The Snow Queen: Story the First, Which Describes a Looking-Glass and the Broken Fragments

The Snow Queen: Story the First, Which Describes a Looking-Glass and the Broken FragmentsThe Snow Queen: Story the First, Which Describes a Looking-Glass and the Broken Fragments

There was once a hobgoblin, who happened to be the most wicked of all hobgoblins. One day he decided to make a looking glass.

“He made a looking-glass which had the power of making everything good or beautiful that was reflected in it almost shrink to nothing, while everything that was worthless and bad looked increased in size and worse than ever. The most lovely landscapes appeared like boiled spinach, and the people became hideous, and looked as if they stood on their heads and had no bodies. Their countenances were so distorted that no one could recognize them, and even one freckle on the face appeared to spread over the whole of the nose and mouth.”

This looking-glass caused the hobgoblin to have great amusement at the misery of others. At his school, because he had a school, the other hobgoblins were enthralled with the mirror. They took it to all the lands of the Earth. They said that everyone could see how the world and humanity really was.

They endeavored to take the looking-glass to heaven. As they flew, up and up, the looking-glass became slippery. Finally, it fell to the Earth and shattered.

“But now the looking-glass caused more unhappiness than ever, for some of the fragments were not so large as a grain of sand, and they flew about the world into every country. When one of these tiny atoms flew into a person’s eye, it stuck there unknown to him, and from that moment he saw everything through a distorted medium, or could see only the worst side of what he looked at, for even the smallest fragment retained the same power which had belonged to the whole mirror. Some few persons even got a fragment of the looking-glass in their hearts, and this was very terrible, for their hearts became cold like a lump of ice.”

Other pieces of the looking-glass became windows and spectacles. Each piece caused misery wherever it went and the hobgoblin was delighted to no end. The stories to follow will tell what happened to some of the pieces of the looking-glass.

treasuremap spongebobObservations

Let’s talk about this mirror becoming slippery. I don’t know if this is in the Bible anywhere, but in other scriptures, there is talk of treasure becoming slippery. This mirror was a treasure, to the hobgoblins at least.

In Helaman 13:31 the following is detailed:

And behold, the time cometh that he curseth your riches, that they become slippery, that ye cannot hold them; and in the days of your poverty ye cannot retain them.

This is in a passage of scripture speaking of the wickedness of men and their treasures. Basically, wicked men would gain treasures and try to hide them from the Lord, but the Lord would cause them to become slippery so the evil men could not retain them.

These were treasures that these evil men had obtained in an evil manner or they were planning on using said treasures for evil. That describes the mirror in this story. This hobgoblin made it in order to do evil. He let other hobgoblins use it to do evil. The eviler their plans got, the more slippery the mirror became. Trying to ruin heaven with a distorted mirror is pretty darn evil.

Basically, if you’re bad, there is a chance that the things you value might slip out of your grasp. Maybe God did it, maybe it was karma, maybe it was even you. However it happened, you lost something you valued because of your actions.

distorted body imageThemes

I love the idea in this story of there being this mirror that broke into all these little pieces that cause us to see the bad things in the world.

We can look at this story many ways, but what is important to remember about the story is that our view can be distorted and it’s not necessarily a good thing, in fact, it’s probably never a good thing. If we were to look through this glass at other people, we would see their faults. We might find a person ugly when we had no cause to. If we looked through this glass at the world, we would only see the bad in the world. If we let a piece of this mirror pierce our hearts, we would see bad in everything around us and be unfeeling. If we looked through this mirror at ourselves, we would only see our faults. We would think we were ugly when we were not. We would believe that we were fat when we were not. We would put ourselves down because our view was distorted.

This is some powerful stuff. This story assumes that it is not a natural state to be a pessimist. If you are a pessimist, something has gone wrong. Honestly, I tend to think like that, although, I have been known to be pessimistic in times. I don’t believe that we naturally want to see the bad things in the world. There is something that acts upon us and causes us to look at the bad instead of the good. Is it a magically evil broken mirror? Probably not, it’s more likely that it’s how society conditions us that causes us to see the bad in the world, but the mirror story sounds a lot better.

I think if a person could imagine that something acted upon them and caused them to see the bad in everything and everyone, then, maybe, a person could try to extract that from themselves.

Overall

I love this idea.

Weigh In

Do you think young girls could benefit from the idea of this mirror distorting their views in relation to body image?

Do you feel that people who are pessimistic have some kind of filter they’re looking through at the world?

The Water Nixie

The Water NixieSummary

The Water Nixie is a short, strange, and dangerous tale about beauty accessories of death. If you don’t believe me, just keep reading.

