“Myths from other peoples’ cultures often provide us with useful metaphors that are more refreshing than our own…” – Myths as Metaphors for Radical Evil, Wendy Doniger.

Are you a fan of psychology? Do you dream in the language of myth? Do you yearn to find the analytical connections between story, legend, and the universal psyche?

Well, my friend, we have the perfect journal for you!

The Mythological Studies Journal acts, in a sense, much like Bellevue University’s The Bellwether. Beginning back in 2010, the Mythological Studies Journal, serves as an annual publication, that features writings by students who were enrolled in the Pacifica Graduate Institute MA/PhD Mythological Studies Program (with a specialization in Depth Psychology). The essays reflect the interdisciplinary approach of Pacifica’s program, which integrates perspectives on myth from religious studies, literature, philosophy, mythology, the arts, and depth psychology as a means of elucidating issues and motifs that shape the cultural dynamics, diverse worldviews, and complexities of psychological life in the contemporary world.

What exactly is depth psychology?

Depth psychology is a field of study that is heavily influenced by the work of three prominent psychologists: Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung, and Alfred Adler. Josef Breur, Sigmund Freud’s mentor, originally coined the term; it describes the psychological approach to unravelling and studying the functions of unconscious. Our unconscious minds store a “repository of thoughts, feelings, and emotions outside conscious awareness or influence.” Sigmund Freud began this work, by first proposing that unconscious played host to the repressed segments of the psyche – those aspects of ourselves that have been rejected, denied or ignored. Carl Jung later expanded on this idea. His theory of analytical psychology went beyond the shadow of the unconscious mind, and delved into the collective unconscious, which is a universal hive mind that contains archetype and images that present themes cross-culturally. 

“Through the study of dreams, images, symptoms, slips of the tongue, spontaneous humor, meaningful coincidences as well as interpersonal engagements, depth psychologists attempt to understand the language and the dynamics of the unconscious as it manifests in their work with clients and in the world.”

A few articles, from recent issues (2020 – 2022) that are particularly enlightening, include Order and Disorder in the Cosmos: Slaying the Dragon or Engaging with the Goddess by Jennifer Maile Kaku, Strange Water: An Exile into the Deep Self in Frank Herbert’s Dune by Jason D. Batt, Tumblr’s Reception of Webtoon Lore Olympus’ Apollo by Lydia Griffiths.

To access the Mythological Studies Journal through the Bellevue University Library, click on “Library” through “Bruin Connect” and from the Library’s webpage, click on the “Find” pull down menu in the upper left hand corner. From there, select “Journal Search.” On the next page, once you locate the search box in the purple section, type in the words “Mythological Studies Journal” and then press “Enter” on the keyboard. You will see that Mythological Studies Journal is available from 2010 – Present through Pacifica Graduate Institute. 

“In the increasing complexity of the world today, mythology is still relevant. Comparing the myths of other cultures with those that dominate our own encourages and enables us to zoom out of our own restrictive worldview. In pluralizing our horizons, we may encounter fresh perspectives and strategies for interacting with the vicissitudes of an unpredictable world.” – Order and Disorder in the Cosmos: Slaying the Dragon or Engaging with the Goddess, Jennifer Maile Kaku (Mythological Studies Journal, Volume IX)

Originally posted in the Freeman/Lozier Library’s quarterly newsletter, More Than BooksV. 26 No. 4, Fall 2023.

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