"Catholics become poets" -- a thought from Joseph Campbell

I remembered this when Neil related the background thoughts for his song "Sinner":

I was in a day school convent in New York with the nuns until, oh my Lord, I was about 15. And when you're born in an Irish Catholic family and environment and spend your boyhood with nuns, and you're serving Mass (I was a little altar boy), you're studying the Catholic doctrine all the time with deep belief. And I think anyone who has not been a Catholic in that sort of substantial way has no realization of the ambiance of religion in which you live. It's powerful, it's potent; it's life-supporting. And it's beautiful. The Catholic religion is a poetic religion. Every month has its poetic and spiritual value. Boy, that got into me. I'm sure that my interest in mythology comes out of that.

 

I notice when I read the work of scholars or artists or novelists who are really interested in myth as a life-structuring thing -- not something that is just fantasy, but deeper, significant fantasy -- nine times out of ten they were Catholics.

 

I've been interested in what happens to people when they leave their religions. Protestants and Jews become psychologists and sociologists, and Catholics become ... poets. You know, it's really true!

(quoted from "The Hero's Journey", NAL 2004, p. 9f.)

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The adventure that we meet is the one for which we are ready. (Joseph Campbell)
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