78 episodes

Mosaic presents Living Myth, a podcast with Michael Meade, renowned mythologist and storyteller. Meade presents mythic stories that offer uniquely insightful and wise ways of understanding the current dilemmas of the world we live in. Living Myth proposes that genuine solutions to the complex and intractable problems of our world require both transcendent imagination and cohering, transformative narratives.

Living Myth Michael Meade

    • Society & Culture

Mosaic presents Living Myth, a podcast with Michael Meade, renowned mythologist and storyteller. Meade presents mythic stories that offer uniquely insightful and wise ways of understanding the current dilemmas of the world we live in. Living Myth proposes that genuine solutions to the complex and intractable problems of our world require both transcendent imagination and cohering, transformative narratives.

    Episode 380 - Elders and Youth on Paths of Healing

    Episode 380 - Elders and Youth on Paths of Healing

    This episode follows the path of an old tale in which youth and elders have to solve seemingly impossible tasks, outwit a power-driven ruler and help create a more welcoming, wise and just society.
     
    Traditional tales from many cultures show how youth and elders are opposite sides of a psychic pairing in which each is necessary to understand the other. Despite cultural gaps between them, youth and elders are secretly connected, and each holds an essential piece of the human inheritance. The eternal youth in each soul carries the original dream of our life, while the old sage in each heart has the wisdom needed to find and follow paths of meaning and purpose.
     
    Elders can carry a greater vision because they have developed insight into their own lives, they have faced up to whatever fate has handed them and found ways not simply to survive, but also to understand the struggles and the suffering that are part of each human life. As those who become truly old enough to know better, they also become living depositories of wisdom for the next generation to draw upon. And in that sense, they develop inner authority and authority that knows what needs to be preserved and be remembered in order for human life to be noble and meaningful and properly in tune with nature.
     
    When the world becomes increasingly divided, the challenge involves redeeming positive views of both the elder and the youth, and thereby rediscovering how each can help envision a more creative and inclusive world. When enough people can become vessels through which the eternal youth and the wise old sage can enter the world, then there can be an awakening of the collective soul that can turn things around, even in the midst of a period of great conflicts and loss. Human culture is intended to be continuously remade through the genius of youth and the wisdom of elders acting in concert with the capacity of nature and the earth to repeatedly renew life at all levels.
     
    Thank you for listening to and supporting Living Myth. You can hear Michael Meade live by joining his new online workshop “Facing Fate, Finding Destiny” on Saturday, May 11. Register and learn more at mosaicvoices.org/events. 
     
    You can save 30% on this new workshop and further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium. Members receive bonus episodes each month, access to the full archives of over 625 episodes and a 30% discount on all events, courses and book and audio titles. Learn more and join this community of listeners at patreon.com/livingmyth.
     
    If you enjoy this podcast, we appreciate you leaving a review wherever you listen and sharing it with your friends. On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you well and thank you for your support of our work.

    • 33 min
    Episode 379 - Earth Day and the Origins of Gaia

    Episode 379 - Earth Day and the Origins of Gaia

    On this Earth Day podcast, Michael Meade begins by looking at the Gaia Hypothesis published 50 years ago and then explores the older roots of the name Gaia, which can be traced back to ancient India where Gaya or Gayatri appears as the ancient goddess of creation. Gaya appears in the Vedas or sacred texts as the source of all knowledge and wisdom. As the “mother of all,” she also had the power to heal all ills and nurture all of life, so that the wellbeing of the planet depended upon the presence and support of Gaya.

    Originally, the Vedas existed in the form of chants and hymns with the root sound Om being the original tone emitted from the womb of the cosmos. The potent chant known as the Gayatri Mantra was considered the first hymn to come forth from the root sound Om. Thus, Gaya or Gaia whether in sound, in image or in name brings a long lineage that echoes back to the origins of life and resonates with the hidden unity of the world. 
     
    In that sense, there was something truly intuitive in the idea of using the name Gaia in a modern attempt to revive the sense of the world being a living entity and all of life being secretly interconnected.

