The Emperor's New Clothes... and Other Tales of Vulnerability

January 25, 2015 7:36 PM

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When I was a child, I remember hearing the tale of "The Emperor's New Clothes." For those who have forgotten, it's about a vain king who is swindled by two con artists who make him what he thinks is the finest attire in the land, when there is actually nothing there. And he proceeds to parade through town, with every villager too afraid to tell the truth until one little boy comments, "The Emperor has no clothes!" My reaction to that was, "Wow, was he brave!" I would certainly have been like those villagers, too afraid to speak up, ignoring what I knew was true. Fortunately I have grown up a little since then!

This tale is, of course, about vanity. And about fear of consequences. But I think it is also about vulnerability. Throughout my life I have felt like the King, knowing inside that something is not right, but parading around anyway, hoping there is no one in the crowd that will point it out. The iro...

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