Books: The Power of Myth

joe campbell

The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell

I love the way this book is laid out.  The entire book is an interview with Bill Moyers and was part of a series for PBS in 1985.

Why mythology?  Because it helps to give perspective, it serves as a guidepost to inner problems, mysteries, thresholds of passage.

One cannot find ultimate truth.  A verse from the Tao-te Ching:  “He who thinks he knows, doesn’t know.  He who knows that he doesn’t know, knows.  For in this context, to know is not to know.  And not to know is to know.”

We have no more rites of passages in modern day (especially for men).

It is important to have a sacred place where you can go to think.  Get away from the economic and practicality of everyday life.  Campbell calls this place a bliss station, a place to really think about intention in life.

Go where your body and soul want to go, follow your bliss.  Your life may be a success, but what good would it be if you’ve never done the thing you wanted to do in all your life.

By following your bliss doors will be open to you that you could have never imagined.

“The world is full of people who have stopped listening to themselves or have listened only to their neighbors to learn what they ought to do, how they ought to behave, and what the values are that they should be living for.”

Mythology is poetry and metaphorical.  Saying yes to the adventure of the hero-the adventure of being alive.

Without compassion the religious experience means nothing.


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