Note – this is a draft of an entry I started writing last summer after I finished reading Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods”.  I thought I would pull it out and finish it.   Spo

The Board of Directors Here at Spo-reflections has mixed feelings about my entries about Jungian psychology. They like the Dungeons & Dragons elements (after all, they are part of that crowd) but the psychobabble elements bores the pants off of them – if they wore any pants at all. We’ve compromised I am allowed an entry on Jungian psychology ‘only once in a while’. And if nobody likes it, they will release the tarasque.

No one knows when Man first invented the gods but it seems it was from the get-go. People need to believe in gods, if only because it is so hard to believe in people. The gods became necessary. They were quite useful to explain things we cannot explain and keep people in check. Ages of thinking this way have imbedded the gods so deep into our collective psyches it has created something what Jung called “The Collective Unconscious”.  Many argue we have better explanations  now of where we came from and what causes thunder* it is time we all stopped investing our time and energy in sky-gods and get on with it. 

While it is good to strip the gods of their blood-thirsty authority they remain important to keep around. Life would be dull without them hanging about in our psyches and stories.  Humans don’t just need fantasy to make life bearable, they need fantasy to be fully alive and human.  We need cucumber trees and three-legged cyclops as much as anything else. To believe in these sort of lies helps us believe in the big ones, like Mercy, Justice, and Hope. You need to believe in things that aren’t true or how else can they become so? 

Last summer I read Mr. Gaiman’s “American Gods” which nicely captures these ideas. In the book the gods who have been imported by immigrants haven’t ‘died’ but are hanging about across America, longing to be wanted again. They need us more than we need them I suppose but we need them all the same. We may not need to pay them homage anymore but the gods need not be forgotten. Rather than sacrificing ourselves to them let’s have them out for a cup of coffee and a chinwag. They enrich our lives; they certainly enrich mine.

Heck if it weren’t for the gods and fantasy figures I’d be out of a blogging job.

 

 

 

*Not Thor. Try to tell as many people as you can in town.