Magick, Ritual, and Symbolism in the Cat in the Hat.

Within the next generation I believe that the world’s rulers will discover that infant conditioning and narco-hypnosis are more efficient, as instruments of government, than clubs and prisons, and that the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience.  (Aldous Huxley in a 1949 letter to George Orwell)

Two children stare blankly at the rain through the four-paned window of their little red box of a house.


They sit on two red four-legged chairs doing nothing except wishing for something to do.

We can’t help but compare them to the pet fish stuck in the bowl next to them or even the toys sitting idly on the floor. The ball may wish to be bounced; the bicycle, perhaps, hopes for a rider.

Beyonce Baphomet Bike

The red-ringed ball contains a five-pointed star (pentagram) with a single point down and two points up. Represented in two dimensions that sphere could be a ringed circle.  The pentagram within the magic circle is an important symbol in ritual magic. When the horned Goat of Mendes is placed within the pentagram we have the Sigil of Baphomet -which just so happens to be the official, copy-written symbol for the Church of Satan. That shape is also a common symbol in Freemasonic Orders including the Order of the Eastern Star.

I snapped a picture of this one above a doorway at the Mormon temple in Salt Lake City.


No, I’m not saying Seuss is a secret Mormon or Satanist! Anton Lavey founded the church of Satan in 1966, nine years after The Cat in the Hat’s 1957 publishing date. I’m merely pointing out a common symbol in magic and the occult. More on that later…

It appears the two children’s wish upon a star comes true with a jump-inducing bump.


The physical book or text of The Cat in the Hat parallels the character of the cat within the story: once the book has been brought into the home the cat has also entered the house and the inhabitants become observers of the unfolding story. Mom is already out of the picture -even though it may actually be her voice narrating and giving permission to the intrusion. The story is entering our heads -or our children’s heads –into their hats, so to speak.


This cat in a hat calls to mind the age-old magicians’ trick of pulling a rabbit from a hat. (In the highly anticipated sequel **Spoiler Alert** the cat pulls tiny versions of himself out of progressively smaller cats’ hats.) The black cat’s tall stove-pipe hat is of similar shape to the stage magician’s top-hat and he also dons the magician’s stereotypical white gloves. He wears the uniform and performs tricks.

Actually, this cat looks a lot more like a dude in a cat suit (or maybe Uncle Sam in a cat suit) then an actual feline: long limbs, upright posture, flat feet, five fingers per hand, and even carries an umbrella.

Black cats are the frequent companions of witches and magicians and usually indicate an ill omen. The door is not locked, and the children have been left completely undefended. In action and personality they are little more than the door-mat the cat steps in upon. Children reading the book naturally identify with Sally and her brother in their silent acceptance.

So we have obvious magical elements and a character who may not be what he appears to be who is now inside. In Western Hollywood-programmed culture most people pretty much accept anything that’s ostensibly made for entertainment without question; certainly those who make cute books to teach and entertain children are unlikely to be anything more than sincere folks who just want to make learning to read fun, right?

Seuss self Portrait cat
Seuss as he sees himself: A creep in a disguise who you’ve allowed into your home.

Dr. Seuss is generally considered to be a sort of super-genius who cracked the code for teaching children to read. It’s easy to confuse marketing and reality: Seuss’s “genius” was promoted heavily by is publisher Random House and his work was spread in part by the Rockefellers. Ted Geisel’s biggest checks in his advertising days came from Standard Oil. Ted (who wrote The Grinch supposedly as a scathing rebuke of corporate greed) was instrumental in getting the united States into war with both Japan and Germany.

Those who push his work today cringe when they see his portrayal of the Japanese and his concise efforts to have them confined to internment camps..

Seuss received early criticism for failing to impart any moral lesson in his books. Many believe that he turned this trend around in later years as his books became more political. He taught children everywhere how to be antiwar while still promoting….well…..WAR!!!

Before becoming a successful children’s author, Ted Geisel was an expert in bypassing the defenses of adults by compelling them to buy products from some of the most powerful corporations in the world. His famous work for Standard Oil managed to inject “Quick, Henry, the Flit!” into the public consciousness.

Seuss’s cartoons portraying public figures opposed to the United States entry into World War II as Nazis sympathizers and even sleeper agents helped create the perception that war was inevitable and that Germans where inhuman brutes hell-bent on taking over the world.

