Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales

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Do fairy tales still have value today? Can fairy tales be used for healing? How can fairy tales be used for healing? This information page about fairy tales gives you answers to these questions.

The fairy tale page: the healing use of fairy tales

Aren’t fairy tales by themselves quite fundamentally healing? At least that is what some people claim. Fairy tales are used for healing in fairy tale psychology and fairy tale psychotherapy, as well as in geriatric care, for example, for dementia. As fairy tale pedagogy they are read to children and used in kindergarten and elementary school. There are fairy tale hours of social gathering, professional fairy tale tellers, fairy tale days, fairy tale museums, fairy tale films and fairy tale jokes. Fairy tale research scientifically deals with fairy tales and socially fairy tales are critically discussed. Fairy tale groups in the social media are widespread, just as fairy tale forums, fairy tale clubs and fairy tale associations. Accordingly, the influence of fairy tales on social consciousness is great.

As this year’s Christmas project, from December 1, 2022, to January 1, 2023, every day, I am going to give you on a fairy tale theme assistance for the healing handling of fairy tales. Whoever wants to, can send me questions about dealing with fairy tales by e-mail before the start of the Christmas project. I am going to answer them as part of the Christmas project. If there are too many questions to include them all into the Christmas project, I will answer them to you personally.

November 26, 2022, Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: The Fairy Tale Christmas Project

Fairy tales are said to have healing power. It is told that they are good for the soul, promote the development of consciousness and serve mental health. At the same time, however, fairy tales are also criticized for being outdated and too cruel.

In this Christmas Project, all these contents will be closely examined each day with an interesting contribution. For this purpose, on each of the next three days, we will first briefly discuss, what consciousness, the soul and the psyche are, before relating the fairy tales to them.

Moreover, an overview on the fourth day will reveal the manifold topics that fairy tales deal with. The most diverse uses of fairy tales (e.g. in kindergarten, in school, in psychotherapy, in dementia, by storytellers, in science, etc.) will be explored. In this respect, many interesting and helpful posts are to be expected, which are useful for the diverse fairy tale topics.

November 27, 2022, (1st Advent), Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales and consciousness

Conscious and unconscious, the collective unconscious, archetypes, ego, id, and superego are terms that most have at least heard of. The theories behind these terms are related, among other things, to fairy tales, too. They then regularly have the task of explaining a positive effect of fairy tales.

Although in the meantime many are skeptical about the healing power of fairy tales and regard fairy tales as outdated, fairy tales are already used in kindergartens and are even part of the curriculum at German school due to this theoretical backing. Moreover, fairy tales are said to have a therapeutic effect. In addition, they enrich the social gathering and there are professional fairy tale tellers.

How positive, or not, fairy tales actually are for human consciousness, will be explored this Christmas season from December 1 to January 1 with daily posts. Consciousness is for this, according to Ayleen Lyschamaya, “That, which causes something to arise, is Consciousness. Everything that arises, is the expression of Consciousness.”

November 28, 2022, Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales as stories of the soul

Fairy tales are said to be good for the soul. Sometimes fairy tales are called stories for the soul right away. It is alleged that fairy tales are food for the soul and make the soul sing. Fairy tales are ascribed to be a mirror of the soul and to touch the soul at the same time.

What is meant by soul? This is by no means clear, but depends on the respective world view. As a totality of all emotional stirrings and mental processes, the soul is often meant in today’s usage as another term for “psyche” (Greek: soul = psyche). However, the soul can also designate a principle, which is assumed to underlie these impulses and processes, to order them and also to bring about or influence physical processes.[1]

If you look at the many uses of fairy tales, the underlying ideas about the soul seem to be just as diverse. This makes it all the more important to establish clarity from the outset. Ayleen Lyschamaya distinguishes the soul as the underlying life principle from the earthly psyche. The soul is the love energy that incarnates into earthly life.

The soul and the consciousness belong together and continue as rebirths over the individual lives. They form the respective life jointly, together with the earthly psyche and the body. The love energy of the soul causes the love ability of the human being.

[1] Wikipedia on “soul” (as of 11/2022).

November 29, 2022, Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales and psychology

Psychology deals with human experience and behavior. Fairy tales pass on human experience from generation to generation as behavioral instructions. What could be more obvious than that fairy tales are interpreted psychologically? Psychologists have been intensively engaged in fairy tale analyses for many years.

For these fairy tale analyses, psychology starts from internally complex people, who are part of a social system. Thus, psychology derives three levels of analysis of biological, psychological and sociocultural influences. The biological level of analysis includes the traits that are advantageous for survival and reproduction. Psychological influences encompass learned expectations, such as learned fears. Emotional responses, cognitive processing and perceptual interpretations are also included in psychological influences. Sociocultural influences contain the social environment as well as the expectations of culture, society and family, including individual groups such as peers.[1]

The psychological fairy tale analyses put their emphasis on the life instructions of the individual fairy tales with their emotional processing offers. The sociocultural influences of the fairy tales are considered as a given helpful standard for the people. For this purpose, a kind of cultural wisdom of life is assumed. To what extent this cultural wisdom includes spiritual aspects is interpreted differently by the psychologists.

This Christmas Project is going to focus on the psychological and sociocultural influences. In particular, the sociocultural influences are going to be studied as cultural wisdom, because the fairy tales themselves are a sociocultural influence. That is, the fairy tales convey as a social environment the expectations of culture, society and family.

[1] Wikipedia on “psychology” (as of 11/2022).

November 30, 2022, Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Topic overview

This Fairy Tale Christmas wants to uncover what is hidden in fairy tales. For this, the already known discussion for or against fairy tales is not to be merely repeated, even if it is included. Rather, the profound basis beneath what is already known will be revealed. It is about seeing through what is hidden behind the obvious in fairy tales. Thirty interesting contributions on a wide variety of topics related to fairy tales can be expected from December 1 to January 1:

  1. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale forest ‒ amusement parks
  2. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales as a social event
  3. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale days
  4. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales and spirituality
  5. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: The soul in fairy tales
  6. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales, loved and rejected
  7. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in pedagogy
  8. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales as a means of education
  9. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in kindergarten
  10. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Parental influence on fairy tales in kindergarten
  11. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Suitable fairy tales in kindergarten
  12. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale pedagogy for kindergarten children
  13. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in school lessons
  14. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale handling in school
  15. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale psychology
  16. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale psychology collective unconscious
  17. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale psychology id, ego and superego
  18. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale therapy as a guide to solutions
  19. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale therapy and the meaning of life
  20. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales for dementia
  21. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales from ancient customs to future
  22. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale storytellers
  23. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale readers
  24. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale origin
  25. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in science and research
  26. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale research in relation to children
  27. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Values, norms and awareness of fairy tales
  28. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales recommendation discussed
  29. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: The Grimm’s Children’s and Household Tales
  30. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale future


31 thoughts on “Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales

  • December 1, 2022 at 6:53 am

    1. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale forest – amusement parks

    In Germany there are more than thirty Fairy tale forest – amusement parks for families, birthdays and school classes. Located in the forest, they enchant children with the Grimm fairy tales from about April to September. Many fairy tale characters are recreated and their stories are read aloud and told. In addition, there are the usual gastronomic and children’s entertainment offers of amusement parks.

    As a popular destination for outings, children experience the Grimm fairy tales from an early age as a joyful, shared family experience. Positive fairy tale experiences are absorbed through all the senses. This further reinforces the already through their figurative language well-memorable fairy tales in children’s minds. Within families, with friends, and as school classes, shared values are cultivated.

    The nature of the social gathering undoubtedly has its positive value. But what about the content? Particularly in the context of shared leisure activities, it cannot be assumed that the content of the fairy tales will be critically scrutinized. Moreover, young children, to whom the theme parks are primarily directed, are not yet capable of critical reflection anyway. Accordingly, the parents and teachers, who visit the Fairy tale forest – amusement parks with their children, trust that they are doing something good for the children.

    Thus, behind the decision for or against a visit to a Fairy tale forest – amusement park lies at the same time the educational attitude of the adults towards fairy tales. Fairy tales are highly controversial and have been the subject of varying degrees of public criticism for decades. Mainly, fairy tales are accused of cruelty and outdated role models. In fact, the criticism goes even further. Most Grimm fairy tales contain hidden, negative messages of consciousness.

  • December 2, 2022 at 7:43 am

    2. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales as a social event

    Fairy tales were originally especially intended to entertain. When there was no mass media, people told each other fairy tales in social gatherings. Storytelling, later also in the sense of reading aloud, is an important social need that conveys security and cultivates relationships. In particular, adults remember the emotional atmosphere when they later think back to the fairy tales. Accordingly, fairy tales are considered particularly effective when they are read aloud or told in a familiar situation, because this creates that very special emotional atmosphere.

    Beyond one’s own family and small groups, such as in kindergarten or school, folk tales also create a cultural sense of belonging. All over the world, fairy tales are told and read aloud to each other. Therefore, fairy tales can also be used as an aid to integration when they are told or read aloud to each other across cultures. In doing so, fundamental commonalities can be discovered in the archetypal symbolism. For example, the fairy tale character “Baba Jaga”, which is very popular among the Slavic population, corresponds in its archetypal symbolism to the “Witch” in the Grimm fairy tales.

    Due to their positive social function for the community, whether in the small framework of the family or in the large intercultural framework of the world, fairy tales are still very popular with many people today. By no means would they want to give up this cultural asset. In fact, fairy tales would not still exist today in the age of mass media across cultural, national and linguistic boundaries all over the world if they were not important to people.

    Fairy tales have been able to maintain their importance, despite all the criticism of them, primarily through their combination of familiar community and touching archetypal symbolism, right up to the present day. Will fairy tales still be needed to fulfill these needs? The familiar community can be established just as well through other stories with more valuable content. The archetypal symbolism touches inwardly through its images, but it is precisely through these that it leads into a false direction of consciousness.

    Fairy tales as a literary form are particularly valuable, because of their intensive effect. What is decisive, however, is what content they pass on. The hidden messages of the Grimm folk tales are harmful to people.

  • December 3, 2022 at 8:02 am

    3. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale days

    Fairy tale days were held in Berlin (Germany) for the 33rd time this year from November 3 to 20, 2022. The 19th Hamburg Fairy tale days were held as a reading festival on one day, November 3. The Schleswig Fairy tale days entered its 13th round from October 31 to November 11. On the weekend of October 28 to 30, it was again time for the Fairy tale and Saga days in Reichelsheim. The 11th Niederzwehren (Kassel) Fairy tale days offered “fairy-tale events” from September 23 to October 2. In Bad Säckingen, Fairy tale days attracted visitors to the old town from October 21 to 23.

    These are some examples of the events that took place in the fall and call themselves “Fairy tale days”. Other than the fact that they all tie in with fairy tales and are held annually in the fall, these Fairy tale days don’t have too much in common. The goals range from literacy promotion projects primarily as interactive face-to-face readings in schools to sales marketing for stores. Some Fairy tale days offer a colorful, diverse program of lectures, readings, concerts and theatrical performances at one downtown location or else as individual events spread throughout the city. The objectives of the events range from entertainment to political education. Other Fairy tale days, in turn, involve storytellers visiting daycare centers, schools and senior citizens’ homes.

