Have you read The Beatryce Prophecy by Kate DiCamillo? It’s The Little Prince for our times.
So much more than a children’s book, it’s a love letter to language and stories. It’s a parable of the feminine energy rising in today’s world, where toxic masculinity has run amok. What will save us is a different ethic, born in deeper values of compassion, justice, respect, and accountability. Dismantling the patriarchy, which is based on lies and force and greed, requires us to wake up.
We need to remember who we are.
As the book opens, young Beatryce has forgotten who she is. She wakes up holding the ear of a goat, in the stable of a monastery. Survivor of an unknown trauma.
How often do we forget who we are? How many times (over the past two years especially) have we looked around in confusion and asked, “What world is this I now inhabit, and how shall I live in it?”
Even in her pain, Beatryce’s essence shines through. She is a curious, smart, strong girl whose vulnerability does not negate her strength. And she swiftly accepts the love of strangers who become friends.
She finds people who love her. And that makes it safe to remember.
What can bring us back to ourselves is love. Feeling seen.
“Trauma fundamentally means disconnection of self. Why do we get disconnected? Because it’s too painful to be ourselves.”Gabor Mate, Hungarian-born addictions specialist
Many experiences can make us forget who we are—most of them traumatic on some scale. Feeling unheard as a child. Witnessing or experiencing violence. And all the gradations in between. So many things snip away at our awareness of soul.
Sometimes it’s so subtle. Wrapping presents, I feel a creeping sense of… is it dread? is it fear? is it shame? is it sadness? I’m not good at wrapping and have no interest in making the packages look nice. Yet I know that some people make fun of poorly wrapped packages. I go a bit unconscious, in that moment, and rush through the heinous task, my stomach tight.
Later, lying in bed, the sensation comes back to me. I flash back to times I’ve had the same bodily feeling that I experienced in that moment. It finds me at conferences and other spaces. It’s a pressured, stomach-achy kind of feeling…a sensation triggered by fear of exposure or shaming, rooted in long-forgotten pain.
And even this very mild trigger is a separation from Soul. That part of me (us) that is one with Divine Source never needs to perform. And what does Source know of shame? Source is Love.
I commit to surfacing such wounds in me, big or small. If I heal them, I don’t have to keep blindly perpetuating an old oppressive system. I believe that performance, shame, and pressure are both symptoms and perpetuators of that dying system.
I live in a body that is keyed a little more anxiously than some. My nervous system reacts to stimuli many others don’t find troublesome. I’m learning (and unlearning, and learning again) that expanding into Source helps me regain my footing.
Show me who I really am becomes my prayer, because I don’t want to hide my shine any longer. Especially in an age where every one of us needs to gather our courage and really show up.
I am fortunate to be part of several circles that see me and re-member me and help me be a little bit braver. Often it is my community that reminds me, again, that I am not just a small and timid body that happens to house a soul. I am actually one with Source.
But back to Beatryce. Surrounded by the people who see and know her, she wakes up (again). This time she is waking to her true power. She follows an inner knowing that she needs to look the king in the face and call him to account.
Yet she is not alone, even when it might seem so. That is key. She is supported by the motley community she’s assembled. (Read the book to meet them: Jack Dory, Cannoc, and Brother Edik, as well as the goat!)
What happens next is a complete toppling of a monarchy that can’t hold up under her gaze.
What I take from this: 1) Simply looking an oppressive system in the face is powerful, even transformative. 2) The community helps re-member us back into our full Soul being, so that we can muster the courage to do this. 3) Joy and laughter (read the book to see this in action) are powerful antidotes to evil.
May we all remember who we really are.