Wow! is all I can say about what is happening in our world today. So much trauma, violence, and emotional outpouring. The human race is in upheaval politically, and I look at the book and film industry and see how in-line the popular stories are with current events.
I wonder about my own work. Do fantasy tales have a place in all of this?
They must. I’m convinced that there will always be a place for the imagination. I stumbled upon the words of C.S. Lewis this morning and was encouraged.
Story telling isn’t only for making political statements. When I think back on the books and movies that left an impression on me when I was a teenager, I am reminded of heroic adventures that gave me hope. They built a foundation within that kept me moving forward.
I can’t say I was always a happy teen. I had a lot of issues when I was young. Bullied because I was too tall. I never lived up to my parents expectations because my sister was a genius and I was not. I spent a lot of my younger years in a shell, huddled in the dark of my mind reading Edgar Allen Poe, or Shakespeare.
I sought answers.
How does one move from the crevices of depression into the light?
If it weren’t for other stories of people who overcame the dragons in their lives, I’m not sure I could have survived. But there was Sir Lancelot, there were Frodo and Sam, there were Black Beauty and Merrylegs, there was Alice, and Peter, and the Prevensies. There was Seabiscuit. And there was David against Saul.
This quote from C.S. Lewis is real to me. All through life we will meet cruel enemies. People who care less about our feelings, or about the things that we do. There will always be forces against us. Walls that we need to break through. Without inner strength, our battles will be hopeless.
That is why the stories of brave knights, be they of yester-world, make-believe, or real, need to be told.
Because even if they are fantasy stories, each of us wants to connect to the soldier inside ourselves who presses on. We don’t want to be defeated. We want to survive. We want to live.
Tell me the tales of brave knights and heroic courage. I need to hear them. I need to be them.