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Day: January 21, 2012

The Call Of Hades

The Call Of Hades

 I’ve recently reread James Hillman’s book, Dream And The Underworld. It is a truly fascinating work. It’s one of those books that bears reading over and over, for its ideas are very profound. I am most interested in Hillman’s thoughts on Hades and Death. Specifically, I would like to focus on what Hillman refers to as, “the call to Hades” (page 31). He states: Because his realm was conceived as the final end of each soul, Hades is the final…

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The Watercourse Way

The Watercourse Way

 There is a Taoist principle called Li, which means something like, “the watercourse,” or “patterns of flow.” It is the “order of flow.” It is the amazing dancing pattern of liquid. Lao Tzu taught that water always seeks the lowest, most basic level. In this most basic state, lies a powerful energy. The typical Westerner would find this state of being too passive. The Protestant work ethic, which helped to create the monster, Capitalism, considers this a lazy way of…

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Heaven and Hell

Heaven and Hell

  Heraclitus said, “The way up and the way down are one and the same” (Wheelwright 78). Just a few thoughts on this passage: To Heraclitus, there is no difference between up and down. This is totally antithetical to the Western mindset. In our culture, we think of the way up as success and the way down as failure. This motif can be traced back hundreds, if not thousands of years. Where did we get the idea that down is…

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A Great Mystery

A Great Mystery

The thing I am most certain about is the uncertainty of life. For all my years of reading philosophy, mysticism, religious texts, etc. I have no idea what life is about. I have theories, but there is never certainty. There is always a skepticism lurking nearby, which I suppose is always healthy. I am certain that life is a mystery and that I will never rationally comprehend it. Life is the mysterium tremendum. I am certain that profound experiences are…

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Dark Places

Dark Places

In chapter four of J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic work, The Hobbit, the travelers are seeking a path over the Misty Mountains when they are assaulted by a monstrous, soul-wrenching storm. This is how Tolkien describes it: …one day they met a thunderstorm – more than a thunderstorm, a thunder-battle. You know how terrific a really big thunderstorm can be down in the land and in a river-valley; especially at times when two great  thunderstorms meet and clash. More terrible still are…

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