Once upon a time in midwinter, when snowflakes fell from the sky like feathers, a Queen sat sewing at a window with an ebony frame . . .
Snow White’s theme is the eternal struggle between inner virtue and outward beauty, characterized by the young girl and the aging Stepmother. A breathtakingly enigmatic and powerful woman beyond her years, the Stepmother feels so threatened in her grip on life by innocent, beautiful Snow White, that she is ready to do anything within her power to destroy the rightful heir and remain Queen.
The King (Snow White’s father), the Dark Count (the Stepmother’s evil counselor), the Hunter (seeking to please the Stepmother and become one of her numerous lovers), and the Seven Dwarves, each guiding Snow White into learning an important lesson in life, are merely the cornerstones of the dramatic action through which the woman and the woman to become are driven in their intense struggle to establish who truly is “the fairest of all”.
In the quest to secure her reign, the Stepmother draws on everything physical and of this world: flashing colors, sweet perfumes and fragrances, stunning dresses, sparkling gems and strong, handsome men. But Snow White, in all her innocence and what little she deems within her power, begins to reach out for her inner qualities, finally surpassing the evil queen like a shooting star and restoring love and life to a dark and troubled world.
Of course, the Seven Dwarves also play a major part in the enchantment of the story. Snow White spends a long time with them before she is ready to face and conquer the Stepmother. Though they love to sing and dance and eat and celebrate, and however small those shrewd and funny characters may be, the Dwarves are very wise and very old. And though they grow very fond of Snow White and dearly love her, they are not always easy on Snow White learning what she needs to know to become Queen. But they have their own, charming way of bringing that across.
In this ultimately genuine version of Snow White, there is plenty of historical truth, giving it the kind of credibility as if it really happened some 200 years ago somewhere in the German Forests. There is romance and sex appeal through the contest of the young girl and the aging woman, not to forget the handsome men around the Stepmother and, of course, the Prince who finally takes Snow White to his kingdom.
We witness the black magic of the Stepmother, supported by the Dark Count, and even attempted murder to be executed by the compliant Hunter. And there is the all transcending wisdom of the mysterious Dwarves, clearly delivering the message that everything may be overcome by seeking to discover the inner forces we have all been given. And through their prudent use, each of us one day will be king or queen and claim our rightful inheritance.
Quotes from some of the Seven Dwarves' wisdom:
“If you ask a butterfly exactly how it happened that he turned from an ugly, old caterpillar into one of the most beautiful creatures we know, he wouldn’t be able to tell you either. Except he always wanted it that way! Your true nature is perfect, Snow White. I don’t mean maybe, or almost, but absolutely perfect. But you can’t keep anything in life that doesn’t want to stay with you. So let it go. Then, whatever stays truly wants to be with you, and it belongs to you forever!”
“Fear, Snow White, is an absolutely regrettable emotion. Just think of it: the worst thing that can happen to you in life is that you are afraid. It weakens you in the face of danger, and deadens you when you’ve got every reason to be happy. Life is the way it is. With or without your fear. So be wise, but not afraid! There is nothing in you that cannot be reality. But it won’t happen overnight. So you finally simply trust in life. Trust that you know what’s right. And that you are not only bright enough to know it, but to do it, too!”
“We’re not saying there’s no evil, and it’s extremely strong, but not eternal, for it can only cause destruction and finally destroys itself and all who are part of it! One day, man will arrive at his own inner conviction that preferring good over evil, indeed, has never been a question of religion or any special view of God, but personal intelligence . . . and that there simply is no sensible alternative.
You see, choosing good isn’t one of many ways to follow. It’s the only way. Everything else leads to ultimate destruction. Then man’s ancient dream of a new age on earth will come true – a new world! And I promise you, the day you understand this, you will see everything with different eyes. Then you will begin to see the human race just as God meant it, with all its hopes and dreams, accomplishments and faults, and all of its experience. And you’ll see in each of your fellow beings what they truly are – children of the light!”
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