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J.Campbell on myth and science

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  • #72193

    Hallo,

    I’m searching for J.C.’s quotation about the need of a global myth and science.

    I believe to have seen an interview, where JC was asked, if he has a  suggestion, what kind of myth could  fulfill the role of a global myth. He answered, that he doesn’t know, but that the myth will be scientific…

    Does anybody know a reference? I would like to find out, what exactly was said and what I mixed up in my memory.

    Thank you very much for help.

    Patrick

     

    #72194

    Here’s a place to start. Campbell has been discussing the four functions of mythology, and arrives at what he calls the cosmological function:

    The myth has to deal with the cosmology of the day and it’s no good when it’s based on a cosmology that’s out of date. And that’s one of our problems. I don’t see any conflict between science and religion. Religion has to accept the science of the day and penetrate it to the mystery. The conflict is between the science of 2000 B.C. and the science of A.D. 2000. And that’s what we’ve got in the Bible, which is based on a Sumerian mythology.” (The Hero’s Journey 192)

    And then a few pages later,

    What I’m trying to say is that the structuring of a mythology is conditioned by the science at that time. There’s no use in constructing a mythology based on an archaic science. I wouldn’t know what to do with an atom, but I do recognize that when we had a Ptolemaic cosmology there was a whole interpretation of the relationship of the earth to the different planes of the universe that was mythologized. What happened to that was it was given an ethical and moral value, the stages of a ladder of the heavens represented the stages of the psyche.

    Well, anyhow, the myth has to deal with the cosmology of today and it’s no good when it’s based on a mythology or on a cosmology that’s out of date. And that’s one of our problems. I don’t see any conflict between science and religion. Religion has to accept the science of the day and penetrate it—to the mystery. The conflict is between the science of 2000 B.C. and the science of A.D. 2000.” (ibid, 194)

     

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