    Just as diverse as the objectives and contents of the Fairy tale days, are the participants. They include, of course, first of all the cities themselves and then, for example, kindergartens, schools, churches, clubs and associations, artists, sponsors, stores and marketing specialists. The Fairy tale days take place, among other places, in city centers, theaters, libraries, bookstores, museums and cafés.

    Overall, the Fairy tale days give the impression that it is not primarily about the fairy tales as such, but about the most diverse interests. These rather use the fairy tales as an appealing topic, in order to reach humans. In this respect, the fairy tales with their hidden harmful messages of consciousness are not needed as such. In fact, the fairy tales only distract from the actual objective. Revealed, positive educational objectives could be achieved more directly.

  • December 4, 2022 at 7:59 am

    4. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales and spirituality

    Fairy tales are said to contain universal wisdom teachings, pass on the principle of eternal good, provide spiritual insights and appeal to the soul. According to the findings of neurobiology[1], this is said to have a positive effect right into the brain. However, neurobiology itself immediately states that this positive effect is not due to the content of the fairy tales, but to the process of telling and being told. The emotional centers in the brain are activated through exciting stories and thus the connections between the nerve cells are enhanced. Nevertheless, this has nothing to do specifically with fairy tales, but rather with the positive effect of told stories in general.

    If one disregards the general positive effect of stories told and refers specifically to fairy tales, three major life issues[2] in particular are mentioned. The first stated challenge is growing up. In fairy tales, there are almost no good parents, because it is said to be necessary to detach oneself from the expectations that small children had of them. In this respect, fairy tales are not recommended for young children, because in this stage of life it is very important to be able to rely on one’s parents as caring and good.

    As second life question is named the trust in love and goodness. The third life question, which is more likely to be found in the secondary characters, is seen as about saying goodbye. These two life questions can be summed up to what really counts as constant and sustaining in life. It is about what is important in life, about the meaning of life and about the love of the soul.

    Fairy tales inspire through their archetypal symbolism. They touch hidden things in consciousness, which is interpreted as universal wisdom teachings. The good end, it is assumed, is about the eternal good for which people long. The trials in the fairy tales are said to guide away from ego-centeredness to the decision for the higher truth.

    These positive messages are attributed to fairy tales, because they touch the unconscious through their pictorial language with archetypal symbolism. It is thus felt that fairy tales have something to say to the core of one’s being. Fairy tales do indeed have that to say. Only what exactly these fairy tale messages are, people do not get, because everything takes place in their unconscious.

    In this unconscious are, among other things, the universal access as well as the soul and divine consciousness content. Therefore, this good is felt in the unconscious, too, and from this, it is concluded that the fairy tale messages must be positive altogether. In addition, however, the unconscious also contains repressed contents and especially power claim. In fact, most hidden fairy tale messages are instructions on how the ego power claim overrides the soul. These fairy tale messages are not grasped by rational analysis, because the figurative instructions for it have their effect completely in the subconscious of the people.

    [1] Neurobiologist Gerald Hüther in the preface to „Märchen für die Seele“ (“Fairy Tales for the Soul”) by Heinrich Dickerhoff, 2010; this anniversary edition brings together the folk tales from three individual volumes of the European Fairy Tale Society, including many by the Brothers Grimm.

    [2] Heinrich Dickerhoff in „Märchen erzählen – Bilder von Träumen, Spiegel der Seele“ (“Telling Fairy Tales – Pictures of Dreams, Mirrors of the Soul”) by Spirit Online, 2021.

  • December 5, 2022 at 7:35 am

    5. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: The soul in fairy tales

    Fairy tales are frequently called “soul stories” and “stories for the soul”, often in the sense of superior wisdom. The fairy tale contents are seen as appealing to the soul. Archetypal imagery is believed to use symbolism that strengthens the soul. In addition, there is the personal relationship when telling or reading aloud fairy tales, which is also considered to be a soul connection. In this respect, everything “around fairy tales” is attributed to the soul. But what about the soul directly in the fairy tales?

    “In the Land of the Soul”[1] is the name of a book that retells nineteen fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm according to the original initiatory structure. Out of old shamanic tradition, a new access to soul connection with reality is established. Many folk tales are seen as initiation tales, that is, as a help for a transition. These transitions are interpreted, among other things, both developmentally psychologically and spiritually.

    The extent to which initiation fairy tales in archaic form relate directly to maturity ceremonies is disputed.[2] The philologist (linguist and literary scientist) Vladimir Propp[3] assumed that the fairy tales are not due to the human psyche, but to the historical reality of the past. This contradiction is resolved when the underlying consciousness of both is taken into account as the basis. Both, the psyche and collective action, are based on consciousness. In this respect, the correspondences arise inevitably.

    Both, the psyche as well as the maturity ceremonies, give clues to the underlying consciousness. However, this is more encompassing than the psyche and the maturity ceremonies alone transport it into rational understanding, because the underlying consciousness contains much unconscious. Therefore, the fairy tale messages with both forms of interpretation (psychological and historical approach) are only insufficiently or not at all grasped.

    Psychologically, for example, Rapunzel and Sleeping Beauty are based on girls in adolescence.[4] The initiation fairy tale Snow White condenses in itself the most diverse cultural forms of access. Thus, there are aspects of psychology, sociology, history, Christian theology, Greek mythology, cosmology and symbolism[5] in Snow White. This variety of approaches to Snow White results in the most diverse attempts of interpretation.

    Their many varying results are based on the fact that they all do not start with the underlying basis of consciousness, but with its already differentiated forms of expression. The varied perspectives of the respective approaches are added and further enhance the diversity of interpretation. The actual diversity, however, already arises beforehand through the incomplete grasp of the underlying basis of consciousness.

    People sense the soul in the fairy tale Snow White. At the same time, however, they can consciously interpret only the obvious, the relationships between Snow White and the stepmother, the seven dwarfs and the prince. In the additional unconscious, the fairy tale figure Snow White directly symbolizes the soul, so that the soul already intuitively sensed can be concretely assigned. The fairy tale Snow White thus describes the experiences of the soul. The unconscious fairy tale message refers to the handling of the soul. Through the archetypal symbolism, the hidden fairy tale message is understood accordingly by the unconscious of the people.

    The unconscious fairy tale message of Snow White is an instruction, how the soul has to subordinate itself to the ego-consciousness part. This final state corresponds to the average adult consciousness of today’s people. Into this led historically the maturity ceremonies and at the same time it is current content of psychology.

    [1] “Im Land der Seele” (“In the Land of the Soul”) by Ursula Seghezzi, 2015.

    [2] PlusPedia and Marjorie Wiki on „Initiationsmärchen“ (“Initiation Fairy Tales”), (as of 11/2022).

    [3] Wikipedia on “Wladimir Propp“, (as of 11/2022).

    [4] “Von schönen Prinzessinnen, klugen Mädchen und bösen Hexen, Frauengestalten im Märchen“ (“Of beautiful princesses, clever girls and wicked witches, female characters in fairy tales“) by Barbara Gobrecht, 2016.

    [5] Wikipedia on “Schneewittchen“ (“Snow White”), (as of 11/2022).

  • December 6, 2022 at 7:37 am

    6. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales, loved and rejected

    In a 2003 survey[1], the vast majority of adults in Germany (81 percent) remembered at least three fairy tales they knew from childhood. At the top of the hit parade of fairy tales were “Snow White“ and “Hansel and Gretel“, which were remembered equally by 43 percent of the population. In addition, 83 percent of adults in the survey were in favor of reading aloud fairy tales to children.

    That is significantly more supporters than in the seventies. In the 1970s, fairy tales were suspected of imparting false values to adolescents. In particular, the depictions of violence in fairy tales played a central role in the critical discussions. It was argued that fairy tales legitimize violence, because they offer aggressive solution patterns. It was suspected that the violence in fairy tales can cause aggression and fear in children. Finally, fairy tale research has rehabilitated the fairy tales.[2]

    But critical voices are on the rise again. Parents and educators complain that fairy tales come from an outdated, authoritarian time, fix the sexes to outdated role models and are far too cruel for tender children’s souls. A mother from England, referring to kissing Sleeping Beauty awake, has started the discussion that fairy tales keep misogynistic stereotypes alive. The popular German “Bild”-newspaper even fears that fairy tales are socially on the brink of collapse.[3]

    Pedagogically and in the role models outdated as well as too cruel are the often discussed and thus well-known points of criticism against fairy tales. But already Goebbels had aptly formulated in 1937: “The moment a propaganda becomes conscious, it is ineffective!“ Propaganda should “only appear by attitude, by sequence, by processes, by contrasting people.“[4]

    This particularly effective hidden collective influence occurs with fairy tales, in that they appeal to the unconscious through archetypal symbols and figurative language. Unconsciously, social values and norms are thus passed on from generation to generation through fairy tales. The book “What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“[5] reveals what hidden messages these are.

    Knowing these hidden messages, it is not surprising that, of all areas, fairy tale research has rehabilitated fairy tales. In the history of fairy tales, “Snow White“ conveys the change towards power-dominated consciousness. Through the later fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel“ the power-dominated consciousness is stabilized. Historically, who had the power in the collective consciousness?

    In the history of fairy tales, due to the hidden fairy tale messages[6], it is easy to see how the original natural spiritual approach was taken over first by the church and then by a rational worldview. At last the rational world view had the collective power until the turn of the times. This rational power is based on science and research. In this respect, fairy tale research has a great self-interest in retaining its social influence by ensuring that the unconscious fairy tale messages continue to shape the collective consciousness from generation to generation.

    Fairy tales do not support child or social development. Instead, through their symbolic-pictorial style and through their unrecognized, hidden archetypal messages, they are highly effective in influencing the collective consciousness. This collective consciousness is in the process of being healed by Musubi since the turn of time. That is why there are now the revised fairy tales “Gretel and Hansel“ and “Snow White heals the Queen“.

    [1] Allensbacher Archiv, IfD survey 7042, April/May 2003.

    [2] “Bruno Bettelheim: Kinder brauchen Märchen“ (“Bruno Bettelheim: The Uses of Enchantment“) by Heike vom Orde, 2012.

    [3] “Die Diskussion um Märchen ist der wahre Albtraum“ (“The discussion of fairy tales is a real nightmare”) by Max Boeddeker, 8/28/2021.

    [4] Goebbels quoted in “Einmarsch ins Märchenreich“ (“March into the fairy tale kingdom“) by Ron Schlesinger, 4/12/2010, in: “Der Spiegel“ (widespread German magazine).

    [5] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [6] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 7, 2022 at 7:39 am

    7. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in pedagogy

    Fairy tales inspire and stimulate archetypal layers in human consciousness. For children, the simple, clear images of their fantasy world are the reason which explains their love of fairy tales. In Fairy tales order-structures of life are concealed. The inner world orders itself without the children consciously perceiving the mechanisms that have led to the order. This means that with fairy tales, life instructions are read aloud to the children. These anchor the social values and norms as hidden messages in the unconscious of the adolescents.

