And in doing that, you save the world. I mean, you do. The influence of a vital person vitalizes, there’s no doubt about it. The world is a wasteland. People have the notion of saving the world by shifting it around and changing the rules and so forth. No, any world is a living world if it’s alive, and the thing is to bring it to life. And the way to bring it to life is to find in your own case where your life is, and be alive yourself.

from The Hero's Adventure (1988)

Portrait of Joseph Campbell

Joseph Campbell

Literature Professor
March 26, 1904 – October 30, 1987

Joseph John Campbell was an American Professor of Literature at Sarah Lawrence College who worked in comparative mythology and comparative religion. His work covers many aspects of the human experience. Campbell’s magnum opus is his book The Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949), in which he discusses his theory of the journey of the archetypal hero found in world mythologies. Since the book’s publication, Campbell’s theory has been consciously applied by a wide variety of modern writers and artists. His philosophy has been summarized by his own often repeated phrase: “Follow your bliss.”

WIKIPEDIA ➦

6 Documents

Filter

Sort

Alphabetic

Date

Duration

Word Count

Popularity

Cover image for The Power of Myth, Part 1: The Hero’s Adventure

The Hero's Adventure

The Power of Myth, Part 1

Bill Moyers and mythologist Joseph Campbell begin their groundbreaking and timeless conversation with an exploration of the classic hero cycle, including consistent and enduring hero patterns in literature, real life, and even the Star Wars films. Campbell also encourages the audience to view parts of their own lives as heroic journeys.

Cover image for The Power of Myth, Part 2: The Message of the Myth

The Message of the Myth

The Power of Myth, Part 2

Bill Moyers and mythologist Joseph Campbell compare creation myths from the Bible and elsewhere, and talk about how religions and mythologies need to change with time in order to maintain their relevance in peoples’ lives.

Cover image for The Power of Myth, Part 3: The First Storytellers

The First Storytellers

The Power of Myth, Part 3

Bill Moyers and mythologist Joseph Campbell discuss the importance of accepting death as rebirth as in the myth of the buffalo and the story of Christ, rites of passage in primitive societies, the role of mystical Shamans and the decline of ritual in today’s society. Campbell explains how ancient myths were designed to “put the mind in accord with the body, and the way of life in accord with the way nature dictates.” As one example, Campbell explains how myths bring humans to understand and accept birth, growth and death.

Cover image for The Power of Myth, Part 4: Sacrifice and Bliss

Sacrifice and Bliss

The Power of Myth, Part 4

Bill Moyers and mythologist Joseph Campbell discuss the role of sacrifice in myth—including a mother’s sacrifice for her child—and the need for all of us to find our sacred places in the midst of today’s fast-paced world.

Cover image for The Power of Myth, Part 5: Love and the Goddess

Love and the Goddess

The Power of Myth, Part 5

Joseph Campbell and Bill Moyers discuss the mythology of love—from kāma to agape to courtly romance—and the role of the female as the giver of life and form.

Cover image for The Power of Myth, Part 6: Masks of Eternity

Masks of Eternity

The Power of Myth, Part 6

Bill Moyers and mythologist Joseph Campbell discuss commonalities in every culture that create a need for God, and the symbolism of circles in life and literature.

Mentioned in 9 documents

Alan Watts

Birth, Death, and the Unborn

All the patterns we see around us in the world are projections of our minds. There is no way things should be, there is no way things shouldn’t be. But if humans can adopt a mental discipline in which they remain able to project patterns without becoming hung up on them, life for everyone will transform into a beautiful artwork.

Erich Jantsch and Conrad Hal Waddington

Evolution and Consciousness

Evolution and Consciousness is one of the first, still rare, truly transdisciplinary books: it deals with a totality, not a sector of it. Therefore, it defies any disciplinary labeling. It is a scientific book, yet also deals with topics until now reserved for books of mysticism and poetry. It bridges the gap between science and other forms of knowledge. It deals not just with scientific questions, but with existential questions which concern all mankind, such as the meaning of life and the evolutionary significance of human design and action. It challenges the whole dominant Western world view: process thinking instead of structural thinking, dynamic instead of static, evolution instead of permanency.