    Thank you for listening to and supporting Living Myth. You can hear Michael Meade live by joining his new online workshop “Facing Fate, Finding Destiny” on Saturday, May 11. Register and learn more at mosaicvoices.org/events.

    You can save 30% on this new workshop and further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium. Members receive bonus episodes each month, access to the full archives of over 625 episodes and a 30% discount on all events, courses and book and audio titles. Learn more and join this community of listeners at patreon.com/livingmyth.

    If you enjoy this podcast, we appreciate you leaving a review wherever you listen and sharing it with your friends. On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you well and thank you for your support of our work.

    • 29 min
    Episode 378 - Mythic Medicine

    Episode 378 - Mythic Medicine

    Michael Meade tells an old story from India about the creation of the world.  In it, an ancient sage named Markandeya is caught in the tension between creation and wonder, despair and loss.  His existential crisis speaks to the world we live in now with its increasing levels of fear and despair.  Addressing the two great fears - fear of abandonment and the fear of being overwhelmed – Meade talks about how easily we can get lost in despair if we don’t know there is something essential in the ground of our being.  He suggests that this story, and all the old stories, remind us that every soul born comes in with genius capacities, natural gifts and a unique way of being – a fundamental quality that serves as medicine and antidote to feelings of discouragement, fear and anxiety.  
     
    Thank you for listening to and supporting Living Myth. You can hear Michael Meade live by joining his new online workshop “Facing Fate, Finding Destiny” on Saturday, May 11. Register and learn more at mosaicvoices.org/events. 
     
    You can save 30% on this new workshop and further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium. Members receive bonus episodes each month, access to the full archives of over 625 episodes and a 30% discount on all events, courses and book and audio titles. Learn more and join this community of listeners at patreon.com/livingmyth.
     
    If you enjoy this podcast, we appreciate you leaving a review wherever you listen and sharing it with your friends. On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you well and thank you for your support of our work.

    • 32 min
    Episode 377 - Eclipses and Epiphanies

    Episode 377 - Eclipses and Epiphanies

    This episode of Living Myth considers how a total solar eclipse can have the effect of reinforcing the now common idea that we are each but a mere speck on a small planet orbiting a relatively unimportant star within a random and meaningless universe. Or it can be a revelation that reassures our souls that we are secretly connected to the whole living cosmos.
     
    A total solar eclipse has the paradoxical quality of hiding the sun, while also revealing aspects of its true nature. At totality, the sun appears as it truly is, a star amongst the other stars. At totality, it looks more like a living, breathing thing, rather than a bright, solid orb.
     
    Despite the increase of cynicism, and the rise of nihilism, our souls have an inborn expectation to have profound experiences of luminosity and the hidden unity of life. The numinous appears as something uncanny and mysterious that gives us a sense of the presence of the Divine and awakens a deeply felt intuition of the rightness of a situation or an event. Within such a moment, the habitual distinction that we make between inner and outer, between subjective and objective, between dream and reality breaks down to reveal the living cosmos and our own lives under one eclipsed light.
     
    For a moment of indefinite duration, our attention is pulled away from the increasingly divided and polarized state in which we live, and the world suddenly makes sense. On one level, we barely matter. On another level, what matters most to us turns out to matter to the world as well.
     
    Epiphanies are occasions of unexpected benediction and blessing during which meaning can flood us with a felt sense of the wholeness and the holiness of life. As wise people used to say, the whole world reveals itself to be a form of living truth. An eclipse of the sun can be seen as a gift, as a collective moment of eternity waiting and wanting to be seen by the inner eyes trying to open from within each and all of our souls.
     
    Thank you for listening to and supporting Living Myth. You can hear Michael Meade live by joining his new online workshop “Facing Fate, Finding Destiny” on Saturday, May 11.
    Register and learn more at mosaicvoices.org/events. 
     
    You can save 30% on this new workshop and further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium. Members receive bonus episodes each month, access to the full archives of over 625 episodes and a 30% discount on all events, courses and book and audio titles.
    Learn more and join this community of listeners at patreon.com/livingmyth.
     
    If you enjoy this podcast, we appreciate you leaving a review wherever you listen and sharing it with your friends. On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you well during this challenging and uncertain times and thank you for your support of our work.