    In this respect, fairy tales have a particularly strong pedagogical effect. This makes it all the more important for educators and parents to be aware of the hidden messages[1] of fairy tales. A common criticism of fairy tales is that they convey weak femininity[2]. To this end, some basic motifs are found particularly frequently in the fairy tales in different variations.

    One basic motif is the heroine, bullied by the feminine, who is saved by the masculine. Many women carry this hope for Prince Charming with them throughout their lives. Even children, especially little girls who identify with the heroine, unconsciously learn three life lessons.

    First, children, still particularly open to outside influences, learn from an early age through fairy tales that the feminine is evil and means competition. (Step-)motherly love, female community and female relationships in general are not to be trusted. Second, the heroine herself is perceived as helpless on her own.[3] Not she is the one, who is strong in the fairy tales, but needs help. Third, it is learned that this help in the form of lasting rescue is salvation by a man.

    As another basic motif, the heroine is in a vulnerable transitional stage, for example, as a bride in “The Goose Girl” or as a woman in childbirth. She is already aligned to the man, but the man has not yet reached as the bridegroom, or he is traveling during childbirth. This is exploited by the evil feminine to eliminate the heroine and take away her husband. Again, the feminine is the evil and the man is the salvation. He is bitterly fought for by the feminine.

    The rescue consists of the heroine overcoming the distance to her husband. While in the first relationship theme the man is the salvation, this second relationship theme is now about keeping the man permanently. The foundation for a dependent relationship is laid.

    The two basic motifs of dependent relationship are stabilized by a third basic motif, which destroys the strength of the feminine. Thus, wise old women with magical powers are made to be feared as evil witches. This unsettles the magical worldview, from which spiritual abilities develop, as threatening. In addition, the life-skill support of experienced stepmothers is turned into the opposite. Finally, still dignified, independent and self-confident women are overdrawn to haughty and proud (e.g. in King Thrushbeard) and humiliated for it.

    Another questionable pedagogical role model function of fairy tales is the way they deal with feelings. Feelings are not described or told out, but immediately translated into action. For example, the disgusted king’s daughter in “The Frog Prince” throws the frog against the wall. Nevertheless, this can also open up the possibility of talking to children about their feelings and how to deal with them. In fact, however, fairy tales are not needed for this, because most children’s stories, just like normal everyday life, offer this possibility anyway.

    Conclusion: Pedagogically, fairy tales are not recommended for children ‒ and also not for society as a whole. But what can you do as a parent as long as the children around you may still be involved with fairy tales? It is then helpful to discuss the behavior of the fairy tale characters in a way that is appropriate for children.

    [1] ”Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (”What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [2] ”Von schönen Prinzessinnen, klugen Mädchen und bösen Hexen, Frauengestalten im Märchen“ (”Of beautiful princesses, clever girls and wicked witches, female characters in fairy tales”) by Barbara Gobrecht, 2016.

    [3] Gretel, which is often cited for female strength, is quite the opposite as a hidden message of consciousness; see the explanations in ”Gretel and Hansel heal the Witch”.

  • December 8, 2022 at 8:11 am

    8. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales as a means of education

    Fairy tales are valued for helping children to express themselves linguistically. By identifying with a fairy tale character, children find words and images for their inner experience. Conversely, however, the fairy tale images also shape the inner experience, which is quite intentional from a pedagogical point of view.

    Even the Grimm brothers intended the second edition of their collection of fairy tales to be an educational book. Fairy tales are considered educational, because they convey values and virtues in an accessible way as well as having a cautionary and deterrent effect. In this way, the fairy tales set standards of orientation. The heroines and heroes always have a task to accomplish. As role models, they are brave and persevere even under difficult conditions.

    In contrast, fairy tales are accused of contradicting today’s pedagogical objectives, because they educate with deterrence and fear. Fairy tales are life instructions based on medieval pedagogy with discipline and obedience. The punishments in fairy tales correspond to medieval law books. Fairy tales convey outdated norms and values.

    Accordingly, many educators from the 68s criticized the lack of emancipation in the fairy tales. The fairy tales were rehabilitated by the fact that it is not about the superficial, outdated role models, but about the symbolism behind them, for which children have a good sense. In other words, it is the personality-building structures of the fairy tales that matter. As in fairy tales the heroine or hero often has to go through adventures, which in developmental psychology are equated with the challenges of reality, fairy tales are considered to be developmentally beneficial.

    Fairy tales are thus intended to influence the personality development of children, so that they meet the challenges of the reality created by adults. The natural development of the children is not the standard, but the intention is to adapt the children to the adult reality. Accordingly, fairy tales convey messages of consciousness to children, which they intuitively absorb. Later, as adults, they have then internalized these messages without being aware of them yet. The fairy tale messages are the unconscious, self-evident world view that is passed on from generation to generation.

    Fairy tales encourage imagination. For children, imagination is considered particularly important, because children prefer to think with the support of images. Imagination is also an important prerequisite for later life, because it supports spontaneity and trains creative thinking. As a result, it helps to solve new, unfamiliar problems and to adapt to unfamiliar situations.

    However, children’s imagination can be fostered in so many ways that there is no need for fairy tales. As there are unlimited other ways to support children’s imagination, there is no need for fairy tales, of all things, which at the same time convey harmful messages of consciousness.[1]

    The violence in fairy tales is often criticized. On the other hand, it is said that violence is justified by the fact that violence and cruelty are part of life. But that is exactly why it is not necessary to convey violence additionally through fairy tales, too. Moreover, children have not yet developed mechanisms to inwardly distance themselves from impressions of violence. This means that the earlier a child has to deal with violence, the worse it copes with it.

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 9, 2022 at 7:15 am

    9. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in kindergarten

    Fairy tales are recommended for children as young as three years old and are regularly read aloud in kindergartens. Among other arguments, the reasons given for this are that fairy tales encourage imagination and help to distinguish clearly between good and evil. It is said that fairy tales as a guide to life show solutions to difficult situations. What is valued about fairy tales is that they are said to address hidden fears and help to work through them. Fairy tales, it is claimed, can be told even to the youngest children, because the soul at any age is considered ready to hear the “old soul stuff.”

    These arguments start from the adult worldview and then adapt it to the observed deviations in children. But this psychological perspective contradicts the natural developmental sequence from soul to infantile and then to adult. This gives rise to some misconceptions.

    By their very nature, kindergarten children are still in soul closeness. As a result, they are so full of imagination that it does not need to be encouraged. In fact, the exact opposite is the point, not to destroy the child’s imagination. This does not require cruel fairy tales, but rather a fundamentally positive attitude toward children’s imagination in normal everyday life. If a child is allowed to live out her or his fantasy in everyday life, that is the best encouragement possible.

    At kindergarten age, the inner child develops in the human psyche. The inner child is not responsible for distinguishing between good and evil. This distinction is the task of the adult personality parts, which develop later in the human psyche. The inner child is responsible for primordial trust. The primordial trust is destroyed through the evil in the fairy tales. This is especially the case when the feminine is regularly portrayed as evil in fairy tales, to which small children have the strongest relationship.

    In particular, “Hansel and Gretel” is read aloud as a classic fairy tale to overcome fear. But in fact, it has exactly the opposite effect. In the fairy tale the solution is, for children to be strong enough on their own to win against “the evil” and then only be happiest alone with their father. In fact, however, young children deeply inwardly know the biological truth that they are completely helpless to survive on their own without their parents. Therefore, the fairy tale solution goes against their nature. While the fairy tale causes fear, it is the loving security of the parents when reading aloud to them that dissolves this fear. It is therefore better to additionally strengthen this loving security with positive stories. It is generally important to instill in the child the basic trust that her or his parents are always there for her or him.

    It goes into the same direction when fairy tales are supposed to be there to show solutions for difficult situations. Young children do not have the task of solving difficult situations. Rather, they should be allowed to grow up carefree, trusting in the care and protection of their parents. This inner security lets them grow into stable and self-confident adults later on.

    By nature, young children regularly still have a lot of compassion due to their closeness to the soul. As a pedagogical recommendation, it should then be explained to them that the witch and the wolf in the fairy tale are not real people and animals and thus no compassion is necessary. This ability to distinguish belongs to the adult inner personality parts and is therefore not possible for the inner child respectively the small kindergarten child. Instead, the little child is going to distance her- or himself from her or his inner truth and thus loses access to her- or himself.

    After all, the fairy tales are moreover considered old wisdom and good for the soul. This contradicts completely the consciousness messages, which the fairy tales intuitively, hidden convey symbolically-pictorially. The most Grimm fairy tales are an individual and historical-collective instruction for how the soul is to be taken over by the ego.[1] Therefore fairy tales frighten the soul.

    [1] ”Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (”What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 10, 2022 at 7:28 am

    10. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Parental influence on fairy tales in kindergarten

    Fairy tales are cultural assets and at the same time very controversial. In kindergartens, fairy tales are popular, because young children love fairy tales due to their figurative language and fantasy world correspondence. Through their archetypal symbolism and in addition with songs, designable materials, creative projects and movement games, fairy tales are especially deeply imprinted in the children’s consciousness right into their bodies. This is all the more so, because young children in particular are still completely open to experiences and uncritically accept what is offered from outside as truth.

    The use of fairy tales in kindergarten, they justify with the educational value of the fairy tales. Fairy tales are said to convey a positive approach to reading. Children, who are regularly read aloud to, have a larger vocabulary at an early age, learn to read more easily, are more empathetic and have better grades in many subjects at school. Yet, around 32 percent of parents in Germany rarely or never read aloud to their children. This makes daycare centers all the more important, because after the family home, kindergarten is the second most important place for children to read aloud. In 91 percent of daycare centers, children are stimulated by stories at least once a day.[1]

    The benefits of reading aloud are undisputed, so that stories in kindergarten have their value. But when selecting stories, attention must be paid to their content. In addition to the many criticisms of the outdated fairy tale pedagogy, empathy is an important point especially for young children. When it is said that young children learn empathy through fairy tales, the exact opposite is true. Young children by their nature still bring empathy, because they are regularly still connected to their soul love. But through fairy tales they learn that it is right to judge people and even to punish them cruelly. This opposition, in a positive sense as a healthy demarcation, children naturally develop later fully in puberty.

    Since it is known that fairy tales are controversial, especially because of their outdated pedagogy and cruelty, the value of reading aloud should be conveyed through stories other than in particular fairy tales. The justified criticism of fairy tales by many parents should be respected. In some kindergartens, however, it happens that the parents’ values are ignored. In such cases, parents are advised to consult with other parents and to talk to the kindergarten teachers. If the values are too far apart, it may be best to change kindergarten.

    In any case, there is still the possibility of counteracting the kindergarten’s influence of fairy tales at home. If parents correct the content of the fairy tales in a child-friendly way, their influence at that age is greater than that of the kindergarten. Anyway, it is encouraging that a change is already taking place in society as a whole, so that the fairy tale problem will occur less and less frequently.

    In fact, daycare centers meanwhile often no longer use the original Grimm fairy tales at all, but rather fairy tales that have been revised for young children. To what extent these still convey the old, harmful messages of consciousness only more delicately or no longer contain them at all, must be found out in each individual case. Who knows the hidden messages[2] in the original Grimm fairy tales, can judge from it whether these were also revised.

