Thursday, April 25, 2013

Book Review: "The Power of Myth" by Joseph Campbell

I wouldn't go so far as to say that this book can change your life. But I would say that it can change the way you think. The Power of Myth is a conversation between renowned scholar Joseph Campbell (who is responsible for everything from creating the comparative mythology discipline to inspiring George Lucas to create Star Wars) and the journalist Bill Moyers. The entire book is a question and answer session between these two great minds and gives the reader the impression of being in the very room with them at Skywalker Ranch. The conversation dances back and forth between stories and myths from across the world and glimpses into a deeper insight towards the self and humanity.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book, to give you a taste for what you're in for when you start reading:

"But the goal of your quest for knowledge of yourself is to be found at that burning point in yourself, that becoming thing in yourself, which is innocent of the goods and evils of the world as already become, and therefor desireless and fearless."

"I say, follow your bliss and don't be afraid, and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be."

"The demon that you can swallow gives you its power, and the greater life's pain, the greater life's reply."

Whether you are already a fan of Joseph Campbell's more academic work (Hero with a Thousand Faces, etc.) or have no idea who Campbell is in the first place- this is a book that begs to be read. And re-read. And thought about. And discussed with your friends. And yourself. And then maybe read once more.

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