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'Guarding Your Primal Gifts' : (Six Steps To Remember When Facing Unemployment) - Week Four

Updated: Sep 17, 2020

Step 4/Week Four : 'Water Lilies'

This might seem a rather odd title for a blog entry on the impact of unemployment but we hope it provides some sense of perspective around people's use of ‘labels’ and 'phrases' that we overhear regularly in relation to a changing employment situation.

'Universal Credit', 'Skill Set','Jobseeker', 'Labour Market' are all terms that we have to adjust to in our new circumstances. There is the language around any job application process, the wording of a 'CV' or a letter, or for any interview that might come our way. It can feel overwhelming at times - as if we are just another 'number' going through this cycle again and again. Quietly, amidst all of this. we must feel that we can continue to grow through the whole experience and make important and real discoveries about ourselves and about the world around us.

Returning to the theme of nature and its potential role in shaping good mental and spiritual health, we are trying here an imaginative exercise alongside a piece of poetry by the German writer, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

We are looking for a way to recognise the inner strength and the value of our 'Primal Gifts' and to assert our faith in ourselves and in the future, regardless of setbacks. Perhaps, we have not even contemplated this before. Despite natural feelings of rejection and failure, there is no single person or organisation who can weaken our self-belief and our determination. Our 'Primal Gifts' have a durable source.

With this inner resolve in mind, we turn to the poem and we adopt the image of a 'Water Lily' that refuses to be tugged up, damaged or torn from its roots! Likewise, our 'Primal Gifts' should always remain intact.

Water Lilies (Johannes Wolfgang von Goethe):

Saw a boy three lilies white,

Lilies in the river,

Half heart-open to the light,

Full of golden arrows bright,

Each a silver quiver.

Lilies, lilies, lilies white,

Lilies in the river.

Said the boy, “I’ll pluck you there,

Lilies in the river!”

Said the lilies, “If you dare

You shall drown, or homeward fare

Dripping and a-shiver!”

Lilies, lilies, lilies white,

Lilies in the river.

Wilful still the boy would clasp

Lilies in the river;

Tumbled in ere he could grasp,

Scrambled out with puff and gasp,

Plucked no lilies ever.

Lilies, lilies, lilies white,

Lilies in the river.

Like the 'Water Lily' we have deep and strong roots. We are not to be ripped up or written off! We are all capable of shining, of being 'open to the light'. As we read in the Book of Genesis, the first book of the Bible, we are all made 'in the image of God'. Our experiences will help us uncover that 'likeness' or that 'image'.

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