    [1] Reading aloud studies 2020 and 2021 of Stiftung Lesen.

    [2] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 11, 2022 at 7:22 am

    11. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Suitable fairy tales in kindergarten

    For an introduction to the world of fairy tales, short fairy tales such as “Sweet Porridge”, “The Mermaid” and “The Star-Talers” are recommended for young children. All three fairy tales contain no hidden messages of consciousness.[1] “The Star-Talers” tells an open moral message, while “The Mermaid” remains rather ambivalent in its message.

    The problem with these fairy tales is that they lead to the popular fairy tale classics, such as in particular “Snow White” and “Hansel and Gretel“. There are fairy tales that contain no or confusing archetypal messages, so that they are without hidden influence on child development. However, on the contrary, there are also those fairy tales that convey a very specific hidden message of consciousness. These fairy tales with a hidden influence on consciousness include in particular “Snow White” and “Hansel and Gretel“.

    Many kindergartens meanwhile use revised versions of the fairy tales that have been adapted to suit children in terms of cruelty, old role models and the teaching of pedagogical values. Only the content of the fairy tales as such remains ‒ and that is the problem: good versus evil and good wins.

    Young children think in pictures, without already being able to recognize connections. This means that fairy tales pick up the little ones in their way of perception, which is why fairy tales are so popular. Then, the fairy tales establish the connection quasi vicariously for the children, furthermore in pictorial form well understandably. From this, fairy tales achieve their orientation and order function and anchor contents past the recognizing mind directly in the consciousness. Therefore, it is all the more important to know, which messages are concretely conveyed to even the youngest children.[2]

    Fairy tales address inner personality contents through their archetypal symbolism. In fairy tales, these are divided into good and evil. This means that through the fairy tales the children learn subtly-intuitively, which personality parts in them are good and which in them are evil. Regularly, their male consciousness parts as princes and kings are good and their female consciousness parts as stepmothers and witches are evil. This creates self-perceptions within children that contradict their original nature. When these personality contents, which are presented as evil, then moreover are fought against, this creates additional inner conflicts. The juxtaposition of good and evil in fairy tales is thus in general harmful to children’s development.

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [2] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 12, 2022 at 9:04 am

    12. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale pedagogy for kindergarten children

    In many kindergartens, revised fairy tales are meanwhile used that in particular have been purged of their cruelty. However, this is by no means the case in all daycare centers. Also, some parents still read aloud the Grimm originals to their young children. There is a joke about this: >> Grandma says to Fritzchen: “Fritzchen, please turn off the detective story. You shouldn’t always watch such brutal stuff. Come on, I’ll tell you the fairy tale, where Hansel and Gretel burn the witch in the oven.”<< The cruelty in fairy tales is considered by some to be harmless, because the wolf, the witch and other dark figures are said to symbolize fears that young children cannot yet put into words. It is said that the little ones then find in the fairy tale an outlet to process these fears. On the one hand, the fairy tale characters are thus symbolically assigned to feelings. On the other hand, however, it is claimed of the fairy tale characters at the same time that they represent personality contents and are archetypically based on the collective unconscious. This is an irreconcilable contradiction.

    If you take, for example, the wolf in the fairy tale “The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids” or in “Little Red Riding Hood and the Bad Wolf” and the witch in “Hansel and Gretel“, both want to eat the children. In doing so, they pose a fear-inducing threat, but not the fear itself. The fear is felt by the victim, with whom the children identify. The children do not encounter their personified fear, for that would have to be represented as a being that is behaving fearfully. Instead, the children are afraid of a fearsome superior fairy tale figure.

    The evil in fairy tales is therefore not an aid to overcoming fear, but rather animates a threat in order to subsequently defeat it. This could nevertheless relieve from fear if for this purpose the threat is not first created, but revealed as already existing. But in doing so, there is a fundamental danger of not being able to assess, whether a child already carries a sense of threat within her or him, or whether the fear is first created. If there are several children, for example, in daycare centers, it can always be assumed that there are some children, for whom fear is initially generated by threatening fairy tale characters.

    Perceived threats can have different causes. If they are real everyday threats from superior persons, it would be wrong to confront them courageously. The protection of parents would then be important, and getting this protection should be conveyed in fairy tales. If, on the other hand, the threat is in the children’s imagination, they are guided by the fairy tales to first see the threat as “real” in order to then fight it. For the child’s emotional world, it would instead be much more relaxed and stable to reveal the threat as non-existent through fairy tales.

    If the fairy tale characters are personality contents due to their archetypal symbolism, certain inner personality parts are depicted as threatening. One of the arguments in favor of assigning symbolism to personality content is that people with the same favorite fairy tale often have similar characters. If personality parts are perceived as a threat, the more (original fairy tales) or less (softened fairy tale versions) cruel defeating of these parts means repression.

    However, for a competent, good life all the contents of consciousness are very important. The witch, as wise old woman, is the personal access to spirituality as female strength. The evil stepmother, as a good adult woman, provides social competence and the evil wolf, as a good adult man, takes over the healthy demarcation in the earthly. For the application of fairy tales in kindergarten it is important to know their hidden messages.[1]

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 13, 2022 at 7:44 am

    13. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in school lessons

    ”Fairy tale lessons are the highest form of teaching”[1], says the Waldorf education. However, it then immediately grasps the actual reason for the positive effect of fairy tales, ”The magic is not the fairy tales per se, but the emotional relationship … which the child enters into when listening to the fairy tale with the empathetic help of the storyteller or reader.” Accordingly, this emotional relationship can also ‒ and even better ‒ be established with pedagogically more valuable stories.

    Furthermore, it is emphasized as positive that fairy tales are a cultural asset. Through their images, fairy tales convey messages from the adults of a community, i.e. a culture into which the children grow. Fairy tales serve the transmission of important messages for the own life mastering and for the formation of relations. Therefore, fairy tales have an identity-building effect and strengthen the cohesion of a cultural community.

    The objection to this is that not only outdated values are passed on in this way, but also hidden messages of consciousness. These have developed collectively historically. The hidden messages of consciousness are intuitively grasped through the symbolic-pictorial fairy tale language, but are hidden from the rational mind. Therefore, it is all the more important to know the underlying actual fairy tale messages.[2]

    Within Waldorf education, however, there is also the view that Rudolf Steiner meant own invented stories by “fairy tales“, because he never mentioned the Grimm fairy tales. In that case, Waldorf education could not refer to its original self-understanding when it uses the Grimm fairy tales in its teaching.

    At state schools[3] in Germany, fairy tales are prescribed in the curriculum for German lessons and are additionally popular for projects, such as theater projects. In Berlin’s German classes, fairy tales are a compulsory part of the curriculum as literary texts for children in grades 1/2, i.e. for six to seven year olds. At this age, fairy tales are still linked to the children’s magical world view, so that they are intuitively and unconsciously taught norms and values that are criticized by many educators and parents.

    If fairy tales are used in German lessons of the upper level[4], the curriculum focuses on analyzing, interpreting, contextualizing, evaluating and understanding texts as well as on language use and language reflection. To this end, the fairy tales are examined in terms of literary history and social history, the gender perspective is investigated, and developmental and (depth) psychological interpretations are taken into account. If, in addition, the hidden messages of consciousness[5] in fairy tales are uncovered, fairy tales are a very valuable teaching content. Beyond the use of text and language, they provide valuable insights into one’s own and collective self-understanding.

    The problem in this case lies with the teachers. Teachers, who voluntarily choose fairy tales in the upper school to convey text and language use, are usually particularly fond of fairy tales. As a result, they may inwardly allow socially controversial topics triggered by the fairy tale contents, such as the gender discussion, but not fundamental criticism of the fairy tales because of their hidden messages. Due to the developmental and (depth) psychological interpretations, teachers could previously assume to be scientifically confirmed in their positive attitude towards the fairy tales.

    Due to the hidden messages of consciousness revealed in the fairy tales, teachers who love fairy tales get into an inner conflict. However, this problem can be solved by having teachers, who are critical of fairy tales, go through the topic in their classes in the upper school.

    [1} ”Warum Kinder Märchen brauchen“ (“Why children need fairy tales“) by Gerald Hüther, 2012.

    [2] ”Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (”What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [3] ”Rahmenlehrplan 1-10 kompakt, Themen und Inhalte des Berliner Unterrichts im Überblick“ (“Framework curriculum 1-10 compact, topics and contents of the Berlin lessons at a glance”) by the Senate Department of Education, Youth and Family.

    [4] ”Interpretationszugänge zu Grimms Märchen“, (“Interpretive Approaches to Grimm’s Fairy Tales“), German grades 11/12, by Teacher training Baden-Württemberg.

    [5] ”Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (”What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 14, 2022 at 9:59 am

    14. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale handling in school

    Just as among parents and educators, fairy tales are also controversial among teachers. In the sixties and seventies, fairy tales were even frowned upon in German school lessons; whereas nowadays they are once again part of the curriculum. Advocates[1] of the fairy tales believe that for teaching in the upper school, the confrontation with the value concepts in fairy tales can be helpful for finding own independent values.

    One pedagogical possibility is to include parodies of the fairy tales into the lessons. For example, it is recommended to contrast the Grimm fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel” with the anti-fairy tale by Paul Maar “The story of the bad Hansel, the bad Gretel and the witch”. In this anti-fairy tale, the witch is the good one, Hansel and Gretel are the bad ones, and the evil wins.

    At the end of the anti-fairy tale, two animals discuss the story from different perspectives and cannot agree on which is the right one. This questions a hasty judgment of good and evil. Such an approach is well suited to stimulate thoughts about one’s own values, because of the different points of view.

    However, this approach still remains with the obvious contents of the fairy tale. When the hidden messages[2] of the Grimm fairy tales are added, many other important starting points arise. In particular, the fairy tale messages subtly conveyed past the mind, can be used to uncover, how value concepts are unconsciously influenced. In addition, it can be found out, which inner personality parts represent which value concepts.

    Moreover, it is important, too, to look at why there is a juxtaposition of good and evil in the archetypal symbolism of the unconscious in the first place. Which inner personality parts are depicted as good and which as evil in the fairy tale and why? Additionally, the hidden message of the personal favorite fairy tale says a lot about one’s own unconscious. This unconscious is the actual basis for the value concepts.

    For elementary school, once again, the fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel” is recommended, for example, didactically-methodically for science lessons. The use of the fairy tale refers to the fact that Hansel and Gretel get lost in the forest and have to find their way independently in nature. For this, questions can be asked, for example, about different plants and their edibility.

    An objection to this approach is that the part of the fairy tale, where Hansel and Gretel find themselves alone in the forest, is particularly fearful for children. But it has been proven that being afraid is not conducive to learning. In addition, children are subtly taught to assume that they will be left alone, so it is important to learn to survive on their own.

    In contrast, a forest with its treasures that can be discovered with curiosity, leads to a more positive attitude towards life. Curiosity is natural to children, so they don’t need to be pedagogically motivated by “Hansel and Gretel”. Moreover, it supports the children´s connection to nature when they experience the forest as a peaceful place rather than a fearful one.

