Thursday, November 1, 2007

Allegory of an Experience

See if you can guess what the following is an allegory of. It is a common activity. Portions of the story may not have specific allegorical meaning. The most significant parts to figure out are 1) the mountain(s), 2) the necessary snow on the mountains, 3) the five brothers, 4) their parachute, and 5) the valley. What experience is being described? A hint concerning the mountain: say the mountain was an allegory of a shoe. It would not be just a shoe in general but a specific brand, say Adidas.

The black, snow-capped mountain stood boldly in the distance, quietly inviting the courageous, jolly young men to ascend her and bring her down. The five brothers had heard of the challenge and had encountered countless, more difficult tasks than this: to tip the entire mountain over and into the vast valley near by. Challenge upon challenge had been successfully completed by these five bald headed brothers as they worked well together. Being quintuplets meant that these brothers spent most of their time together which resulted in their unusual collaborative existence. In time, four of the five began to realize the peculiarity of their other brother. He was shorter but considerably stockier than the other four; this discrepancy never became a problem but an asset, given the nature of their many tasks.
It was time for the new challenge of tipping the mountain over and into the valley below. The valley called to the mountain above with the faintest rumble, judicially reminding her of the law of gravity. The brothers watched from the sky as they slowly but joyfully approached. They had decided to parachute in as the sides of the mountain were too slippery to climb. The few individuals who had successfully ascended her side were left unable to tip her without help. When the time was right, the brothers jumped together; they shared one parachute with the one stocky brother on one side and the four slender brothers on the other. Gracefully, though quickly, they descended upon the mountain. A strong wind, it seemed, had their bodies nearly perpendicular, feet first approaching their target.
The parachute was large enough to rap a third of the way around the mountain. Stocky landed on one side with a thud dangerously shaking the fragile rock. The other four landed on the opposite side, three along the wall, and one upon the summit. This brother, on top of the mountain, found himself sitting in the fluffiest and thickest, though slightly muddy looking, snow he had ever seen. Snow was everywhere, falling off the sides as if the diameter of the flat-topped mountain were too small to contain it. He wanted to dive into the billowy snow and never return, lost in its soft, supporting comfort but refrained, set upon completing the mission.
When all five brothers were in place and when the appointed time had come, they pulled against the mountain with their parachute wrapped around the side opposite the valley. Stocky, alone on the side of the mountain, pulled with the strength of three men as the other four pulled from the opposite side. With a moderate amount of effort their task of moving the mountain had begun. The valley hospitably waited to be filled with the mountain as the brothers pulled. It was only a short trip for the mountain to fall into the valley and at once the valley felt the cool rock and snow fill her. The joyous mission had been completed. The brothers were successful in toppling the famous mountain.
The “mystery of the mountain” as it was called was this: some sort of magic lingered in the spot where this mountain stood. As soon as the brothers had toppled her, another mountain just like her would appear, not by growing up from the ground or by
being reformed from the valley, just placed there out of the sky. Odd it was: floating mountains continually arriving at the same spot until the valley was completely full. It was the same five brothers who tipped each of these mountains, one after the other. What rejoicing there was as this filling took place and even more when it was completed. The owner of the valley was satisfied displaying the utmost delight.

4 comments:

Scott Schultz said...

I'm not sure. I have a bad habit of thinking every allegory is about the (C)hurch.

Wesley said...

Well this one is definitely a smaller scale everyday action but I would encourage almost anyone in the Church to perform it on a regular basis.

Wesley said...

Well, the black mountain is a pint of Guinness, the side of the mountain is the glass in which the Guinness is contained. The snow is the head of the Guinness when poured from the tap. The five brothers are the five fingers of a hand, the parachute is the palm of the same hand. The valley is the stomach. The tipping of the mountain is the hand picking up the glass and drinking. The "mystery of the mountain" is the bartender bringing fresh pints until the stomach is full. This allegory is related to the Church if St. Brigid was somewhat accurate.

Scott Schultz said...

Heh. Cool.