Sunday, May 21, 2006

3 WISHES

In fairy tales, wishes always come in threes. I wonder why? Are the genies and fairy godmothers trying to tell us that there only three things truly worth wishing for? Is the offer a test? Wish well and you will be happy for life. Flunk the exam and you will be forever banished from the land of fairies and gnomes.

It reminds me of another three. Edgar Allen Poe said there were three things in life that the human being needed to thrive. It's a great wish list, and one that has been with me since I first read it.

1. Someone to love
2. Work you care about
3. Outdoor life

Yes, I could be happy with that, but I would also want health, and a place to live, and a peaceful planet...and then I would want the people I love to have work they care about and someone to love and...well, you get the idea.

So why only three? Maybe because the genie knows that we fairy tale people are a greedy lot. Once he starts performing on command, we'll never stop rubbing the lamp...So okay, I accept. It's three.

1. I wish that I would wish for things that bring real happiness and good.

2. I wish that I would wish as passionately for others as I do for myself.

3. I wish that I would smile when I wish and keep smiling whether my wish came true or not.

30 comments:

AscenderRisesAbove said...

What a wonderful photo!

Sarah said...

That's an inspiring list - and an honest one. Thanks - made me think about mine!

Marilyn said...

Great wishes...and that photo?...rocks! :)

Terri /Tinker said...

I love the photo! Your wishes are wonderful - and I agree, the land of faerie is on to humanity's monkey-mind - just one more wish...

Patry Francis said...

ascender: The photograph is one of a series by an amazing photographer I found on Flickr. If you click on it, you can see more great shots.

sarah: If you post your three wishes, let me know!

marilyn: Thanks. I love the photo, too.

terri: "Humanity's monkey-mind" Interesting turn of a phrase. Thanks for visiting!

paris parfait said...

Love the photo and your list of wishes! Well done.

Living Part Deux said...

Good contemplations - and wonderful list. And, like everyone else, I am captivated by the photograph!

finnegan said...

Poe got it right three times.

Three is the minimal number because it can go round. Maybe that's what gets the ball rolling with all the rest?

boliyou said...

Great photo, great wishes, both Poe's and yours.

Laini Taylor said...

The Poe list is great and succinct, and yours is beautiful and soulful. And yes, love the photo too!

Kerstin said...

I guess even in fairy land there is a limit to what you can have! I like Poe's three wishes, I had not read them before. They encapsulate so much, so simply. As do yours.

Shai Gluskin said...

I wish

1. I could more often trust my creative instinct.
2. human beings would listen, negotiate, and throw all their weapons away.
3. I had more time to play ball with my kids.

liz elayne said...

poe's list and your list - fantastic! i love this idea of "outdoor life."

chiefbiscuit said...

Great wishing - wise wishing.

Dale said...

:-) This reminds me of the most useful teaching I ever received about aspirations. (We work a lot with aspirations, in Tibetan Buddhism.) When you're supposed to generate an aspiration -- say, that all sentient beings will be happy -- and you can't do it, you find that you just can't wish happiness for Saddam Hussein, or Dick Cheney, or your sister-in-law, or whoever, that's fine. Generate the aspiration that you'll someday be able to make the aspiration. If even that fails, you can take another step back, and aspire to be able to aspire to make the aspiration. It really doesn't matter; functionally it's exactly the same.

Kristine said...

Great photograph! I like that last wish. It is pretty deep.

rdl said...

Nice list and you didn't wish for 3 more wishes! :D

Alexandra S said...

Such true and genuine sentiments! I think POe is right indeed- when any of those three are out of whack, as they are for me at the moment, life is infinitely harder. Wishing you a life time of many more than three dreams coming true! many, many, MANY more than that!

MB said...

A three-legged stool is the most stable on rough terrain.

I'm not honestly sure how that relates but I feel like it should.

You've got me thinking.

bluepaul said...

That's a nice wishlist
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zhoen said...

Three. Because you wish too far one way, then too far another, the third is for the grace of the middle way.

I didn't know I was wishing it, but it turns out I was wishing to be happy without wishes. And the beggar rides.

Madeleine said...

What a fantastic photo!Good find.

I too, was thinking why so many things seem to come in 3's-Good or bad.1 is too limited and 2 doesn't have enough scope to cover ALL those aspects we so need in our wishing.3 seems, for me, to cover the past, present and future of my life and experiences.

Your selfless and honourable wishes were very inspiring, and I must remind myself,too, to smile even if my wishes are not fulfilled.
Thanks for kind comments re-my 3 wishes.
mad x

papyrus said...

Very interesting piece. I enjoyed reading it and getting an insight into your thoughts. Thanks.

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