Nelson Rockefeller actively pushed Ted Geisel’s cartoons in PM magazine in South America (serving as an agent of the United States of America)

While PM was little known in Latin America, and Dr. Seuss even less so, Ted’s cartoons grew notorious there through the efforts of Nelson Rockefeller, another Dartmouth alumnus, who coordinated inter-American affairs for the State Department. That office distributed Ted’s cartoons and they were widely reprinted. Ted said, “Nelson found very few [other] cartoons…that cautioned the country that we were going to get into the war.” (Morgan, Judith & Neil. Dr. Seuss & Mr. Geisel  1995 p.103)

Thanks in part to Seuss’s propaganda, business was booming for Standard Oil. Germany could not have taken over Europe without Standard Oil. The German air force could not have done the long-range damage that it did without the necessary Standard Oil additive. Selling to both sides is lucrative. Kind of like being antiwar and demonizing every prominent peace activist as stupid, insane, cowards, or nazis so the richest people in the world can profit on both ends.

We all know the agreed upon backstory: before Dr. Seuss came along and made reading fun, children had to suffer through boring Dick and Jane books. The Cat in the Hat marked a significant milestone because Theodor Seuss Geisel (the Dr. Seuss character was created using “Ted’s” mother’s maiden name (pronounced Zoyce) with a fictitious honorific (though he would later be awarded honorary doctorates for his “brilliant work”)) managed to write a book with only two hundred thirty six unique words! We did some scientific studies and found out that children are way smarter when they know less words. I know…it seems counter-intuitive but it’s science so except it or we’ll skin you alive and burn your insides until you accept the truth.


Like all good public relations and intelligence operations,  by the time the book was released, the public had already been primed through cleverly veiled marketing in a pseudo-scholarly article in Henry Luce’s May 24, 1954 Life Magazine (p.136): With all the stimulation of television, books just ain’t interesting enough to keep the kids’ attention! We have a problem: The children are too bored to learn to read!! We’re losing the children!!! What’s our reaction? We’re Americans so we’re not going to just sit idly by while our teachers forget how to teach children how to read, we’re going to do something!! Which brings us to the solution (introduced, of course, in a casual enough manner to keep it from feeling like an advertisement but firm enough to make it totally obvious that THIS IS THE SOLUTION): Oh yeah, there’s this brilliant Dr. Seuss who somehow managed to figure out how to make reading fun!

Kids Can't Read!!

The Cat in the Hat may or may not successfully teach children to read, but it absolutely teaches them to silently accept what should be alarming intrusions. In the story, the children never challenge the intruder in even the slightest way. They didn’t know what to say and their mom was gone so….They say absolutely nothing.

It is an ancient rule of both the moral and common law that silence connotes consent –silence and a lack of meaningful action constitute consent in the face of these crimes. (Hoffman, Michael A. Secret Societies and Psychological Warfare  p.79)


The cat in the hat does most of the talking and his favorite topics are inversion of the natural order and his “tricks.” Rather then explaining that the sun is obscured by rain clouds, he declares that “the sun is not sunny” and only the pet fish responds to his odd statements (and trespassing) while the human beings (who supposedly possess their own voices, free will, and judgement) silently go along with everything.

10-11Fish v. Cat

The Cat’s first big trick is all about inversion (and bullying) as he raises the fish and its bowl of water (which would naturally seek the low places) high in the air above his umbrella (which usually shelters anything below it from rain). The more the fish protests, the higher he goes!

12-13up fish

Here are some action shots of the children bravely watching the cat torture their terrified pet without uttering a word. (Go ahead and snap some action shots of your kids watching the kids watching the bullying for some meta fun!)

To begin his “trick” the Cat jumps up on top of the starred globe: a three-dimensional representation of the magic circle and pentagram in which the magician stands to conduct his ritual.

This pose that the cat strikes during this ritual invokes the image of the hanged man. Again that symbol is inverted so that rather then hang upside down, the cat is balancing right-side up and propping the water above his head.

The hanged man (from the popular Rider Waite tarot deck) hangs by his right leg with his left crossed behind. The cat balances on his right leg with his left crossed behind but instead of crossing his arms behind his back he crosses them in front. The youth’s hair hangs down and his head shines like the sun while the cat wears his silly striped hat.

