Short Stories From 10 Years Ago – March 29, 2004
Short Stories From 10 Years Ago – March 29, 2004 – I was watching a film last week-end about European and English knights and the jousting and broadsword matches in which they competed. Of course, there was the cruel, self-serving bad knight (with the black horse) and the good knight, who wasn’t really of noble birth.
He was a handsome blonde interloper with a heart of gold amd a white horse – who truly loved the fair princess. She, who is being forced to marry the bad knight. Does this sound familiar? Anyway, at one point in the film the bad knight has the good knight arrested as an imposter, bound and thrown in prison. He then beats him mercilessly. As the black knight stands over our hero he says: “You have been weighed, you have been measured and you have been found wanting. Did you really think you could be me?”
We know the story ends with the triumph of good over evil and the good knight winning the hand of the fair and beautiful Jocelyn. It was a light, enjoyable film. After it was over I couldn’t get the phrase, “You have been weighed, you have been measured and you have been found wanting” out of my mind.
It made me think of all the times I’ve said the same thing, or a variation of it, to myself. I’ve also listened sympathetically while friends of mine told me about feeling the same way. We live in a society that uses comparison to either elevate or condemn, and all too often we believe the condemnation. We belittle our efforts as ‘not good enough’ or we feel insignificant in comparison to someone else. The little voices in our heads tell us we’ll never measure up to the guy or gal next door or the person in the office down the hall. This enemy within haunts us, yet at the same time wants to be loved and accepted.
How wonderful it would be – if instead of finding ourselves wanting – we stood up tall and accepted ourselves as we are. It’s important to keep acquiring knowledge, to challenge our self-imposed limitations, to seek a better way of being and to strive to learn more about the fine art of living. One of the gifts of getting older is to finally feel the lovely softness of self-acceptance as it seeps into the soul. There are things about myself that I still need to change. I work at being a little less serious – a bit less rigid, more compassionate and forgiving; but I also realize the many good qualities I have, that make me a decent and honourable person.
The next time you hear those little voices of self-doubt doing a monologue in your head or a tap dance on your self-esteem, simply turn the volume down a notch or two and focus instead on the attributes you possess that make you the unique and inspiring person you are. I’m learning to be kinder to myself, and in so doing I’m becoming aware of my place in the world. It’s a nice feeling this “weighing myself, measuring myself and finding my wanting – NOT”.