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Symbolism and thoughts on short story ‘Chained Freedom’ by Natasja Hellenthal

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“This is not a fairytale, but a true story,” storyteller Tana Woodwolf tells the audience at the start of ‘Chained Freedom’.

This is some more information, symbolism and random thoughts about ‘Chained Freedom’, a thought-provoking fantasy. I’ve written the story some years ago whilst being stuck in a rather, suffocating relationship. I always had the choice to step out sooner than I did, but I didn’t feel ‘free’ enough, or ‘ready’ enough, or even ‘strong’ enough to do so but moreover full of guilt.
Instead, I wrote this story, as all my stories are based on my own life and experiences to some degree. I’m not Tana, mind you, but I feel like I know her really well!
But it’s not just relationships, of any kind, we can relate this story to, and apply it to our lives; it’s any kind of loss of freedom really. Freedom; everyone’s birthright, but so very fragile and easily swept away from us, whether we let it happen consciously, or more than often not. It could also be through religion, our upbringing, conditioning and social dogma’s that we get trapped without giving it a second thought.
When are we really free?

Chained Freedom’ is a short story featuring Fay Comyenti, first daughter of Sula and Felix from the first book in a Fantasy drama series, ‘Call Off The Search’ (Comyenti Series), and how she helps a woman break free from a magical entrapment.
Fay is not the main character, but an important side-character, who reminds the main character of Chained Freedom, Tana Woodwold, of her own inner strength.

Short synopsis:

Tana Woodwolf wakes to find herself trapped within a strange land. She learns quickly from the faces of the others that this is no paradise she has been transported to; it is a prison.
Unable to escape, Tana soon discovers that a dark and malignant force is dragging them, one-by-one, to unreachable higher rooms of the tower from which they never return.
If she is to ever escape from there then she will need to use all the guile and strength she has within her. Does one of the others hold the key? Or is it something else within the prison that she needs to study?
As the darkness comes nearer, a strange voice whispers, ‘Look and be free… You have to let go of what you know.’
Should she trust the voice? Should she trust the others? Does she even have a choice?
As despair and terror closes in around them all, only one person can discover the truth and save them…

Symbolism of Chained Freedom (spoiler alert!)

Tana, once free, is determined to also help free the other slaves. She won’t rest until she has found a way to do so. She cannot be completely free, until then she is still chained. Little does she know that the Wizard is the very embodiment of Evil and can never be defeated. It’s the balance of life, of light and dark, of right and wrong. It is more than that: as long as men continue to do evil, hurt other people, the Wizard will live. Only people with dark thoughts are being transported! That’s the first rule.
As for the other slaves, they are people like Tana, who cannot be broken free from the outside, but themselves will have to try to find a way from the inside.
Some people aren’t ready yet and live with a curtain (the magic wall), closed over their eyes. Others, like Tana, with a little help, can see an opening and find a way to lift the veil to let the light in again; a way to see the world in its true light and find goodness. Hope is the key that can open the heart which is the way. Compassion and love are the door(s).

Tower: Patriarchal dominance and world-leader ship. The prisoners end up there (close to the evil wizard) as a first warning and to actually been given a second choice. Not the real criminals are being put here, as they get a harder punishment, but people, like Tana, with minor crimes.
Prisoners: that’s what we all are unless we break through. Also a reference to ‘free range’ animals, or caged domesticated animals, who can’t escape at all. The prisoners know, like farmed animals, that they will end up dead and live in fear (both have been proven).
Wizard: Pure evil. But really it’s not about him, he is just a symbol. That’s why he has no face, no name, no voice and no real role in the story, because it’s about the slaves and their own inner wizard, their own evil inside of themselves. You can choose to do either good or bad. But you cannot be good to others if you’re not good to yourself first.
Disbelieve of their fate: What have they done wrong to deserve this? That’s a real life question of many people in ‘chained’ or difficult situations.
The Magic wall: the curtain or veil that is drawn over our eyes, making us forget our innocence and to be in touch with the real world around us.
Fay: the helper, someone who believes in Tana, for we all need someone to have faith in us; to do what seems the impossible.
Chains: invisible, but they’re still there. Also our responsibility to help others. We can never be truly free unless the whole world is. Until then we are still half-chained or with
one hand.