Why strike such a specific and archetypal pose?  The hanged man is the twelfth key of the tarot deck or the letter Mem. Here’s a passage from the Hanged Man chapter of Paul Foster Case’s book The Tarot:

Water, the element represented by Mem, is the first mirror. Water reflects images upside-down, and this idea is carried out by the symbolism and title of Key 12, which is a symbol of reflected life, of life in image, of life in the forms taken by the occult “water,” or cosmic substance. (p.135)

So we have this idea of flipping something upside-down (which is literally happening with the fish being pushed up up up), we have the mirrored image of the hanging cat, and the magic act of reflecting life in the images of this blue book. The Cat in the Hat as physical text draws children who read it into this artificial image of children giving their attention to a cat in a hat; this layering causes a kind of dissociation and ramps up the power of the magic.

2-3 WindowSquareHeadsdscn2541

The watery theme comes through in the rain outside. The view through the window through which the children stare is blue, and this is mirrored as real children stare into another kind of blue window: the panes of the open blue book. The evening news anchors are always surrounded by blue because it puts the viewer at ease and encourages receptivity.


Paul Foster Case goes on to write that the meaning of the title “Hanged Man” is “suspended mind.” (p.135) and later that the “Mem is mute, like water.” (p.138). This is pretty interesting in light of the fact that, again, only the creature who lives in water speaks and the children are silent and receptive. In the actual archetype, the light of the mind shines like the sun from the hanging youth’s head; the cat’s head is, of course, covered by both his red and white striped hat and mocking grin. In this perversion of the archetype, “the sun is not sunny.”

14-15 Grinning Head

The alchemist principle of the Revelation of the Method has as its chief component, a clown-like, grinning mockery of the victim(s) as a show of power and macabre arrogance. When this is performed in a veiled manner, accompanied by certain occult signs and symbolic words and elicits no meaningful response of opposition or resistance from the target(s), it is one of the most efficacious techniques of psychological warfare and mind-rape. (Hoffman, Michael A. Secret Societies and Psychological Warfare  p.78)

This tall hat calls to mind the image of the barber pole. In the Middle Ages barbers used their sharp implements to actually perform blood letting and surgeries. That familiar pole may refer to the staff the patients squeezed to increase blood flow. Another origin theory has bloody bandages hung to dry from the top of a pole outside the barber shop; the wind twirled the white bandages over and around the now bloody pole in the familiar candy cane configuration. Barber poles are usually spinning, and the red and white stripes have a hypnotic effect that creates an optical illusion of stripes that forever climb or descend the pole.

In Aleister Crowley’s Book of Thoth section on The Hanged Man, he points out that “water is the element of illusion”(p.97) and Seuss’s cat’s pose has the light of the mind covered with a hypnotic optical illusion.

The Cahokia mounds make up the largest earthworks in America and just so happen to sit below the gateway to the west: St. Louis arch. Long ago the Cahokia had a

red-striped pole of the kind known to have been used by certain southern tribes to display the heads or severed limbs of their battle captives….the inscribed stone plaque found at Cahokia…shows two human heads hanging from a striped pole. (Grimstad, William N. p.240)

So we have the idea of this red-striped pole within a doorway or penetrating the threshold of this great arch and…severed heads.

So why does the cat wear this red striped hat and what’s the purpose of his “trick?” Let’s go back to Paul Foster Case’s description of the lesson imparted by the hanged man:

The only logical and sensible course of conduct is a complete self-surrender. This surrender begins in the mind.

6-7 Doormats

Ironically, Mr. Case specifically states that “Nobody who follows this course ever becomes a human door mat (p.139)” so Seuss’s version is a perversion of this teaching and used to mock the victims. Total surrender, not to the perfect plan of the Creator or even the “Universal Mind” that P.F. Case writes about, but the surrender of children in what is beginning to look like black magic.

Atu (p.35) means house or key in ancient Egyptian. Here’s more from Cowley’s chapter on The Hanged Man: “The Atu [here referring to the 12th Key: The Hanged Man] represents the sacrifice of “a male child of perfect innocence and high intelligence.” This has always been a highly controversial line from Crowley that his public relations minded followers insist is symbolic.

