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Reply To: Talking with filmmaker Patrick Takaya Solomon about Finding Joe””


Hello Patrick,

Thank you so much for being here and sharing your story of finding your bliss.  Very much like Maryanne, finding the golden Buddha, and death and resurrection are my fav themes.  As Joe explains in his lecture in the  above video, ‘when you experience incongruity, you move out of your circle, and follow the left-hand path’.  A realm where there are no rules, or if there were, I was not aware of them.  My road led to very much like what Joe describes, ‘perhaps not a respected life, but certainly an interesting one’. I am eagerly looking forward to your next film.

In the Power of Myth series (POM), Joe said, ” There is something magical about films. The person you are looking at is also somewhere else at the same time. That is a condition of the god. If a movie actor comes into the theater, everybody turns and looks at….He is the real hero of the occasion. He is on another plane. He is a multiple presence. What you are seeing on the screen really isn’t he, and yet the ‘he’ comes. Through the multiple forms, the form of forms out of which all of this comes is right there.”

And why do we need gods and heroes? “We need gods – Thor or Zeus or Krishna or Jesus or, well God – not so much to worship or sacrifice to, but because they satisfy our need – distinctive from that of all the other animals – to imagine a meaning, a sense to our lives, to satisfy our hunger to believe that the muck and chaos of daily existence does, after all, tend somewhere. It’s the origin of religion, and also of storytelling – or aren’t they both the same thing? As Voltaire said of God: if he did not exist, it would have been necessary to invent him.” (Neil Gaiman)

So, those of my friends who know me as a Joe Campbell-fan, and when they ask me to describe what ‘following a bliss’ really involves, I point them to Abraham Maslow’s Pyramid.

Joe’s view, as you and others well know, was that a mythically inspired person, does not care for the basic needs, food, water, shelter, safety, security, relationships, personal growth, esteem. Self actualization is this individual’s basic need. So, if you are to follow your bliss, remember that all the lower needs will have to drop out, and they do, as you follow the left hand path.

Death and Resurrection is the main theme in my journey too. I have accepted death, and am certain there will be a resurrection, if not in this life, then certainly after I have bid farewell to all here on this earth. I am constantly aided by my hero, Joe, who said, “Death and Resurrection come at the same time”.

Whether it’s the film actor, the director, the choreographer, the dancer, the poet, and artists such as yourself are communicating our myth today. Campbell tells us that ‘artists ……. have to understand mythology and humanity’ .

I like how you and Maryanne phrased it, “Sometimes we hide the gold in our souls under a facade to make money”

Again, thank you for sharing your stories, and listening to ours.