Last Updated 17 Aug 2022

The Story of the Aged Mother (Analysis)

Category Folklore, Love, Mother, Wisdom
Essay type Analysis
Words 3615 (14 pages)
2,178 views
Table of contents

THE STORY OF THE AGED MOTHER (A Japanese folktale)

SETTING: Shinano at the foot the mountain

CHARACTERS: The aged mother- the main character of the story, who has the wisdom that brings to save and benefited their land The young farmer- the son of the aged mother The daimyo-the despotic ruler of Shinano but later on he learned to give importance the old folks.

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THEME: “A mother’s love is something that no one can explain. It is made of deep devotion and of sacrifice and pain, it is endless and unselfish”.

CONFLICT: Man vs. Man- the only antagonist in the story was the daimio who proclaimed a law to immediately kill all the aged people.

LITERARY MOVEMENT: Realism- the situation in the story was once happened in the history of Japan, not by putting to death the aged people but abandoning them. It views the once history of a certain country and the simplicity of life. The story also contains lesson and the language used was simple and comprehensive. “A mother’s love is something that no one can explain. It is made of deep devotion and of sacrifice and pain, it is endless and unselfish”.

Also read: Mother of a Traitor

The story of the aged mother is a folktale from Japan. It tells about how great the love of a mother for her child. It was shown on their situation when the daimio proclaimed a law ordering that all the aged people should be put to death. The order filled the heart of the poor farmer a great sorrow for he loves his mother that much. Instead of putting her mother to death in the hand of the cruel law he decided to give his mother a kind mode of death. He took his mother to the bare summit of Obatsuyama- the mountain of the “Abandoning of the Aged” and planned to abandon there.

On their way to the said mountain the heart of the loving mother grew anxious for she knew that her son will on danger on his way back because he was not familiar to the many mountain paths. What the mother did she snapped the twigs of the bushes they passed and drop it silently on the path to serves as a guide on the way back of her poor child. “Let not thine eyes be blind, my son. ” “The mountain road is full of danger. Look carefully and follow the path which holds the piles of twigs. They will guide thee to the familiar way farther down”.

These lines shows the unconditional love that the mother has for her son, an unselfish love that smote the heart of the poor child and made him cried and decided to take his mother with him backed to their humble hut in the valley. He hid his mother on a walled closet for food beneath the kitchen. Time passed and they both feel secure and safe until one day the daimyo sent a messenger and again demanded on the people of the valley present him a with a rope of ashes. To the despair of the poor farmer he told the mews to his hidden mother.

And her mother luckily come up with the idea and told him to make a rope of twisted straw and the other thing to do. The despotic ruler was pleased of what he had witnessed and asks the poor farmer if where he obtained that kind of wisdom. The poor farmer stated everything and daimio listened and meditated in silence. Upon hearing the story he now decided to abolish cruel law, and sees the importance of the elder to shape the society and said “with the crown of snow, there cometh wisdom”.

The story shows us two important virtue- love and wisdom. Mother’s love is nothing can compare nor measured; it is pure and unselfish and made of reverence. Truly we can say that we can found heaven underneath mother’s feet for she fought cruelty with love and affection and true hero for bringing out our courage to face the harsh realities of life. Most of all serves as our courage, weakness and strength that guided us to walk through our journey called life.

In the saying “with the crown of snow, there cometh wisdom”- the crown of snow is pertaining to the elders, emphasizes the importance of them in shaping our society. The word “there cometh wisdom” explained that as we get old our everyday experiences makes us wit, and as we commit mistakes learning comes. The old folks who undergone on the different challenges in life and had survive serves as our guiding path because their varied experiences teach us to become wise; wise enough to know right from wrong.

Importance of Mother Nature

More and more people are becoming aware of the importance of saving mother earth. Indeed, the sense of urgency behind the drive to save the environment is stronger than ever before. After all, we only have one planet; if this one becomes totally ruined, our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren will not have a home. If we all do our part to save mother earth, it is definitely possible. Therefore, people should learn as much as they can about ways that they can help save the environment; by working together, our planet can remain habitable for centuries to come.

Save Mother Earth Tip #1: Recycling

The popularity of recycling has increased a great deal in recent years, as people search for ways of saving mother earth. Recycling can have a dramatic impact on helping to save the environment. Many different things can be recycled and reused, reducing waste and garbage in landfills and around the planet. In terms of helping to save the environment, recycling is an excellent strategy. It makes sense, in saving mother earth, to reuse her resources as much as possible. Increasing recycling efforts can help us save the environment.

Save Mother Earth Tip #2: Education

Teaching our children about the importance of saving mother earth is a great way of instilling lifelong habits that can help save the environment.

Schools are increasing the teaching of subjects that pertain to helping to save the environment. Young children are encouraged to help save mother earth by engaging in various habits that promote eco-friendly techniques. Parents can also increase the green-education of their children by demonstrating every day strategies for helping in the fight to save the environment.