Crowley goes on to point out:

Mem is one of the three great Mother Letters… Moreover, Water is peculiarly the Mother Letter, for both since Shin and Aleph (the other two) represent masculine ideas.

The symbolism in The Cat and the Hat forms a fairly cohesive foundation but the archetypes are combined and twisted in a way that approaches the perverse. Surely someone who wrote some of the most popular children’s books of all time wouldn’t be into such things, right? Let’s take a look at one of Ted Geisel’s less well-known drawings to get a glimpse his mindset.


It’s pretty much taken as fact that a whole generation of children can read because of Dr. Seuss but I would like to see the studies conducted with a proper control group of children who had no interaction with Seuss whatsoever. Learning to read can be just another avenue to danger if it just provides another avenue for propaganda. A child who can read but has no discernment skills, is probably better off not reading at all. In today’s world everyone is falling over themselves to avoid appearing judgemental. Good judgement is a relic of the past now that discrimination is a bad thing.

[Def. of discrimination from 1937 Dictionary compared to today?]

If Dr. Seuss’s creation methodology was truly was just letting his imagination go wild (which is definitely the consistent cover story (which doesn’t at all mean it isn’t true!)) then whatever muse or inspirational ether dropped these symbols into his mind hopefully did so to benefit mankind.

The Cat in the Hat was the flagship book of Beginner books: the Random House imprint aimed at young children that was run by Ted Geisel, his wife Helen (who committed suicide after Ted fell in love with a younger married woman) and Phyllis Fraser, second wife of the founder of Random House, Bennet Cerf. Random House was and remains one of the largest publishers in the world. (It is still the world’s largest publisher of general interest paperbacks.)

Bennet Cerf was a Jewish fella whose mother was a tobacco heiress. Throughout his life he was one of Ted Geisel’s biggest cheerleaders and told anyone who would listen that of all the talent at Random house, only Ted Geisel was a grue genius. Mr. Cerf said that he would publish anything that Ted created.


In 1939 that meant publishing Ted Geisel’s tasteless attempt at adult fiction. The Seven Lady Godivas tells (and unfortunately illustrates) the story of seven naked sister’s whose father, Lord Godiva, dies after being thrown from a horse.


“I swear,” swore each [of the seven naked sisters], “That I shall not wed until I have brought to the light of this world some new and worthy Horse Truth, of benefit to man.”

Yes, that’s the foundation of the story. The sisters were already each betrothed to a different brother of the Peeping family (Peeping Jack, Peeping Harry, Peeping Dick -you get the idea.) So after each has a naked interaction with a horse, each sister is bestowed a Horse Truth like “Don’t ever look a gift-horse in the mouth” and “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.”


This book represents such a pronounced lapse of judgement that I think it calls the whole “Seuss is a genius” thing into question. I would be a bit more forgiving if he had published this in College or even in his twenties. Unfortunately, Ted was thirty-five years old when this was released upon the world. Go to the library and check it out. This is one of the lamest books I have ever held. I wish I could include every single picture from this monstrosity but here’s a couple more just to whet your curiosity:


Anyway, back to his children’s book published after Ted had gained 18 more years worth of wisdom.

We first saw the pentagram on page two of The Cat in the Hat and that shape reappears throughout the book. Manly P. Hall literally wrote the book on magic and the occult. His famous 1928 tome has this to say about the pentagram

The pentagram is the figure of the microcosm-the magical formula of man. It is the one rising out of the four -the human soul rising from the bondage of the animal nature (p.323).

[The pentagram] is the time-honored symbol of the magical arts, and signifies the five properties of the Great Magical Agent, the five senses of man, the five elements of nature, the five extremities of the the human body. By means of the the pentagram within his own soul, man not only may master and govern all creatures inferior to himself, but may demand consideration at the hands of those superior to himself (p.326).

Here we have this mocking beast standing atop of an inverted symbol of man that has been sloppily inscribed on a child’s play thing. Here’s what Hall has to say about the misuse of the pentagram:

The pentagram is used extensively in black magic, but when so used its form always differs in one of three ways: The star may be broken at one point by not permitting the converging lines to touch; it may be inverted by having one point down and two up; or it may be distorted by having the points of varying lengths. When used in black magic, the pentagram is called the “sign of the cloven hoof,” or the footprint of the Devil. The star with two points upward is also called the “Goat of Mendes,” because the inverted star is the same shape as a goat’s head. When the upright star turns and the upper point falls to the bottom. It signifies the fall of the Morning Star (p. 327).

