Rich discusses Guinevere as a mythical character who embodies a set of mythical traditions that span several centuries. Often depicted differently her legacy has yet to be fully recognized because she is overshadowed by Arthur. This book seeks to correct that problem and fill in a gap in the scholarship by providing an extensive study of the ways she has been represented from medieval times until today. Rich draws on notable scholarship like C.G. Jung's individuation process, and Joseph Campbell's hero journey, as she strives to uncover an authentic account of Guinevere's story. This work explores her struggles, honors her otherworldly origins, and imagines her in an androgynous world that allows her to be her own person, marry for love, care for the earth, and tend to soul; not one into which she tries to fit, but one that she helps to shape.
This book honors Hestia, the goddess of the hearth. It fills the gaping void in exclusive scholarship on Hestia and explores her as a pop culture icon in a quest to grasp her relevance for people today. Thinking about Hestia as an archetype of focus and centeredness may offer soulful refuge from the e-chatter overload that people face in their daily lives. It may help fulfill contemporary yearnings for authenticity and wholeness within human hearts and souls by offering us a path homeward, back to connections with people's inner selves (paperback).
The myth of the hero's journey is a symbolic portrayal of the individual's struggle for greater consciousness, psychological wholeness, and spiritual realization. In this book, Keiron Le Grice draws on the ideas and life experiences of C. G. Jung, Joseph Campbell, and Friedrich Nietzsche to explore the spiritual journey of the modern self, from existential crisis and the mystical "awakening of the self" to the dramatic encounter with the underworld of the psyche and the arduous labor of psychological transformation. In a work of wide-ranging scope and insight, Le Grice analyzes myths, religious texts, and scenes from a number of popular films--Jason and the Argonauts, Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, and more--to illuminate the archetypal stages and themes of the hero's journey, helping to make the deepest of transformative experiences more readily intelligible to us all.
"It is a great gift when a scholar has the ability to synthesize ideas from several deep thinkers and multiple disciplines, and then write with a clarity and directness that renders those ideas accessible to a wide readership. It is an even greater gift when that author has integrated these ideas with his own personal journey, so that what he writes has the emotional authenticity and existential relevance of life lived, not merely books studied. In The Rebirth of the Hero, Keiron Le Grice has brought those gifts to his readers in a way that many will find of immense value as they pursue the spiritual adventure of our age." --Richard Tarnas, author of The Passion of the Western Mind and Cosmos and Psyche.
"In this much-needed accessible navigation of the hero's journey, Le Grice gathers dynamic sources--C. G. Jung, Joseph Campbell, and Friedrich Nietzsche--to provide a fresh perspective on the evolution of consciousness and psychospiritual transformation. Exploring the often-avoided subject of death and rebirth experiences from a non-pathological view, he makes an outstanding contribution in offering a freshly-laid path for the individuation process. Most importantly, he invites us to renew the value of myth, which, in turn, transforms the individual, culture, and the heartbeat of the earth." --Kathryn Madden, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief, Quadrant: The Journal of the C. G. Jung Foundation for Analytical Psychology, and author of Dark Light of the Soul.
The study presents the most comprehensive analysis of the descent to the underworld in Modernism. The work shows that the nekyia was the single most important myth for the Modernists writing between 1895 and 1946. It focuses on ‘necrotypes’, symbolic images typically found in association with descent to the underworld. It also takes an interdisciplinary approach to the subject, with chapters on the nekyia in film, science, psychology, and painting. It pays careful attention to the multicultural sources for the myth – Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Greco-Roman, Judeo-Christian, Celtic, Norse, and Native American. “This is a courageous and broadly-sweeping study of many key literary and artistic figures of a crucial half century of creativity in Europe, England, Ireland and the United States . . . . Smith’s study is not simply a survey, but a study in depth, in descent, and in a kind of scholarship that is remarkably free of the current horizontal jargon of literary theory. . . . The book’s interdisciplinary flavor makes such a study an excellent resource not only I showing the confluence of various disciplines but a model for how interdisciplinary studies can be used to see the larger whole of work rather than the narrow confines of a particular agenda.” – Dennis Patrick Slattery
This study presents a comprehensive analysis of the descent to the underworld in Modernism. The book shows that the nekyia was the single most important myth for the Modernists between 1895 and 1946. It focuses on "necrotypes", symbolic images typically found in association with descent to the underworld. It also takes an interdisciplinary approach to the subject, with chapters on the nekyia in film, science, psychology, and painting. It pays careful attention to the multicultural sources for the myth - Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Greco-Roman, Judeo-Christian, Celtic, Norse, and Native American.
