enlightenment with dr. seuss

let’s have some more dr. seuss. this is from the grinch who stole christmas. grouchy, grumpy, mean, bitter grinch has just stolen all the christmas gifts from the people in who-ville, pretended to be a nice guy by giving little cindy-lou who a glass of water, taken the last little crumb out of cindy-lou’s pantry (leaving not even enough for a mouse) and now, with the booty weighing down heavy on his sled, he’s making his way

three thousand feet up! up the side of mt. crumpit,
he rode with his load to the tiptop to dump it!
“pooh-pooh” to the whos!” he was grinch-ish-ly humming,
“they’re finding out now that no christmas is coming!
“they’re just waking up! i know just what they’ll do!
“their mouths will hang open a minute or two
“then the whos down in who-ville will all cry BOO-HOO!
“that’s a noise,” grinned the grinch,
“that i simply MUST hear!”

so he paused. and the grinch put his hand to his ear.
and he DID hear a sound rising over the snow.
it started in low. then it started to grow …
but the sound wasn’t SAD!
why, this sound sounded MERRY!
it COULDN’T be so!
but it WAS merry! VERY!

he stared down at who-ville!
the grinch popped his eyes!
then he shook!
what he saw was a shocking surprise!

every who down in who-ville, the tall and the small,
was singing! without any presents at all!
he HADN’T stopped christmas from coming!
somehow or other, it just came the same!

dr. seuss’s illustration for the last paragraph is a huge semi-globe of strobing red light supporting a chain of hand-holding happy who-ers, who seem to be sending out more light into the universe with their joyful song.

christmas, the festival of light …

i don’t know that i’ve often made the connection between the buddhist idea of enlightenment and our wintry festivals of light. perhaps no matter how grinchy, isolated and deeply unhappy our experiences are: enlightenment, in-light-ment, is inevitable?

isabella mori
counselling in vancouver

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