(My page numbers are from the Tarcher/Penguin Reader’s Edition.  There are plenty of online and downloadable versions. The relevant chapter is XXII Ceremonial Magic and Sorcery which can be read online here.)

When used in magic, the pentagram and circle are typically drawn with great care so that its dimensions are perfect, balanced, and unbroken. This one is drawn with slightly different dilapidations on each page and the cat breaks the circle (after assuring the fish, “I will not let you fall”) by falling off the ball and therefore out of the circle.

Gravity rights his inverted pose and the cat falls, spilling the milk and the fish bowl in a kind of mock baptism. Interestingly, Aleister Crowley’s Book of Tarot (The Book of Thoth) says this about the 12th key or The Hanged Man:

It represents the spiritual function of water in the economy of initiation; it is a baptism, which is also a death.

We are told he fell on his head and (after he hits the ground on page 24) we see that the children have been decapitated. Well, only their heads remain as their bodies momentarily disappear behind what has now become a red box on page 25.


This image with the children’s bodiless heads is foreshadowed at the beginning when we only see their heads -each framed in the bottom two panes of the window. Notice the previously closed window now appears to be open. The bottom half of the window no longer has a divider. That little ritual of surrender appears to have had a real effect! The children are wide open and firmly in the thrall of the sorcerer. The fish is also no longer in his bowl of water but has landed in a tea kettle with a handle and spout.


This image sets up the cat’s second trick by presenting the audience with two boxes. The two children, of course, are already in the red box house (now with the window open), but now stand in front of the white cube (on which the fish kettle rests) as cat suit dude brings in a red box that is hooked shut.

The red box locks with a hook: fishing for children is the aim of this book.

The way that the two boxes balance the set of pages implies that the cat’s Things (waiting in their red box) and the the boy and Sally (waiting in (front of) their box) are connected. The fish is also in a container, at the beginning in a typical fish bowl, but now in a kettle.

So the window is open and the fish is in a vessel for pouring. The implication is that now there is an opening to allow a pouring of something into something else: a transfer or transference. The boxed and ritually decapitated children wait to see what will happen to them next.


This brings us back to the first shot of the children where only their heads are visible in two four square sections of the window. The two squares of the window panes above them are empty and the imbalance gets the reader’s subconscious mind ready for the introduction of Thing One and Thing Two as these children’s other halves while reinforcing the idea of decapitation. The heads are boxed in the way that the minds of the children reading are contained within the narrative: a kind of artificial trap -detached from the real world.

2-3 WindowSquareHeads

The cat releases two humanoid play-things that he has dehumanized to the point of calling them Thing One and Thing Two. Even without any deeper analysis this is pretty gosh-darn creepy: they are kept in a box and called Thing One and Thing Two.

The Cat tells the children that the Things are tame and pats them like…well…pets.


The two Things and the two children parallel each other. Both sets wait in their red boxes as little more than play-things. Neither set speaks up for themselves.

Things 1 and 2 are designed to be more interesting then the children. They actually take the opportunity of getting out of the box to, you know, run around and play.

They said, “How do you do?                                                                                                        Would you like to shake hands                                                                                                    With Thing One and Thing Two?”

And Sally and I                                                                                                                               Did not know what to do.
So we had to shake hands                                                                                                             With Thing One and Thing Two.


Again, the children don’t know what to do so they just do what they’re told by a child-trafficking stranger in a creepy disguise. Ted Geisel at least remains consistent as the same advice is still being suggested in Dr. Seuss’s last published book (Oh, The Places You’ll Go):

And when things start to happen,                                                                                               Don’t worry. Don’t stew.                                                                                                                 Just go right along.                                                                                                                          You’ll start happening, too.

Having their potential victims pre-programmed in this way is every pedophile’s dream come true. I’ve seen no direct evidence that Ted Geisel physically abused children. He was instead a generous genius hell-bent on teaching children to read (though he had no children of his own).