If everyone does their part, today’s children will be tomorrow’s environmentalists, helping to save our planet from ruin.One major problem of the environment is lack of knowledge. If that little girl knew that she killed trees when she crumples the paper if she draws an oval instead of a circle, I think she wouldn’t continue doing that. And if she still did, it will be lesser compared to before. If only she knew. If only we knew. If only we knew earlier.

My stepmother

I have a perfect family now.  Like all proud parents, I have my mother to thank for everything.  Unlike all proud parents, however, I have my mother to thank for showing me the perfect example of how not to be a parent.  This “mother” that I refer to of course is not my birth mother but rather my stepmother.  She was forever the bane in my life.  She is, however, the reason why I am a good parent and why I have always strived to become a good parent.

Now that I have two children of my own, I realize just how important it is for their upbringing to have a solid family around to support them and parents who encourage instead of discourage.  I like to think of my own family as a “can do” family and not a “don’t do or else” type of family.  I show my children the same love and affection that I received from my father and my birth mother and perhaps, I may even show my two children more love and affection because I know what it feels like to live in fear and cower in terror.

As I lay here recovering from my latest battle with my terror of a stepmother, I recall how I sensed it from the moment that I met her that we were never going to get along with each other.  While I did sense the animosity as our eyes met each other on that fateful day when I was but a child of six years old, I have never understood why my stepmother resented me so much.  There seemed to be nothing that I could do right.  This latest emotional battle that I and my stepmother had but a day ago has left me so drained.  It was not even a big deal.  It was only with regard to me wanting to speak to my father since I had not heard from him in a while and it soon heated up into full blown mud flinging.

I was never this brave, for lack of better term, towards my stepmother.  I remember a time when I was six years old.  This was the same moment that I met her and I saw how she pretended to be very nice and kind towards my father and his family, meaning me and my siblings. From her mouth spouted all sorts of sweet nothings and words of praise and admiration for how fine a parent my father was and how lucky we all were to have a dad like him.  I heard from her the honeyed words of praise but saw deep in her eyes the petrifying glance of a medusa.  I was correct in my assumption as soon after my father left to attend to an errand and the monster that was lurking beneath began to emerge.

The succubus who had seduced my father had now set her sights upon me, the only other woman in my father’s life and I was to be her next victim.  She pounced upon me swiftly and caught me off guard.  I was taken abrupt as she began to terrorize me and likening my appearance to that of various parts of the anatomy that I shall not mention.  To top it all off, she even dared call my own birth mother a woman of ill repute to whom I would most likely turn into.  Suffice it to say that from that moment on there would never be peace when my stepmother and I would meet.

That moment in my childhood changed my life not only because from that point on I had somebody there to terrorize me but also because of the fact that it taught me a valuable lesson about parenting; never leave your children in the hands of a stranger even if other people trust them.  One can never be too cautious these days with all those veiled demons lurking and waiting for you to leave your children alone and then they pounce and harm and terrorize your children.  While that experience did turn me into a stronger person and a better parent, I firmly believe that my children do not have to undergo the same mental and emotional torture that I encountered in order to learn their lesson.

It used to take me awhile to recover from the battles that me and my stepmother used to have.  There were times when I would be in shock for an entire month and would spend several days just hiding in my room and refusing to speak to anyone.  This type of experience is something best left in stories about monsters or evil stepmothers.  This is the reason why I have asked God to make me strong for my children and to give me a long life so that I can be there for them always to ensure that nobody will ever make my two children suffer.  I also ask that God make me a good mother so that I will always be able to provide for my children to keep them with me and keep them happy.

Being God fearing, I felt that I could change the way my stepmother treated me by doing what Jesus told the apostle Peter and turn the other cheek.  Though my stepmother was a hypocrite, I tried my best to carry on a working, if not good, relationship with her.  I thought that my efforts had finally paid off when I heard that my stepmother had spoken to my other asking her in a very nice and friendly manner if she would be amenable to letting me stay with her.  She said that she would bring me to the United States and give me a life that was better than the one I currently had.  She could declare me as her daughter and then, together with my father, we could all go to the “Land of the Free”.  I will never forget those exact words because those were the ironic words that she chose to use when she was explaining all of this to my birth mother.

It did not take a lot of convincing to make my mom amenable to the idea and soon I found myself in my room preparing for that long trip to the “Land of the Free.”  As I packed the last of my belongings I heard my father telling my birth mother that everything would be alright and that she had nothing to worry about regarding my safety.  I was on my way to a better place and better life.  The thought made me smile yet little did I know that I this day would mark the end of one life and the beginning of another one, a life of fear, terror but ultimately happiness.

My stepmother never intended for me to have that good life in the “Land of the Free.”  She had ulterior motives at that time and simply wanted to punish my mother by taking me away from her.  The reason for her vengeance was because I was born to my birth mother while my father was married to my stepmother.  Since my stepmother could not directly go against my birth mother for fear of incurring my father’s wrath, she turned to making me suffer.  She was convinced that I was to blame for all the trouble and anxiety that she was going through and she intended to make me feel what she was feeling and more.

