I have spent the last week, and more, binge-watching the five seasons of The Adventures of Merlin. It is filled with humor, magic, mayhem, and a wise dragon that speaks to the destiny of mankind. What’s not to love? More important, it reminded me of my own life.
At age four, I was involved in an accident. The doctors told my parents that I desperately needed brain surgery to replace a shattered piece of bone protruding into my brain causing a blood clot that would certainly end in my death. Mom and Dad were also told that the chances of a full recovery were very slim and that I would probably end up with some sort of brain damage, akin to Cerebral Palsy.
My life, since age four has been a miracle, or just plain magic. And the story of Merlin is a story of the battle waged against magic. It is the story of King Arthur and the knights of the Round Table, where each individual holds an equal place, an equal voice, in what happens. Even the Queen. Unlike other such tales, in this one Merlin is the personal servant to Arthur Pen-dragon.
In our world today, we are seeing a very similar upheaval. Our president, and his cronies, want us to ignore science (the current magic, if you will). They would have us to believe that statistics and scientific proof have absolutely no meaning. That the use of fossil fuels is not destroying our world, and that we ourselves are not bringing our world to an end. And their reason for doing such a thing? Greed. But greed for only the top one percent among us. They can afford to ignore all the horrendous storms, one after another, occurring all around the globe. The loss of life, and environment means nothing to them.
Perhaps they believe that they breathe a more rarefied type of air. Have you noticed that these storms are destroying the trees? Trees create oxygen, the stuff we need to breathe in order to continue living. Perhaps our leaders believe they can afford canned air, so they have nothing to worry about?
And so what if they are stealing our future by decimating Health Care, Social Security, Food Stamps, and redefining our benefits as entitlements? That will just get rid of the elderly and disabled and leave more for them. They have guaranteed earnings and won’t lose one penny. Every one of our leaders took an oath to serve the Constitution and the people. Are they doing that?
Near the end of the Merlin series, Arthur has been wounded and knows he is dying. He asks that the seal of his authority be given to his queen because he knows that she will rule far more equally than any other. She comes from common stock and it is an awareness that is part of her knowing. I’m not saying we need a female in our highest office, but shouldn’t our laws reflect the reality that she is the other half of the species? Equal in her knowing and her abilities? No longer to be abused or assaulted, dominated or subjugated just because some men have a need to prove their own superiority?
Within the series, magic is defined as “the Old Religion”. It has been outlawed because there are those who would abuse such power. But, I believe that mankind itself has shown that even a little bit of power carries with it, the possibility of corruption. We are after all, perfectly imperfect beings.
It is the wise dragon who tells Merlin that each of us must accept our own destiny, be that for good or evil. It is a choice each of us must make. Not just once, but in each moment. That is the journey of each life. We can give up or go on fighting. It is what we are created to do.
I found the last seconds of the series delightful. It closes with the image of a road, and a semi-trailer truck passing along that highway. As it passes, a figure appears walking along the edge of that highway. The figure is Merlin, all that symbolizes magic, still walking the land, still smiling.
Notes: Image is from the Internet. The series mentioned is available on Netflix.