Wind in the Willows- aspects of me


I was thinking the other day about collections of characters and how each one can represent an aspect of the self- the metaphysical approach and this wonderful story came to mind.

For those of you who may not know the Wind in the Willows it is a wonderful children’s novel about a group of animals and their adventures. Most of the adventures have to do with Toad but we’ll get to that in a bit. Each animal has a very distinct personality and part to play in the story. They are: Badger, Ratty, Moley and Toad.

Toad, J. Thaddeus Toad, Toad of Toad hall, born to privilege Toad rarely thinks about anyone other than himself- very much the ego.

He reeks havoc, leaving it for others to deal with and is always jumping on the next new thing. Poop! A motor car! He is an extrovert: want’s adventure, wants to be the star. Not a bad  if balanced but out of check it can land you in jail, just like Toad.

Moley– Mole is quiet and might never have become a part of the story at all, if the sunlight had not pulled him away from his underground spring cleaning. Mole is loyal but fragile, he is new to the world above and needs a guide. Mole is the introvert, isolated, solitary, unsure when things are new. He is also the heart of the story, never giving up, always hoping for the best. Mole is an optimist and dreamer.

Badger: Is the voice of reason, the person you go to when there is something to be done. Badger lives in the wild wood a place most creatures avoid. He is strong and brave and wise. That is why the weasels leave him alone and he is the only creature with a chance of raining in the Toad.

Badger is the mature self, sage, the  pragmatist. Balancing action with prudence, he is not one to jump into a situation but will act when he deems it necessary. He does not like wasting his energy on anything unimportant and is not a socializer. His loyalty is unfailing for his friends and allies.

Ratty: Is a river rat, completely content as long as he can stay on the river, in his boat. Rat enjoys the finer things in life but not to excess like Toad. He is confident in his surroundings and his place in life. He is a social creature but knows when to seek time alone. He is generousness but will not be taken advantage of. In the book, Rat is the only creature who hears and follows Pan’s flute to find a lost otter. This suggest that he is more connected to nature than the others.

Rat is the realist, he sees things as they are, un-blinded by the innocence of the mole or the deliberations of the badger. He is balanced, equally ready for an adventure or a lazy day on the river. He is living in the moment and open to its call.


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