Feeding the Soul II

Talking about life, religion and Analytical (Jungian) Psychology.
Monday, March 18, 2002


In "2001: A Space Odissey", Arthur C. Clarke portraits astronaut David Bowman (played by Keir Dullea) on a voyage to some place where time and space fold in such a way that the old Bowman, the newborn baby Bowman and the actual astronaut Bowman are just aspects in a greater representation of Bowman's psyche, something that he found only after travelling through space and time (so it seems) in an effort to decypher the Monolith (an object with golden proportions, the square of 1, 2, and 3 units make its three-dimensional measures).

The Monolith, as an object of "golden" proportions (it alludes to alchemical symbolism), represents mankind's search for the supreme understanding, mainly the complex answers to the three questions: "who am I", "where do I come from", "where will I go".

As he slips through a light gateway (some kind of what astrophysicists call "wormhole", also called "stargate" by some people, some kind of gravitational tunnel where it is possible to achieve lightspeed -- although here "where" and "speed" have very relativistic meanings), Bowman says, amazed: "It's full of stars!"

Stars -- constellations included -- are effectively very distant objects from which people have been withdrawing, time after time, several aspects of the objective psyche. To the stars the thoughts of poets and physicists, astrologists and astrophysicists, have been constinuously dedicated, creating a mythological set of knowledge from which we can achieve (using books on one hand and maybe telescopes on another) some kind of relief from our everyday consciousness.

How many times do we look to the stars along our lives? How many times do we look into ourselves during our lifetimes? There is a relationship between what is most distant and what is nearest.

The word "Odissey" is in fact very importantly adequated to this masterpiece from Stanley Kubrick: Homer's Odissey, Ulisses voyage back on Ancient Greece, is the story of a man in search of his soul; so it is this work from Kubrick.


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