We went to see The Lion King. Yes, the reviews were meh (and rightfully so.) But I love this story, and given my son is a proud Leo (turning 10 in a few days-pinch me!), this movie is a staple.
Btw, The Broadway show is a must. My most memorable and enjoyable theater experience ever!
So, the story has every component of the classic hero’s journey: The ordinary world in which Simba the cub was born, the inciting incident, the call, allies-enemies-drama-rama, the refusal of the call, and the return home.
The story of all stories, is never an old story.
One of the pivotal moments is when Rafiki, the tribe’s shaman, guides Simba to a pond at night. When Simba looks down at the water, he gets to see his own reflection, like in a mirror. This is where he “meets” himself.
His reflection is then turned into a vision of his father, the now dead Mufasa. Through out the vision, he hears his father’s voice, telling him to “Remember Who You Are.”
This is a line that speaks to me deeply as it’s what my work is all about. To see yourself through your lens. To reflect on your own image. This is how you remember who you are, and how you “take the seat at the table”, or “own your thing and worth.”
Only this time, I heard something new (which made the experience and the extra popcorn, so worthwhile!)
“You have to take your place in the circle of life,” said Mufasa.
How is that different from “owning your thing?”
This reframe puts your purpose in context. Your invaluable contribution is not just something nice to have or to give, but something essential to the circle of life. Without it, the circle isn’t’ complete.
You can’t just “sit” on it.
Although by BEING, you’re already part of the cycle, it’s up to you to actively take your place in it. “Who You Are” isn’t separate from your contribution. “Who You Are” is activated once you claim a clear position within the circle.
That’s how you go from being separate and isolated, to becoming an essential giver.
Simba was happy eating insects at the valley with his akuna-matata-friends.
But Scar was eating up his home from the inside.
Simba couldn’t stay away in paradise and save his home at the same time.
It wasn’t enough for Simba to BE the true king, and to remember who he was.
He had to go get it-with his roarrrr.
He had to voice his presence and present his rebellion.
My current work is depicted as a circle of colors. We are in it, no matter what we do. The difference happens when we choose to take our specific place in it. And crown ourselves.
Now, do you really have to be a Queen to claim your place in the circle of life?
Initially, I wanted to say “no”. Not everybody can be King or Queen.
But then I looked at my self in this picture, and I realized that I’m about to change my mind. Drastically.
You can’t create change unless you become a leader.
The ONLY position you can have, is that of a leader. Crowing yourself is both your responsibility and your obligation.
And it doesn’t matter how many other kingdoms, kings or queens are out there…
There is ONE crown to claim. Yours.
And you’re the one in charge on coronation day.