Why Tell Stories ?

Discussion in 'Moral Stories' started by Hindu, Feb 21, 2015.

  1. Hindu

    Hindu Member Staff Member

    Why We Tell Stories?
    The real question may be how can one not tell stories? Every conversation is rife with information-packed stories of what the teller has been doing recently. People share stories they have heard from others, retell stories they have read, and even rehash things they have seen on television. Anyone who chooses to formalize this sharing takes on the role of the “storyteller.”

    A storyteller has a repertoire of tales, skill at delivering those tales, and access to an audience. The sharing of stories serves the audience as well as the teller. For the audience, the storytelling event offers a moment of play, a shared experience, a bonding. Participation stories allow listeners to be involved in an artistic event—and, in the hands of a skilled teller, they can play their part very well. Emotionally intense stories bring a group of people closer together in a shared caring. In such a group event, emotions that are not normally allowed to surface are released.

    The most wonderful gift of story is the bonding of a group. Held close under the spell
    of a story, the group breathes as one. The shared experience softens the edges between individuals and brings everyone closer in the warmth of the moment. Together, the members of the group enter a “story trance.” Storytellers benefit, in turn, as they experience the heartwarming feeling of holding the audience’s attention and nurturing the group by sharing a beloved tale.

    Many stories also serve the community in a broader sense. All societies use stories to pass on group values. Wrapped in the sweet pill of an entertaining story, a moral goes down easily. Stories also can be useful tools that allow individuals to chastise or expose negative behaviors without overtly speaking the truth. The Liberian storyteller Won-Ldy Paye related how Anansi spider stories have been used to “say without saying” in front of a chief. If the chief has behaved in a greedy manner, the storyteller shows Anansi in this incorrect behavior. Everyone knows whom the storyteller is talking about.
    A little boy was spending his Saturday morning playing in his sandbox. He had with him his box of cars and trucks, his plastic pail, and a shiny, red plastic shovel. In the process of creating roads and tunnels in the soft sand, he discovered a large rock in the middle of the sandbox.

    The boy dug around the rock, managing to dislodge it from the dirt. With a little bit of struggle, he pushed and nudged the rock across the sandbox by using his feet. (He was a very small boy, and the rock was very large.) When the boy got the rock to the edge of the sandbox however, he found that he couldn't roll it up and over the little wall.

    Determined, the little boy shoved, pushed, and pried, but every time he thought he had made some progress, the rock tipped and then fell back into the sandbox. The little boy grunted, struggled, pushed, & shoved; but his only reward was to have the rock roll back, smashing his chubby fingers.

    Finally he burst into tears of frustration. All this time the boy's father watched from his living room window as the drama unfolded. At the moment the tears fell, a large shadow fell across the boy and the sandbox. It was the boy's father. Gently but firmly he said,

    "Son, why didn't you use all the strength that you had available?"

    Defeated, the boy sobbed back,

    "But I did, Daddy, I did! I used all the strength that I had!"

    "No, son," corrected the father kindly.

    "You didn't use all the strength you had. You didn't ask me."

    With that the father reached down, picked up the rock and removed it from the sandbox.


    Do you have "rocks" in your life that need to be removed? Are you discovering that you don't have what it takes to lift them? There is One who is always available to us and willing to give us the strength we need. Isn't it funny how we try so hard to do things ourselves

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