Power of Dreams/MDS Dream Forum
Start a New Topic 
Author
Comment
To Gerard

Hi Thanks for this site and the obvious dedication you have to it! I was just reading your reply to the topic about the shadow, and something you said about us not being able to understand the origins of the universe struck me. It seems to me that we have many ways of knowing. 2 of which are reason and intuition. When you say our brains are not evolved enough yet arent you talking about our ability to understand the universe through reason? Do you think we cant get the same understanding throgh intuition? If we really have a connection to our souls and the spiritual - wich is seperate from the physical aspects of reality, why cant we intuit the meaning and purpose of life wich would include the origin of the universe? sorry if this dosent make sense i am not an expert in these matters, i just have a burning desire to understand the meaning of life itself!!

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 29 australia

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} female

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? yes

Re: To Gerard

Edwina,
You ask an excellent question. One that really has no answer other than what each of us can only speculate.

Intuitively we indeed may know the origins of the universe since in my belief that from which all things evolved is connected. Somewhere within the DNA of the human soul there is the seed of those origins. But with reason we can only speculate on that seed since we are unable to 'see' it. The intuitive self may have insights to that but how to put in terminology that the mind can understand is still beyond our capabilities. So we are stuck with concepts. Often those concepts are expressed in religious ideas. But religion is a product of man, itself a concept. We are left with little that answers the question, 'What is the meaning of life'.

But there are answers. One that I live by comes from Joseph Campbell in his series The Power of Myth with Bill Moyers {one of the most popular series PBS has ever produced. Here is the exerpt that says so much about the meaning of life.

Joseph Campbell: Experience of life. The mind has to do with meaning. What's the meaning of a flower. There's the Zen story about a sermon of the Buddha in which he simply lifted a flower. There was only one man who gave him a sign with his eyes that he understood what was said. Now, the Buddha himself is called "the one thus come". There's no meaning. What's the meaning of the universe? What's the meaning of a flea? It's just there. We're so engaged in doing things to achieve purposes of outer value that we forget the inner value, the rapture that is associated with being alive, is what it's all about.

But Campbell also talks about the clues of that help explain the mystery of life. And he does so with the help of mythology.
Myths are the stories of our search through the ages for truth, for meaning, for significance.

Joseph Campbell
: People say that what we're all seeking is a meaning for life. I think that what we're seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive. That's what it's all finally about, and that's what these clues help us to find within ourselves.

Bill Moyers: Myths are clues?

Joseph Campbell: Myths are clues to the spiritual potentialities of the human life.

Bill Moyers: What we are capable of knowing and experiencing within?

Joseph Campbell: Yes.

In essence we are incapable of knowing the origins of the universe. But intuitively we do have clues, those that Campbell spoke of, spiritual clues.

I don't dwell on the meaning of life because I accept the above as truth, the truth of a flower. Its just there. I instead focus on that spiritual aspect, and the creative aspect that accompanies the spiritual. It is through the muses we are able to express ourselves, creativity in art, music, poetry, etc. To be creative, that is the bliss that provides meaning. Our spirituality is also expressed through our creative Self.

Myths-Dreams-Symbols, creating it, maintaining it, and working with dreams are my bliss, that which gives meaning to my life. Joseph Campbell encourages us all to 'follow our bliss'.

That is the long way to answering your question but I believe what Campbell spoke of is as close as we can get to 'experiencing' the meaning of life. For me and those who follow this script, within the spiritual Self, the creative Self, there is indeed 'an experience of being alive'. Through those we find the meaning of our individual lives.

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? Yes

Re: To Gerard

Wow! Thanyou, you gave me shivers! Joseph Campbell is amazing, i stumbled onto his video serious in the library while looking for something else, a few years ago, and i have not been the same since! I was on a similar train of thought last week about the meaning of trees. One of my highlights of going to work, is all the beautifull trees i get to see on the way, and i was wondering why i think they are so beautifull. I came to the conclusion that, they remind me that there is so much life going on around me. They are just 'being', surviving and growing to thier own highest potentiality in whatever circumstances they find themselves. And i guess they highlight the same purpose within me. But, if i have the ability to ask myself why- why do i exist, why do i want to know why i exist- i seem not to be satisfied with just 'being' like a flower or a tree. Is this ego stuff maybe? Or maybe just human stuff? part of being active social inquizitive animals? There seems to be fundamental need within me to give meaning to everything, my dreams, my relationships, my experiences and therefore my reason for having experiences at all. I am not a flower, i have an ego - maybe for a reason? i dont know i have begun to confuse myself!

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 29 australia

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} female

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? yes

Re: To Gerard

Edwina,
Campbell is my spiritual mentor. It was the Power of Myth on PBS back in 1992 that changed my life. After watching the first hour I knew it was a life changing event. It fit with who I am, and fits even more so today.

I can understand your sentiments about the ego. We all have an ego, or none of us would have a personality. But the underlying message of Campbell and Jung is that the ego must be submissive to a higher cause. That is the prime metaphorical message of the death and resurrection motif, and the primary motif of the hero adventure. You die to the ego centered self and you are resurrected to that higher Self. The higher Self is the creative, spiritual self, or that part of you that is called to serve others. You are sacrificing for the other. And it is in the Self that one finds meaning in life.

