Monday, April 6, 2009
Where are our myths and Heroes?
Hercules and The Hydra- Antonio del Pollauiulo - 1475
" Out of poetry and poetic myth come the laws that shape a society. All people are living different myths."
"Every country is a group of people living a common myth."
-Robert Anton Wilson; The Illuminatus Chronicles
I really wonder where our country's myths and heroes are? There was quite a huge discussion on this recently. The Ministry of Education was doing its best to promote our heroes. However, Mrs. Manning had it all wrong. The experts, mentioning "Heroes;" had nothing to do with our current citizen's acheivements,( I mean Lara cool an all, but that was not the point) but the mythological achievements of the archetype Trinidadian Man/Woman. What are we striving to accomplish?
What is the myth of our country? Where are the heroes of our collective consciousness?
What are the themes found in our stories? Is there the typical hero, who descends into darkness and battles evil to rise into the light? Is there a hero who conquers all, only to be destroyed by his own passions? Do we have the humble birth, rising, beyond all expectations to become the greatest individual of his/her time?
Sadly, we have no mythology with such themes. And I loathe to discuss what stories we have adapted as ours. The closest thing that comes to mythical tales, are the fables of Anansi, the trickster. Anansi tricks everyone out of their possesions, and is only concerned about saving his own skin. Go figure....our myth is "What can I get out of this for me." or "What's the most I can get, with the least amount of work?"
Anyone see the irony here?
We have no myths........no wonder we have no collective purpose.