"Richards writes skillfully and soulfully about the most pressing issues of our times, and the deeper crisis out of which they have emerged. Drawing from a vast trove of knowledge about the world's religious, mystical, and philosophical traditions, he extracts the most valuable gems, polishes them with the revolutionary insights of modern science, and forges a radiant, new cosmosophy - a universal wisdom that honors the wisdom of the universe. The beauty of this mythos is that it, like the cosmos, is not static but dynamic, inviting our active participation and imaginative engagement. "This book succeeds in instilling reverence for a living universe and hope for a dying planet. May Cosmosophia blossom and flourish in the hearts of all beings!" -Darrin Drda, author of The Four Global Truths
Whatever our cultural and religious background or personal psychology, a greater intimacy with myth provides a vital link with meaning, the absence of which is so often behind the neuroses of our time. Here the acclaimed author of The Middle Passage explains why a connection with our mythic roots is crucial for us as individuals and as responsible citizens of our age.
Riting Myth, Mythic Writing: Plotting Your Personal Story is a both a theoretical as well as interactive book on the nature of personal myth. Its intention is to offer participants who wish to explore further the terms and structure of their personal myth over 80 writing meditations that are spread throughout 9 chapters in order to guide the readers-writers on a pilgrimage into the deepest layers of their personal myth. An added feature of the book are writing meditation responses from participants who have been part of the author's writing retreats in both the United States and Europe. Their power and authenticity attests to the strong desire and need of each of us to explore what myth guides us, what terms it does so within and what one can learn to become more conscious of those deep forces in the psyche that seek expression in all we do and are.
Starting with a new preface that describes the dual nightmares of global terror and global warming, The Water of Life addresses meaning and purpose in personal life and the need to return culture to its mythic context. Meade is a masterful storyteller with a genius for metaphorical thinking; he draws on the power of myths, fairy tales, and his own personal story of descent and transformation during the Vietnam War. At once a mythic journey, a study in depth psychology, and a treatise on initiation The Water of Life addresses the roots of conflict, the recurring hunger for war and the issues of reducing the warrior. Throughout the text the water of life functions as the core symbol for both personal and cultural renewal, and redemption in the spiritual wasteland. Using ideas gleaned from many years working with youth and communities at-risk Meade s writing rings with the echoes of truth and sings with an incantational voice that takes you right to the edge of elemental knowledge.
This new edition includes an introduction by Michael Chabon.
Trickster Lives offers thirteen new and challenging interpretations of trickster in American writing, including essays on works by African American, Native American, Pacific Rim, and Latino writers, as well as an examination of trickster politics. This innovative collection of work conveys the trickster’s unmistakable imprint on the modern world.
We should remember that for the ancients, the underworld was both infernal and Elysian; it was a dual realm, part hell, and part heaven. Like marriage. Like any relationship that lasts longer than three months. Sacred Mysteries explores the wonderful treasury of myths and folktales about marriage bequeathed to us by our ancestors, and which we must pass on to our descendants. What we see in the magic mirror of these myths is that deeper part of ourselves created by the marriage relationship. Sacred Mysteries retells and analyzes those myths and tales of marriage and relationship which involve a hero journey to the otherworld. It focuses on the archetypal symbolism in these marvelous stories, in order to provide a magic mirror of myth in which to reflect upon the mysteries of our relationships - their sorrows and joys, their ups and downs, their losses and recoveries. Joseph Campbell once remarked that marriage is a sacred relationship because it breaks down our egos, but thereby opens us up to a deeper dimension within ourselves. James Hillman would agree, and call marriage a "soul-making" journey, one that takes us down into the depths, where the mythic images of the soul lie buried. Sacred Mysteries celebrates and illuminates the ups and downs of couples on the quest. It focuses exclusively on myths, ballads, poems, stories, and folktales about couples who undertake a journey to the otherworlds within the soul - worlds only marriage and relationship can open up to us. ISBN: 1-57733-126-5, 6x9
A highly original and scholarly work on spirituality by noted historian Mircea Eliade
In The Sacred and the Profane, Mircea Eliade observes that while contemporary people believe their world is entirely profane, or secular, they still at times find themselves connected unconsciously to the memory of something sacred. It's this premise that both drives Eliade's exhaustive exploration of the sacred—as it has manifested in space, time, nature and the cosmos, and life itself—and buttresses his expansive view of the human experience.
What distinguishes this book from previous books on mythology and psychology is that Adams provides so many impressive examples of how myths appear in contemporary life. Adams examines the psychological significance of Oedipus, Odysseus, Hercules, the Hydra, Poseidon, Chronos, Medusa, Tezcatlipoca, the labyrinth, the Minotaur, the griffin, the unicorn, and many other mythological creatures, and concludes by presenting a dream that beautifully exemplifies the “myth of the hero.” With wit and clarity, this book brings us into the incredibly rich psychic reality of the infinitely creative human imagination. Michael Vannoy Adams declares that the ancient gods and goddesses, heroes and heroines, and fabulous creatures are alive and well within us. They exist in the mythological unconscious and emerge in the dreams and fantasies of modern men and women
This book presents the most comprehensive study currently available of the myth of the descent to the underworld in postmodern literature. It develops a theory of necrotypes – archetypal images consistently evoked by the myth of the nekyia – and applies it to close readings of selected works by major authors of the period, from Alejo Carpentier and Octavo Paz to Thomas Pynchon and Ken Kesey. In addition, the study shows how these works exemplify the postmodern practice of ludic syncretism, the playful fusion of materials from a wide variety of multicultural sources, including Classical, Biblical, Mesopotamian, Egyptian, Native American, Nordic, Celtic, and Hermetic mythologies. Finally, it shows how ludic syncretism evolved from High Classical Modernism, in a manner analogous to the evolution of Hellenistic from Classical art, or of Baroque from that of the High Renaissance.
