Monday, July 17, 2017

The Wisdom of the Wizard of Oz: A Top Ten List

10.  Good manners will take you far.

When Dorothy gets dropped in Munchkinland, everything is so different--the colors, the trees, the flowers, but mostly the people. They look different, they sound different. But Dorothy speaks to them politely, like she'd talk to anyone else. She apologizes because her house fell on the witch, even though it wasn't really her fault. Is this what you would do?

And what do you think of Munchkins being small people? What does that mean?

9. There will be people who try to stand in your way. Don't let them.

Why do you suppose she's green?
Think of the Wicked Witch as all those people who say you can't do something. Do your best to ignore those people and move on.

8.  Be kind. It affects people more than you know.
What was the 'oil' that made the Tin Woodsman come back to life? Maybe it was actually kindness that made him able to move.

Quote from the Wizard: "As for you, my galvanized friend, you want a heart. You don't know how lucky you are not to have one. Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable."

Tin Woodsman: "But I still want one."

7. Friends stick together. Friends help you keep it together. When you know you have friends in your corner, it gives you strength, maybe even courage.

When he was with his friends, the Lion dared to do lots of things. He may have whined about it, but he did them.

Maybe the lesson is this: If you have support, you can accomplish whatever you want. Appreciate your friends and support them, too.

 The Wizard: "You, my friend, are a victim of disorganized thinking. You are under the unfortunate impression that just because you run away, you have no courage. You're confusing courage with wisdom."           

6.  Everyone has a brain. It's how you use it that counts.

Maybe Scarecrow thought he didn't have a brain because no one ever told him he was smart.

Tell someone who doubts, that he is smart. Sometimes that's all a person needs. And while you're at it, remind yourself on a regular basis that you are smart, too.

Scarecrow: "Some people without brains do an awful lot of talking, don't they?"

5.  Be Dorothy.

This doesn't have to do with gender. Think about her role in the story.

Was she the anchor? Was she the spirit of good that prevailed? Was she trust?

Was she the calm in the storm?

And who are you in the midst of your friends or family?

4. Choose who you lead--and choose who you follow--with care.

The flying monkeys were misfits: they weren't munchkins and they weren't cute little dogs. Remember how eagerly they did whatever their leader told them to do---what good came of that? Do we ever see this in 'real' life?

Would you rather be Dorothy or the Wicked Witch? Munchkin or Flying Monkey? You can choose.

3.  People need to earn your respect.

Smoke and mirrors and a scared little man hiding behind a curtain operating a bunch of levers, the 'wizard' was nothing more. Ironically, he was wise enough, as shown by his quotes.

What makes us respect someone? Who do you respect? Why?

Maybe more importantly, why do we think we need someone else's permission to do what we want?

Dorothy had more power than The Wizard would ever have. She trusted him, but she didn't need him.

2.  Singing always helps.

But the most important lesson I think we can learn from the Wizard of Oz is this:

1.  You are intelligent and strong. You are a good person. You know yourself. Be still and listen.

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