Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Dual Definition of Myth (cont)

The fact that the word "myth" has become synonomous with an untrue belief belies an underlying shift in our epistemological focus over the past several thousand years. To generalize: we have become, as a culture, a great deal more concerned with verifiable facts and less concerned with the existential truths which have a different relation to fact. This progression ties not only into the Enlightenment focus on rationality and the scientific method, but, perhaps more pervasively and certainly more recently, we can see this following from the needs of industrialization. Fundamental business principles rely on actions that are easy to reproduce, and which produce similar if not identical results with each reptition. This promotes an economy of scale that is absolutely necessary for so-called big business.

The dual meaning of myth comes almost as a by-product of this worldview, and provides a certain cultural insight that we will be exploring throughout the Immanence of Myth. In its proper sense, myth has no necessary relation to fact because it relates to our interior and psychological rather than external, physical selves. This is not to say that the former has no bearing on the latter. Far from it. That the inner and outer life appear as mirror images of one another, separated by what appears to be a vast divide, is another issue that we must contend with. (in Deconstructing Our Myths.)

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