Gregory Stock

Metaman

In this visionary book, Gregory Stock gives us a new way of understanding our world and our future. He develops the provocative thesis that human society has become an immense living being: a global superorganism in which we humans, knitted together by our modern technology and communication, are like the cells in an animal's body. Drawing on impressive research, Stock shows this newly formed superorganism to be more than metaphor: it is an actual living creature, which he has named Metaman, meaning beyond and transcending humans.

Tyler Volk

Metapatterns

In the interdisciplinary tradition of Buckminster Fuller’s work, Gregory Bateson’s Mind and Nature, and Fritjof Capra’s Tao of Physics, Metapatterns embraces both nature and culture, seeking out the grand-scale patterns that help explain the functioning of our universe. Metapatterns begins with the archetypal patterns of space, both form-building and relational. Tyler Volk then turns to the arrows, breaks, and cycles that infuse the workings of time. With artful dexterity, he brings together many layers of comprehension, drawing on an astounding range of material from art, architecture, philosophy, mythology, biology, geometry, and the atmospheric and oceanographic sciences. Richly illustrating his metapatterns with a series of sophisticated collages prepared for this book, Volk offers an exciting new look at science and the imagination. As playful and intuitive as it is logical and explanatory, Metapatterns offers an enlightening view of the functional, universal form in space, processes in time, and concepts in mind.

Terence McKenna

Mushrooms, Evolution, and the Millennium

Terence McKenna asks the fundamental question concerning natural hallucinogens: is it an accident of nature that certain plants and mushrooms can alter human awareness in profound ways? He argues that man and hallucinogenic plants and mushrooms have co-evolved. These botanicals provide a way for people to experience their spiritual nature, and throughout history have been used by shamans whose function is to enter altered states in order to perceive the spiritual causes behind ordinary reality. Delivered at the Masonic Temple during a gathering of the Los Angeles Mycological Society.

Alan Watts

Queries and Sources

Alan Watts reveals his research resources for the series of Eastern Wisdom and Modern Life thus far, and he answers questions about points in the previous programs. He recommends books for further study.

Alan Watts

The Constitution of Nature

Watts unfurls three cosmic tapestries woven by ancient minds: the Western world's vision of nature stitched as a crafted cloth, India's playful drama where God dances every part, and China's Taoist masterwork of nature flowing free like mountain streams. Though the West's thread gave rise to technological gifts, it tangled our hearts. Now the Orient's ancient organic insight whispers fresh hope, kindling new fires of wisdom within.

Erich Jantsch

The Self-Organizing Universe

The evolution of the universe—ranging from cosmic and biological to sociocultural evolution—is viewed in terms of the unifying paradigm of self-organization. The contours of this paradigm emerge from the synthesis of a number of important concepts, and provide a scientific foundation to a new world-view which emphasizes process over structure, nonequilibrium over equilibrium, evolution over permanency, and individual creativity over collective stabilization. The book, with its emphasis on the interaction of microstructures with the entire biosphere, ecosystems etc., and on how micro- and macrocosmos mutually create the conditions for their further evolution, provides a comprehensive framework for a deeper understanding of human creativity in a time of transition.

Alan Watts

The Two Hands of God

Watts takes readers on a fascinating journey through the mythology of China, Egypt, India, the Middle East, and medieval Europe. His theme is the human experience of polarity, a condition in which opposing qualities define and complement each other. Light cannot exist without darkness, good cannot exist without evil, and male cannot exist without female. Chinese philosophy expresses this idea of universal polarity with the concepts of yin and yang, while other cultures express it through the symbolic language of myth, literature, and art. Watts illustrates the way great sages and artists across time have seen beyond the apparent duality of the universe to find a deeper unity that transcends and embraces everything.