Saturday, March 31, 2012

Library Journal recommends Hillman biography

Library Journal provides an express review of James Hillman's biography by Dick Russell shown below. Volume 1 of The Life and Ideas of James Hillman is recommended in the week ending 30 March 2012.
Russell, Dick. The Life and Ideas of James Hillman. Vol. 1: The Making of a Psychologist. Skyhorse, dist. by Norton. Apr. 2012. c.528p. ISBN 9781611454628. $35. PSYCH

Psychologist and neo-Jungian James Hillman (1926–2011) is best known to the general public from an appearance on Oprah that catapulted his 1996 book The Soul’s Code to the top of the best sellers lists. In that title (one of more than 20 that he wrote), Hillman posited that a person’s early life can best be understood in retrospect, as preparation for a mature life’s task. Here, in the first of a two-volume authorized biography, Russell (On the Trail of the JFK Assassins) applies this method to Hillman’s own early years, emphasizing how his family history, education, and travels displayed many connections to Carl Jung, foreshadowing his later career as the director of the Jung Institute in Zurich. Born in Atlantic City in a hotelier family, Hillman traveled extensively in the 1940s and 1950s as a member of the U.S. Navy Hospital Corps and then as a student.

Verdict A very readable biography, this book is recommended for general and scholarly individuals with an interest in neo-Jungian and depth psychology.—Mary Ann Hughes, Shelton, WA
The Life and Ideas of James Hillman:
The Making of a Psychologist
Volume 1
by Dick Russell
Hardcover: 528 pages
Publisher: Arcade Publishing; 1 edition (June 11, 2012)
ISBN-10: 161145462X
ISBN-13: 978-1611454628


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Marketer recommends storytelling for authority

John McGory who works at a content marketing firm pulls from Thomas Moore's Care of the Soul to write about the father figure in his post "Greek Myths and Powerful Internet Storytelling". McGory quotes Moore: "Where do I get those feelings of protection, authority, confidence, know-how and wisdom that I need in order to live my life?"

McGory then responds, "Many people turn to the Internet and social media for that governance. Unfortunately, today’s communication revolution often lacks a 'father’s soul.' A 'father’s soul' provides the spirit to give you the strength to be the author of your own life. Moore says that 'Soul is not a thing, but a quality ... that has to do with depth, value, relatedness, heart and personal substance.' The Internet is a great tool that provides us with facts, opinion, ideology and reason. But it often lacks the qualities that Moore says creates soul. Storytelling helps bridge that gap."

McGory offers some questions to distinguish between authentic authority and phony mentoring before concluding, "We are all Odysseus, out to sea and seeking a way home. The true father spirit is one of guidance and trust. Your Internet presence should be no less."

Monday, March 19, 2012

Artist reviews vocation arc from 1999 to 2012

Artist Lesley Riley shares a 2008 blog post in today's entry, "More Art Already": "I speak of what I was thinking and doing in 1999 and am struck by how it was such a predictor of how my life has unfolded." She quotes Thomas Moore's book, A Life at Work: The Joy of Discovering what You were Born to Do. Riley describes combining verbal fragments with her art fragments: "The Fragment and quote are circa 1999. Now, almost 10 years later, after finding and living my calling, I am back examining my calling. But according to Thomas Moore, that is exactly what I should be doing, and that’s great news." The 1999 fragment quotes James Hillman's The Soul’s Code: In Search of Character and Calling.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Unitarian Universalists consider Moore's gospels

For the Upper Delaware Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, service leader Laurie Stuart offers the program "Writing in the Sand" based on Thomas Moore's book by the same name. Stuart shares,
"As a sort of disclaimer, I want to let you know that, unlike Moore, I am not a scholar of the Gospels and I have little relationship to them. Growing up Unitarian Universalist, I hold no allegiance to any particular sacred text and get my connection to spiritual or divine essence through direct experience, both secular and mystical. And it was in that secular experience that I first became acquainted with the work of Thomas Moore. He was the keynote speaker of the UUMA Convocation that I attended in November of 2009 and, in a mystical sense, this book came unbidden in the mail in the spring of 2010. In a simple way, (everything in my mind is simple as well as complex) my experience, this combining of the ordinary with the extraordinary and the unexpected, is the fundamental point of the book. But because beginnings are often endings, and endings are beginnings, there’s a whole lot more meaning in the complexity that can be gleaned. So I began reading it and liked that it made the Gospels, those holy and sacred writings that I have no conscious connection with, speak to me."
Stuart says, "In his examination of the original Greek texts, Moore dismisses the cautionary voice of tradition and explores the deeper significance of language, stressing the origins of words and the many levels of meaning in stories and imagery. Through his study, Moore shows that the teachings of Jesus are challenging in a far different way than the moralism often associated with them. Based on being open to life, deepening your understanding, and giving up all defensiveness around your convictions, the Gospels can be the source of a new kind of certainty and stability that cannot be codified and enshrined in a list of rules."

