Center of the Gold Country, California,
June 24
I suppose you could say I am just one who never was able to do all he wished he could do in a lifetime. I could never be interested in just one thing, but all things. I suppose it is these twilight years where the dawn is coming closer that I occasionally sit down and write a few of my thoughts. Some stay with me, never seen by others and some I post for the world to see. They are varied subjects, for which my mind will focus on for that time. So for now, allow me to indulge.

NOVEMBER 17, 2008 10:40PM

A Parable of Power

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I have read so much regarding some who have reached for the brass ring of power feeling they destined for it without having to earn it. Number 43 George Bush is recent tragic example and we all have suffered for it, but I feel he will even more so in the years to come. To consider Sarah Palin exhibits this trait as well, ambition with the “God Willing” sense of inevitability seems to me also a candidate. There are many more out there as we all know and they are not just in politics but everyday life, in community, in our work and more.


I suppose I should tell a story, a story that is for the most part true. This is about someone I worked with for years. The story about “Little Jimmie” is much abbreviated and put forth here in what I would define as a parable.


Once upon a time there was a handsome young man named Jimmie.  Jimmie was welcomed into the group of manly men of worth, men of tall stature and wide shoulders. Jimmie being somewhat shorter than these manly men of worth and tall stature was given the name, “Little Jimmie”.

These manly men of worth, tall stature and wide shoulders possessed a self depreciating wit, years of learning coupled with a sense of humility that was not always apparent to one who knew them not.

 Little Jimmie, was a handsome bright young man. He felt as he was brighter than most why spend time with the years of learning.  Little Jimmie also felt the humility and a self depreciating sense of humor was a weakness of these tall manly men of worth.  Little Jimmie’s humor was self appreciative, and often pointed at one who was in his eyes less worthy than he.

Handsome Little Jimmie began weaving his web of tales, tales of his prowess, his manliness, his worth and his knowledge. Little Jimmie told these tales to all that would listen.  He wove these tales to bring his stature up to those men of tall stature and worth among those who knew him not. But mostly Little Jimmie weaved his tales for so he could believe.

Young women were soon to be seen with handsome Little Jimmie, they wanted to be seen with the manly man who wove tales of his prowess and greatness. He was the man who had been seen in the presence of other manly men of worth.

At some point Little Jimmie would find himself called to a seat of power as many manly men of worth, learning and humility are called.  That Little Jimmie had been called was not a surprise to him as he was worthy, he alone knew this more so than any others. He was handsome, strong, intelligent and deserving.

Seats of power required knowledge and humility, neither for which had Little Jimmie time for.  Soon Little Jimmie, the handsome intelligent well deserving manly man of worth, demanded only those to be around him who saw in him divineness that other men of tall stature, wide shoulders  and worth lacked.

But alas, Little Jimmie was no longer able to run from the years of learning he had little use for. His humor at the expense of others, lack of humility and contempt for those he felt less worthy were no longer found acceptable for one who is seated in such a position of power.  He was found not worthy.

Handsome Young Little Jimmie was now no longer young. He was no longer handsome.  The years had been tolerant of him when he was young, but no longer. He became long in jowls and larger in girth. No longer did young women wish to be seen with Little Jimmie. He was no longer viewed as learned, his stature now wide and full and without his touted prowess he now became unmasked as a pretender.

 Little Jimmie had alienated those manly, men of worth, tall stature, self depreciating humor and great humility as he sought the seat of power. A lifeline was not to thrown to Little Jimmie.

No longer did he have that seat of power to comfort him. No longer a part of the fraternity of Manly Men of worth who had spent many years of learning, cultivating self depreciating humor, and the sense of humility.

Little Jimmie was now alone.


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If we reach for superficiality, we are destined to become superficial.
Nice parable.
A thumb for you.
I know that few today are in a sympathetic mood to the Little Jimmies and his like-minded real-world apposites. But if suffering lies in the future, there remains the possibility of redemption. But until the pride is vanquished, redemption is not possible...much less forgiveness.

Folkmuse, I've melted a chocolate bar and poured it into an envelope for you. You can remold it when it arrives. No thanks are necessary. I'm short on C-notes (and quarters) right now, but I wanted to do my part to help.
FM: I like your use of the metaphor of a parable and the repetition of phrases which are one of the hall marks of parables. And your parable meets a lot of the criteria I use to decide if it "works." Yours does.

In theology, the koine Greek word, "parabole", means, literally, "to throw along side." The English word, "parallel," comes from the same root.

In NT theology Jesus took the parable art form two steps further. He added the idea of "mystery" to the parable so his parables are intended to be something that we ponder and puzzle out. And he further invited the listener/reader to see the parable as something that goes "from the smaller to the greater."

That translates (in non-theology talk) that a commonplace story represents a greater truth that you have to figure out. Jesus seldom even told his disciples what the parables he told meant. He interpreted the parable only if he thought that they were being hopelessly thick headed. ;-)

All this is to say that your parable fits those standards. And, had you not told us in the beginning what it meant I believe that we would have figured out the "mystery" and the larger truth hidden in the smaller story.

And, long way around a low fence, THAT is why I say your parable is well written and thoughtful.

Good work, rated.

Nicely conceived and implemented, Folkmuse.