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Blog March 6, 2020

Lindsey Harris writes:


This blog is to tell you a little about the Opening Presentation of the Champernowne Summer Course 2020 “Alone and Together” , that will take place on Sunday 9th August at Hothorpe Hall.  

fountain as love of the goddess
Fresco Painting in the House of the Marine Venus at Pompeii 1st Century— Image by � Mimmo Jodice/CORBIS

from ARAS (Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism)

Fountain as the proliferating effect of the goddess of love.

Participants at the Summer Course come together for a limited special few days, as individuals joining a collective, in search of exploration and adventure into imaginary realms.  This is where we can each follow our individual quest for enrichment of our souls. 

When we all assemble for the first time, there will be initial formal introductions by the course team, providing orientation at the start of the course.

The Opening Presentation follows, with a marked contrast of approach, to quieten our busy states of mind, and begin to create a gentler mood for reflection.  We will enter a different realm, so that participants can let go of the trappings of the outside world, and enter a different dimension, and perhaps find an inner way of seeing. This is an entering into the dimension of the collective unconscious, seeking what Jung called the spirit of the depths. We  retreat from the everyday world, and venture into storyland. 

Stepping like Alice through the looking glass, we will tell two stories, which expand imaginatively on the theme of “Alone and Together”.  These two concepts, being alone and being together with other people, are opposites. In our lives we must hold a balance between both these contrasting aspects of ourselves, which is sometimes an uneasy conjunction.

Two classic tales will be narrated as a collective presentation, told to you the listeners, whilst a background of multiple visual images will amplify the story motifs.  

The opening presentation aims to whet your appetite for the coming adventure, offering a panoply of dramatic happenings and images, seen through the lens of two tall tales from the past, coming from once upon a time and long ago, when the world was young.

There are many fairy tales, stories, legends and myths where the themes of “alone” and “together” are featured.   Fairy tales can often reflect the trials and tribulations of the individual psyche on the path of individuation, while myths can reflect the challenges facing larger groups of people, to help societies grow towards greater consciousness. 

History has yielded up many possible examples, such as those fairly tales about a young poor girl or boy, bravely called to endure a difficult trial, e.g. Cinderella, Dick Whittington, Rapunzel or Jack the Giant Killer;  or those early myths and legends, where a band of adventurers set out to seek a special treasure, like Jason and the Argonauts, or the Knights in search of the Grail, or like Theseus and Ariadne who face up to the Minotaur.  

There are groups who function and cooperate together such as Celtic faery bands, or the nine sisters called the Muses, or the Furies who seek to revenge against injustice, or the Valkyries who save the souls of fallen warriors. Any one of these stories can open up dramatic events that challenge the protagonists fearsomely to the utmost extremes. These are the stuff of our imagination, which can open our souls to the transforming power of images.

The two tales to be narrated on 9th August are currently a secret, concealed and embargoed until the day, to keep a surprise element, to weave a spell at the first hearing, because the ear is the foremost and quickest route to the unconscious of each individual.   In these tales we hear afresh the voices of the collective unconscious, and perhaps be awakened to our own new creative ideas, to explore later in the summer course.

The Fountain of the Love of Wisdom” is the evocative title of a book in homage to Marie-Louise von Franz, one of the greatest proponents of the wisdom of the unconscious. Our two stories at Champernowne this summer are examples of ways the healing spirit arises from the depths, through the ever-flowing waters that well up from the dark abysses of the unconscious. 

Lindsey C. Harris

March 2020

Written by: Lindsey Harris

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