A Christmas Carol remains Dickens’ best known Christmas story. By no means his only offering for the Christmas period, the others have receded in popularity. Darker and, perhaps, less accessable tales such as The Chimes are, hardly, known these days. It might be said that they struggle to create as cohesive and structured a story when compared to the well known tale of Scrooge, which is a shame. They are worth reading, if only once. To return to A Christmas Carol, below is an interpretation of facets of that cautionary tale which I first posted on a previous blog some years ago. It is a, purely, personal take on the teachings contained within the development of the main character and I post it here because such literary characters have become part of the milieu of mythological story telling and the lessons inherent within them.
In some respects one can interpret Dickens’ A Christmas Carol as a parable relevant to such treatments as Reverse Therapy and, to an extent, Buddhism.
Both these disciplines would agree that we cannot always, if ever, alter exterior events, but what we can change is our perceptions of and attitudes towards them.
The miserly Scrooge, obsessed about wealth and security, worrying about the loss of money and living from an attitude of Lack, is the voice of Headmind: The grasping, controlling, never satisfied and self-centered voice of doom, the ego, the self-obsessed critic voice of fear chattering away within.
What changes in The Christmas Carol?
Christmas does not change. Nor do any of the other characters. Scrooge is “visited” by the voice of Bodymind urging him to get back in touch with feeling, with how he responded to Christmas as a boy. The “inner child’s” natural and spontaneous response to the magic of Christmas. The Voice of Christmas Future shows him the destiny that awaits if Headmind remains the strongest aspect of his character: A small life unlived, never loving or giving or trusting, mean and miserly not just to others but to himself.
So what changes in The Christmas Carol?
Scrooge’s attitude and perceptions of himself in relation to Christmas is all that changes. He listens to a different inner voice, that of Bodymind which wants him to embrace his own inner desire for fulfilment and happiness.