two good friends, Kay and Gerda.
One winter, Kay suddenly felt something in his eye. Gerda could see nothing there. But it was one of the enchanted splinters, and another had entered Kay’s heart.
From then on Kay was a bad-tempered, grumpy boy and no longer played with Gerda.
He teased people as they walked along the road, and shredded to pieces the beautiful roses that grew in the garden.
What a beautiful metaphor Hans Christian Anderson was using.
Once Kay had the enchanted splinter in his heart it affected his outlook on the world.
And so all of us see with our eyes and our hearts. We may see the world and ourselves with love and compassion.
Or we might tend towards hatred and negativity. And of course, there are all shades in-between.
The splinter in our own hearts
In this story, Gerda went to rescue Kay after he had been kidnapped by the Snow Queen.
Kay was imprisoned within the frozen palace. Gerda found him and placed her hand on Kay’s heart. The splinter melted away.
In our real lives, no-one comes to rescue us. We need to do the work of healing ourselves.
We each have our own splinters that might influence how we see the world. And how we view ourselves. Through our personal healing work with meditation we can transform!
The winter work of transforming our hearts
Sometimes the winter season feels like a good time to do the work of transformation.
This season of hibernation encourages us to go deeper as we retreat from winter’s harshness. With healing we can rest our eyes gently on others and ourselves. And see the best in everything. And in every moment.
Yvette Jane – Mindfulness & Meditation Coach