This rather long quote is most of the last paragraph from J.C.Cooper's 'Fairy Tales: Allegories of Inner Life'.
"The tales meet the deep-seated psychic and spiritual needs of the individual as myth does for the race; both follow traditional lines and obey universal laws of symbolism. Through them runs the constant motif of man’s struggle to find his true worth, his inner self, his place in the universe. The themes deal with creation, paradise lost and regained, the union of the opposites, initiation, the conflict between the powers of good and evil, the meaning of life, a meaning which can vary from the moral and social to the psychological or the mythological and spiritual according to each person’s interpretation and needs.
But, psychological or spiritual, the chief motif is that of initiation and integration, the transformation of man himself by himself with supernatural aid, the transition from the mortal to the immortal in the ever-recurring cycle of birth, death and rebirth until that, too, is transcended and he can live happily ever after."
Cooper, J. C. Fairy tales: Allegories of the Inner Life. (Wellingborough: Aquarian
Press, 1983) 154.