As Jungian analyst Ann Bedford Ulanov puts it, “As the instincts are to the body, so the archetypes are to the psyche.” In other words, archetypes are innate reflexes which get triggered by certain conditions in our environment and, whether for better or worse, determine how we react and behave.
By studying how dreams and fairy tales work, we can then follow their archetypal maps with greater agency into the unknown because they help us to see the meaningful dimension of our personal experience. They show us when we are undergoing universal rites of passage such as initiation, exile, symbolic death, and rebirth.”
Some of the activities we think of as routines (which makes them sound dull, dreary, mechanical) are actually rituals (daily acts of meaning).
My most important ritual is writing while drinking a creativity potion, a.k.a. coffee. I rarely go a day without this, including on vacation. As my husband Ken can tell you, I get quite cross when anything interferes with it.
What are your rituals? Or, maybe more important: what would you like them to be?
— Susan Cain
“Remember to delight yourself first, then others can be truly delighted… When we focus on the song of our soul and heart, then others will be touched similarly. Sometimes people wonder or worry whether people will like or approve of their creative expression. It’s none of your business. It’s your business to stay present and focused for the work of your deepest dreams. It might look crooked or strange, or be very odd-but if it delights you, then it is yours, and will find its way into other hearts.”
What is that element in us that wants to come forth, take form and live in the world? Shall we call it soul, creative impulse, talent? It’s as if a whole universe lives under the surface in us and is waiting to be discovered. Discovering it is intense play, joy even. Not discovering it is a routine kind of living death. We sense something missing, which is strange since we’re dutifully following the directions we were given for a safe life. What happened?