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Goddesses of Business – Female Archetypes for Professional Roles

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By Malayna Dawn

P5270033 As women in business, we aren’t always lucky enough to have role models to follow. But if we look back to the ancient world, we can find that many mythologies included ideal feminine concepts that were not restricted to the care of home and family.

The psychologist Carl Jung (1875-1961) used familiar symbols as models for patterns of behavior or personality traits called “archetypes”. We have many archetypes at work within us, helping us to fulfill our various roles in life. There are numerous images to choose from, but for representations of ideally powerful women, goddesses are probably the best. 

(Photo of Athena at the Vatican Museum taken by Malayna Dawn)

Listed below is a sampling of goddess archetypes we can apply to the business world.  Whether we recognize these qualities in ourselves already, or long to possess them, perhaps with these archetypes as guidance, their traits can become part of our working personas.

Athena/Minerva

Athena was the Greek goddess of wisdom, war, the arts, industry, justice and skill. Her mother was Metis, goddess of wisdom, but she emerged fully grown out of her father Zeus' head.  Her Roman counterpart was Minerva, goddess of wisdom, medicine, the arts, dyeing, science, trade, and war. She was also credited with the invention of numbers and musical instruments.

The Athena/Minerva archetype speaks to women’s ability to multi-task.  The Athena-type’s well-rounded education allows them to communicate well with men and earn their respect, which can be very useful in business.


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Using My Voice to Share my Worldview – Written, Spoken & Sung

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WorldMapFace-bluemouth
I came up with a great new mission statement, and I already feel it shaping my experience: 

"I use my voice — written, spoken and sung — to share my worldview in order to inform and inspire joy, abundance and a life well-lived."

I've been feeling a bit shattered and scattered, and needed something to tie all my pieces together again.  These felt like the magic words. 

I've been focusing on my writing for a while now — about a decade. Then, for the past five years, I've been the voice of Colombo Fashion Week. I like working on CFW because I get to utilize so many of my abilities at once, and it makes me feel like a useful part of a team.  I write the scripts, edit the printed programs and manage the online content for the web and social networking.  I get to use my performance experience on the nights of the show, too. 

Another thing I've been doing to some extent lately is performing wedding ceremonies. Previously, I only did that for my friends and their friends, but as a means of feeling useful, I've begun sharing that experience with new friends that I hadn't met yet. It feels like being a kamikaze fairy — I dive in, deliver the magic words, wave my wand and disappear, leaving the completed mission behind me. I didn't really publicize that I was doing this work, because it didn't really seem to fit.

But lately, I've been feeling the pull toward music again — my first love. And I've actually begun taking steps to put myself out there in a whole new way.

So this mission statement lets me incorporate my musical experience and my wedding ceremony services as well as my fashion week announcing, because they all fit! AND "world view" is a perfect way to describe the new travel site/network, Spiral Whirled Travels, as well as my take on pop culture and mythology and symbolism and spirituality.  It's like Prego, it's all in there!

Let's see where it takes me!

Image modified from an item available for sale on Etsy from The Goddess Glass Company.

Thoughts on Themes of AVATAR

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I was fortunate enough to see the film AVATAR with an insightful chick from India, who explained to me at intermission (we have those in Sri Lankan movie theaters) that the word “avatar” still has spiritual meaning to people in India, and therefore when they’re referring to the movie, they might differentiate it by pronouncing it with an American accent!  

 

The definition for them is “The incarnation of a Hindu deity, especially Vishnu, in human or animal form.” She pointed out that Vishnu’s avatar is Krishna and both are blue.  And also that the Na’vi had tails, much like the monkey god, Hanuman. 

 

She also mentioned that the word “Na’vi” sounds like the Hindi word for “new” and she wondered how the Na’vi language was developed, so I found an explanation for her on Wikipedia.

 

The name PANDORA

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Contemplating “Twilight” – Story, Symbolism, and Mythology

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Twilightbooks

I had put off reading Twilight initially. 

Maybe it was out of loyalty to Anne Rice’s vampires

Maybe because it looked like a teenage vampire story and I thought I couldn’t relate to the kids today. 

