Join host cultural mythologist Leigh Melander, PhD to explore the evocative mythologies that inform who we are. The ancient Greeks said that myths were the things that were most and least true simultaneously. Far from just being a lie, myths pulse in the background of all of our lives -- our selves, our families, our communities -- we tell ourselves stories about all of them. What are the myths we're living in and how are they living in us? Myth America is a project of Spillian LLC, a creative center offering programming in imagination, story, myth, sustainability, and community.
Mythos & Logos
Mythos & Logos
We like to delineate, us humans. We want things to be different. And we want our way to be better.
That tends to takes us to defining the world in binary ways - pitching what we see as rational and empirical understandings against story and intangible understandings.
But what if they're not binary? What if they're actually actually just different lenses to put in your glasses as you look at the world, that have more in common with one another than differences?
On this week's Myth America, a dance into mythos & logos, and some quantum physics, just to keep things interesting.
Myth America is a live, lively riff on the big stories that sit in how we understand the world from cultural mythologist and trouble maker Leigh Melander, PhD.
Living in Mythic Times
Are we living in mythic times?
Myth sits in the paradox of being both/and. It is true and untrue. It is metaphor – meta – carrying, phor – across – making meaning by moving from the literal to the abstract, the concrete to the intuited. The ancient Greeks, and then Romans, said that myths were the things that were most and least true simultaneously. As Sallustius (a 4th-century writer, a friend of the Roman Emperor Julian. He wrote the treatise On the Gods and the Cosmos, a kind of catechism of 4th-century Hellenic paganism.) wrote “Now these things never happened, but always are.” Truth sits in the flashes of insight that can be deeper than what we see in the tangible world in front of us.
Far from just being a lie, myths pulse in the background of all of our lives -- our selves, our families, our communities -- we tell ourselves stories about all of them.
This is where Myth America begins. Together we’ll explore the stories that we tell that in turn, tell us. We are as made by the stories we choose to tell as we are the makers of them. As individuals and communities.
With all of that in mind, I’ll like to throw out an idea that’s been poking at me.
We are living in mythic times.
So many of the things – the systems, the safeguards, the normal – that we have lived within and have seemed unquestioningly stable, are breaking. Or they’re broken. Or now seem so fragile that it’s hard to imagine their surviving.
Suddenly, the world doesn’t seem quite so immediate or literal or mundane. Instead, it feels as though we are caught in a story of mythic scale, with our lives and the very planet at risk. It’s hard to fathom. It feels so huge, and so beyond what any one person can do, terrifying and overwhelming.
To me, this feels mythic. Does it to you? Join me to explore this idea together. And please share your thoughts in the comments!
You can subscribe to this podcast here!