This is one of the small creeks which feed into the larger Fish Creek in Calgary. It really isn’t the season for thawing, but the effects of global warming has meant a lot of days of higher than normal temperatures. I don’t want this post to be a rant about humans misusing and abusing the planet as this is not something new in human history. Rather, I want simply to use this image to talk about a thawing out in my own psyche, an event for which this image serves as a serendipitous metaphor.
By now, most of my readers here realise that I am engaged in exploring my own myth, creating my own myth and that I am using photographic images in the process.
“As may be clear by now, myth represents the crystallization of basic experiences of life construed through various forms of imagery. Such imagery lies beyond intellectual comprehension yet is experienced meaningfully. Mythic images help us to approach the mysteries. Myth draws us near the profound depths of love and hate, life and death – precincts of the gods, the mysteries, where categories of thought falter and slip into dumb-found silence. Myth is a way of talking about the ineffable.” (Hollis, Tracking the Gods, p. 23)
“Talking about the ineffable,” talking about the energies, the impulses to spiritualism and meaningful existence for which words fall short. A simple word such as love shows us the impossibility to capture exactly what love really is. Humans have tried to capture that meaning in dance, sexual activity, poetry, novels, philosophical examination and even in scientific studies. We know that love exists and often find ourselves embraced in the energies that we call love. Yet for all of this knowing, we can’t prove the existence of love or adequately describe love. So we invent stories, myths that point towards that mystery, try to present an explanation for ourselves.
I create my myth as a way of trying to explain to myself who I am, what I am and why I am. I remain a mystery to my “self” at least to my conscious self. I am so much more than my biology, my factual history that is remembered and forgotten. I create my myth as an attempt to understand those with whom I engage in relationship whether that relationship is that of husband, father, grandfather, teacher, therapist, analysand, friend, acquaintance or any other role in which I have participated through the years. And in reaching for my myth I find myself using images as hints, as pointers to what I want to say but can’t say because of the poverty of words in trying to explain the mystery of my self.