It’s not the myth of Zeus or Aphrodite… it’s yours. There is nothing more important to an individual’s personal happiness than uncovering their own mythology. It is the personal myth that is most defining as it allows one to live their story, dive into the ocean of their potential and fall deeply in love their life.
Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls. – Joseph Campbell
So what do you do when you want to discover your own myth and fully live your story? It sounds like a tall order but that was the question I asked myself over five years ago…
Ebb and Glow emerged from my own journey of discovering my creativity and personal mythology. It wasn’t the easiest path and often I felt alone and untethered from a sense of meaningful direction. I went from business school into the art world but nothing felt like I was following my true path. Something had to change…
The concept of Ebb and Glow became a touchstone into discovering another way of being. I spent years deprogramming myself from “the matrix” so to speak… unlearning bad habits and limiting ways of viewing the world. I made it my intention that no matter how difficult and no matter how scary I would ultimately let go of the things in my life that didn’t feed my soul. This process made me think of the ebb of a tide, the letting go and waning of what I once thought was true about me and my life but no longer wanted to carry.
At that point, I was able to allow myself to pursue my passions and interests by taking creative leaps in my own art and channeling my own curiosity. I craved nothing more than to explore the subjects that interested me most. I called this process glowing, like an ember before the flame… But what does this have to do with myth?
Myth is Essential
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this world doesn’t seem built for the creative idealists and dreamers, the dancers and the alchemists, the musicians and the mystics. No, instead what is prescribed is a formula of school, debt, work, consumerism and (if you’re lucky) retirement in your twilight years to spend time finally doing what you should have been doing all along (being happy). I propose that myth is the most essential remedy to this.
If you dare to live outside the box as a creative you cannot go it alone. Myth is the bridge between what we desire and our choice to live those dreams. According to Joesph Campbell, the world’s foremost mythologist, mythology provides symbols for us to navigate the terrain of the subconscious and our place in the world, so that we can connect to our spiritual nature or the “universal will”.
Myth is not an airy abstraction, rather it can be used as a practical framework for engaging one’s life. When an individual is able to connect to a story and see herself in the journey of the hero, it’s more than just fantasy. She see’s herself in the place of the archetype. The unfolding of the journey (in a story, a movie, or play) reveals the symbols along the path that echo obstacles or experiences in her real life. In these stories, she consciously and subconsciously receives the ability to trust that she can do the same. And once an individual has her own myth in sight she is ready to take the first step in realizing her potential. The treasure she discovers is the ultimate treasure; to live fully embodied in her truth, harmoniously with the language of the universe.
Over the years, through confusion and the struggle of trying to figure out where I fit into the world one thing that always guided me back to myself were the symbolism of stories and the heroes and villains within. They echoed the stories I carried in myself about any obstacle I was facing in my life, or any dream I hoped to obtain. It is the romantic human connection we share with stories. We seek them out to remember our joy, to understand our pain, and for the commiseration that reminds us we are not alone. These aren’t isolated myths we share. This is us.
On the other hand, without myth the creative spark that ignites us to take the first step in growth might not be fueled for often it is difficult to know where the journey begins. In fact, it’s almost just as easy to wander… that is of course until you become stuck. I feel that it is often the creative types that get stuck or hungry for something they cannot quite place. And if they don’t see a way out of the mist and back into the story of their soul then their abstract desires will consume them, driving them to realms of disillusionment and regret. In stories of myth, whether they be ancient or modern, we find our answers… In a poem, a painting, or a sculpture is the bridge from this world to the access point to our souls.
Do not be satisfied with the stories that come before you. Unfold your own myth. – Rumi
My intention is to curate Ebb and Glow like a cosmic museum. I want it to become a space to share my findings in posts and pages where we can explore worlds of archetypes in mythology, art, the ancient world, storytelling, metaphysics, and the esoteric. I hope that Ebb and Glow serves to connect you to ideas and artifacts of the greater universal narrative.
More so, I hope it inspires you to be brave- Brave enough to consider that there is beauty in the world found in our hidden mythologies. This beauty is not just worth fighting for but worth enjoying, savoring and diving into. I hope you’re inspired to fearlessly follow your own journey and say yes to your adventure.