I am an adherent to the "Monomyth" philosophy as proposed by Joseph Campbell. The Mono myth is the story of a hero's "Departure, Fulfillment, and Return". These ??? levels are brought about through through the "death and resurrection" of the hero. The hero must die to himself to "find the source of life to bring you to a new position of life." The hero is defined by Mr. Campbell by "achievements beyond the normal realm of achievements." To which the Hero has often "Given himself to something beyond himself."
The mono myth has manifested itself throughout the course of history. In Buddhism, the Buddha witnesses the cruel reality of life, and returns into the forest. On returning the Buddha has a solution to the problem of suffering. In Christianity, Jesus departs into the desert, for forty days and nights. These spiritual journey aren't without their share of hardships either. Hungry and thirsty is tempted by the devil to eat and drink for the pleasure of material pleasures. Upon returning Jesus too has a solution for humanity. "To love God, and your neighbor as yourself" In Islam, we learn that the Prophet Mohammad journey into the desert to mediate in solitude. After years of mediation he received a revelation from the Angel Gabriel that would later form the basis of Islam, "There is no god, but God."
These stories and revelation changed the course of human history and continues to give us hope. Spiritual teachings can be traced back to this essential mono myth touted by these spiritual leaders. His call is for everyone to become their own hero's, and give themselves to something beyond themselves.
Stories of religious leaders are the expression of these "heroic myths" throughout the history of time. Joseph Campbell begins the "Hero Journey", of the six video series the Power of Myth, with "We have not to even risk the adventure alone for the heroes of all times have gone before us. The labyrinth is thoroughly known, we've only to follow the hero path. Where we thought to find an abomination we shall find a god. Where had thought to travel outward, we shall travel to the center of our own existence. Where we thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves. Where we thought to be alone, we shall be with the entire world"
"Eternity isn't some later time. Eternity isn't a long time. Eternity has nothing to do with time. Eternity is that dimension of here and now which thinking and time cuts out. This is it. And if you don't get it here, you won't get it anywhere. And the experience of eternity right here and now is the function of life." Finally I was able to fully appreciate the moment and of the sun rising out my window. It has taken billions of years for this moment to be possible, unknown paths were taken by pioneers and still your existence has been made possible. You shouldn't be here, but you are, is that not a miracles itself.
Life is a continuing cycle of self discovery. A cycle of improving yourself though hardships and everyday trials. About continuing to achieve a inner peace, that no one can steal from you. Joseph Campbell said "the promised land isn't someplace out there, it's the place where you can return to time and time again and achieving personal peace."
Some questions will forever be unanswerable. This philosophy take that into account. It accepts religion as an attempt to understand a world beyond this, accepts science, and justice as a progressive system that is achieved in leaps and bounds to humanity.
What's your story? Whats your fight? What's your Jihad?