Thursday, March 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Joseph Campbell

Reading Joseph Campbell and hearing his lectures and interviews changed my life. I'm not being hyperbolic. The thoughts and insights of this great man helped me tremendously in developing the proper use of my imagination for the understanding of living with a text in community, in my case, the Bible in the Church. His book The Hero With a Thousand Faces, is still, in my opinion the best introduction and explication of Jungian psychology out there, he explains Jung better than Jung does.

Campbell helped me see the golden thread that binds all human culture, indeed he said that "Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths." As one storyteller, said, the essential thing that separates animals and people, is that people tell stories about animals. Myths are stories that reveal more in their telling than if informaton had simply been disclosed. This is why I think Jesus taught in parables, a story commands interaction and interpretation. Anthony DiMello said that the fastest route to the truth is a story.

Campbell also indirectly had a HUGE impact on my childhood, because George Lucas learned alot about storytelling and myth from him for his development of Star Wars. (too bad Lucas forgot all his learning in the latest Star Wars movies, utter dreck!)

Does this sound like Luke Skywalker to you? Jesus?

"A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man."

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