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The Cry for Myth Paperback – May 1, 1991
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Here are case studies in which myths have helped Dr. May's patients make sense out of an often senseless world.
It happens almost daily in a therapist's office. A patient, recalling a person, an event, an emotion, quite unexpectedly supplies a link from a life in the present to one of the durable myths of our culture. In this moment, the myth becomes a mirror, revealing to the patient the source of disturbance and pain in a pattern of behavior that often stretches a year or longer. The healing process begins. The myth, "eternity breaking into time" in Rollo Mays's words, becomes the focal point of recovery.
Through tracing myths – whether from classical Greece and Dante's Middle Ages, European legend (Faust and the prototype of Sleeping Beauty), or contemporary American life (Jay Gatsby) -- and relating them to the dreams and associations he encounters in his own practice, Dr. May provides meaning and structure for all who seek direction in a morally confusing world.
In this, perhaps the finest achievement of a great therapist, Rollo May writes with "the grace, wit, and style: for which he recently received the Gold Medal of the American Psychological Society.
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About the Author
- Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company (May 1, 1991)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 324 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0393331776
- ISBN-13 : 978-0393331776
- Item Weight : 14.6 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.73 x 8.5 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #908,979 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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In chapter 1, when May quotes W.B Yeates--"Science is the critique of myth," I became hooked. For this quote and its timing in the text shows the recognition of genius. 99.99% of psychology may be utter garbage and 99.99% of all psychologists may very well be parasitic biomass, but here is the 0.01%. Rollo May seems to have transcended his profession.
In chapter 2, what did May's patient mean by "Satan was a Rebel for God"? Here May has a foot-note that Lucifer, the devil was apparently envious of Christ and that's what made him evil according to St. Thomas Aquinas.
From Chapter Eight, page 128: "THE GREAT GATSBY is Fitzgerald's spiritual autobiography. He uses the word 'forever' often in this book. Maxwell Perkins [his editor] wrote him, 'You are able with an occasional glance at the sky to impart a sense of eternity.'"
Top reviews from other countries
I particularly enjoyed the chapters on Dante's Inferno and The Great Gatsby but it was with May's look at the myth of Faust through three sources - Marlowe, Goethe and Thomas Mann - that he brings the great myth of our times to life.
The final chapter on space flight and those first astounding images of the Earth from space back in the 1960s speculates on what our myths may be, may need to be, in the 21st century.