The message that Tana is trying to give to other people is: Be good, do good, be kind to one another. If you don’t, you’ll end up in the tower. Because she had found kindness and a love in her own heart, hope and a lightness in her being, maybe by doing good, helping others, she found a way out and the wizard ‘let’ her escape, because she was changed and no longer evil.
I believe that with the right mind-set and help people indeed can change.
This story to me is the ultimate story of good and evil, right and wrong and how we can all fight our own evil in ourselves and help others. Surely by helping others you reduce the evil in your heart. The opening in the wall in the end was bigger and felt easier for Tana to find.

Quotes:

“If you cannot change a situation why not improve the quality of life around you?”

“You see, you’re only chained if you allow yourself to be chained. Your soul, the real you, cannot be put in shackles and will always be free.”

“You can’t possibly make holes in the wall for everyone. I don’t think it works that way,’ Fay said. ‘You’ve seen it with your own eyes. They have to, like you did, create their own doorway.’
‘So, I’ll show them how. I can teach them how to escape, I’m sure I can.’
I had a feeling she didn’t agree with me.
‘I’m not saying you can’t, but how does the old saying go; prevention is better than a cure?”

“The other prisoners and I had one thing in common: our enslavement, chains or not, and there surely would be more people after my leaving, perhaps I had been replaced already.
Am I free?
Even though I could have easily walked away and forgotten all about the mysterious evil wizard and his slaves, I just couldn’t. Until then, my freedom was still in chains.”

End Note:

After nearly ten years of being thrown backwards and forwards, of living in doubt and insecurities, of a life half lived in freedom, half in chains, I managed to free myself from my own forged shackles. But, complete freedom is of course a big word. I will always have my responsibilities as we do, some I created, but since then I’m much stronger and aware and am no longer shackled. The chains I wear these days or made of invisible soft silver cords.
I’m even more conscious of the meaning of freedom and what we are all doing with it once we have it, or what we do to get it back when we don’t.
Every day in freedom is a gift. Many don’t have it and are still fighting that struggle, some have lost their lives.
We are all bound to each other through invisible, silver lines as I call them. They are not just those attached to our family and friends, but to everyone. I believe we owe it to others who are less fortunate and need our help, even if we don’t know them.
We cannot help everyone, but everyone can help someone.

‘Chained Freedom’ is available here:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IK4OWXE

Listen to the book here:http://www.booktrack.com/read/d9408688c713442e8476cf3a46693f5a

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NEW FANTASY RELEASE! CITY OF DREAMS ~FREE this weekend ONLY~

‘CITY OF DREAMS’, available in all formats will be FREE this thanksgiving weekend only.
Share it with your friends and don’t forget to leave me a review, thanks (:

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“Have you ever wondered where stories come from? Where are paintings, sculptures and poetry, prose born? In the artist’s subconscious mind? Dreams? How come some writers and painters roughly have the same idea and come up with similar creations, even though they’ve never read or seen anything by the other or communicated it in any way? Is there such a thing as a ‘Well of Art’ that all artists drink from to be inspired? And if so, how is this accomplished? Whilst asleep? Dreaming? Where is art born?”

Aigle Comyenti is travelling home to be on time for his sister’s wedding. Whilst travelling he hears the last notes of an enchanting tune and makes a sudden decision. He MUST have that song.
The musician however, on her way to an art festival to perform, not only teaches Aigle the melody, but also steals his trusty pendant: the coppery piece given to him by his real father. The jewellery, worthless to the girl, is immensely valuable to the boy and his vanishing kind; the empathetic comyentis. For it is not only the last reminder of his mysterious people but could also be the very key to their unknown past and origin…

The handsome young traveller has no other choice than to follow the girl, but where she is going, Aigle is reluctant to set foot; it is a city crammed with the comyentis’ number one enemy: humans. A place where danger for discovery lies high. What Aigle finds next within the walls of the city of Traumermoure is beyond what he could ever have dreamed up. Not only is the girl he followed there, Mallory, been put into a deep sleep from which she cannot wake, but the city’s visitors may face the same fate…

Can Aigle, who has powers beyond men’s understanding, be concerned? Will he risk everything that is at stake for one human girl he hardly knows
To wake Mallory up, he has to enter her dreams…

One click here to get it now: http://hyperurl.co/gjzqlx?IQid=vevo

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THE COMYENTI SERIES by Natasja Hellenthal- an introduction

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This series introduces a unique humanoid species: comyentis who can merge their minds with animals to gain special powers for the greater good. They are beautiful empaths with a love in their heart for all life. But who are they truly? And where do they come from?

