by Ira Kennedy
"History teaches that
civilizations which lose faith in their gods normally crumble into barbarism and a
protracted dark age, which endures until such time as a new culture arises or is
imposed... The barbarism which succeeds cultural disintegration is not necessarily imposed
from without: it arises from within, since the abandonment of civilized values exposes us
collectively to possession by the worst elements of the Shadow."
1. Projecting the Shadow: The Evolution of the Hero
2. Phases of Culture: Society in Transformation
3. Total Eclipse: Dark Magicians
4. The Lessons of Time: History vs The Eternal Cycle
5. The Big Lie: Myth Slandered
6. The Willing Victim: Hunter-gatherers and Communion
7. Domesticated Deities: The Fall of Nature, The Rise of Man
8. Either, Or: The Dance of Duality
This document was written in longhand during one day back in May, 1993. I am not an authority on sociology or mythology. The ideas presented here are personal insights derived from my study of mythology, (particularly the works of Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell, Mircea Eliade, Weston La Barre, and Anthony Stevens) coupled with my concerns of our current social condition.
This paper ends abruptly because, simply put, my wife at the time was concerned about my sanity. I was working in our guesthouse, surrounded by stacks of books, and writing at a furious pace. The piece seemed to unfold all by itself without corrections or additions. I was elated during the process; she was depressed. To satisfy my my wifes concerns I abandoned the project. Perhaps it was just as well.
During the intervening years I have seen more clearly than I could at the time, the beginnings of a social transformation. The Internet, as an extension of our central nervous system, is busy restructuring social relationships. For better or for worse I believe this is the landscape where new paradigms will evolve. After all, the dark projections of our culture are global and a medium of comparable magnitude is required to address the problem.