The power of myth is the power of metaphor and poetry to capture the imagination, to inspire us to greatness. Mythical characters are simply archetypes of human possibility; to identify ourselves with a particular hero is not an act of ego but an acknowledgment that there is something to be learned from the way the hero faces a problem. Myths are guides for the human spirit and thus belong to everyone. With myths as our guide, we are never alone for we carry with us the collective wisdom and courage of our culture.
While it is true that myths may perhaps be literally false, they often are metaphorically true. There are lessons to be learned, energy to be gained, inspiration to be had.
Every story of myth is really our story writ large. There is within each of us the power to be a hero in some fashion, to some one, some day, in some way. Each of us has the right to our own myth, to our own dream.
In today’s society, how can myths be a source of strength and power for each of us?
Simple! Create your own stories, your own legends, your own personal myths. Remember your BEST moments, picture them in your memory, dwell on them, write them large in your mind and in your dreams. Then endeavor to make your best moments happen with every greater frequency. See the person who sparkled and shone, even if ever so briefly. See this as you, as your norm, as your base line, as within your daily capabilities.
Bit by bit, with intelligent, directed effort, smart practice, and hard work, you can make that special moment an everyday reality. Then cast your net further yet, dare to dream higher and brighter.
Create your own myths, your individual inspirational legends, and let them be your talisman. There is power in believing, especially when followed by energetic effort.
“The mighty hero of extraordinary powers—able to fill himself with the terrible glory of the universe—is each of us!” – “The Hero with a Thousand Faces,” Joseph Campbell
“We must recover the power of myth on the far side of reason.” – Belden C. Lane, professor of theological studies at Saint Louis University
“I always feel uncomfortable when people speak about ordinary mortals because I’ve never met an ordinary man, woman or child.” – “The Power of Myth,“ Joseph Campbell