    [1] Dr. Oliver Geister, lecturer at the University of Münster and high school teacher in “Erziehungswissenschaftler: Märchen bereichern die Eltern-Kind-Beziehung sehr“ (“Educators: Fairy tales greatly enrich the parent-child relationship“) by Waltraud Messmann, 2012.

    [2] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 15, 2022 at 7:55 am

    15. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale psychology

    The Encyclopedia of Psychology[1] defines fairy tales as psychologically interesting prose narratives. The reason is that fairy tales are a projection screen of human fears and desires, and everyone develops important structures of her or his childhood identity through fairy tales. For most children and adults, there is a favorite fairy tale and there are favorite fairy tale characters, who offer important experiences in coded form. Fairy tales can be used in many ways, for example, in poetry therapy groups, in psychodramas, in analytical psychotherapy and in play therapy.

    Psychology in itself can be defined as the science of human experience and behavior. Depth psychology deals specifically with the unconscious processes in humans, which are considered important for the analysis and explanation of experience and behavior. Likewise, fairy tales have always dealt with central questions and difficulties of human life. Fairy tales want to give answers to concrete questions of life. In this respect, it is only natural that fairy tales play a multifaceted role in psychology on the one hand and are interpreted psychologically on the other.

    One problem of the psychological and psychoanalytical interpretation of fairy tales is that rarely two interpretations of a fairy tale coincide. Fairy tales offer different possibilities of association for each person. This is taken for granted, so that the fairy tale statements are seen as personal interpretations. Even if the fairy tales themselves address basic life questions that are important for all people, the psychological and psychoanalytical fairy tale explanations only mean suggestions for a personal interpretation possibility.

    People are so diverse that everyone actually always has a quite individual personal relationship to fairy tales. At the same time, however, fairy tales appeal to the collective unconscious through their archetypal symbolism. This is identically structured for all people. The archetypal symbols are like a map which, from the collective unconscious, gives people a guide to life.

    This life instruction has its collective origin much deeper in consciousness than the more superficial psychological and psychoanalytical fairy tale interpretations can grasp. Therefore, there are different psychological and psychoanalytical fairy tale interpretations, but only one underlying life instruction. That is, all fairy tales with collective consciousness message convey only one life instruction each.

    Which single life guidance the Grimm fairy tales convey in each case, is uncovered in “Which message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”[2] These hidden fairy tale messages, which are neither accessible to the mind nor to psychological and psychoanalytical fairy tale interpretation, are which unconsciously influence people. The vast majority of these fairy tale messages are neither suitable for children nor for psychotherapies.

    [1] “Lexikon der Psychologie, Märchen“ (“Lexicon of Psychology, Fairy Tales“) with bibliography: “Psychologische Märchenanalyse“ (“Psychological Fairy Tale Analysis“) by W. Salber (1987); on favorite fairy tales also Hans Dieckmann and Verena Bertignoll.

    [2] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 16, 2022 at 8:02 am

    16. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale psychology collective unconscious

    Gustav Jung[1] differentiated the unconscious into a personal unconscious and a collective unconscious. The latter, he explained, had developed as human history through evolution and was shaped by various experiences. These experiences are passed on, among other ways, through fairy tales. Across different epochs, cultures and languages, the psychological patterns of fairy tales show recurring basic motifs, so-called archetypes. The collective unconscious is therefore supra-individual and independent of culture. It is the unconscious psychic basic structure of the human being.

    Other scientists[2] discovered the unconscious collective structures as well. The cross-cultural narrative principle of the “hero’s journey“ can be traced back to Campbell. Durkheim calls the unconscious collective structures “collective-consciousness“. Halbwachs developed the theory of “collective memory“. The collective unconscious is the mental heritage of human history, passed on through fairy tales, among other ways.

    According to Jung[3], the fairy tale heroines or heroes are to be understood as archetypal figures. Fairy tales are like a model for personal consciousness. Jung assigned the fairy tale contents to the soul aspect. From them arises the right ego attitude demanded by the psychic wholeness. The heroic figures and the course of the fairy tale plot correct the consciousness. The initial distress or deficiency situation is remedied at the end of the fairy tale. Jung assumes that the conclusion of the fairy tale usually has a more holistic structure than the beginning. That is, the consciousness is now more correctly oriented towards psychic wholeness. Fairy tales compensate the individual as well as the collective consciousness. This was shaped in the European cultural area predominantly by Christianity.

    According to Jung, each fairy tale is a relatively closed system in itself, each with an essential psychological meaning. At the same time, however, in his view, the fairy tales additionally circumscribe a soul self. This is both, the soul wholeness of an individual as well as the regulating center of the collective unconscious.

    In fact, the individual consciousness as well as the collective unconscious contain both, soul wholeness and an ego attitude, which can be further differentiated. In concrete, the individual and the collective unconscious consist of building blocks of consciousness that are guided by the fairy tales to new alignment. These instructions are the messages that the fairy tales convey.[4]

    The fairy tale messages describe the evolution of human history. This has developed from the soul wholeness, in the European cultural area over Christianity, to the scientific rationality. Collectively, the soul relatedness was replaced by an ego that is separated from its origin. Accordingly, fairy tales are an individual and collective guide, how to lose one’s soul.

    The struggle for social orientation in the collective consciousness can be traced very well historically on the basis of the fairy tales. Thus, there are early fairy tales (Little Red Riding Hood), later fairy tales with conflict between Christianity and rationality (The Tailor in Heaven) or soul and ego (Snow White), and very late fairy tales that are in the inner state of lack of the completely detached ego (Hansel and Gretel).

    Jung recognized the basic archetypal meaning of fairy tales as well as the connection between the individual ego attitude and the collective unconscious. However, the differentiated building blocks of consciousness with their qualities and relationships among each other were not known to him. Therefore, he summarized them as an unconscious. In this unconscious, he assumed the soul as correcting influence on the ego attitude.

    In fact, however, the collective unconscious has developed in exactly the opposite way; freeing itself from this corrective influence of the soul. That is, most fairy tales are a correction towards the wrong ego attitude. The ego has taken over the power in consciousness and maintains it through the fairy tales. Therefore, most fairy tales with their archetypal messages of consciousness[5] are harmful for personality development and as instructions for life.

    [1] “Psychologische Typen“ (“Psychological Types“) by Carl Gustav Jung, in “Gesammelte Werke“ (“Collected Works”), vol. 6, 1995, as sourced from Wikipedia and Anthro-Wiki on “Kollektives Unbewusstes“ (“Collective Unconscious“), 10/2022.

    [2] Wikipedia on “Kollektives Unbewusstes“ (“Collective Unconscious“), 10/2022.

    [3] Wikipedia on “Marie-Louise von Franz“, 10/2022.

    [4] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [5] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 17, 2022 at 8:05 am

    17. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale psychology id, ego and superego

    A basic assumption of all depth psychological theories is that in addition to what people are conscious of, there is also “the unconscious”. According to Sigmund Freud, this unconscious is a collection of forgotten and repressed contents. Later he adds an archaic inheritance.

    Freud assumes an “id” as libidinal, a “superego” as regulating instance and an “ego” as mediator between libidinal and regulating instance. The id corresponds to the unconscious. The unconscious libidinal is stronger than the conscious actions. The superego contains, among other things, the commandments and prohibitions of the parents and the distinction between good and evil. The ego rationally assembles the id and the superego into the personal world view. Repressed contents from the superego end up in the id. Together with these stored experiences, the id is the actual driving force in people.

    For Freud, libidinal is also at the forefront of his division of human development into six phases: narcissistic, oral, anal, oedipal, latency and puberty. Freud relates each of these phases to physical development with its respective libidinal, especially the sexual drive.

    According to Freud, fairy tales contain people’s libidinal desires, so that through fairy tale interpretations the irrational can be rationally grasped. Just as psychoanalysis uses dream interpretations to uncover and solve human problems, it also tries to discover the solutions to problems in fairy tales and use the fairy tale messages to help.

    The difference between dream analysis and fairy tales, however, is that dreams rise from within a person, are interpreted with a very personal reference, and thus can lead to individual solutions. With fairy tales it is exactly the opposite.

    The fairy tales provide images and solutions from the outside. As projection surfaces, the fairy tales have to do with one’s own issues, but then provide a collective solution, to which one is supposed to adapt. That is, the id of the individual person ties in with the id in the fairy tale and is given the solution from the collective heritage of humanity. Thus, the previous development of mankind becomes the standard. The fairy tales, as social superego, pass on the life instructions to the id as to how the id should behave.

    According to Freud, this guide to life is reduced to human libidinal already from infantile development on. He finds this libidinal in the fairy tales, too. In fact, there has been a reduction of the collective consciousness, because mankind has developed from its originally existing soul access to the separated ego-consciousness. This reduction in consciousness is passed on by the fairy tales from generation to generation.

    Freud himself was affected by this reduction in consciousness when he reduced people to a collective heritage, their libidinal, strict parental and social superego, and a rational ego. He viewed religion as the unconscious’s need for wish fulfillment. Unlike Jung, he did not include soulfulness in the unconscious. Therefore, his already fully reduced consciousness tried to analyze fairy tales, which through their messages convey the process of consciousness reduction. From the consciousness-reduced result, it was not possible for Freud, with his view focused on libidinal, to interpret fairy tales. The fairy tale interpretations based on Freud’s psychoanalysis are inaccurate.

    But Freud’s value for fairy tale interpretations continues in having drawn attention to the fact that fairy tales contain hidden messages of the unconscious. He himself could not recognize these, only because his perception of the unconscious was too reduced. If one knows the differentiated contents of the complete consciousness, most fairy tales convey clear messages of consciousness[1] independent of interpretation. These show, how the collective consciousness has developed from the soul-consciousness to the reduced ego-consciousness. From this reduced ego-consciousness the original reduction messages were then not even recognized anymore.

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 18, 2022 at 7:54 am

    18. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale therapy as a guide to solutions

    Fairy tale therapy is used with both children and adults to access the inner self. The goal of fairy tale therapy is to uncover inner processes and develop new solution patterns.

    Fairy tales tell of problems that are part of people’s normal lives. Therefore, the fairy tale contents can be related to one’s own life situation. In the identification with a fairy tale heroine or hero, the courage can be found to deal with one’s own problems.[1] The similar situation invites projection and at the same time there is enough distance to the fairy tale character to not feel at the mercy of one’s own emotions. Also, socially undesirable feelings can be more readily admitted through the distance of fairy tales.

    Typically, at the beginning of fairy tales, the heroine or hero faces a very difficult to seemingly unsolvable task. The fairy tale then describes, how the heroine or hero goes through the fears and dangers. The fairy tale message encourages to face the fear, because in the end it is rewarded. In this way, fairy tales give hope and the courage to engage in inner changes. The direction in which these changes should go, is conveyed through the archetypal symbols in fairy tales and the seemingly good ending. Fairy tales thus fulfill the dual function of self-knowledge and the recommendation of healing.