Stuart includes his own musical contributions and photographs, stories from Moore's Writing the Sand: Jesus and the Soul of the Gospels, and video clips of Moore speaking.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Ordinary living: "Irish soul is tough and scrappy"

 For North Jersey readers, "Irish it up for me!" describes soulful bonds within an Irish family as experienced by Gene Myers. Myers quotes Thomas Moore:
"'The Irish are among a select few remaining on the earth in whom an alternative, soul-filled approach to ordinary living is still alive,' author Thomas Moore.
Soul may seem at odds with green beer and red hair. But Irish soul isn't lofty. It's rooted in real life. Irish soul is tough and scrappy. It comes from a people whose pride kept them strong in the face of colonization. It helped them claw their way up from the bottom at Ellis Island."
Myers also shares, "Considering the 'deep soul' of the Irish, Thomas Moore writes, 'It basks in tradition and finds its heaven in family  . . .'" In 2009, Myers published this post on the Joy of Life blog.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Richard Tarnas introduces James Hillman's work

Watch Richard Tarnas deliver an introductory lecture about James Hillman's psychology for the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco: James Hillman Archetypal Psychology 2012-01-20. According to the video description, "This brief course offers an introduction to the ideas of James Hillman, the principal founder of archetypal psychology and an influential thinker in contemporary psychology and culture." Tarnas, a friend of Hillman, recounts their relationship while giving an overview of Hillman's contributions in the introductory lecture.

Part I 2012-01-20: Run time: 1:06:28
Part II 2012-01-20 Run time: 1:18:57

Session 2
Part I 2012-01-27 Run time: 1:09:03
Part II 2012-01-27 Run time 1:21:58

Session 3
Part 1 2012-02-10 Run time: 58:09
Part II 2012-02-10 Run time: 1:30:09

Session 4
Part I 2012-02-24 Run time: 1:12:31
Part II 2012-02-24 Run time 1:17:44

Session 5
Part I 2012-03-02 Run time: 1:17:32
Part II 2012-03-02 Run time: 1:15:01


Monday, March 05, 2012

Author mentions Moore's influence in interview

Barque supporter Julianne Davidow shares her interview with America Oggi about her book, Outer Beauty, Inner Joy on the linked page under Press. In the interview she mentions Thomas Moore's influence:
Julianne Davidow: The Italian Renaissance took a new look at many writings from ancient philosophies, and writers created a syncretic philosophy of their own. When I started reading these fifteenth and sixteenth-­century writers, I understood that their philosophy had influenced the art. Because of my love of art and comparative religion, I wanted to learn more.

Maria Vittoria Solomita: Did you gather all the material on your own, or did you have an advisor during the course of your research?

Julianne Davidow: In the beginning, I discovered Marsilio Ficino through books by Thomas Moore [author of the best-­selling Care of the Soul, who wrote the foreword to Outer Beauty, Inner Joy]. Then I started reading books by Ficino himself. I conducted research for years, above all at the Marciana Library in Venice, personally choosing books. I began to understand how the artists incorporated the philosophy of the times into their creations.
Davidow also offers her interview with Thomas Moore, "Embracing the Soul of the Renaissance," on this linked page. Enjoy Davidow's new blog about Outer Beauty, Inner Joy.

Friday, March 02, 2012

The soul's seasons are rhythmic and musical

The blog entry "Universally Human" shares quotes from Thomas Moore's book, Original Self, ending with this passage from the book:
"Modern psychology tries to tell us that we are constantly developing creatures, but I prefer to think of us as seasonal beings. We have our summers of sunny pleasure and our winters of discontent, our springtimes of renewal and our autumns of necessary decay. We are essentially rhythmic, musical. As the ancients used to say, our emotions are in orbit, like the planets. Patterns that define us return again and again, and in these returns we find our substance and our continuity, our original nature and our identity."
— Thomas Moore
This focus on rhythm is repeated in the blog entry "What Feeds Us?" by Kathleen Jacoby on her site Seasons of the Soul:
"There are multiple expressions of our uniqueness. Like snowflakes, we all have a special imprint, and the task is to find opportunities that allow those affinities to be released in a way that blesses the world and fulfills us. Then we have made a difference. Then the longing is no more.

There have been a few times in my life when that longing was fulfilled. Each time had to do with writing projects that completely harnessed my focus and imagination. For me, expressing observations is a major part of my tonal affinity. It is through communication – especially the written word – that I find myself deeply in love. All of me is engaged. Thomas Moore once wrote that if our work is not our lover, it is not our work."
Jacoby also observes, "I have found that there are cycles in a creative life. We cannot always be in process of externalizing the muse. There are down times that require digesting and renewal. It can be frustrating when we deeply yearn for that sense of being 'in the zone'. The zone also has to accommodate the moments of nothing when seemingly everything has stopped."

Consider a description of Hildegard von Bingen's Symphony of the Harmony of the Heavenly Revelations for the rhythms of your own seasons and for your own musical signature.