deeper meanings of some myths, legends and fables can throw light on man's
own life journey.
One of them is the medieval European myth of Parsifal. This myth belongs to the days of King Arthur and the Round Table.
Folklore of different nations has changed the details a good deal, but fundamentally the story remains the same. It concerns one man's quest for Holy Grail. Originally this meant the chalice of the Last Supper before Crucifixion of Christ, but it later acquired a wider significance. It came to symbolize the chalice that contains the precious, mysterious inner meaning of life, that which will bring enlightenment to men's inner darkness. It has been called the pearl of great price for which all souls hunger.
The hero of the tale is an unsophisticated country youth named Parsifal. Early in his quest he finds the Grail castle, the place where the grail is kept and has a vision of the chalice but the vision vanishes immediately and Parsifal is left with nothing but the Grail hunger. The word "Grail" is related in it's root to the word "gradual", which implies that the finding the Grail must be a gradual process. This is a lesson Parsifal learns. As a valiant knight, he becomes member of the Round Table. He travels a great deal in his search, having many adventures, slaying dragons, overthrowing other knights, helping damsels in distress. For a time he even forgets about his search but, being reminded of it, he sets out again with great determination. If he finds it, this time he will ask the right question so that instead of vanishing the Grail will crown his life with true spiritual success.
His arduous, intense search is finally rewarded. He sees and enters the Grail castle. Within the castle are many knights and ladies, the chief of them being called the Fisher King. He has been deeply wounded by a taste of the highest truth before he is ready to assimilate. Now all he can do is fish. This symbolizes working on himself through some creative activities. Through his suffering, the whole neighborhood is unhappy, poor, unproductive. Some versions of the story say that Parsifal's question to the Fisher King must be "What ails thee, brother?". Such a question reveals the compassion that will saved the world.
But the most important question he must ask is, "Whom the Grail serve?" Than he receives answer, "The Grail serves to the Grail King who resides in the innermost room of the castle since time immemorial."
The Grail King is a symbol of the man's inner God. When Parsifal assimilates this answer, his quest is over, he has reached salvation. Furthermore, the Fisher King is healed and the whole neighborhood , symbolizing humanity, become happy, peaceful and prosperous.