It’s the peak of the summer, at least what concerns the length of daylight. For some European countries this day is the most important holiday of the year. In Sweden, for example, it is the only time when all the stores are closed and people are out celebrating, dancing and cheering all night long. Nowhere else but in the high north is it so evident that this is a very special peak moment. People crave to recharge their batteries and join forces with the sun’s majestic glory.
In folklore this is symbolized by the high time of marriage. It is not always just about marrying another person, though. It is about having found a true partner, the moment when we connect with the highest, best and strongest - the partner within ourselves.
See what this little mouse in a Bosnian tale experienced, when wanting to find a bride:
The mouse, who wanted to get married
Long ago, the mouse decided to get married.
"So, you want to get married. Who do you want to marry?" people asked.
"My bride has to descend from the highest, the most beautiful and the strongest!" said the mouse.
"The highest is the sun," people said.
"Well, then I'll just get my girl from the sun!"
Immediately, the mouse went to the sun and asked: "Dear sun, I beg you, let me marry your daughter. "
"But mouse, why exactly my daughter?"
"You are the highest, the most beautiful and the strongest!"
"It may well be that I am tall and beautiful. But the strongest I'm certainly not! " - "Who could be stronger than you?" the mouse has asked.
"The cloud! Often she pushes in front of me and I cannot shine my light for you on earth. What good is my strength then? - Better go to her. ”
The mouse ran straight to the cloud: "Cloud, I want to marry and I've heard that you have a beautiful daughter. Will you let me marry her? "
"Good mouse," the cloud said, "why do you come to me?"
"Because I've heard that you're the strongest!"
"But no," the cloud said, "I'm not the strongest at all."
"Who could be stronger than you?"
"The wind! - If he blows, then he drives me before him wherever he wants. He is much stronger than me. Go to him."
Quickly the mouse ran to the wind: "Hey, wind! It's time for me to get married. Now, I have heard that you have a beautiful daughter. Will you let me marry her? "
"Now, tell me, mouse, why do you come to me?"
"Because I've heard that you are the strongest!"
"I should be the strongest? - You're wrong. "
"Who could be stronger than you? - You drive the clouds in front of you and you even tear the roofs off the houses. "
"You're right, mouse. But look at the oak there on the hill. All day I run against her. I shake her and storm through her branches. But she remains unaffected. I tried everything, but she has withstood my strength for three hundred years. She is much stronger than me. Go to her! "
The mouse ran straight to the oak.
"What do you want from me, mouse?"
“I've heard that you have a beautiful daughter. Will you let me marry her? "
"Why do you come to me, of all people?"
"Because I've heard that you're the strongest. For three hundred years, the wind is already shaking you, but cannot hurt you as much as he tries. "
"You're right. But I'm not the strongest after all. "
"Who could be stronger than you?"
"At the bottom of my roots, there is somebody gnawing at me. He's been gnawing for many years, and not much is missing, before I will go down. He is much stronger than me. Go to him! "
So the mouse crawled under the roots of the oak tree. And who does he find there? - A mouse!
Immediately, the mouse asked the other mouse for his daughter’s hand.
So, our little mouse ended up marrying the most beautiful, highest and strongest bride of them all - another mouse.
What a brave and determined little mouse! As he aimed at the highest, best and strongest, he detected exactly this in his own kind.
This is what we celebrate on this peak day today, the summer solstice: our relentless search for the highest, best and strongest, on the inside as well as on the outside. And once we found it, we can also see it in others - or vice versa.
What a happy ending!
This article is dedicated to my dear friends in Sweden, the crew of the Museums of Legends, who celebrates midsommar today.
Andrea Hofman, 2019