Saturday, September 7, 2013

Reborn from the Ashes

Furthermore, we have not even to risk the adventure alone, for the heroes of all time have gone before us. The labyrinth is thoroughly known. We only have to follow the thread of the hero path, and where we had thought to find an abomination, we shall find a god. And where we had thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves. Where we had thought to travel inwards, we will come to the center of our own existence. And where we had thought to be alone, we will be with all the world. ~Joseph Campbell ~
This quote reminds me of a phoenix. Phoenixes grow old, burst into flames, and die. Then they come out of the ashes reborn. What Joseph Campbell is saying here is similar to the idea of a phoenix. In the thought of killing another, we slay ourselves. By traveling outward, we travel in. And in death, there is rebirth. The phoenix is also used as a symbol of hope, of being able to make it through your hardest struggle, the fire, and becoming reborn, a better, stronger person. In that hardest moment, when we feel that we are alone in our misery, the whole world understands. Everyone has a misery they need to overcome. The labyrinth is well known because everyone has been through it, come in touch with themselves, and the heroes' stories are simply the best known. Even the best of us, the heroes of the real life story, had to make it through the labyrinth, find themselves, slay themselves, and make it back out better than they were before.

We may think we are alone but we are all going in the same circles. Life and death, strife and success, in and out. When we think we are going crazy, there is always someone else out there who understands, who can help us out of the maze.