    The choice of the favorite fairy tale and the projective identification with the fairy tale character lead to self-knowledge. The favorite fairy tale and the projective identification are indicative for the consciousness of the patient. Anyway, the hidden fairy tale messages[2] in no way provide a recommendation for healing. Rather, most fairy tales convey instead the instruction to detach oneself from the spiritual and to become a reduced ego-consciousness. In this respect, hidden fairy tale messages[3] seen through, do exactly the other way round lead to the realization of which destructive social influences the souls are subject to.

    Accordingly, the approach of fairy tale therapies to use the fairy tales as such for healing, is to be adapted. The vast majority of fairy tales do not serve healing. Instead, exactly the opposite, the uncovering of their harmful effect means healing. Therefore, fairy tales may have some value in revealing the cause of mental disorders. For this, however, the rational analytical ability must be more developed than the influence of the archetypal symbolism. Only then can the revealing understanding correct the intuitively conveyed fairy tale messages and stimulate more beneficial solutions.

    Accordingly, fairy tale therapy is not suitable for children at all and for adults only with sufficient cognitive strength. Nevertheless, even cognizant adults are influenced by the archetypal symbolism at the same time. Moreover, since there are better methods to work with inner images (e.g. dream interpretation, active imagination, art therapy and other creative self-expression), fairy tale therapy is to be discouraged altogether.

    [1] ”Märchen als Therapie“ (”Fairy Tales as Therapy”) by Verena Kast, 1993.

    [2] ”Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (”What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [3] ”Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (”What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 19, 2022 at 6:49 am

    19. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale therapy and the meaning of life

    Fairy tale therapy is for healing. But when is a person healed? The goal can be to restore primarily the ability to function in everyday life, or the focus can be on self-discovery and the meaning of life. This, in turn, can be brought in through religious and esoteric worldviews.

    The esoteric fairy tale therapy[1] assumes that life has an origin, a meaning and a goal. It starts from the difficulties and problems, but only to reach the highest goal of life from there. For this purpose, esoteric fairy tale therapy uses seven primordial images, which it traces back to a primordial fairy tale “The Golden Ball“. This original fairy tale does not belong to the Grimm’s fairy tale collection, but is written in a very tender, loving and positive way. It conveys as goal a harmonious state, which is firmly anchored in the heart. The esoteric fairy tale therapy proceeds soul-energetically gently with relaxation exercises, picture journeys, fairy tale and light meditations, chakra cleansings, clarifying conversations and creative working up.

    This gentle approach is good for the soul, because it corresponds to its loving tenderness. The shortcoming of the esoteric fairy tale therapy is the underlying structure of consciousness, on which this soul-tender approach is built. Fairy tale characters are archetypal symbols that have a meaning anchored in consciousness. For example, the king signifies the highest ego instance. This is equated with the divine origin in the primordial fairy tale. The entire fairy tale plot subsequently remains within this given earthly framework. Finally, the earthly royal castle becomes the love connection of the heart. That is, the ego of man is twisted into the source of love for the soul. In this respect, the healing procedure conveys a harmful message of consciousness.

    According to the religious fairy tale therapy[2], fairy tales contain biblical messages. An advantage of fairy tales, they say, is that fairy tales play in the soul and insist that people can become happy only through love. Fairy tales are said to describe overcoming fear through trust. On this basis, in religious fairy tale therapy, through the fairy tales, religion becomes the foundation. Religious fairy tale therapy teaches the trust that this world opens a perspective into another world.

    Fairy tales reflect the cultural world views of human history. Since these were shaped in the European area by Christianity, some fairy tales contain Christian messages. In later fairy tales, however, these Christian fairy tale messages were then replaced by the rationality of ego-consciousness.[3] In the Grimm fairy tales, the soul and love almost never refer to the universal origin in the consciousness of transcendent human beings. Instead, the soul and love are aligned to the Christian church or to the ego. Thus, the fairy tale messages convey a worldview that contradicts the healthy transcendent completeness of consciousness.

    The esoteric fairy tale therapy gives delicate assistance to the soul, how it should orient itself to the ego. The religious fairy tale therapy passes on Christian beliefs. Both of them remain related to the ego in the individual consciousness. Therefore, they include the meaning of life in fairy tale therapy, but without supporting healing in the sense of holistic consciousness.

    [1] “Die Heilkraft der 7 Urbilder des Märchens“ (“The Healing Power of the 7 Primal Images of the Fairy Tale“) by Jean Ringenwald, 2012.

    [2] “Drewermann: Märchen greifen den Kern der Botschaft Jesu auf“ (“Drewermann: Fairy tales get to the heart of Jesus’ message“) by Pro, 2018.

    [3] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 20, 2022 at 8:24 am

    20. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales for dementia

    According to a study by the German Federal Ministry of Family Affairs[1], fairy tales have a positive effect, both on the mental well-being of dementia patients and on the caregivers. Fairy tales provide access to dementia patients and thus increase their quality of life. In particular, challenging behaviors of dementia patients are alleviated, which relieves the caregivers. The fairy tale campaign is part of the national dementia strategy, in which several German states are participating.

    Fairy tales are among the particularly deep and lasting impressions, with which the earliest childhood memories are linked. They activate long-term memory. At the same time, fairy tales appeal emotionally, so that dementia patients can be well reached by fairy tales. With declining cognitive abilities, sensory activation takes place, because fairy tales are anchored in people´s subconscious. In addition, fairy tales have been passed down unchanged for generations, so most people know them and a unifying social influence is added. It has been observed that through fairy tales positive changes are possible after a very short time.

    These positive changes are judged by the relief they provide to caregivers, and the accessibility of dementia patients in terms of their everyday environment. But, is this really what is best for the dementia patients themselves? The quality of life of dementia patients is increasingly so massively reduced that the nursing home is only concerned with gaining access to them at all through fairy tales. This has so little to do with quality of life that the question must be asked, whether this kind of “quality of life” can be the goal for these people at all.

    People with dementia continuously decline and approach death. That´s when the soul comes to the fore. Instead of still holding on to the old, already largely destroyed personality structures through fairy tales, it is a matter of letting go and inwardly preparing the transition to the afterlife. Fairy tales, however, convey completely opposite messages.

    The hidden fairy tale messages[2] relate the soul to the ego consciousness. Thus, fairy tales promote clinging to life, instead of supporting the soul in its departure from life. Many fairy tales contain so-called “hero´s journeys”, which refer to the change of the earthly life competence. Therefore, fairy tales are instructions for life in the earthly, but not for the transcendent transition of death. Even the fairy tales that include death, want to explain how to deal with death, and not to make death easier for the soul.

    [1] “Es war einmal … MÄRCHEN UND DEMENZ“ (“Once upon a time … FAIRY TALES AND DEMENTIA“) commissioned by the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth.

    [2] „Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?“) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 21, 2022 at 8:04 am

    21. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales from ancient customs to future

    Today, we celebrate the solar festival of the winter solstice. The winter solstice is the longest night of the year and at the same time the beginning of the twelve Rauhnächte. In pagan history, this festival referred to the Great Goddess and the God of the Sun. The “mother night” gives birth to a new sun. The winter solstice was celebrated with customs, especially by the Celts and northern Germans.

    This custom included, among other things, the fairy tale of Mrs. Holle. Until the pagan mission, Mrs. Holle was very revered among the people, under the name Frigg, as the Great Mother and important goddess of Norse mythology. She had a close relationship with the human women, so that they laid the table with milk, doughnuts, oat dishes and fish for the goddess at the winter solstice.[1]

    The telling and reading aloud of fairy tales was part of the custom, too.[2] Today, there is special education on fairy tales, for example, by a “Fairy Tale Academy”[3]. The Fairy Tale Academy sees itself as a transmedial and integrative educational project that produces future fairy tale experts. To this end, the Fairy Tale Academy starts with the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm and builds on this with a comprehensive, continuative concept.

    Picking up the old and leading to the new is a proven approach. The Fairy Tale Academy applies this both in terms of content and didactics, so that the training appears scientifically modern and makes a professional impression. But, precisely therein lies the all the greater problem of concealment. The basis of the Grimm fairy tales is regarded from the outset as pedagogically valuable and is no longer questioned. Instead, everything else is built on the Grimm fairy tales as a matter of course. On this harmful Grimm fairy tale basis, the Fairy Tale Academy would like to make a long-term contribution to a systemic change of the school.

    However, the old Grimm fairy tales cannot make a positive contribution to the future, because most of them contain hidden harmful messages of consciousness. The Grimm fairy tale texts have only the one ‒ though very positive ‒ value of being able to serve the historical uncovering of harmful influences on the collective development of consciousness.

    [1] “Wintersonnenwende: Die Wiedergeburt des Lichtes“ (“Winter Solstice: The Rebirth of Light“) by Alexa Szeli, 2016.

    [2] “Rauhnächte, Märchen, Brauchtum, Aberglaube“ (“Rauhnächte, fairy tales, customs, superstitions”) by Sigrid Früh, 1998.

    [3] Die “Märchenakademie“ (“Fairy Tale Academy”) is a cooperative project of Prof. Dr. Julia Knopf, Chair of Teaching German at the Primary Level at Saarland University, and Dr. Martin Beyer, Corporate Story & Creative Writing.

  • December 22, 2022 at 8:20 am

    22. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale storytellers

    Storyteller is an ancient profession. It brings stories to life, so that something like this doesn’t happen: The father reads aloud fairy tales at the bedside, so that the son should fall asleep. Half an hour later, the mother quietly opens the door and asks, “Has he finally fallen asleep?” Replies the son, “Yes, finally …”

    Fairy tale telling is meanwhile considered an intangible cultural heritage. The European Fairy Tale Society trains fairy tale tellers and then recommends them in their guild. Fairy tale telling can be learned as a main profession, for part-time work, as a small artist or as a hobby. Fairy tale tellers are engaged in many ways: in kindergartens and schools, hospitals, homes for disabled and elderly, libraries, church institutions, at booked group events and cultural initiatives, at birthday parties, weddings, anniversaries, company and corporate parties …

    There is no regulated training for storytelling, but all the more training offers. Despite all the differences, they usually have the basic approach of introspection in common. Thus it is a matter of discovering oneself in the mirror of the fairy tale and thereby bringing the fairy tale to life. The telling of fairy tales is considered to be an ongoing process that draws from the inner self. In order to be able to tell fairy tales freely and pictorially in poetic language from the heart, the fairy tales should first be explored and internalized.

    A further content of the fairy tale teller trainings is regularly, to convey the value of the fairy tales as cultural, educational, therapeutic and mental-spiritual aids. The depth-psychological background of the fairy tales is interpreted and their life wisdoms are looked at. To this end, the fairy tales are seen, among other things, as a guide to the management of the human will. It is said of the fairy tales that they show a way to conscious self-rule over the “I”.

    Some training courses in fairy tale telling are also aimed at public institutions and companies in the private sector, which are concerned in the broadest sense with personal development and thus with personality development. The interpretation of fairy tale characters with regard to personality traits is touted as a modern method of management. Training as a fairy tale teller is recommended in order to provide employees with optimal personality development.