Of course at that time, all of these ulterior motives and malicious plans were beyond my comprehension.  As a little girl I always tried my best not to hate or resent her for anything that she did to me.  I always tried to do my best to make her feel good and happy with me and to ultimately make her feel proud and happy of me.  As I eventually learned, however, such a scenario was never meant to happen.  Instead, with every act of good that I attempted, I was to be chastised and embarrassed in front of strangers and treated like I was the lowest life form on this planet.

If there is a lesson to be learned from all of this, it is probably that fear is a good teacher.  If it were not for the fear that my stepmother instilled in my heart, I would not probably be the good mother that I am now.  While it is arguably a terrible feeling that I always need to fear for the safety of my children, I always tell myself that one can never be too cautious.

Another lesson that I learned from all of this happened when I was around 18 years of age.  Now, my father never had any idea of the abuses that I suffered at the hands of my stepmother.  He always assumed that we were happy that way and I kept it that way since I did not want to tell on my stepmother for fear of making my life worse than it already actually was.  It was early morning when one of life’s lessons hit me smack on the head.  I awoke to the fists of my stepmother on my face as she berated me for not attending to some of my chores.  Apparently I had neglected to make sure that the dishes in the kitchen were as clean and shiny as she wanted them to be.  My stepmother was determined to make me pay for such an oversight and took justice in her own hands and began pummeling me with her fists.

For the first time in my life, I felt an intense hatred towards my stepmother.  Nobody has ever laid a hand on me.  Not in anger.  Not in frustration.  My father was never around to console me and help me cope with my situation since he had no idea that such an atrocity was being committed under the roof of his own house.  It was that day, however, that I decided that I would no longer put up with any of this and I decided to leave home.  It was the best decision to make at that time and the worst decision to make in hindsight as I left with some guy that I had recently just met.

Things soon turned bad as I fell into a string of failed relationships but just as quickly my fortunes began to improve as I met good people during the times that I needed it the most.  These recollections pain me because as I traversed this journey called life and served my sentence I met other people; people who were good unlike my own stepmother.

I ask myself sometimes whether I had done anything to deserve the treatment that was receiving from my stepmother.  I asked myself if I indeed was the cause of all her troubles.  I realize that I never really asked to be born into this world.  All children are supposed to come into this world as innocents but I entered this world pronounced guilty and destined to serve my sentence from the moment that I took my first breath.

My birth mother has no idea what I have been through and I don’t intend to tell her about it.  I guess that it how things should be.  As a mother, I do not want to know that my own children have suffered or been hurt.  I guess the warmth and glow that overcomes a mother as she first hugs her child is the reason for that.  I was born and I too have given birth.  I was born into this world a slave, a victim of a vengeful demon.  I have been emancipated by the birth of my own children and I know that when my time comes I will have enough good memories with my own children to last me till eternity.

The Similarities between My Mother and Me

I love my mother very much. She is not only a strong woman but also a great mother. My mother always takes care of the children in my family very well and chats with us as a friend; in addition, from the stories in life, she has taught us many valuable lessons. Most of my hobbies and habits are learned from my mother. Therefore, my mother and I have many similarities, such as liking adventure games, gift giving to loved ones on special occasions, and enjoying outdoor activities. Both my mother and I like adventure games.

When I was seven years old, she took me and my sister to go to a national park, a huge park with many games. My mother wanted us to join in a game, which has a boat falling from a very high waterfall. While my sister expressed fear, I was curious to try it. I still remember that when our boat reached the top of the waterfall, it suddenly stopped and began to move downward. I was very scared and crying. My mother tried to assure me that everything would be fine. She wanted me to overcome the fear of heights as well as be ready to face all the challenges in life.

So far, I am more courageous, and we often spend more time to participate in adventure games. My mother loves to give gifts on special occasions, and so do I. On holidays, we often go shopping to choose a special gift for loved ones. My mother said that a gift is a symbol of love and regard. To me, gift-giving helps bring people closer together. Also, gift-giving is traditional in my country. By gift-giving, we thank loved ones and wish them happiness. It may be valuable items or simply the greeting card, but more importantly is how you send the gifts.

I especially love Christmas, when wishes come true. As a child, I still looked forward to receiving gifts from Santa. Now I can understand their meaning, and I would like to bring joy and happiness for everyone. Both of us enjoy outdoor activities. Last Sunday, my family spent time together at the Silverwood Lake. While my aunties and my mom were doing barbeques, my cousins and I built some tends which was my favorite work. After lunch, we decided to go hiking upward a hill. It was so windy. Unfortunately, my mother forgot to bring her overcoat, so she could not go too far away.

How absent-minded was she! Anyway, we still had a lot of fun. My mom often tell me that enjoying Mother Nature can be serene, and camping can be economical, build family spirit. I personally think that getting outdoors benefits everything from improved eyesight to more brain function through being more creative. So, we have shared enjoying this activity more 10 years. In conclusion, I love my mom for the good values she has given me. Because of this, we are similar in liking adventure games, gift giving to loved ones on special occasions, and enjoying outdoor activities.

The Story of the Aged Mother (Analysis) essay

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