I am teaching a puppetry class right now for a Waldorf teacher training for Early Childhood teachers. One of the things we are doing is making standup needle felted puppets, and at their graduation, we will present the fairy tale of the golden goose. That fairy tale isn’t the way I remembered it from when I was a kid. I remember the boy with the golden goose and a bunch of people getting stuck to him and the princess laughing and then they get married.
But in the Grimm’s version, there is a little gray-haired old man who Dummling (I actually prefer Simpleton) shares his meager meal with. He is then rewarded with the golden goose. When we look at fairy tales in Waldorf education we think about the archetypes. I was thinking about the archetype of the simpleton and woke up the other morning thinking about the Fool in the Tarot deck. I always think of Simpleton as,well, a simpleton, but the Fool is an amazing guy. His number is 0, the number of unlimited potential. The journey through the major arcana is the fool’s journey. He represents potential, innocence and new beginnings. He is the one for whom anything is possible because he doesn’t know any better. He has beginner’s mind and things just go his way. Whenever he has a problem, the little grey-haired man helps him out.
There is so much more–I will come back to this again. There are the three innkeeper’s daughters and the parson–in progress below– and sexton and 2 laborers. The mystical number 7 people who end up stuck behind Simpleton when he makes the princess laugh. Wow, there is so much in this silly little story!