THE RETURN OF THE KING
So we looked at the Knight and the damsel (Gimme the Knight) Now let’s go to the King.
Interestingly America has never had an association with the King archetype. Formed by people who were eager to escape the negative associations of royalty, it revelled in its independence. The entrepreneur became the new ruling class in America. He was the one with all the power. The word Boss was synonymous with respect. Whether that be the unofficial Boss (Mob leader), the Business Boss (CEO), or THE Boss (Bruce Springsteen).
But there was something missing – particularly in the past few decades when the corruption, self interest and limited vision of so many of the leaders was revealed. Perhaps they had thrown the baby out with the bathwater. There was a sense of loss for the regal qualities of charm, intelligence, wit, presence. It’s little wonder that the King they were waiting for arrived right on time…enter Barack Obama
Watching him on the Jay Leno show, it is impossible not to be completely enchanted. How rarely have we witnessed the grace, ease and authenticity he exudes? We have become so accustomed to authority figures delivering carefully rehearsed lines – whether it’s a politician or the chairman of a bank – that we’ve lost belief and respect for our leaders. This, at a time when the world needs leadership so badly.
At the end of the 18th century the population of America was 3 million people who were led and inspired by at least half a dozen major statesmen, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Paine etc. Now, with the population at 300 million that would be a pro rata equivalent of 600 statesmen of influence, passionate about their belief in the highest potential for all regardless of their background, enthusiastic and what they could build for future generations – where are they?
What is the implication and the call to arms that the election of Barack Obama signals? I would hazard a guess that it’s the need to discover our own sovereignty. To develop those regal, benevolent qualities in ourselves.
The King is dead…long live the King.
No more King Midas. The midas touch has revealed the shadow side of its promise. If everything you touch turns to gold you end up living in a cold inanimate world. We want to live in a vibrant dynamic world that values the relationships between living things.
No more Fisher King. The wounded king who could have been healed if only the right question had been asked of the Grail i.e. how to serve the Grail, not how to be served by it. We want to live in a world that values integrity over arrogant self-importance.
No more Autocratic King. The only ‘Divine right’ is the requirement to hold ourselves accountable to the creative spark in each one of us. We want the world to value diversity and acknowledge different talents. Our world currently over values some (the media worthy celebrity ones) and under values others (everything else from teachers to window cleaners).
No more King of Pop. They let us down too! Elvis and Michael Jackson just buckled under all that projection. Isolated in castles, they became the wounded Fisher Kings of their generation. And like the myopic grail knights we are all asking the wrong questions. We’re all searching in places other than ourselves for the gold chalice.
We have so much to offer that has nothing to do with money. It’s ourselves. Our hearts. It’s not what we do, it’s who we are being when we do what we do that counts. Obama is leading the way into the new paradigm, but we need more leaders to step up and join him. Given some good kings we can experience ourselves as honest subjects. And wouldn’t that be a relief to us all!