Lion’s Roar Affiliate Editor Mariana Restrepo reimagines Disney’s newest musical, Encanto, as a solution to train our youngsters about Buddhism.
As a guardian and a Buddhist, I usually discover myself searching for methods to show my toddler about Buddhism. You’d assume that in immediately’s day and age, the place every thing is marketed as aware this or that, I’d be capable of discover myriad assets. However age-appropriate Buddhist supplies for younger youngsters are literally exhausting to search out.
I’ve come to the conclusion that I can use something my toddler is inquisitive about to show him about Buddhist values. So right here I’m, on my fifth viewing of Disney’s Encanto, the soundtrack on repeat on all my gadgets, and many of the songs already memorized each in English and Spanish. My husband and I hold catching one another unconsciously singing to ourselves “We don’t speak about Bruno, no no!”
At its core, ‘Encanto’ is a narrative about human nature and the character of struggling.
As a born and raised Colombian, when watching the film, my coronary heart longs for these Colombian landscapes I as soon as walked, the normal meals I’ve eaten so many occasions, the normal attire worn by the characters I actually wore to highschool recitals, the numerous references to Colombian customs and expressions all through the film, that are a part of my very own private repertoire. However now, on this fifth viewing, the Buddhist a part of me retains questioning, might I exploit Encanto to show my son about Buddhism?
In a Buddhist reimagining of Encanto, let’s imagine that at its core Encanto is a narrative about human nature and the character of struggling. And actually, what could possibly be a extra Buddhist plot than that? With out giving an excessive amount of away, Encanto tells the story of a household displaced by violence; a mom who after dropping her husband, by the facility of affection and sacrifice is given a miracle. Within the darkest second of her life, when there was nothing else left. This miracle self-manifests, represented by an ever-burning candle, a flame that may by no means exit. Abuela Madrigal describes this miracle as a refuge. This miracle, in addition to the trauma from which it’s born, is handed down from one technology to the following, manifesting as a special reward in every member of the family. The miracle and the reward that every member of the family embodies is each a supply of happiness and struggling. It’s as a lot a present as it’s a burden, and it comes with the strain of upholding the household values it represents and the duty of protecting the household miracle alive.
We rapidly be taught that although every member of the family has an distinctive reward, struggling is on the middle of every of their experiences. It doesn’t matter how stunning and ideal you’re, like Isabela, or how highly effective and powerful, like Luisa, or how a lot data you’ve, like Dolores, or whether or not you possibly can know the longer term, like Bruno, when our lives are dominated by hope and worry and due to this fact lead by our attachments, we’re certain to undergo. On this method, the Madrigal household has turn into outlined by their items, their attachment to them, their hopes of what they may accomplish by them, and their worry of dropping them. Their attachment retains main them to make choices that not solely create private struggling, however perpetuate the struggling of the household as a complete, finally placing in peril the miracle itself.
Maribel, the primary character, is the one member of the household who was not given a present. Nevertheless, it’s by her real concern for the wellbeing of her household and her neighborhood, her embodiment of compassion, that she is ready to deliver again the magic that was seemingly misplaced. It is just by compassion, for one another and themselves, and thru the belief of their interdependence, that the cycle of generational trauma is damaged and the sunshine of the miracle might be reborn and the household can return to their supply of refuge. Lastly, the imagery of yellow butterflies is woven all through the film, not solely referencing the Colombian novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez and his One Hundred Years of Solitude, but in addition signaling the completely different transformations the household and every character bear. Due to this fact, the yellow butterflies come to represent impermanence and alter and the letting go of attachments.
So whereas we watch for extra Buddhist supplies for kids, there you’ve it, my Buddhist reimagining of Encanto. I encourage you to offer it a attempt, perhaps watch that present your child is obsessive about, or learn your toddler that guide for the one-thousandth time once more, however this time put your Buddhist glasses on and see if yow will discover a solution to train your baby about Buddhism by what they already get pleasure from…. As a result of if all of us have buddhanature, why can’t a Disney film have it too?