    The essential contents of the fairy tale tellers training courses are thus the own fairy tale internalization, the interpretation of the fairy tales and their effect on other humans. The latter contains beyond the pure entertainment also the purposeful personality development of others. That is, the fairy tales are applied with their archetypal symbolism on oneself and on other humans as consciousness instructions. In particular, the fairy tale tellers themselves thereby expose themselves very intensively to the harmful hidden consciousness messages[1] of the fairy tales.

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 23, 2022 at 8:30 am

    23. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale readers

    Fairy tale readers are to be distinguished from fairy tale tellers as an independent form of language art. While fairy tale tellers can more easily establish contact with the audience, fairy tale readers have the advantage of being able to offer more complex texts.

    Even elementary school pupils practice reading fairy tales aloud. For example, in 2010, a reading aloud competition “European Fairy Tales” was organized by the EU information office Europe Direct East Saxony.[1] For adults, there are required reading speed, voice volume and coloration, articulation, tempo and breathing. Also the inclusion of the listeners, for example the questions of children, wants to be learned.

    Training in reading aloud fairy tales is available primarily for the nursing and care staff of dementia patients. Throughout Germany, read aloud training courses financed by the nursing care insurance fund are offered for the nursing and care staff of facilities for the elderly. Nursing and care staff can be trained to become professional fairy tale readers. In particular, loud and clear speaking, sufficient reading pauses and a low reading speed are important for dementia patients. This staff training lasts 16 hours, is 100% financed by the nursing care insurance funds, is recognized as continuing education, and participants receive a certificate.[2]

    A university certificate is also possible through the dementia telling training. This training is offered by the Alice-Salomon-University in Berlin, as the largest state SAGE-University (Social Work, Health and Education) in Germany. The training or continuing education is aimed at, among others, nursing staff and storytellers. This is not reading aloud, but telling, however, it is offered in Corona times as digital fairy tale lesson.[3]

    Fairy tale reading is used to achieve certain goals. For example, reading aloud competitions are intended to promote reading skills in children. This does not require fairy tales with hidden messages of consciousness, but this goal can be better achieved with other children’s literature. Fairy tales are not only cruel, convey outdated role models and were originally intended for adults, but above all orient the unconscious in a developmentally harmful direction through their archetypal images.

    In the case of dementia patients, the effect is based on the fairy tales as such. Nevertheless, it is not a positive effect when the hidden fairy tale messages are to cling to life, instead of preparing mentally for death. The archetypal symbolism of fairy tales guides the soul to subordinate itself to the ego in the earthly. Especially towards the end of life, however, it is particularly important to have good access to the soul. The soul causes the peaceful gliding over into death.

    Because of their hidden messages of consciousness, fairy tales are harmful for children as well as for nursing and care staff and also for dementia patients.

    [1] “Beste Märchenvorleser werden prämiert“ (“Best fairy tale readers are awarded”) by Bild (popular German magazine), 2010.

    [2] “Es war einmal … Märchen und Demenz, Präventionsmaßnahme für Pflegeeinrichtungen“ (“Once upon a time … fairy tales and dementia, prevention measure for care facilities”) by Märchenland, Center for Prevention and Health Promotion, as of 11/2022.

    [3] „Digitale Märchenstunde gegen Demenz – Angebot für Pflegeeinrichtungen“ (“Digital fairy tale hour against dementia – offer for care facilities”) by Caritas (social aid organization in Germany) as an experience with the Märchenland project.

  • December 24, 2022 at 8:22 am

    24. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale origin

    Today, on Christmas Eve, Christian countries look back a little more than 2000 years to the birth of Jesus. The Christmas story is a beloved tradition for many people. However, fairy-tale motifs and themes as customs go back much further in human history, to far pre-Christian times. From then until today, fairy tales have shaped and continue to shape society.

    As for the time of emergence and the origin of fairy tales, there are various theories. Among the most important theories are the “Indo-European theory” of the Grimm brothers, the “Indian theory”, the “Anthropological school” and the “Finnish school”. The latter refers to the function of fairy tales in the community, while the anthropological school relates fairy tales to the customs, habits of thought and dream experiences of primitive peoples. The Indo-European theory states that the same fairy-tale motifs may occur independently among different peoples, but that some fairy tales are so combined that a migration must be assumed. The Indian theory continues this migration thesis to the extent that many fairy tales are said to have originated in India and to have come to Europe from there. The only consensus is that the fairy tale motifs are much older than the fairy tales in which they appear.[1]

    In the European fairy tale tradition, Europe’s economic relations with the Orient played a major role. In the Middle Ages, Indian fairy tales were spread from India to Western Europe by seafarers and translated into European languages. Many linguists assume that India is the place of origin of the fairy tales. A well-known representative of this theory is, for example, the German orientalist and linguist Theodor Benfey. His basic assumption was that Buddhist literature in India was the place of origin of almost all fairy tales and that these later reached the West in written form in the Middle Ages.[2]

    Fairy tales were retold from generation to generation. Until well into the 18th century, fairy tales were a common form of evening entertainment for adults, especially in rural areas. It was only later that they were written down, made famous worldwide by the Grimm brothers. Their book “Kinder- und Hausmärchen” (“Children’s and Household Tales”), published in 1812, was initially intended as a scientific work. It was not until the second edition, three years later, that the Grimm brothers changed their objective to an educational book for children.

    Towards the end of the 19th century, during the Wilhelmine era, fairy tales became an integral part of schoolbooks and education. In the Third Reich, fairy tales were then ideologically abused, for example, when the sleeping princess was awakened by a prince in SA uniform with the Hitler salute. After the end of the Third Reich, the fairy tales were therefore banned from schools as “brown” ideas. Particularly because of their depiction of violence, fairy tales came under pedagogical criticism, but later were finally rehabilitated by science. Even today, Bruno Bettelheim’s psychoanalytical perspective in his book “Kinder brauchen Märchen” (“Children Need Fairy Tales”) is invoked to justify fairy tales for children.

    The origin and the history of the fairy tales with their various social influences are of importance if one tries to interpret the fairy tales with a focus on psychological-social aspects. In order to better understand the wisdom teachings of the fairy tales, it is helpful to include world views of that time as well as religious influences. However, all this loses meaning if one knows the underlying messages of consciousness.

    The archetypal symbolism of fairy tales appeals worldwide across all differences, because it springs from the very essence of being human. The very own, individual and collective core of human beings expresses itself in and through fairy tales and is intuitively understood worldwide. That is why the earliest records of fairy-tale themes and motifs can be found in the ancient world more than 5,000 years ago. How this human essence has developed evolutionarily from then until today can be traced through fairy tales. Below the rationally accessible and historically comprehensible are the hidden messages of consciousness, which make the human evolution from its origins until today traceable.

    [1] “Märchen: Theorie, Didaktik und Lernziele im Fremdsprachenunterricht“ (“Fairy Tales: Theory, Didactics and Learning Objectives in Foreign Language Teaching”) by Joanna Rurainski, 2001.

    [2] “Märchen“ (“Fairy Tales”) by StudySmarter and Wikipedia on “Theodor Benfey” as of 11/2022.

  • December 27, 2022 at 6:26 am

    25. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales in science and research

    In science and research fairy tales are studied from different approaches. Comparative fairy tale research divides fairy tales into categories according to their essential narrative content, for example, animal fairy tales, magic fairy tales, religious fairy tales etc. Structural analysis examines the composition of fairy tales. These two approaches focus on the nature and sequence of typical fairy tale content. Based on the narrative structures of fairy tales and language comparisons, an attempt is made to assign the fairy tales to different epochs.

    The age of the fairy tales can also be determined by putting the fairy tales in an order of their development of consciousness. An example of this is the “fairy tale history“. The contents of the fairy tales correspond to collective constellations of consciousness, which build on each other.[1] Accordingly, the fairy tales are very interesting for other disciplines, too, especially for anthropology, historical sciences, philosophy, psychology and for consciousness research.

    Another approach deals with the moral function of fairy tales. It was found, for example, that fairy tales make no statement about the motive of an action. Instead, moral satisfaction is achieved by changing a situation that is perceived as unjust in a way that it then corresponds to the sense of justice. Good triumphs over evil and evil is punished.

    The assignment of fairy tale contents to good and evil gives important information about the collective consciousness, because many fairy tales convey the handling of consciousness contents. The fairy tales describe, what the people of that time perceived as good and evil, based on their constellation of consciousness; and how they dealt with it. This gives rise to questions such as the origin of morality and ethics in consciousness.

    Other approaches to fairy tale research come from other disciplines, such as anthropology, history, and psychology. A central thesis is that in fairy tales archetypal contents of the collective unconscious are represented. Fairy tales are meant to provide psychological orientation in symbolic form. In addition, fairy tales are often meant to collectively compensate for the one-sidedness of prevailing values. That is, from the collective unconscious, fairy tales attempt to orient the human community and compensate for its deficits.

    This important social orientation and balancing function of fairy tales is based on a collective unconscious, which, as the term suggests, is unconscious. Therefore, it is the task of fairy tale research to investigate the collective unconscious in fairy tales in order to gain important information about the past and for the future of people from it. Since the collective unconscious is meanwhile known, as well as which (unconscious) messages of consciousness the Grimm fairy tales convey[2], research can be done on this basis.

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

    [2] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 28, 2022 at 8:30 am

    26. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale research in relation to children

    Fairy tale research in relation to children[1] decided the discussion about the educational value of fairy tales to the effect that fairy tales are developmentally beneficial. In “Children Need Fairy Tales”, Bruno Bettelheim demonstrates from a psychoanalytic perspective that fairy tales benefit children. The German-speaking science supports Bettelheim’s plea for fairy tales in child education.

    Fairy tales are a help in life for children, because they correspond to the child’s perception through their symbolic-pictorial form. The children´s own inner images are stimulated. Fairy tales make inner processes understandable and express the truth of fantasy. Fairy tales offer projection aids, so that fears and inner conflicts can be better managed. This relieves children of their own unpleasant feelings.

    It is important to know, which inner conflict resolution strategies are offered by the fairy tales and which procedures for dealing with feelings are conveyed. For this, the construction of human consciousness is fundamental, so that the developmental effect of the fairy tales can be judged on this basis. The respective message of the individual fairy tales is explained in “Which message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”[2]

    Fairy tales promote a sense of language and memory. Early storytelling and reading aloud supports later reading skills and the handling of texts.

    In addition, fairy tales offer role models from which to learn. A heroine or a hero encourage one´s own inner development. Values are conveyed and prosocial characteristics that are ingrained in children are reinforced. Fairy tales strengthen the feeling of cultural cohesion and create an awareness of common values and norms.

    These values and norms continue to overall-socially evolve. The collective consciousness of the human community has changed over time. Accordingly, fairy tales can be historically assigned to different periods of origin. For example, the fairy tale “Little Red Riding Hood” originated early in the history of fairy tales, while “Snow White” can be assigned to later times, and “Hansel and Gretel” belongs to the last Grimm folk tales. In this respect, the task of fairy tale research with regard to children is to examine the social values that are passed on through the individual fairy tales.

    Children recognize their own experiences, events and feelings in fairy tales. Many fairy tales take the family as their starting point. In it, hostility, poverty and parental anger prevail. Children learn that they can be successful themselves, even without their parents, who are not perfect and all-powerful.

