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Posted April 24, 2013
Myth, Dreams, and Religion is a collection of eleven essays writ
Myth, Dreams, and Religion is a collection of eleven essays written by various authors, including Alan Watts, Davis Miller, Stanley Romaine Hopper and Joseph Campbell himself. Published in 1970 the themes examine Western mythology, myth and dream as catharsis, myth and dream in Hebrew and Christian scripture as well as contemporary philosophy. The books' subjects include a wide spectrum running from Greek Philosophy, the dilemma of modern man, similarities and differences in Freud and Jung's approaches to dreams, the paradigm of human nature, the different meanings and executions of catharsis to the significance of ritual and the liberation of the imagination.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Campbell unifies all of these essays by identifying four functions of the traditional myth and three attitudes that man approaches and renders myth with. Rollo May examines the power of the daimonic forces behind myth and the individual, sorting the destructive from the creative and the integrative to the dis-integrative behavior that may follow suit. Owen Barfield reviews levels on consciousness in his essay Dream, Myth and Philosophical Double Vision.
Finally, Ricahrd A. Underwood solicits exemplification from one of the best philosophers of the twentieth century, quoting Nietzsche in his essay, Myth, Dream, and the Vocation of Contemporary Philosophy; "A period which suffers from a so-called high general level of liberal education but which is devoid of culture in the sense of a unity of style which characterizes all its life will not quite know what to do with philosophy and wouldn't, if the genius of Truth himself were to proclaim it in the streets of and the market places. During such times philosophy remains the learned monologue of the lonely stroller, the accidental loot of the individual, the secret skeleton in the closet, or the harmless chatter between senile academics and children."
All in all, I enjoyed the book much more than I had thought I would originally. It deserves a place on my bookshelf right next to Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance and The Last American Man.
Posted October 29, 2002