The Storyteller – A Spiritual Archetype for the Soul
“Every Story that has ever been told or will be, exists timelessly within the void. This is the temple of the Storyteller.” – Joanne Morris 2017
Within the heart and soul of every human being is a story, the retelling of our lives; past, present and future – both the stories we have woven from our choices and actions, and those yet untold and unforeseen.
To some, we are the weavers of our own fates, to others, our destinies exist independently of our control, instead they are paths to be discovered, travelled, and experienced. Wherever our personal perspective concerning fate lies, we certainly are own storytellers. We retell our tales in dulcet tones, emphasizing the magick of our adventures, reiterating our lessons, and painting over the ‘uglier parts’ of life to make for a more palatable remembering.
The archetype of the Storyteller reaches out to something hardwired within our human natures; it is timeless, evolving, ageless, and arguably vital to the survival of our spiritual selves.
The modern age suffers from a lack of personal storytelling.
Stories suffer from technological advancement even as it benefits from the deluge of availability of information; we can watch stories brought to life as images on a screen, access thousands of books at the click of a button, and hear the words from voices all over the world easier than ever before; and yet, the tactile experiencing of stories has suffered from over-saturation of media as well as story sterilisation.
The stories we do hear through media are ultimately controlled by people with a vested interest in selling them; news outlets drive home sensationalised stories of terror and violence, and modern storytelling often hinges on similar titillation to capture the attention of an increasingly disengaged audience.
Image from Behance
Hearing elders speak around a fire, capturing the tales of their ancestors, reliving histories and lessons, is an almost extinct artform; marginalized in modern times to be expected only in certain native communities.
The passing down of ethical and moral tale is now associated with supposedly less advance communities; leaving people free to buy into a culture of self, disingenuous, self-serving dialogue that encourages exaltation of only the self, even as it harms the spiritual ecosystem through which we are all connected.
Similarly, Libraries and physical books find their role as knowledge keepers supplanted. This experiencing of stories, if not sought out and treasured, will be lost for all time. To be deprived of such valuable conduits of human experience, portents of imagination and creativity is a travesty that spiritual weavers of this world should rally against. To find wonderment in tales that touched our soul, fed our spirit, and expanded our mind is a true gift. Such experiences breed empathy and understanding; as we connect to stories about others outside of the self, we in turn become more in touch with our humanity.
“Stories are the most important thing in the world. Without stories we wouldn’t be human beings at all.” – Philip Pullman
Often magickal practitioners acknowledge the power our words – that’s why we call it spelling! – but neglect to bridge that line of thinking to the next step; the realisation that our stories are also spellcrafting. The spiritual call is often fuelled by one simple question that leads us to a lifetime of seeking higher truth; Who am I?
Are we the sum of our experiences? But then the human mind filters and forgets much of our memories, and it is a well-documented psychological perspective that suggests our memory typically acts like a storyteller; embellishing certain elements of what we remember and diminishing others.
Are we then the story we tell ourselves?
There is always the potential for self absorption and even self deception within spirituality, which shows the dangerous side of the storyteller. To lose sight of objectivity and personal truth, focusing solely on the inflation of the egotistical retelling to perpetuate our own myth is to poison our narrative into self service. Instead, as storytellers, we need to learn to see our stories, weave them if we must into clearer, beautiful narratives, and yet remain empathetic to the plights of others.
This is the art of forming emotional connection to and respect for the subject matter and all characters involved within that storytelling. It reminds us that we are not separate from our fellow human beings, no matter the perceived divide.
And in a world in turmoil, we need to remember that now, more than ever.
Many blessings, Starlets
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