The two sets of boxed creatures touch when they shake hands and there is an implication of transference represented by both the fish’s transition to the pourable kettle and the opening of the window. This implication is then underscored by the fact that Thing One and Thing Two immediately begin flying kites: toys that typically blow in the wind and are attached to children by strings.

The kites themselves both have a tessellated pattern of white and red that illustrates the relationship between the two children and the two things.


The origins of the word tessellated (from the Online Etymology Dictionary):

tessellated (adj.) Look up tessellated at
1690s, from Late Latin tessellatus “made of small square stones or tiles,” past participle of tesselare, from tessella “small square stone or tile,” diminutive of tessera “a cube or square of stone or wood,” perhaps from Greek tessera, neuter of tesseres, Ionic variant of tessares “four” (see four), in reference to four corners. Related: Tessellate (v.), a 1791 back-formation (from 1826 as an adjective, 1909 as a noun); tessellating.

So we have square stones or cubes that intersect and touch each other that form a kind of mosaic or checkered pattern.

Two children wearing white shirts and two Things wearing red shake hands and then the Things begin to fly their red and white checkered kites: they are connected by strings to play-things. These strings run through and around the children, and a very interesting effect is achieved by flipping back and forth between p.39 and 45. Both sets of pages contain two red and white kites with their strings crossed. Both sets of pages contain both sets of children/things. We are witnessing another version of the handshake on pages 34 and 35.


When flipping back and forth between these pages, the Things on pages 38 and 39 appear in the exact places where the children stand on pages 44 and 45. If this theory seems too outlandish, Ted Geisel was known to tack up all the pages of his books on on cork-board in his office (find place in Dr. Seuss: Rhymes and Reasons Documentary on Youtube). He always maintained a view of the pages side by side up on the wall and this little substitution would be very clear when laid out in such a way.

The Things and their kites expand the mess the cat started as they run around the house reeking havoc and turning everything upside-down. The kites are much like the children in the story in that they have no direction or impetus in and of themselves. Neither are very interesting until someone (or some wind) comes along to move them.


In the mother’s bedroom one kite bumps the head of her single bed as her new gown slides along the other kite’s string. This is a disturbing image: the mother’s pink, red and white dotted dress flying around the house like a ghost and it foreshadows her imminent arrival home.


The fish is the first to see the mother approaching through the window as its kettle slides along the kite string toward the open window to reinforce this transfer: a pour-able vessel sliding toward an open window along a string that connects children and play-things. (Notice the way his spout drips when he spots the children’s mother.)


When it appears that his mother will discover the truth of what has happened by catching this creepy cat and its playthings in the house, the heretofore silent and go-along-to-get-along boy springs into action: trapping the Things in his gigantic net with a “plop”. He now commands the cat:

“Now you do as I say.                                                                                                                      You pack up those Things                                                                                                              And you take them away!”

This reminds me of Alice in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland where Alice, who knows nothing about the “Jaberwocky [sic]” and has no desire to kill it or anyone else, is drawn into the fictional dialectic of the fanciful Wonderland and ends up doing the very thing she said she would not do: kill the “Jaberwocky [sic]”. The standoffish boy who never knew what to do and so far hasn’t really committed any real crimes, assists the Thing trafficker in recapturing his Things.


The real issue is not the children getting busted for allowing a mess to be created while they are home alone. Like Alice in Wonderland, getting the subject or victim to take right action within the totally artificial framework of the narrative is key to taking control of them. An intruder came into the house and made a huge mess. He then brought in a couple of human-like creatures that he keeps locked in a box who expanded the mess. The children haven’t really done anything wrong until the boy assisted the perpetrator by re-kidnapping his Things and in doing so allows more time to clean up the criminal evidence.


It’s frustrating to watch children programmed to do nothing when such a potentially dangerous intrusion occurs; still, the fact that the silent witnesses somehow share culpability is nonsense. Yes, it’s good to assert yourself when your space is invaded, but if you’re a child it’s ok to just wait for mom. The boy didn’t appear to be in immediate danger and there was a good chance his mom would walk in and catch the perp as she’s literally steps away from the door!


It’s only the dialogue between the fish and the cat that creates the frame which propels the boy to take action to prevent his mother from seeing the evidence of the crime. Now he is the kind of dude that traps peopley Things like animals. It’s almost like a little bit of wild Thing got into him. Fortunately he’s learning to cage the wild side when he needs to keep up appearances.

