Category: MythBlast

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Dune: Breakthrough as Breakdown of the One

The release of Denis Villeneuve’s remake of Frank Herbert’s influential sci-fi novel Dune has its entire fandom reflecting back on what made the novels great, thus bringing to mind the mythic dimension of the...

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The Beautiful, Hidden Harmony of Chaos

“We all know the myth of the four ages—of gold, silver, bronze, and iron—where the world is represented as declining from its golden age, growing ever worse. It will disintegrate, presently, in chaos—only to...

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Dear and Gorgeous Nonsense: The Poetic Impulse in Myth

There is something about existence that has been puzzling to human beings, it seems to me, since the beginning of our species: a nagging intuition, an impression—an apprehension, really—that there is much more to...

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Symbolons of Love

October is metamorphosis month.  Dropping back a few thousand years, as human experience of the world changed, so too did the mythology that puts us into relationship with that world. Campbell notes that mythology...

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The Antlered Child: Changing Shapes, Changing Souls

Change is in the air. Again. As usual.  The climate is changing. The pandemic changes. Technology changes. Our lives change. Once upon a time, change happened more gradually, or so it seems. Now it...

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Myth: The Grammar of Creativity

 For the rest of the year, we at JCF are highlighting the final volume of Joseph Campbell’s remarkable Masks of God series, The Masks of God, Volume 4: Creative Mythology. Many of my friends...

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The Metamorphic Journey

Do something, you change. Do nothing, you change. Fight change, you change. Embrace change—well, you get the picture. And while we change, “things” change too. So it seems in the field of relative life,...

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UFO: A Living Myth of Transformation

If we ever wanted to find a contemporary exemplar of living myth par excellence, we would need to look no further than the UFO phenomenon—especially with the recent video leaks and subsequent Pentagon disclosures...

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Engaging The Renewing Feminine Within

“People often think of the Goddess as a fertility deity only. Not at all—she’s the muse,” Joseph Campbell elucidates in Goddesses: Mysteries of the Feminine Divine. “She’s the inspirer of poetry. She’s the inspirer...

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Billie Eilish and the Transforming Artemis Archetype

A passage from the Homeric Hymns tells us of a goddess that stretches out her bow and fires her creation into the world. “The peaks of mountains tremble. The forest in its darkness screams...

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Ego, Irony, and the Goddess

This month the MythBlast Series is focusing on Goddesses: Mysteries of the Feminine Divine which is, I think, a tremendously important contribution to the Campbell oeuvre edited by the gifted Safron Rossi (who is...

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To The Female God of the Labyrinth

“And my understanding of the mythological mode is that deities and even people are to be understood in this sense, as metaphors. It’s a poetic understanding.” Joseph Campbell, Goddesses: Mysteries of the Feminine Divine,...

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The Power of Tenderness: Ted Lasso, Grail Hero

A man stands at the mouth of the Forest Adventurous, “where we meet our adventures when we are ready for them.” (Romance of the Grail: The Magic and Mystery of Arthurian Romance, 116) He...

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The Healing Integrity of Love

Our featured volume this month in the MythBlast Series is Joseph Campbell’s Romance of the Grail: The Magic and Mystery of Arthurian Myth. There is much to like about this lovely volume as it...

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Rhythms of the Grail

Amidst the tales of chivalrous knights and exciting Arthurian quests that Joseph Campbell unpacks in Romance of the Grail: The Magic and Mystery of Arthurian Myth, he makes an intriguing observation about how the...

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The Principle of Honor: A Poor Substitute for the Real Thing

The chocolate cake is on the table. I mean the thick, moist, rich, exquisite, multi-layered chocolate cake. It has been divided so that each guest may have two pieces. As it turns out, one...

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Lions and Tigers and Athena, Oh My!

This month we turn to Campbell’s volume Occidental Mythology. For most of us raised in the West, Western mythology is where we get our start investigating myth, and that means the Greeks. For me,...

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The Blessing of Spiritual Poverty

However, one has to recognize a distinction between the ends and means of devotion and of science; and in relation to the latter there is no reason to fear a demonstration of the derivation...

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The Mythical Game of The Green Knight

Games have long been a compelling presence in mythology. The origins of the Kurukshetra War between Kauravas and Pandavas in the epic poem The Mahābhārata begin over a game of dice. Mythologist David L. Miller...

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Virtue and Democracy

This month, the MythBlast Series is centered on Joseph Campbell’s The Masks of God, Vol. 3: Occidental Mythology. Given that we in America are celebrating the fourth of July on the day this MythBlast...

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Incarcerated, But Not Imprisoned: Joseph Campbell’s Hero Myth

When I was invited by Dr. Mary Watkins, director of Pacifica Graduate Institute’s Liberation Psychology program, to volunteer to teach a correspondence course with inmates from a California state prison, I responded to her...