By Joseph Campbell
The writer of the bestselling Hero With 1000 Faces touches on topics starting from sleek marriage to virgin births, from Jesus to John Lennon, in an exciting and enjoyable try to clarify our global.
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Additional info for The Power of Myth
II THE JOURNEY INWARD One thing that comes out in myths is that at the bottom of the abyss comes the voice of salvation. The black moment is the moment when the real message of transformation is going to come. At the darkest moment comes the light. MOYERS: Someone asked me, "Why are you drawn to these myths? " Why is this so? Why does it seem that these stories tell me what I know inside is true? Does that come from the ground of my being, the unconscious that I have inherited from all that has come before me?
Life sheds one generation after another, to be born again. The serpent represents immortal energy and consciousness engaged in the field of time, constantly throwing off death and being born again. There is something tremendously terrifying about life when you look at it that way. And so the serpent carries in itself the sense of both the fascination and the terror of life. Furthermore, the serpent represents the primary function of life, mainly eating. Life consists in eating other creatures. You don't think about that very much when you make a nice-looking meal.
In the Hindu story of the Self that felt fear, then desire, then split in two, we have a counterpart of Genesis 2. In Genesis, it is man, not the god, who splits in two. The Greek legend that Aristophanes tells in Plato's Symposium is another of this kind. Aristophanes says that in the beginning there were creatures composed of what are now two human beings. And those were of three sorts: male/female, male/male, and female/female. The gods then split them all in two. But after they had been split apart, all they could think of to do was to embrace each other again in order to reconstitute the original units.
The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell