Wednesday, 24 September 2014

How the mind-realm of creative imagination best-serves the child

This is a western child in an eastern posture. He probably has his head full of stories and not the thought-chatter emptiness that his meditation teacher hopes for him. Stories legends and myths are a proxy source of experiential wisdom, providing simple ethical lessons that give due recognition to individual freedoms and self-assertion as tempered by reason and consideration for others.

Why, then, do we so cling to the need for religious interpretation of some of them?

All the value of the above-outlined is lost as soon as a religious or quasi-religious body - a collective in competition with other collectives - elevates one story only, tending to disparage others, thus giving that story the imprimatur of what I might refer to as "base-reality" (rightly more the province of science).

If the humanities, the poetry of life, symbol, myth, legend and story can be focused more on the future, which is the child's near-present - a focus that seems to be a crying need in this present age - then it's all doing proper service to the child. If it continues to be wrapped up in the past and tradition too much, it will only serve an established body-politic to subject the child to its service.

If the beneficial re-adjustment of the humanities is to be achieved, we can respect the grandeur of the religious achievements of the past (for example architecturally) without being held by them in thrall. At the same time we can re-adjust our minds to insist that the humanities and sciences complement each other in "non-religious" but soulful harmony, no more treading disdainfully on each other's ground.

Because imaginative stories are only "fun", Syai mythology enters harmlessly into the culture and year-round of festivals without the dangerous solemnity of religion.

No comments:

Post a Comment