Once upon a time there were two children, a boy and a girl, playing by a well. Seriously, don’t kids know not to play by wells from all these stories? Needless to say, they both fell in. A water nixie lived in the well. She decided that since the children fell in her well, they should work for her.

She made the girl spin dirty, tangled flax and fetch water with a bucket that had a hold in it. She made the boy cut down a tree with a blunt axe. She gave them nothing to eat but dumplings as hard as rocks.

The children became impatient and determined to get away. One Sunday, the nixie was at church(I find this hard to believe) and the children ran away. When church was over the nixie was upset to see that the children had run away. The nixie decided to run after them with her long strides. The children could see that the nixie was after them so they decided to fight back.

The little girl threw down a brush behind her which formed an immense hill of bristles. There were thousands and thousands of spikes that the nixie had the scramble over. She finally did get over, and the little boy threw down a comb. The comb made a great ridge with a thousand times a thousand teeth. The nixie managed to keep herself steady on them and crossover.

These were not all the personal beauty products the children had in their possession; they were not lost, yet. The little girl threw down a looking-glass which formed a hill of mirrors. It was so slippery that the nixie could not climb it. She thought she would go home and grab her axe to chop through the hill. This gave the children enough time to escape. The nixie finally realized that she was not going to get the children, so she went back home.

The End

Observations

Who plays by a well? Seriously? Who does that? I remember being very young, and hearing a story of a little girl who had fallen down a well. It was quite the ordeal. It took a lot of people, a lot of hours, to get this little girl out. I remember, that they had to drill a hole down beside the well shaft in order to free her, as she was stuck inside the well shaft. I think she lived and was happy, but I don’t really know. I don’t know why anyone would think it would be a good idea to play by a well or sit by a well. It’s a deep hole in the ground filled with water. What scenario, involving you falling into it, is going to end up good? No, scenario, that’s what.

A nixie is a water spirit that can shape-shift and will often take the form of a human. I just thought you should know. You might also see this same entity referred to as a “neck, nix, nixe, or nyx.” Some people also say that it is a mermaid of sorts. If you see the creature simply listed as a “nix” then the creature is probably male. If you see the other forms, “nixie or nixe,” it’s probably female.

Why is a water spirit going to church? What kind of church was this? I would assume that any creature like this would be pagan, if it possessed any religion at all. Was it going to pagan church or was it Catholic? If the nixie was Catholic, what tenant of that religion said it would be ok for her to keep two children captive and make them do all her dirty work? I don’t think any part of Catholicism condones that behavior, but I could be wrong.

Killer beauty supplies=awesome.

Themes

At any rate, this nixie is a hypocrite. She goes to church, but thinks it is ok to keep children captive. I know some of a lot of religions, but I do not know every in-and-out of all these religions. I do know, that most religions, do not teach, in their dogma, that it is ok to keep anybody captive. I really don’t care what religion you practice, or claim to practice, none of them are too keen about imprisoning people just because you can. This nixie was probably going to church being taught that it was not ok to subdue people against their will, and then she goes home and subdues people against their will. That’s the definition of a hypocrite. She was probably getting ready to take a casserole to Sister Jones and everything.

Hypocrites do not win. You will get paid back by God, Karma, or whatever force you believe in. You cannot continue your hypocrisy without seeing some negative effects. It might take some time to catch up with you, but  it’s going to happen.

I like the idea that these beauty supplies become dangerous implements. Think about it. Sometimes we say that beauty is pain, right? We do say that. If beauty can be pain, can the implements used to get that beauty also be pain? Of course they can, anyone who has ever burned themselves with a curling iron knows that. These beauty implements cause this nixie a lot of pain and a lot of hassle.

When we think of these entities like fairies, nixies, mermaids, dryads, maenads, and so forth, we think of beauty. We think these female looking creatures are the most beautiful creatures alive. There is something about the idea of the female form not being entirely human that really turns society on. I don’t know how else to word that. If these creatures possess this beauty, are they not also subject to the pain beauty can cause? Because there is no such thing as a psychology class for mythical creatures, I can’t really give you a straight answer on that question. I do think that since we press human characteristics on these creatures, we’re probably also pressing human faults on these creatures. That means they get the whole gamut of humanity’s darker side from greed to anorexia. I do think this nixie probably had a few run-ins with a comb, a brush, and a looking-glass herself, long before any children ever came into the picture.

Overall

I’m not so sure about this nixie, but I do like the idea of combs and brushes being deadly. Don’t forget, Snow White also had herself a run-in with a deadly comb.