This program is not recorded.
The need for a basic myth is as great as it has ever been. A relentless pandemic, fractured politics, and an uncertain ecological future have thrown us back on ourselves as individuals and as a species. A myth is a map of the psyche and the world. If it contains psychoactive symbols, it is alive for the soul and may give us grounding for the present and direction for the future. Through his creative scholarship, Eric Neumann has given us such a grand myth.
In this course, we shall explore the great myth of the human journey as it is set forth in the first part of Erich Neumann's The Origins and History of Consciousness. A title more intimidating than the actual text, Neumann's work has remained popular and provocative. James Hillman saw Neumann's myth as a creative fiction of and for the soul. C. G. Jung himself felt that Neumann had arrived "at conclusions and insights which are among the most important ever to be reached in this field" (Jung's Forward).
This Spring we shall aim at finding some new life in the deep wells of Neumann's great myth. We shall look at the myth in its three parts--the creation myth, the hero myth, and the transformation myth. These three parts are unified in one grand vision of Sophiac wisdom and the reconciliation of opposites. From the Great Mother, to the Hero and finally to the transformation of the Soul, we shall come across the great symbols of the psyche as it has made its journey--both collectively and individually. Given the aliveness of the psyche, we shall also discover something new.
Class format: Presentation and discussion (including images and surprises)
Suggested Reading: Erich Neumann's The Origins and History of Consciousness, Part I (excerpts to be emailed)
I. Introduction and Orientation
II. The Creation Myth
III. The Hero Myth
IV. The Transformation Myth
Mark Napack, M.A., S.T.L., M.S., studied archetypal patterns in comparative literature at Columbia University, after which he applied Jungian theory to the redemption motif in medieval theology for his thesis at Fordham University. He further studied Jung, psychology, and the history of religion at Loyola and Catholic Universities. A long-time graduate and college instructor, Mark has presented at international conferences and his work has appeared in scholarly journals and books in English and French. Mark Napack, LCPC, is also a Jungian-informed psychotherapist in North Bethesda, MD.
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