THE BLOG
10/13/2014 01:17 pm ET Updated Dec 13, 2014

Aslan and the White Witch

This passage speaks to the turning points of resilience that are always near.

Aslan and the White Witch

We always have the choice to be one who affirms or one who drains. This choice is beautifully rendered in the C.S. Lewis classic The Chronicles of Narnia. There, Aslan, the life-affirming, mystical lion, appears from time to time to restore balance and empower others. His counterpart, the life-draining White Witch of Narnia, freezes the life out of others, turning them into statues. Theirs is a classic battle; it is our battle. Ultimately, it is Aslan's mystical breath that brings those drained of feeling back to life by thawing their numbness. Isn't this the gift of encouragement: to thaw our numbness by breathing life into each other and ourselves? Isn't this the blessing of the lion-hearted?

We could say that the mystical breath is the heartening influence we carry within us and that freezing the life out of things is the disheartening influence, the coldness we're capable of when we withdraw our attention and care. When we stop listening long enough, that inattention can be numbing.

It is imperative to remember that we are both the lion and the witch. As such, we carry tremendous powers within us to affirm life or to drain it. Each time we turn away from life and deny the living, we numb some part in the world. But each time we turn toward life and accept everything that lives, we thaw some part in the world. While we can't avoid turning away from life and at times denying the living, while we can't escape moments of numbness, working with what we're given is the first step to decoding the hieroglyphic of our time on Earth. Our resilience is the mystical breath that thaws us and brings us back to life.

A Question to Walk With: Journal about a time when you were a disheartening influence on another and what caused you to be that way. Then journal about a time when you were a heartening influence on another and what caused you to be that way.

For more poetry for the soul, click here.

For more by Mark Nepo, click here.