The frame (delivered earlier by the fish) implied that the cat had released something that must be kept hidden. The boy has captured what is now a part of himself and given it over to the cat. The children have this thingness inside them and those children observing this story through the text window may receive the impression that the fun playful side of them has a devious quality that has to be kept under wraps, locked in the red box and let out only at certain times when there is no risk of getting caught. This is a dangerous dissociation and fragmentation of the psyche of very young children.

All this imagery of transfer and connection between the Things and the children solidifies the implication of a relationship between the children and the Things. Do the children become part Thing or do the Things take with them part of the children? Does the ritual swap them out so that the cat kidnaps the children in his box and leaves Things? What does he take with him?

What is important is the effect of the story and the symbolism on the young readers. The Things bestow a kind of energy and human playfulness onto the boring thing-like children. The only thing that differentiates them from the other toys lying around the house is the action taken after they have been touched by the Things.

As the cat takes the Things out of the red box the boy holds the fish and kettle in one hand and the now grounded kite in the other as Sally holds her mother’s now limp dress. This hints to the effect of the overall interaction. The children hold the image of a fish in a bowl. They’re pets like the Things are pets: waiting to be played with. Holding the kite implies this idea of playthings who are moved by forces outside themselves and move like puppets on strings; now that the cat is out of the house, the kite leans on the ground; the empty dress held by Sally is lying limply on the floor.

When they see the cat’s dandy cleanup machine both the fish and the children are won over completely. Look at those smiles! We can be sure that they will be receptive to future visits from strangers!


The cat in the hat always keeps his hands in very strange configurations – consistently keeping his pinky finger separated from his other fingers in a way that almost makes it look like he is wearing mittens with separate finger sleeves for the thumb and the pinky. Even his red cleaning machine cleans with hands that have their pinkies dangling away from the other fingers of each white-gloved hand.

As the cat finally drives out, the children enthusiastically wave goodbye in a way that mirrors this odd behavior. It looks like a strange hand signal where the thumb and pinky finger are deliberately separated from the middle three fingers. Strangely enough their mother comes through the door in a most awkward and unnatural way; she leads with hand raised in exactly the same odd finger configuration. It’s not quite a wave but really looks more like a purposeful hand signal (or deliberate shadow puppet).


Aleister Crowley made a similar gesture; however, though his pinky is separate from his hand, the space between his pinky and other fingers is not as pronounced as it is when the children and their mother perform it. Interestingly enough, the gesture is called the Oath of Secrecy. Unfortunately in Richardson’s Monitor of Freemasonry on page 86 where that sign is displayed I could discern no pinky separation so make of that what you may.

The very page where the mother performs this alleged Oath of Secrecy contains this text:

Should we tell her about it?                                                                                                         Now, what should we do?                                                                                                             Well. . .                                                                                                                                               What would YOU do                                                                                                                      If your mother asked YOU?

While this book may be effective at helping children read it comes at the great cost of reducing them to things and actually seems to enact a kind of ritual magic that captures and compartmentalizes those attributes which most make children children.

Go ahead. Read this book to your children over and over and over again. I’m sure it’s just a bit of harmless fun.

For those immersed in the media driven consumeristic materialist “culture” cluttered is the default. We have a ton of garbage around us for no reason other than that we haven’t taken the time to take a serious look at the Who What When Where Why How at the things we’re consuming and the elements that are shaping our environment. There’s nothing wrong with asking whether something we’re feeding our children over and over again is working for their overall health and well-being.

The cat bears some resemblance to Uncle Sam and the book feature’s the color’s of the American flag. Ted Geisel worked for the U.S. government during world war, too. He wrote the film shown to the troops before conducting their new policing  jobs in post-war Germany. Before the end of the war, Seuss Geisel traveled around Europe with  screening his film for each of the active American generals and at least get ‘tacit approval’ from each one.

Of all the generals on his list, from Eisenhower down, only George Patton escaped Ted’s screening. “Somebody else took the film and played it for Patton. . . . I was told he said, ‘Bullshit!’ and walked out of the room. (Morgan, Judith and Neil p.113)


Romans 1:22,23, and 25 says:

Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles…They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator.


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