Why are they on the planet Bhan? What is their tragic history with humans; their number one enemy, and how come comyenti’s with all their power were once overpowered? Can they come to terms with that and overcome their aversion to humans? What is their one weakness and how can they rise above this? Can comyenti Sula accept being stuck in between two worlds? Can any comyenti really and should they? How powerful are the comyenti’s really? What will the future hold for the comyenti species if they survive at all?

Book One: ‘Call Off The Search’ introduces Sula Comyenti, a nomad halfling who feels neither completely comyenti nor human, and she is neither straight, nor lesbian.

She needs to come to terms with ALL her sides to be able to accept who she really is. Sula has to live her life in hiding because of her unique abilities and to protect herself. Her kind has been brought to the verge of extinction by humans and she might very well be the last one. But she has one dilemma; her search has not led to another comyenti and time is running out: she needs to mate with a human in a last attempt to save her species. But can she overcome her loathing for humans to save her kind from complete annihilation? When she comes across an attractive sensitive farmer, Felix, she thinks he might be the answer. She finally starts to follow her heart as well but with what consequences?

Just when she thinks she has made the right decision, a mysterious dark beautiful stranger turns up, other comyenti Shazar, and with him new dilemma’s arise and danger. We slowly learn more about his past and adventures. But can he be trusted? This is the start of a confusing time for Sula and falling for Felix’s sister, Feline, might or might not help with this.

One-click it here: http://smarturl.it/calloffthesearch?IQid=qr

Book Two: ‘Children Of The Sun’

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The story continues…

Will Sula and Felix ever find out the truth about what really happened to Feline and Shazar’s involvement in her disappearing?

When twenty years later Shazar’s human mate, Ashanna, abruptly dies, he sets off to visit and reconnect with Sula. However, he is closely followed by Twello, his adopted human son who has his own secrets. When they enter Rosinhill they soon discover that Shazar’s iniquitous plan from twenty years ago has worked: Sula has born him a son: Aigle. And with him new hope arises and a new different future for the comyentis is about to begin…
Strenuous relationships follow with Shazar’s and Twello’s arrival, which threaten the life Sula has built for Felix, herself and their children. And that is not all: there is a new danger; much worse than Shazar could ever be, and one that is about to engulf the comyentis and with that their new hope.
Who are these strange shapeshifting creatures and what do they want from Sula and her children? Can the comyentis stop them before it’s too late?
And who are the comyentis really, where do they come from, why are they on Bhan and what is their connection with their new found enemy?

One-click it here: http://smarturl.it/cots2

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NEW RELEASE: Children Of The Sun is finally here after many oreo biscuits and captain morgan’s!!!

If you enjoyed Call Off The Search, book 1 in the Comyenti Series and want to continue reading after the shocking cliffhanger, Book 2 is NOW available worlwide! One- click it here: http://smarturl.it/cots2CHILDRENOFTHESUNCOVERSEPT13

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LAST 3 WEEKS OF PROMO BOOK 1 UNTIL BOOK 2 IS RELEASED OCTOBER 13TH

********#Fantasy #Series ********
Book 1: http://smarturl.it/calloffthesearch?IQid=qr FREE in KindleUnlimited
Book 2: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00N2U9GE6 (pre-order)

The comyentis are different; beautiful and mysterious, possessing powers of which humans can only dream. And for this, they are hated, persecuted. For millennia, humanity has murdered and enslaved the peaceful comyentis wherever they find them. Jealous of their ability to merge their minds with animals to use their powers, to empathise with other beings on a deep spiritual level and even hear their thoughts, they seek out and destroy them.
Half-breed Sula, one of the last of her kind, lives in hiding. With not just her own life but her whole species’ held precariously within her hands, she feels the weight of her responsibility. As loneliness and alienation slowly engulf her, an attractive young human enters her world and she is torn. Should Sula trust him? Can she afford not to? Will she be able to overcome her aversion to humans to save her species from extinction? A life as a wandering hermit, or risk everything for love?
Sula’s life becomes further complicated when she meets another comyenti and is forced to make a decision. Follow her head or her heart? ***

COTSSERIESPROMO

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Books that inspired me as a person and writer, part 1 Manfred Kyber

Inspirational Books Part 1: Manfred Kyber

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Manfred Kyber

Manfred Kyber, born on March 1, 1880 in Riga, Latvia (then under Russian rule), grew up on his father’s estate. He studied philosophy in Leipzig and later moved to Berlin, where he lived for ten years and published his first works. He lived in Löwenstein, Württemberg (southern Germany) since 1923. In addition to poems, a novel, plays, theater criticism and an introduction to occultism, he primarily wrote fairy tales and animal stories – partially humorous, partially serious – which, reminiscent of La Fontaine, humanize animals to a certain degree to convey their feelings and elaborate on philosophical questions. He became famous for his stories “Unter Tieren” (“Among Animals”). He was a pacifist and advocate of animals’ rights. He died on March 10, 1933 in Löwenstein.

