Myth

The average child is an almost non-existent myth. To be normal one must be peculiar in some way or another.

Do people love truth? On the contrary, mankind has employed its subtlest ingenuity and intelligence in efforts to evade or conceal it... Do human beings love justice? The sordid travesties in our courts year after year suggest that they love justice only for themselves. Do they love peace? Can anyone seriously ask the question? Do they love freedom? Only for those who share their views. Love of peace, freedom, justice, truth - this is a myth that has been created by the folk mind, and if the artist does not look behind the myth to the reality, he will indeed wander amid the phantoms which he creates.

The history of an oppressed people is hidden in the lies and the agreed-upon myth of its conquerors.

Myth is the foundation of life, it is the timeless pattern, the religious formula to which life shapes itself... There is no doubt about it, the moment when the storyteller acquires the mythical way of looking at things, that moment marks a beginning in his life.

Without doubt the greatest injury of all was done by basing morals on myth. For, sooner or later, myth is recognized for what it is, and disappears. Then morality loses the foundation on which it has been built.

In every age 'the good old days' were a myth. No one every thought they were good at the time. For every age has consisted of crises that seemed intolerable to the people who lived through them.

To keep from gravitating toward genocidal conflict, we must stop demanding perpetual progress. For quiet nonpolitical reasons, governments and politicians cannot achieve the paradise they habitually promise. Political leaders who continue to dangle before their constituents enticing carrots that are becoming unattainable hasten the erosion of faith in political processes. Circumstances have ceased to be what they were when the once-New World’s myth of limitlessness made sense.

The bare, uncompromising face of the land is too much for us to behold, and so we clothe it in myth, sentiment, and imposed expectations.

Truth isn’t outside power, or lacking in power: contrary to a myth whose history and functions would repay further study, truth isn’t the reward of free spirits, the child of protracted solitude, nor the privilege of those who have succeeded in liberating themselves. Truth is a thing of this world: it is produced only by virtue of multiple forms of constraint. And it induces regular effects of power. Each society has its regime of truth, its ‘general politics’ of truth: that is, the types of discourse which it accepts and makes function as true; the mechanisms and instances which enable one to distinguish true and false statements, the means by which each is sanctions; the techniques and procedures accorded value in the acquisition of truth; the status of those who are charged with saying what counts as true.

A myth is a collective 'dream' of an entire people at a certain point in their history... But a myth not only lives in literature and imagination, it immediately finds its way into the behavior and attitudes of the culture - into the practical daily lives of the people.

Myth is the software, the cultural DNA, the unconscious information, the meta-program that governs the way we see 'reality' and the way we behave. By providing a world picture and a set of stories that explains why things are as they are, [mythology] creates consensus, sanctifies the social order, and gives the individual an authorized map of the path of life. A myth creates the plotline that organizes the diverse experiences of a person or a community into a single story.

While personal myths give us a sense of identity, continuity, and security, they become constricting and boring if they are not revised from time to time. To remain vibrant through a lifetime, we must always be reinventing ourselves, weaving new themes into our life-narratives, remembering our past, re-visioning our future, reauthorizing the myth by which we live.

The great enemy of truth is very often not the lie - deliberate, contrived, and dishonest - but the myth - persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.

When myth meets myth, the collision is very real.

Intoxicated with the power to manipulate nature, some misguided men have produced a rationale to replace the Myth of Superabundance. It might be called the Myth of Scientific Supremacy, for it rests on the rationalization that the scientists can fix everything tomorrow.

The poem... is a little myth of man's capacity of making life meaningful. And in the end, the poem is not a thing we see - it is, rather, a light by which we may see - and what we see is life.

The myth of integration as propounded under the banner of the liberal ideology must be cracked because it makes people believe that something is being achieved when in reality the artificially integrated circles are a sophomoric to the blacks while salving the consciences of the few guilt-stricken whites.

A myth is a religion in which no one any longer believes.

If we are to attain a final theory in biology, we will surely, surely have to understand the commingling of self-organization and selection. We will have to see that we are the natural expressions of a deeper order. Ultimately, we will discover in our creation myth that we are expected after all.

Experience is connected to myth. Being immersed in self-experience is living one’s own myth, one’s own life story… As our connectedness to living depends, we learn that experience is the teacher. And experience cannot be programmed. We are our own mythmakers, knowingly or unknowingly.