Thought Leaders, Movements, Writers and other Influences for "Vision Speak"
The term "New Age" became popular in the late 1960's and early 70's and gained widespread attention with the Harmonic Convergence event in 1987. To me, the "new age" movement represents anyone seeking spiritual answers outside of the traditional doctrines of institutional religion (but not necessarily negating any of the core principles of these religions).
Today, many 'new age' and 'personal growth' authors, teachers, spiritual leaders, coaches and healers are reaching a worldwide audience with a diversity of philosophies that somehow all seem to complement one another.
Some of the popular authors and speakers today that are inspirational within this area include Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Louise Hay, Andrew Cohen, Caroline Myss, Gregg Braden, Eckhart Tolle, Cheryl Richardson, and many more. Today there are many retreats and conferences, large and small, that focus on these topics such as those by Hayhouse, Enlightennext, the Omega Center and Lilydale, not to mention the contributions from the wonderful world of Oprah.
I've had a few readers of "Vision Speak" call it "new age fiction" which to me, is high praise.
from Wikipedia: "The New Age (also known as the New Age Movement, New Age spirituality, and Cosmic Humanism,) is a decentralized Western social and spiritual movement that seeks "Universal Truth" and the attainment of the highest individual human potential. It includes aspects of cosmology, astrology, esotericism, alternative medicine, music, collectivism, sustainability, and nature. New Age spirituality is characterized by an individual approach to spiritual practices and philosophies, and the rejection of religious doctrine and dogma.
The New Age Movement includes elements of older spiritual and religious traditions..."
Carl Jung, the founder of analytical psychology, pioneered work involving the unconscious mind. He recognized the connection between dreams, art, mythology and spirituality over the course of human history.
One of Jung’s most intriguing discoveries was the “collective unconscious” which is the part of the unconscious mind in all of us, shared by all humanity. The symbols and archetypes stimulated by this part of the psyche are the product of ancestral experience and are found not only in dream imagery but in mythology and religion throughout the ages. The collective unconscious is also known as "a reservoir of the experiences of our species." The idea being that we are all connected at this subconscious level and that we are not born with a completely blank slate in our minds but with a blueprint of sorts.
For most of us, we are unable to remember or direct our dreams (yet!) or even understand them; however, in “Vision Speak”, Willow and Kalesh can access their ‘unconscious’ visions and even share them and connect via the collective unconscious to realms beyond our current understanding. Using this deep inner sense could propel mankind forward to unimaginable heights.
Some quotations from Carl Jung’s book, “Man and his Symbols” relating to the unconscious mind:
“Whatever the unconscious may be, it is a natural phenomenon producing symbols that prove to be meaningful.”
“..the really complex and unfamiliar part of the mind, from which symbols are produced, is still virtually unexplored.”
My mother told me the story of a young boy from India who'd been discovered by leaders of a religious group. They found him as a child and recognized something great, an aura unlike any other, and so he was groomed to be their future leader, their world teacher, or as some might say: their 'chosen one'. He joined their order and followed their teachings but eventually turned his back on them when he came of age. He spent his life as a world teacher and brought great wisdom to the world but not in the way his mentors had imagined.
This story always resonated with me and so, loosely, the story of Krishnamurti was an inspiration for the character of Kalesh.
Some facts from:
Jiddu Krishnamurti , (May 12, 1895–February 17, 1986) was a renowned writer and speaker on philosophical and spiritual subjects. His subject matter included: psychological revolution, the nature of the mind, meditation, human relationships, and bringing about positive change in society. He constantly stressed the need for a revolution in the psyche of every human being and emphasized that such revolution cannot be brought about by any external entity, be it religious, political, or social.
Krishnamurti was born into a Telugu Brahmin family in what was then colonial India. In early adolescence, he had a chance encounter with prominent occultist and high-ranking theosophist C.W. Leadbeater in the grounds of the Theosophical Society headquarters at Adyar in Madras (now Chennai). He was subsequently raised under the tutelage of Annie Besant and C.W. Leadbeater, leaders of the Society at the time, who believed him to be a "vehicle" for an expected World Teacher. As a young man, he disavowed this idea and dissolved the worldwide organization (the Order of the Star) established to support it. He claimed allegiance to no nationality, caste, religion, or philosophy, and spent the rest of his life traveling the world as an individual speaker, speaking to large and small groups, as well as with interested individuals. He authored a number of books, among them The First and Last Freedom, The Only Revolution, and Krishnamurti's Notebook. In addition, a large collection of his talks and discussions have been published.
Joseph Campbell was a professor of mythology, speaker and prolific writer, whose influence was so far-reaching that Newsweek, upon his death in 1987, called him “one of the rarest of intellectuals in American life: a serious thinker who has been embraced by the popular culture."
Campbell applied Jungian theory to his study of mythology and added his own perspective in the realm of spirituality and human potential.
He believed that all religions, at their core, sought the same elemental life force from which everything came, within which everything currently exists, and into which everything will return. Although this cannot be expressed in words, spiritual rituals and stories refer to the force through the use of "metaphors"—these metaphors being the various stories, deities, and objects of spirituality we see in the world. For example, the Genesis myth in the Bible ought not be taken as a literal description of actual events, but rather its poetic, metaphorical meaning should be examined for clues concerning the fundamental truths of the world and our existence.
Accordingly, Campbell believed the religions of the world to be the various, culturally influenced “masks” of the same fundamental, transcendent truths.
In his own words: “People feel panicky at the thought that we might all have something in common, that they are giving up some exclusive hold on the truth. It is something like discovering that you are a Frenchman and a human being at the same time. That is exactly the challenge that the great religions face in the Space Age.”
Campbell was fascinated with what he viewed as basic, universal truths, expressed in different manifestations across different cultures. For example, in the preface to his book: “The Hero with a Thousand Faces”, he said a goal of his was to demonstrate similarities between Eastern and Western religions. In his four-volume series of books “The Masks of God”, Campbell tried to summarize the main spiritual threads common throughout the world while examining their local manifestations.
Note – excerpts above taken from The Joseph Campbell Foundation site and Wikipedia
From “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” by Joseph Campbell:
"We have not even to risk the adventure alone, for the heroes of all time have gone before us — the labyrinth is thoroughly known. We have only to follow the thread of the hero path, and where we had thought to find an abomination, we shall find a god; where we had thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves; where we had thought to travel outward, we shall come to the center of our own existence. And where we had thought to be alone, we shall be with all the world."