Every girl, don’t you see, wants to be Cinderella. Every lad, don’t you see, wants to be the Prince. Both Cinderella and the Prince in the story somehow knew they were greater than what they seemed.
Cinderella is truly royalty. The ashes seem real, yet they are not real. They are a symbol.
The Prince is royal in his heart, yet he also carries all the paraphernalia of royalty. The paraphernalia is not his royalty. It is only the appearance of royalty. Anyone can wear a costume. The costume does not a prince make.
The Prince desired that the world see Cinderella as he indeed saw her. We can say that the Prince saw through the ashes. He saw that they were merely ashes. They signified ashes and had no greater meaning. The Prince saw through the surface level of life. The Prince, raised as he was, did not know his True Being yet, and yet he saw Cinderella’s True Being.
Cinderella did not yet know the full truth of herself, and yet she knew she was more than an ash girl. She was called Cinderella. She answered to it, and yet she was higher than the wicked stepmother and her two vain daughters who called her that. She seemed like a scullery maid, and yet she was a princess.
Could not a wicked stepmother have been other than she appeared to be as well? This one was indeed wicked. The story does not tell us what made her so. Was she once an innocent girl? What made her so haughty? What insecurity made her so haughty? I make no excuses for her selfishness, for she did not have to be like that. Nevertheless, there was hidden within her, a pearl of grace that she had buried. Of course, she did not see herself as wicked. She saw herself as defending her position. She wanted her daughters to marry the Prince. Her motive wasn’t so bad except that she went at things in a narrow way. Anyway, was her main motivation that one of her daughters become the bride of a Prince, or was she trying to fulfill her own desire to be a royal mother and mother-in-law?
And the wicked daughters, was it really their desire to be a Princess? Certainly, they hadn’t really thought what it means to be a princess. They had not thought beyond the wedding. They had not thought of what it truly means to be a princess. And they had not thought as far as how the one who would be princess might separate herself from her sister and how the one who would become a mere maid-in-waiting would react? That’s another story. And, all the while, were they good daughters who wished to please their mother? They even did bodily harm to themselves in order to fulfill their mother’s dream. The mother wanted everything that the world can give.
This is the relative world all right. Had the wicked stepmother been a lovely stepmother, and her daughters lovely and all-embracing, wherein would lie the tale? Where would the story be at all?
If the pumpkin had not turned into a coach, in what would Cinderella been driven to the ball? If the mice had not turned into coachmen, who would have driven and accompanied the coach? Even Cinderella had to make her appearance in the way the world would comprehend.
We understand that the Fairy Godmother waved her wand, and yet where did the Fairy Godmother really come from? Did she really just appear from somewhere as a rewarder, or was she always there within Cinderella and the Prince and not there within the wicked Stepmother and her daughters or so submerged within them that the Fairy Godmother couldn’t come to the surface? Who is the Fairy Godmother really, where does she come from, and what makes her appear when she does? The child in you knows all the answers.