This work provides a comprehensive study of the myth of the descent to the underworld in postmodern literature. It develops a theory of necrotypes - archetypal images consistently evoked by the myth of the nekyia - and applies it to close readings of selected works by major authors of the period.
In Moby-Dick, Herman Melville captured the American whaling industry at its peak, with momentous changes ahead. Here, in "Moby-Dick" and the Mythology of Oil, Bob Wagner casts Melville's epic novel as a lesson for the ages, one that is critical for us in today's petroleum age. Wagner's interpretation of Melville's tale connects directly with today's world, even with today's headlines. Readers concerned with the American economic experience and our relationship with the earth will find much to ponder in Wagner's illumination of the parallels between Melville's time and ours.
Living Myth explores the dilemma of how to live life creatively at a time when the dominant myths of our culture are losing their power to give meaning to our lives. Using C. G. Jung's idea of discovering a "personal myth" D. Stephenson Bond reflects on the psychology of mythic imagination, as a force in both culture and individual life. He argues that meaning is experienced subjectively through the stirring of imagination and fantasy in the individual, which touches the larger impersonal, archetypal patterns. The book offers hopeful insights into the possibilities of cultural renewal and individual meaning through the restoration of the imagination.
At least three major questions can be asked of myth: what is its subject matter? what is its origin? and what is its function? Theories of myth may differ on the answers they give to any of these questions, but more basically they may also differ on which of the questions they ask. C. G. Jung's theory is one of the few that purports to answer fully all three questions. This volume collects and organizes the key passages on myth by Jung himself and by some of the most prominent Jungian writers after him: Erich Neumann, Marie-Louise von Franz, and James Hillman. The book synthesizes the discovery of myth as a way of thinking, where it becomes a therapeutic tool providing an entrance to the unconscious.
In the first selections, Jung begins to differentiate his theory from Freud's by asserting that there are fantasies and dreams of an "impersonal" nature that cannot be reduced to experiences in a person's past. Jung then asserts that the similarities among myths are the result of the projection of the collective rather than the personal unconscious onto the external world. Finally, he comes to the conclusion that myth originates and functions to satisfy the psychological need for contact with the unconscious--not merely to announce the existence of the unconscious, but to let us experience it.
In Quest of the Hero makes available for a new generation of readers two key works on hero myths: Otto Rank's Myth of the Birth of the Hero and the central section of Lord Raglan's The Hero. Amplifying these is Alan Dundes's fascinating contemporary inquiry, "The Hero Pattern and the Life of Jesus." Examined here are the patterns found in the lore surrounding historical or legendary figures like Gilgamesh, Moses, David, Oedipus, Odysseus, Perseus, Heracles, Aeneas, Romulus, Siegfried, Lohengrin, Arthur, and Buddha.
Rank's monograph remains the classic application of Freudian theory to hero myths. In The Hero the noted English ethnologist Raglan singles out the myth-ritualist pattern in James Frazer's many-sided Golden Bough and applies that pattern to hero myths. Dundes, the eminent folklorist at the University of California at Berkeley, applies the theories of Rank, Raglan, and others to the case of Jesus. In his introduction to this selection from Rank, Raglan, and Dundes, Robert Segal, author of the major study of Joseph Campbell, charts the history of theorizing about hero myths and compares the approaches of Rank, Raglan, Dundes, and Campbell.
This book provides an overview of the hero journey theme in literature, from antiquity to the present, with a focus on the imagery of the rites of passage in human life (initiation at adolescence, mid-life, and death). This is the only book to focus on the major works of the literary tradition, detailing discussions of the hero journey in major literary texts. Included are chapters on the literature of Antiquity (Sumerian, Egyptian, Biblical, Greek, and Roman), the Middle Ages (with emphasis on the Arthurian Romance), the Renaissance to the Enlightenment (Shakespeare, Milton, Marvell, Pope, Fielding, the Arabian Nights, and Alchemical Illustration), Romanticism and Naturalism (Coleridge, Selected Grimm's Tales, Bront%, Bierce, Whitman, Twain, Hawthorne, E.T.A. Hoffman, Rabindranath Tagore), and Modernism to Contemporary (Joyce, Gilman, Alifa Rifaat, Bellow, Lessing, Pynchon, Eudora Welty).