Dungeons, Heroes, Transformations

This week I had depth talks with two interesting people - Peter Kenney, who studied at the Jungian Institute, Zurich, and Marcus Losach, the author and pilgrimage guide who lives at Glendalough.

Peter and I explored archetypal dreams, stories and people. In Jungian understanding, if our surface ego life falls apart we should take it as an opportunity to journey downwards into places of darkness, there to discover our true God-self where transformations can take place. This is the theme of many classic stories, the reality of many Celtic saints and is supremely demonstrated in Jesus Christ's descent into Golgotha and hell and the resulting time-transcending transformations in earth and heaven. This exploration is leading me into a creative cross-over season - watch this space.

Marcus and I explored one of the greatest examples of this kind of archetypal figure - Saint Patrick. Marcus has published two books. The latest consists of updated translations of Patrick's two writings; the other explores the tradition that Patrick was captured while his family were in Brittany. Patrick's parents may have been part of the mass fifth century migration of Britons to this part of France caused by conflict and plague. Marcus argues that Patrick's home and estate (Bannavem Taverniae) is now Le Chateau de Bonaban in the village of La Gouesniere, between the old Roman port of Aleth (St. Malo) and Dol, where Samson later established a diocese. He also argues that Patrick spent time at Martin of Tours' community, before his ministry that transformed Ireland.

What a story for those caught in mass migrations today! And do these strong and ancient links of Britain with her continental neighbour have implications for the coming national debate on Britain's relationship with the rest of Europe?

Personal and political scenarios have different levels. Whatever level we are on, we can take at least one step away from the superficial and get to grips with what lies underneath the surface. Transformation awaits us.

Posted at 02:13am on 8th October 2015
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