I was delighted with this book, it is one I did not have and it resonated with what would have been in his lifetime.., the beginning of what Quantum Physics would reveal in the decade after his death. As the DOS of Servants of the Light School I highly reccommend ALL Campbell's books as background reading. Although he remained a committed Catholic during his life, his was mind that was open to new ideas and never closed to a different interpretation.
In the INNER REACHES OF OUTER SPACE Joseph Campbell repeats some of the familiar observations of his earlier works in which he shows how certain mythic motifs can be found buried in all of the world's religious traditions. The similarities may not be easily recognized because the same motifs are usually understood and developed in different ways because of cultural differences. These repetitive motifs are called elementary ideas and in the local forms where they appear in various religions they are known as ethnic or folk ideas. As examples of elementary ideas Campbell offers the concepts of the Promised Land and the Virgin Birth. In writing about the similarities of symbols found in ancient civilizations, Campbell mentions discoveries among such diverse societies as those that existed in the Indus Valley, Mesopotamia, Egypt, China and Ireland. Because of the great advances in learning which have become accelerated and dramatized by space exploration, Campbell points out that our old gods are either already dead or dying. The big question now is what new mythology will emerge from a modern understanding of a unified planet amidst a vast universe. The most remarkable feature evident in THE INNER REACHES OF OUTER SPACE is the breadth and depth of the author's knowledge and understanding of mythology. Joseph Campbell led an enviable life driven by a singular passion and his writings are the best reflection of that life.
After going over many of Joseph Campbell's video interviews, this was a great informative book too move on to. He really goes into depth on many mythologies from around the world and brings it all together "in you". "The kingdom is within you."
The book is divided into three chapters; The first talks about the imagination of the mind, the inspiration and the whole cosmology of the mythologies. The second goes into the concept of religion and the way mythology is used as the inspiration for one to seek the truth and the light within - and for - ourselves. The third describes the role of art in the evolution and progress of thought. Various figures and paintings are depicted and referred to throughout the book.