Friday, March 17, 2017

The Little Red Hen, Redux

According to Wikipedia The Little Red Hen is an old folk tale, most likely of Russian origin, that was used during the 1880s as a story that offered a transition to less blatant religious and moralistic tales while still emphasizing a clear moral. I have taken the liberty of reframing the tale in order to illustrate the spiritual evolution that raises one from selfishness to awareness of the Higher Self and unity with all. Following is the recast tale.

THE LITTLE RED HEN

Once upon a time there lived a little red hen. She called all of her spiritual  neighbors together and said, “If we plant these seeds, we shall eat the bread of truth. Who will help me plant them?”

“Not I,” said the cow.
“Not I,” said the duck.
“Not I,” said the pig.
“Not I,” said the goose.

“Then I will do it by myself,” said the little red hen, and so she did. The wheat grew very tall and ripened into golden grain.

“Who will help me reap my wheat?” asked the little red hen.

“Not I,” said the duck.
“Out of my religious field,” said the pig.
“I’d lose my affiliation,” said the cow.
“I’d lose my comfort,” said the goose.

“Then I will do it by myself,” said the little red hen, and so she did.

At last it came time to bake the bread.

“Who will help me bake the bread?” asked the little red hen.

“That would invade my spare time,” said the cow.
“I’d lose my right to quack,” said the duck.
“I’m a dropout and never learned how,” oinked the pig.
“If I’m to be the only helper, that’s discrimination,” said the goose.

“Then I will do it by myself,” said the little red hen.

She baked five loaves and held them up for all of her neighbors to see. They wanted some and, in fact, demanded a share. But the little red hen said, “No, I shall eat all five loaves.”

“Unfair!” cried the cow.
“Outlier!” screamed the duck.
“I demand an equal share!” yelled the goose.
The pig just grunted in disdain.
And they all painted picket signs and marched around and around the little red hen, shouting obscenities.

Then the farmer (The True Self) came. He said to the little red hen, “You must not be so greedy.”

“But I earned the bread,” said the little red hen.

“Exactly,” said the farmer. “That is what makes our free will system so wonderful. Anyone in the barnyard can earn as much as he or she wants. But under our exclusive (an impossibility) earthly regulations, the productive workers must divide the fruits of their labor with those who are lazy and idle.”

And they all lived happily ever after, including the little red hen, who smiled and clucked, “I am so grateful, for now I truly understand. When I eat, everyone eats with me. Before I have been the cow, the duck, the goose and the pig.”

And her neighbors became quite content in her. She continued baking bread because she joined the “game” and got her bread free, which she ate with her Self, who just happened to be her united friends. And all the side-liners smiled. “Fairness” had been established and they came to know themselves, in the Little Red Hen.

Individual initiative had died, but nobody noticed; perhaps no one cared...so long as there was free bread that the indiscriminate hens planted, reaped, baked and ate together.

So I end my reframed tale with voices of my own: Moo, quack, honk, grunt and cock-a-doodle-do. Ive been them all and just perhaps, so too have we all.
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