Monday, September 29, 2014

Battling Dragons on Michaelmas


When we first began our journey into Waldorf education I’ll admit that many of the festivals were completely new to me and just a bit confusing. We added them in one by one, trying to find the meaning of each celebration as it fit with our family. Michaelmas quickly took on an important meaning for us and each year it becomes more and more personal to our family.

 As parents I think it’s only natural to want to shelter and protect our children, especially while they are so young. There are so many things in the world that honestly I would rather my girls’ not ever be exposed to. For right or wrong we have done our best to protect the innocence of their childhoods for as long as we possibly can. I do not want my children to fear the “evil” lurking in the dark shadows of the world. Nor do I want them to go through life blindly believing that there is no such thing, because try as we might we cannot always protect them from everything. It can be a delicate balance to attain as a parent, that struggle between darkness and light.

 How many of our children have come to us with a fear of what might be lurking in their closets or underneath their beds once the lights are turned off? No matter how many times we might try and explain to them that the monsters they perceive are not really there, it is rare that they believe us. To them, those things are real. We didn’t create this idea of something lurking just out of sight, it is something that they seem to sense intuitively. It is our responsibility, I believe, to give them the courage and tools to conquer these fears for themselves.

 For this reason Michaelmas has become a celebration of courage and bravery for our family. The stories showing us that, like battling a fierce dragon, our fears can be conquered. It acknowledges the fact that yes, sometimes there are bad things in our world but they are not to be feared because they can be beaten. We must stand up for what is good and right and believe that in the end, good will prevail.

We must be the light that shines into the darkness.

  Michaelmas 1

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