    • 24 min
    Episode 376 - A Divided World, A Hidden Unity

    Episode 376 - A Divided World, A Hidden Unity

    On this episode of Living Myth, Michael Meade contrasts two creation myths that feature the original division that becomes the source of all subsequent divisions in life. One ancient tale makes clear that healing and transformation are the secret aims of the tension of opposites that exist inside each person, inside each society and inside life itself.
     
    “At critical moments in the life of individuals and societies, the basic elements and energies of existence polarize. While the two poles of a polarity seem to be irreconcilable opposites, they are secretly one. In a true polarity, one side cannot exist without the other; for existence itself is an essential unity appearing as a duality. Yet, at the level of pre-systemic thought, the mystery of totality underlies all the conflicts and divisions in life, both personal and collective. We suffer what divides us in order to find ways back to the wholeness before all the dividing began.
     
    Something ancient in us bends us towards the origins of the whole thing, so that what troubles us takes us down to the bottom of what troubles us and back to the beginning before the original unity was divided. The word healing means “to make whole again.” Healing, health, wealth, wholeness all hail from the same etymological roots. To heal is to make whole and what continually requires healing is the original split. No healing without a return to origins, no healing that does not in some way touch the original split.
     
    Without stories that remind us of the hidden wholeness and the hidden holiness of the world, all that is left are the pressing problems and threatening divisions that seem increasingly impossible to solve.”
     
    Thank you for listening to and supporting Living Myth. You can hear Michael Meade live by joining his new online series “The Creative Middle Way” beginning on Thursday, March 28.
     
    Register and learn more at mosaicvoices.org/events. 
     
    You can save 30% on this new course and further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium. Members receive bonus episodes each month, access to the full archives of over 600 episodes and a 30% discount on all events, courses and book and audio titles.
     
    Learn more and join this community of listeners at patreon.com/livingmyth.
     
    If you enjoy this podcast, we appreciate you leaving a review wherever you listen and sharing it with your friends. On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you well during this challenging and uncertain times and thank you for your support of our work.

    • 24 min
    Episode 375 - The Return of Eros

    Episode 375 - The Return of Eros

    On this episode, Michael Meade suggests that the message borne by spring flowers breaking through the hard ground of a long winter involves much more than a simple return to how things were before. In mythological terms, creation is ever ongoing as nature continually presents the essential mystery of life renewing itself from the haunts of death. In terms of that ageless story, we are being invited to participate in a return to the original potential that was there at the beginning and continually becomes present again. This greater invitation involves the blossoming of our own souls as well as a potential renewal of culture.

    In Greek myths, Eros was the first-born deity, there at the very beginning, but also present again at the beginning of any new project or meaningful change in life. Eros is the archetypal presence of longing and attraction, the primal energy of connection, the secret glue that holds everything together. Eros is the power that connects each of our souls with the living, breathing soul of the world.

    Eros is also the connective tissue in social life and all relationships. When this soulful sense of instinctive connection and compassion declines, people turn against each other and life itself is diminished. When we lose our natural sense of longing for beauty and truth and being present to the wonder of creation, we become as if dead to the world.

    It is our collective fate to live at a time of both tragedy and transformation. It is our mutual calling, not simply to return to the world as we knew it, but to become part of a genuine renewal, a flowering of imagination and a recreation of the sense that we are all connected and part of the mystery and the ongoing creation of life on earth.

    Thank you for listening to and supporting Living Myth. You can hear Michael Meade live by joining his new online series “The Creative Middle Way” beginning on Thursday, March 28.

    Register and learn more at mosaicvoices.org/events. 

    You can save 30% on this new course and further support this podcast by becoming a member of Living Myth Premium. Members receive bonus episodes each month, access to the full archives of over 600 episodes and a 30% discount on all events, courses and book and audio titles.
     
    Learn more and join this community of listeners at patreon.com/livingmyth.

    If you enjoy this podcast, we appreciate you leaving a review wherever you listen and sharing it with your friends. On behalf of Michael Meade and the whole Mosaic staff, we wish you well during this challenging and uncertain times and thank you for your support of our work.

    • 24 min

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