Honestly, it was largely because I’m in the midst of writing my next book—still a spiritual adventure set in Sri Lanka, but a gothic and supernatural one–and I didn’t want to be influenced too much. 

Photo from http://www.flickr.com/photos/sweetknez23/

But then I gave in. My mind needed data.

I’m so glad that I did!  For one thing, it made me feel young! And apparently, I CAN relate to the kids today, since I know a few Tweens who are totally into the series, as well as several alleged-adults like myself.  Youth is a state of mind

Also – it reminded me that true creativity isn’t diminished by appreciating others’ creative work, instead, it breeds inspiration by feeding the imagination.  Creation feeds creation—it’s the circle of life and of giving and receiving. And that’s all good stuff.  Her praise for the band “Muse” * for inspiring her is a good example.

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Synchronicity, Symbolism & Giant Stone People

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I recently experienced one of those moments when it seems that a glimpse of the grand design is revealed, even if only for a second, in seemingly insignificant ways. It happens to me every now and then, and yet it still surprises and excites me, and inspires me to believe that there is a purpose and a synchronicity in operation beyond what I am able to see and understand.

I was at the doctor’s office, and since I expected to wait for over an hour if not two, I brought some books to read that can be expected to have a fair amount of overlap.  “Man and His Symbols”—an exploration of Carl Jung’s work with the subconscious, and “The Writer’s Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers”—which is based on Joseph Campbell’s study of the Hero's Journey in “Hero with a Thousand Faces”.

Jung’s colleague, ML von Franz, explained that the Self is often symbolized by stone—perhaps because they are complete, unchanging and lasting. “Many people cannot refrain from picking up stones of a slightly unusual color or shape and keeping them, without knowing why they do this. It is as if the stones held a living mystery that fascinates them. Men have collected stones since the beginning of time….”

Buddha-galVihara She says that this is why practically all civilizations have the urge to erect stone monuments to local saints or heroes, on the site of important or religious events, or to express an otherwise inexpressible experience. From the alchemist’s Philosopher’s Stone to the Ka’aba in Mecca, from huge stone Buddhas to Mount Rushmore, people are moved to create and identify with stone monuments.

Then I read in The Writer’s Journey: “the Statue of Liberty is a recurring symbol of the immigrant dream, a lighthouse beckoning the newcomer… The Statue of Liberty, a gift from the people of France to the people of America , is a colossal example of the ancient practice of sending statues of gods and goddesses from a founding city to its colonies to connect them by a psychic thread, a religious tie. …”

More giant stone people!

This particular passage I was reading was a mythical analysis of the film “Titanic” and the ideas of the time in which it was set. Moments later, as I pondered the synchronicity of the ideas, I could hear Celine Dion singing the theme from Titanic over the waiting room TV. Weird!

Or is it just that I was in that moment, at the right place, at the right time, and I was open to all that it could bring? I think perhaps I was.

Written exclusively for symbolicthemes.com

I Wanna Be A Muse

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When I grow up, I wanna be a muse.

If you’ve seen the movie Xanadu like I did numerous times as a kid, (or the Broadway Musical), then you know that a muse is one of 9 sister goddesses from Greek mythology, whose job it is to inspire humans.

The movie totally inspired me–-of course, I was 10, so all I took from it were the concepts of divine intervention, inspiration, possibility, magic, music and that love conquers all. Good stuff. I never did pick up the whole roller skating thing though, but I did sport leg warmers for a while for no particular reason.

Anyway, back to the Greek muses. Each of them had a different talent, or area of expertise. There’s a good breakdown on the Wiki page. Of course, the Greeks weren’t the only ones with muses. India has the apsaras and Norse mythology has the Volva. So there.

So here’s what I’ve decided I like as a mission statement: to inspire and a-muse, helping people to get more in touch with their own intuitive guidance.

So let us muse together, about music, museums and general amusement for personal enhancement!

Xanadu

Pic credit: http://www.musical-world.de/DVD/DVD-Rocky/DVD-Xanadu/Xanadu.jpg