There is an important aspect about spirituality that must be understood to be able to comprehend its importance. Spirituality is more than religion. In fact religion often gets in the way of true spirituality. It denies the soul of its caring, compassionate nature. Religion is man's quest. Spirituality is nature's domain. Native Americans practiced true spirituality.

Every part of this earth is sacred to my people.
Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every clearing and humming insect is holy in the memory and experience of my people. The sap which courses through the trees carries the memories of the red man.

The white man's dead forget the country of their birth when they go to walk among the stars. Our dead never forget this beautiful earth, for it is the mother of the red man.

We are part of the earth and it is part of us.

The perfumed flowers are our sisters; the deer, the horse, the great eagle, these are our brothers.

The rocky crests, the juices in the meadows, the body heat of the pony, and man--all belong to the same family.


....Chief Seattle


To sit under a tree and watch the insects and the birds and the other small creatures. Remember how you felt as a child doing this, it was a world of its own. Mystical, magical. Now as an adult we focus on the other self, the ego world that excludes nature as a part of our daily lives. Your drive to work. For a brief few moments you are able to forget about the pressures of the world around you. In those moments you are in contact with the higher Self. You fit in with that environment because as Chief Seattle so eloquently stated, "We are part of the earth and it is part of us".

But what about your own meaning in life? Campbell's exaltation to 'follow your bliss' is where you will find meaning. I have taken that statement to a new level with my oldest grandson. Time upon time I have said to him "find that thing in life that you truly love doing and make it your life'. Most often it is the creative aspect that provides meaning. My grandson loves animals so we have talked about his becoming a zoologist or some other related filed. It is what you love doing most that is your bliss. Follow that and no matter what there will be 'heaven on earth' for you.

Campbell tells us we have two opportunities in life to find our Bliss. One is when we are young, preparing to enter college or the workforce. Most often at that age we follow the money, the ego route. But if we are able to discern our bliss, one will live the rest of their life in bliss.
The second opportunity comes at mid-life {35-55}. That is when I discovered my bliss with Joseph Campbell's Power of Myth. I was 42. I have always had an interest in psychology {with an emphasis on the psyche}. If my childhood had been different I could have very well been a psychologist, a Jungian psychologist at that. But since I was too old to start over I began a self education in the ....psyche. And then in 1998 with the advent of the computer age I became interested in web design and starting building Myths-Dreams-Symbols. And all the while I began a new search for my spiritual self. That void in my life was finally filled. I had found my meaning.

So I do say to you, embrace your ego. But do not let it become the primary force in your life. That primary force is your bliss and to live without it denies you of your true meaning, what ever it may be. At 29 you have an early start to a late education {you are not having to wait until mid-life}. Take advantage and seek out that ting you truly love doing and make it your life's endeavor. It won't be easy but when you discover your bliss and start down that path, life takes on a whole new meaning.

To sit under a tree and view the universe in a microcosm. That is reality. For the insects, the birds, the flowers, life around that tree is their life's purpose. Bliss is a matter of doing what you were intended to do. A flower has all the meaning in the world if that flower is you. Your bliss is the unfolding of the flower when the sun rises. It is as simple as that, yet so hard to understand. Unless the ego is willing to be submissive to a higher calling. It is the true adventure of the hero.

I don't mean to be so philosophical but one gets carried away with discussing 'bliss'.

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? Yes

Re: To Gerard

Hi Edwina,

I would like to add to Gerard’s comments.
I’m thinking of another aspect of “It is what you love doing the most that is your bliss”.
Is that we do the “what” in the “way” that follows our sense of wholeness, that will bring bliss.
Even if , like many , you are not be able to pursue the thing you feel is your bliss, you still have a chance to live in bliss. By being aware, attentive and finely tuned to the choices we make in every moment.
You will bring your love and therefore your bliss with you. This takes attention and acceptance , a way of living.

I think of those who have no opportunity to live or do “that” which they would most wish.( Let alone an ability earn livelihood. ) There must be something true for all of us, wether or not, we have what we need.

So, “ The way we do that which is required of us, creates it’s own bliss”, is something I’d like to add.( although I may have only just expanded in another way, something Gerard has already said.)

I’ve enjoyed reading your and Gerard’s discussion.
Nicola

PS . my 7 year old son “wants to look after snakes” when he grows up, always has. And anyone mentioning a qualification or title for this career, has it rejected by him, with such certainty.
I think there’s something in that.

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 42

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? yes

Re: To Gerard

edwina,
If there is one thing we can do as parents, or grandparents, is to encourage out children to find that thing in life that they like most doing. Snakes has many connotations. But an interest at an early age of something that can symbolize so much is positive. Developing the young psyche is most important. Rob Reiner {Meathead in 'All In The Family' TV show} is an advocate of the first 3 years of life as being the most important. Your interest in your son's developing psyche is so encouraging. Please continue with that education and your son will surely realize his greatest potentials.

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? Yes

stats from 7-14-10 to the present