Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Seeking story

You hear how we shouldn't be so obsessed with stories about Tiger or Kate or Conan when there are so many more important things happening on the planet, but I'm not sure. We're hungry for story, that's what informs us, and with our recent and sudden massive collapse of story - from church to Wall Street to government to corporations to schools, you name it - we are seeking out story, hard, wherever we can find it.

I found this dirty pdf transcript - gotta love PBS - of Bill Moyer's 1987 interview with Joseph Campbell. I think we're still seeking that uniting story Campbell was talking about 23 years ago. I think that's why the Twitter and Apple and Facebook and Wikipedia and Obama 2008 stories had/have so much energy. They are uniting stories, expanding stories - they connect us and move us forward.

Fascinated with Campbell saying that you can't predict where the new myth will come from, any more than you can predict what you'll dream about tonight, and the suggestion that we are all potential vessels of revelation(!).

The story he suggests in the last paragraph is laughable for its simplicity. I wonder how long it will take for that story to emerge and take root. Maybe faster than we think. Maybe it's happening.


Paul Kim said...

Thanks for sharing the Campbell quote, Jelly.

I'm principal of a said...

Relatedly. Just heard this poem by James Agee on my classical station.

Sure on This Shining Night

Sure on this shining night
Of star made shadows round,
Kindness must watch for me
This side the ground.
The late year lies down the north.
All is healed, all is health.
High summer holds the earth.
Hearts all whole.
Sure on this shining night I weep for wonder wand'ring far
Of shadows on the stars.