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To Cohen, stories form a prism through which we see the world. We define our lives by the stories we tell ourselves and each other about our childhoods, friends, work, ambitions, and hopes. It is not the world of facts, he says, which gives us meaning, but the world of imagination, making stories supremely important. But his depth of understanding of the world brings to his tales many fine details that other storytellers might miss.
Old stories, says Cohen, have great power, because they relate to matters that have remained important through many changes in society. That is why they have survived. Public stories help define our culture, telling us what is permissible and what is not, what and who are admired, and how we wish to treat each other.By changing the stories we tell we can change our understanding and behaviour.
The stories in this remarkable little book are not presented here merely as teaching tools. These well-crafted tales have their own intrinsic value and their own life. They are told because they simply came bubbling up, insisting that they be heard, and would not let go of the author until he wrote them down and shared them with the world.
Daniel Cohen's retellings of Greek and Celtic myths take my breath away and make my spine tingle, pointing the way to a transformation of the cultures of domination that have shaped our world, causing so much damage to all of us and the web of life.
Carol P. Christ (author of Rebirth of the Goddess and She Who Changes.)
Daniel draws on ancient texts, myths, ballads and tales with an insightful new twist, wry and uniquely his own.
Robin Williamson (bard, storyteller, founder-member of the Incredible String Band.)
These retellings are brave, beautiful and original, combining a genuine appreciation of the original myths and legends with a rigorous new system of ethics.
Ronald Hutton (author of The Triumph of the Moon, The Pagan Religions of the Ancient British Isles, and many other books and articles.)
I've read no better storyteller than Daniel Cohen. And my standards are high. I laugh with joy at his mysticism and perceptive wit, sigh with relief, find healing through his gifts. Francesca De Grandis (author of Bardic Alchemy: Enchanted Tales about the Quest for Goddess and Self.)
This witty, insightful book inspires us to incubate myths in the rich ground of daily life and discover how they can still surprise us.
Caitlin Matthews (author of Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom, King Arthur's Raid. Mabon and the Guardians of Celtic Britain, and many other books.)
Cohen's stories teach us insights into gender roles, especially those involving heroism today. The author sees behind stories' seams through his critical eye and voice. These are long-polished re-viewing and re-insighting narratives of classical and late-European stories. They make me wish I had children to tell them to. Notes at the end explain starting points for these engaging narratives.
William G. Doty (author of Myths: a Handbook, Myths of Masculinity, and other writings on myth.)
This small but mould-shattering volume left me stunned and breathless many times over. Wildheart