Thursday, February 19, 2009

Joseph Campbell Checks In...

With my recent posts on what is required of each of us in today's world, and specifically in our country in crisis, I thought I would add a few quotes from Joseph Campbell. It seems to me his work is almost completely ignored by mainstream America. It's been awhile since he spoke so voluminously about myth and its importance, but I detect little to make me think any of his ideas have sunk in to general consciousness.
From Thou Art That, New World Library 2001:

"The exclusivism of there being only one way in which we can be saved, the idea that there is a single religious group that is in sole possession of the truth - that is the world as we know it that must pass away. What is the kingdom? It lies in our realization of the ubiquity of the divine presence in our neighbors, in our enemies, in all of us." (p. 107)

"People feel panicky at the thought that we might all have something in common, that they are giving up some exclusive hold on the truth." (p. 110)

As I firmly believe in his ideas, it is disheartening to see that if anyone acknowledges his work at all, it is so often heaped on the pile of "New Age". More to come on this, for sure.

1 comment:

richmus said...

Interacting with people who have a committed stance to an exclusivism is a daunting and draining process. Often in such interactions, I am met with anger, or more likely, behind the back attempts to once again exclude. Sometimes it takes a force of will to stay in interaction with such people. An antidote to such difficult interactions is to make regular use of allies. This harkens back to your previous post about John Doe clubs.