    Since the Grimm folktales were not originally written for children, but only later adapted for children, they do not relate to children’s developmental situations. Rather, the fairy tales describe the adult world view to which children feel exposed.

    Fairy tales convey the inner family of adults, into which children grow socially. That is, the fairy tales teach children to adapt, as best as they can, to the culturally prevailing adult consciousness at any given time. As this has evolved, it is the task of fairy tale research, to examine the consciousness messages of fairy tales in terms of current social norms and values. It is not child development that is to be found in the fairy tales, but the worldview of how children are socially shaped.

    [1] “Bruno Bettelheim: Kinder brauchen Märchen“ (“Bruno Bettelheim: Children need fairy tales”) by Heike vom Orde, 2012; “Was Märchen zur psychischen Gesundheit von Kindern und Jugendlichen beitragen“ (“What fairy tales contribute to the mental health of children and adolescents”) by Johannes Wilkes, 2016; “Aschenputtel – wo liegen die Chancen der Märchen für Kinder?“ (“Cinderella – where are the opportunities of fairy tales for children?”) by Jürgen Barthelmes, 2016.

    [2] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 29, 2022 at 7:09 am

    27. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Values, norms and awareness of fairy tales

    Fairy tales have a great influence on society and already start with children. According to fairy tale research, fairy tales promote child development, because children are specifically addressed by the style of fairy tales. However, since fairy tales were originally told and written down for adults, only the symbolic-pictorial form matches, but not the content. Fairy tales convey values and norms that were originally addressed to adults in a way that appeals to children. That is, fairy tales shape children in terms of adult social values and norms.

    Societal values and norms derive from the collective consciousness. This, in turn, is based on the collective unconscious. Fairy tales pass on the collective unconscious in symbolic form and thereby provide orientation. From generation to generation, life instructions are thus transmitted, the content of which people are not aware of; that is, without people knowing about the influence on their consciousness. This makes it all the more important to know the fairy tale messages. The book “What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”[1] gives the answer.

    Fairy tales as such are valuable for conveying messages of consciousness. The decisive factor for whether fairy tales have a positive effect is, which consciousness messages they pass on in concrete terms. Can fairy tales be developmentally supporting and healing when they cruelly punish an “evil” part of one’s own personality? Fairy tales are a mirror of one’s own awareness as well as of the collective consciousness and thus contain the chance to become more conscious.

    [1] “Welche Botschaft vermitteln die grimmschen Märchen?“ (“What message do the Grimm fairy tales convey?”) by Ayleen Lyschamaya, 2022.

  • December 30, 2022 at 7:34 am

    28. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tales recommendation discussed

    German-language fairy tale research[1] recommends fairy tales for children. In particular, it refers to Bruno Bettelheim’s book “Kinder brauchen Märchen” (“Children need fairy tales”). According to Bruno Bettelheim, fairy tales produce neither aggression nor fear, but help to cope with these feelings. The cruel stories are supposed to be a life help for children, because they address difficulties of growing up. From Bruno Bettelheim’s psychoanalytical point of view, many fairy tales deal with oral and oedipal conflicts, with violent and phallic fantasies, with fear of sexuality or castration, with humiliation, self-destruction and with separation anxiety.

    As fairy tales were originally told and written down for adults, they convey first of all themes that concern adults. The psychoanalytical view assumes that these contents at the same time reflect the natural difficulties of growing up. Opposing this, children are confronted with these themes from the outside (family, society), for example through fairy tales, and react with corresponding inner difficulties. However, to what extent the difficulties of growing up come from inside or from outside, can be left open, because in both cases the solution offered by the fairy tales is ultimately decisive.

    For children as well as for adults, fairy tales offer the solution “good versus evil and good wins”. These are “good” and “evil” inner personality parts. If inner personality parts are “evil”, this can be translated as “hurt”. Injured in fairy tales are regularly the stepmother and the witch, i.e. the feminine. An evil stepfather, on the other hand, does not appear in one single Grimm fairy tale, although the external family situation of that time, as well as the family situations in the fairy tales, consist of a stepmother and a stepfather.

    The frequent criticism of fairy tales, that gender roles are conventionally distributed, does not apply, because these are inner parts that everyone, regardless of gender, has within herself or himself. The much larger, hidden – and thus unnoticed – problem is much more serious. The socially very wounded feminine is portrayed as “evil” and “defeated”. In the individual as well as in the collective consciousness and for society, this is not a good, but a catastrophically bad fairy tale ending. A fairy tale ends good when the injured inner parts are healed. In this respect, the Grimm fairy tales are neither for children nor for the society development-promoting.

    [1] “Bruno Bettelheim: Kinder brauchen Märchen“ (“Bruno Bettelheim: Children Need Fairy Tales”) by Heike vom Orde, 2012, (with further references).

  • December 31, 2022 at 7:58 am

    29. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: The Grimm’s Children’s and Household Tales

    Today, on New Year’s Eve, another year comes to an end, so that a review is appropriate. Therefore, it shall be looked back on the origin of the fairy tales, as they are still known today in Germany and around the world.

    The history of folk tales experienced a great upswing in the 19th century with the publication of the famous Grimm collection “Kinder- und Hausmärchen” (“Children’s and Household Tales”). Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm published these from 1812 to 1858. With the second edition, the Grimm brothers revised the fairy tales in a way that they could be read to children. It was earliest this edition that brought popular success. Throughout Europe, folk tales were recorded and published based on the Grimm brothers’ model.

    From the second edition on, the Children’s and Household Tales were essentially written in the style that still characterizes the idea of fairy tales today. There was an increasing sentimentalization, desexualization and Christianization. Following a literary tradition, the role of evil passed from mothers to stepmothers. Foreign words were substituted and popular idioms were added. Important details were changed to suit the contemporary tastes of the predominantly middle-class audience.[1]

    According to many researchers, the Grimm brothers were not only careful collectors of old traditions, although the Grimm fairy tale collection is considered to be very authentic folk literature. Rather, researchers assume that the Grimm fairy tale collection is a mixture of new texts, art fairy tales and folk tales, some of which have been heavily edited and altered. Both, the sources of the fairy tales and the Grimm brothers, strongly influenced the fairy tales. In doing so, the Grimm brothers were responding to contemporary criticism that had urged more pleasing narrative treatments of the material.

    Under these circumstances, to what extent can it still be assumed that the Grimm fairy tales represent the social general public? The original Grimm claim of a literary-historical collection should not be disregarded. This shaped the basic attitude and approach of the Grimm brothers. The expectations of a children’s book were rather brought to them from the outside, so they adapted to them.

    The Brothers Grimm wrote in their prefaces that the collected fairy tales would be “genuine Hessian fairy tales”, which had their origin in old Norse and original German myths. However, research found out that the main Grimm source was not a Hessian peasant woman, but an educated dressmaker with French roots. Nevertheless, also an educated dressmaker could have told folk tales, so there is no shortage in that. The expansion beyond the narrow national borders even makes the messages of the Grimm fairy tales all the more representative, because they draw from a larger general public.

    It can be stated that, just as with all oral traditions before, there is always a personal influence on the fairy tales. In the case of the Grimm’s children’s and household tales, this results from the Brothers Grimm and their sources. And yet, despite these personal and social influences, the archetypal fairy tale motifs occur similarly throughout the world. “Märchen” (“Fairy tale”) derives from the Middle High German “maere”, meaning “message” or “news.” These messages of the fairy tales are passed on, independently of personal and social formations, from the unconscious essence of humans.

    Nevertheless, it also happens that some original consciousness messages of the fairy tales have become contradictory due to many subsequent changes. These original fairy tale messages have then been lost through their now confusing consciousness instructions. This is an advantage, however, because the vast majority of consciousness messages that can still be understood, convey harmful instructions for living.

    In this respect, the Grimm’s children’s and household tales should be given back the value that the Brothers Grimm originally intended them to have: as a literary-historical collection. In this way, the Grimm fairy tales will no longer harm people, but instead benefit them.

    [1] Wikipedia on „Grimms Märchen“ (“Grimm’s Fairy Tales”) (with further references), as of 11/2022.

  • January 1, 2023 at 9:13 am

    30. Fairy tale value ‒ value fairy tales: Fairy tale future

    For years, “WDR 5 Spezial” (German TV) has offered a fairy tale marathon on New Year’s Day. On New Year’s Day 2022, for example, fairy tales from the 1950s and 1960s were presented. With radio plays and readings, young and old fairy tale fans are entertained for four hours.

    Other fairy tale offerings, for example, on the Internet and as books, have adapted and revised the Grimm’s Children’s and Household Tales to the contemporary German language. The plot and storyline may differ from the originals, and passages that are too cruel have been rewritten in a way that is suitable for children.

    In school, often in the fifth grade, it is liked to teach pupils to creatively design fairy tale passages (e.g., the ending) on their own; or to write their own fairy tale altogether.

    In this respect, it can be said that the originally free handling of the told fairy tales has not been completely lost through the book form. Fairy tales remain changeable stories that can be adapted to the times. As a result, fairy tales retain a timeless, important value for people.

    With fairy tales, the fairy tale form and the fairy tale content must be distinguished. The fairy tale form, with its pictorial language and archetypal symbolism, is extremely valuable. Even for children, fairy tales provide orientation and a guide to life. For adults, fairy tales can convey spiritual wisdom that cannot otherwise be grasped rationally. Intuitively received with the heart, universal truths are sensed. This valuable is all possible in the fairy tale form if the fairy tale contents were correspondingly positive ‒ but they are not.

    Instead, the valuable fairy tale form is misused to convey hidden harmful fairy tale content. Because fairy tales are received intuitively instead of rationally, it is easy to pass on hidden fairy tale messages unnoticed. The hidden fairy tale messages are directed at the unconscious, remain unconscious and develop their harmful effect from the unconscious. But, the moment the hidden fairy tale messages are uncovered and become aware, a decision can be made against this negative influence.

    However, the valuable fairy tale form as such can indeed be used if it conveys positive fairy tale messages. For this purpose, it is important to make the archetypal symbolism rationally conscious. Thus, it is known, which fairy tale message is being engaged with through the respective fairy tale. It can then be rationally decided, whether to engage with the message intuitively conveyed through the fairy tale. Through the respective fairy tale, the rationally accepted, conscious fairy tale message is additionally intuitively grasped with the heart.

    The fairy tales of the new age apply this valuable approach. The contents of the higher level of consciousness are intuitively conveyed with rationally explained symbolism. Thus, through the fairy tales the messages can additionally be grasp with the heart. For this purpose, the collective output level of consciousness of the old age is picked up as “Hansel and Gretel“. The harmful message of this fairy tale is revised to the healing fairy tale message as “Gretel and Hansel“.

    From the healer consciousness of the new fairy tale “Gretel and Hansel“, however, the curing and development of consciousness goes even further. Four continuation fairy tales to “Gretel and Hansel” convey the complete healing, the thereby possible higher consciousness competence and the universal plan. These five fairy tales of the new age, with their revealed valuable messages of consciousness, are gathered in the fairy tale collection “Gretel and Hansel heal the Witch“.

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