The position of the palms together- this we use when we pray, do we not? That is a greeting that says that the god that is in you recognises the god in the other. These people are aware of the divine presence in all things.
The problem in middle life, when the body has reached its climax of power and begins to decline, is to identify yourself not with the body, which is falling away, but with the consciousness of which it is a vehicle. This is something I learned from myths.
In bounded communities, aggression is projected outward. For example, the ten commandments say, Thou shalt not kill. Then the next chapter says, Go into Canaan and kill everybody in it. That is a bounded field. The myths of participation and love pertain only to the in-group, and the out-group is totally other.
Now I found it in writing sentences. You can write that sentence in a way that you would have written it last year. Or you can write it in the way of the exquisite nuance that is sriting in your mind now. But that takes a lot of ... waiting for the right word to come.
There seem to be only two kinds of people: Those who think that metaphors are facts, and those who know that they are not facts. Those who know they are not facts are what we call "atheists," and those who think they are facts are "religious." Which group really gets the message?
To evolve out of this position of psychological immaturity to the courage of self-responsibility and assurance requires a death and a resurrection. That's the basic motif of the universal hero's journey—leaving one condition and finding the source of life to bring you forth into a richer or mature condition.
The community of today is the planet, not the bounded nation…patterns of coordinated agression can only break it into factions. We are in a time of rationalized avarice and sanctified misunderstanding.
Where you stumble, there lies your treasure. Thevery cave you are afraid to enter turns out to be the source of what you are looking for. The damned thing in thecave, that was so dreaded, has become the center.
The contemplation of the life thus should be undertaken as a meditation on one's own immanent divinity, not as a prelude to precise imitation, the lesson being, not Do thus and be good, but Know this and be God.
A constant image [in myths] is that of the conflict of the eagle and the serpent. The serpent bound to the earth, the eagle in spiritual flight – isn't that conflict something we all experience? And then, when the two amalgamate, we get a wonderful dragon, a serpent with wings.
Writer's block results from too much head. Cut off your head. Pegasus, poetry, was born of Medusa when her head was cut off. You have to be reckless when writing. Be as crazy as your conscience allows.
In our society of fixed texts and printed words, it is the function of the poet to see the life value of the facts round about, and to deify them, as it were, to provide images that relate the everyday to the eternal.
Thinking in mythological terms helps to put you in accord with the inevitables of this vale of tears. You learn to recognize the positive values in what appear to be the negative moments and aspects of your life. The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure.
In a wasteland the surface does not represent the actuality of what it is supposed to be representing, and people are living inauthentic lives. I've never done a thing I wanted to in all my life. I've done as I was told. You know?
But the makers of legend have seldom rested content to regard the world's great heroes as mere human beings who broke past the horizons that limited their fellows and returned such boons as any man with equal faith and courage might have found.
And what it [a future myth] will have to deal with will be exactly what all myths have dealt with – the maturation of the individual, from dependency through adulthood, through maturity, and then to he exit; and then how to relate to this society and how to relate this society to the world of nature and the cosmos.