What’s behind the green curtain? There is good reason that this children’s story has lasted the test of time. The story of the Wizard of OZ – is an allegory of life, a journey. It is also an allegory of reality and illusion.
The four characters in this classic tale set out on their quest to find what’s important to them. For Dorothy home, for the Scarecrow brains, for the Tin Woodman a heart and for the Cowardly Lion courage. Unwittingly it seems, the author L. Frank Baum has struck upon what the core needs are for each of the four personality types.
Dorothy (Gold) wishes nothing but the sense of belonging that being home gives her. “No matter how dreary and gray our homes are, we people of flesh and blood would rather live there than in any other country, be it ever so beautiful. There is no place like home.” Dorothy acts as the ‘accidental leader’ and caregiver for the group. For the Scarecrow (Green), with no brains, feared only a lighted match, yet he yearned to have knowledge. Many times, the scarecrow ‘thinks’ of ways he can help the team to get to the Emerald City. The Tin Woodman (Blue) longed for a heart and to love again. The Tin Woodman cries so hard when he steps on a beetle and crushes it, he rusts up all over again. The Cowardly Lion (Orange) wants to find courage, and longs for the freedom of the forest. He helps his friends by taking charge and getting them out of several scrapes along the journey on the Road of Yellow Brick.
Upon arrival at the Emerald City, the four are disappointed to learn that they must earn what they are asking of the Wizard, they must embark on another journey to kill the Wicked Witch of the West, their resolve is tested again. When the quartet arrives back at the Emerald City after killing the Wicked Witch of the West, they ask the Wizard to grant them the wishes he has promised. They quickly discover that the Wizard is a ‘humbug’ – an ordinary man with no powers to grant their wishes. What he does help them to discover is that all along they had inside themselves the very things they wanted the most in life. “Who the real Oz is, when he is in his own form, no living person can tell.”
The four characters are playing out what every one of us does in our own lives. We are born with a set of characteristics that drive our behaviour. Our upbringing and environment help shape us and make us the unique beings we are. Yet, beneath the surface, the core needs and desires we have – and our hard wired mental functions shape every decision and action we take.
Think of your brain as an iceberg – at the tip is our conscious mind – what constitutes our reality, under the surface, is the unconscious – what drives our behaviour. All thoughts happen in the blink of an eye – the brain takes in information- the unconscious decides what is real and gives the message to the conscious mind. The conscious mind believes it has made the decision, this becomes our reality. Our thoughts are filtered through the patterns and beliefs we hold, hard wired and learned throughout our lives. Our brain is like the Wizard of Oz – we see the illusion, we command the conscious brain to do the same things over and over again. This is why we ask ourselves the question – why does this always happen to me?
“Oz himself is the great Wizard… more powerful than all the rest of us together.” Once the green curtain is pulled aside, and we can see the machinations of the ‘Wizard’ – we discover that all that we thought we wanted, we already had, the answers are within. All we thought was real – just an illusion. The magic of the message in the Wizard of Oz is that we have the power to re-wire our brains; we have power over the unconscious. The Wizard shows the characters that they can believe whatever they want and it will become real. “Oz left to himself, smiled to think of his success in giving the Scarecrow and the Tin Woodman and the Lion exactly what they thought they wanted.”
The tale of course has a happy ending with all four characters finding what they sought. They each had to embark upon a journey, a journey of learning – they had to challenge the beliefs and thoughts they carried along with them. Once the illusion was stripped away, each was able to see clearly how to achieve what they truly desired.
Will you draw back the green curtain?
Will you challenge your long held beliefs?
Irene Anderson cc-cta – is a certified coach and facilitator and Director of DiscoveryWorks! Coaching and Training. Irene’s passion is encouraging people to reach inside and bring out their best strengths through Self Discovery and Coaching. Irene has extensive experience in helping people in the process of Self Development.
Irene’s coaching style is open and relaxed – Using her unique C.O.R.E Coaching® method, she listens at a deep level and respectfully guides her clients to achieve results.
Irene’s style of facilitation is highly interactive and high energy. On a team level, Irene uses a variety of methods to help her clients improve their ability to work and communicate more effectively. Using her extensive knowledge of Personality Type and Temperament, including the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®), Personality Dimensions®, True Colors®, Irene incorporates these methods to deliver customized, results oriented programs that meet the needs of her clients.
Irene can be reached at:
Email – Irenefirstname.lastname@example.org
Blog – www.mylifecompass.ca