UPDATE on March 19th:
Good morning everyone,
As difficult and inconvenient this coronavirus pandemic is, by listening mindfully for guidance about what the experts – and my own deep intuitive sense of knowing – are telling us to do, I am struck by what blessings and realizations are coming up for me during these moments of quietness. Chatter and patience dance with one another like partners traversing silently across an empty dance floor. My monkey mind moves across the landscape of all that I imagine I am missing. After a few moments, it lands in a specific image of friends, many of whom I would have seen this evening at Michael Mollura’s Myth Salon. My good friend Ilia would have been staying with me with his wife and violin to play a Bach concert this weekend. He had been here last month and met Michael. In all likelihood, they would have dropped into a few moments of musical reverie during Michael’s dreamwork. Several of you had sent me your dreams. I felt deeply honored to be carrying these private shared moments. They will be pulled from the shelf when it is time to resume. Now, each of us is going through the processes of cultivating distance in our own way. I’m sure it is a learning experience – except that I am troubled by the birth pains of what will undoubtedly become a new consciousness. As the numbers of people afflicted by the coronavirus climb, I am climbing atop the foundation of reason to minimize contact, for safety, for a better view of the craziness outside. I am resisting the impulse to leave my home that, love it as I do, is becoming all too familiar. The rhythm of interchange between home as the heart of my enterprise and the world outside is slowing, and as the rhythm subsides, it becomes easier to see both home and the external world for everything they are. Yet, I do long for the familiar visual and physical embrace of people I meet – strangers on their way to becoming casual friends. I picture specific friends, colleagues, acquaintances – spending a moment with each person’s image, trying to imagine them in a particular context. It is useful for me to do this – it helps make my relations with them more real, precious, valued for their scarcity, less a concept and more a feeling.
The other day in my Myth Salon email, I shared a poem called “Pandemic,” that my wife had shared with me, that someone had shared with her. It apparently resonated with the Myth Salon community in a very profound way because quite a few people wrote to me indicating they wanted to share the poem with someone they knew or upload it onto some web platform. It had that affect upon me – which is why I initially shared it. When I contacted the author, bay area poet Lynn Ungar, she found it ironic that her pandemic poem had gone viral. I think it’s important to acknowledge how when sparks land upon combustible material, they often catch fire and help purge the problem. Her poem is an elixir of healing and I hope it spreads like wildfire, like a pandemic that is its title. We will need much love to emerge from this coronavirus episode – which it truly is: a destructive thing with a beginning, middle and end.
I don’t embrace patience easily – although I practice it a lot. I look forward not needing so much patience or quiet. I will miss you tonight – and I am coming to terms with that today.
Be well and find some way to enjoy the solitude of your time apart,
A little more than a week from now, on Thursday March 19, we are in for a truly remarkable experience! The Myth Salon will feature Award-winning composer Michael Mollura PhD, who is also a licensed psychotherapist, who will produce a depth-inducing multi-sensory experience performed live – a tapestry of sound, percussion, and the orality of dream text. Based on the works of CG Jung and James Hillman, Dr. Mollura is the only clinician in the world known to compose music to actual dream reports as a way of accessing dream material to link healing paths on neurological, quantum, and collective levels to address trauma and the wounds in the unconscious. Interpreting dreams with music goes back centuries to the work of mystic Sufis in the Middle East. However, his work is the first of its kind and exemplifies the healing powers of music, communication, and creativity set into a therapeutic environment.
For this special presentation, members of the Myth Salon community are invited to submit their dreams in writing from which several will be selected for reading, interpretation and arranged into the performance. To have your dream considered, please email me. Michael Mollura will be accompanied by his world-renowned percussionist Christo Pellani along with unannounced special guest musicians. Michael has performed at Pacifica on several occasions and is known as an award-winning feature film composer for such critically acclaimed movies such as Awake – the Life of Yogananda, Hare Krishna, Heal currently on Netflix; HBO’S Hot Coffee, Climate Refugees, and Romanyshyn’s Antarctica. Dr. Mollura currently practices psychotherapy in Beverly Hills and Atwater Village. Dr. Mollura currently practices psychotherapy in Beverly Hills and Atwater Village.
Then, on Thursday April 9, the Myth Salon will be visited by veteran film and story consultant Christopher Vogler, whose book The Writer’s Journey is a mainstay wherever film and television script-writing classes are taught. About to be released as a special 25th anniversary edition later this year, The Writer’s Journey explores the powerful relationship between mythology and storytelling in a clear, concise style that’s made it required reading for movie executives, screenwriters, playwrights, scholars, and fans of pop culture all over the world. He has worked for Disney, Warner Bros., Fox and many other major studios and production companies influencing the screenplays of movies from THE LION KING to FIGHT CLUB to THE THIN RED LINE and most recently wrote the first installment of RAVENSKULL, a Japanese-style graphic novel. Christopher Vogler started work in the film industry as a story analyst for 20th Century Fox and other major studios, becoming part of the animation story staff at Disney during the era of THE LION KING, ALADDIN, HERCULES, and MULAN. You can visit his website and writer’s journey blogs: https://chrisvogler.wordpress.com/
Each month, the Myth Salon gathers together from 7-9PM with an invited presenter in my Santa Monica home for an evening of mythic content, ritual and discussion that is moderated by my good friend and colleague, Dr. Will Linn. Finally, and with sincere appreciation and emphasis, the Myth Salon is grateful to the Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association for its unwavering encouragement and support.
We welcome you to join us – please let me know if you’ll attend!