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As a child I was lucky to have discovered this wonderful writer who in more than one ways has helped me sooth, uplift and strengthen me at the start of my life and inspired me as a person and as a writer.

There are two books that stand out for me: ‘Die drei Lichter der kleinen Veronika’ (Engl. translation: The Three Candles of Little Veronica: The Story of a Child’s Soul in This World and the Other), novel, 1920 and ‘Tiergeschichten’.

‘Veronika’s Drievoudig Licht’ as it’s called in my native Dutch, is a beautiful profound and insightful story about the spiritual connection we are all having with one another and the burdens we are carrying in this life. It’s about a sensitive little girl with an old soul who can still see and hear the things around us, that most of us can’t any longer. She can talk to animals and sees elves, gnomes(who can be black or white) and spirits and angels in her favourite garden. She is protected on her life’s journey by her uncle, Johannes, who is connected to her through out many lives as a sort of guardian angel.

“-Worst of all is that you people understand less and less of it all when your body ages and it entangles itself with you.- ‘Have we come to this earth to become stupid?’, Veronika asked, ‘that would be strange?’‘No,’ said the elf, ‘you only become stupid because it grows darker around you and then you’ll have to find the light to understand everything again. And if you have found the light in the darkness then your understanding of life has improved. God has given this task to humanity to find the light. They shouldn’t just look for it and find it for themselves, but also for the animals, the plants and the rocks, and for the elves and the gnomes and for all that lives with them.”

“We have to do this voluntarily, Veronica. We have to try to help each other with carrying the burdens, for people, animals and all that lives. That is the way to the light.”

This emotional story will touch almost everyone that reads it, as the mysticism that is embedded in it is understood and sensed. It is a story of the heart; that cannot be reached by the thought process.

I have until now only read it two or three times in my life, but I often thought back about it and it made me want to re-read it. It has certainly helped and changed me.

“There is a distance that once was, that’s where we come from. There is distance, that once will be, that’s where we’re going to. Yet every distance is close by if we think about it. Build your temples and light works, light your candles, you who live in the now and remember: midnight is over and morning has arrived.”

‘Tiergeschiften’ (collected animal stories) is an anthology of fables with depth and insight where animals are the main characters. It’s written at the beginning of the last century but can still be read as freshly as then. Subjects such as anti-vivisection, anti-hunting, vegetarianism and animal love are as modern as ever.

Manfred Kyber is a master storyteller and animal activist who uses a combination of the show and tell technique without ever being long winded or preachy. His characters touches your heart and are as real as people with the same emotions and pain.

“Animals, just like us, have their own sense of humour and tragedy. Between us and them are similarities and mutual affairs. People often believe that between them and other animals there is a deep abyss. It’s only a minor rotation of the wheel of life. Because all of us are children of a unity. To understand nature, we have to understand her creatures. To understand a creature, we have to look upon it as our sibling.”

“The world is full of unheard cries for help. There are people that don’t hear them. It seems impossible to count all those in vain unheard calls. There are that many. But they are all counted. They are written down in the book of life.”

Bibliography

Der Schmied vom Eiland, poems, 1908
Unter Tieren, animal stories, 1912
Genius astri [Engl. translation: Genius astri: thirty-three poems], poems, 1918
Märchen, fairy tales, 1920 
Im Gang der Uhr, novellas, 1922
Einführung in das Gesamtgebiet des Okkultismus, 1923
Neue Tiergeschichten, animal stories, 1926
Puppenspiel, fairy tale, 1928
Die drei Lichter der kleinen Veronika [Engl. translation: The Three Candles of Little Veronica: The Story of a Child’s Soul in This World and the Other], novel, 1920
Gesammelte Tiergeschichten, collected animal stories (combines Unter Tieren and Neue Tiergeschichten; the collection won the Literature Award of the Bureau International Humanitaire Zoophile in Geneva in 1930), 1934
Gesammelte Märchen, collected fairy tales, 1935

Other English translations (all out of print)
The Mouseball
The Little Slipper Man

 

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