The world is churning all around us, overheating with climate change as well as intensifying cultural conflicts and tragedies. Amidst a worldwide shaking up and breaking down there can be no single idea, specific political movement, or patented belief system that can save us. All kinds of ingenious solutions are needed; all types of inspiration, invention, and originality are now required. The idea of a genius self already present and trying to awaken within each of us may serve us better than more common notions of a heroic solution.
Each person born, regardless of race or ethnicity, gender identity or social status participates in the genius of life in some unique way. Thus, each person has something to give to the world, each is subject to a calling and is needed at this time. Everyone has something to give if they give from their essential nature.
As the problems of the world grow massive and loom huge around us, join us for this mythic intensive that considers the essential uniqueness and genuine inheritance of the individual soul. Amidst the increasing polarization and nihilism of modern life there needs to be a sense that something in the human soul remains resilient, creative, and capable of renewal. The question becomes how might you become an agent of ongoing creation; how might your genius contribute to your own well-being and benefit the world around you.
As the problems of the world grow massive and loom huge around us, there is a danger that the inner values and genuine inheritance of the individual soul become lost. Amidst the increasing alienation and polarization of modern life there needs to be a sense that something in the human soul remains resilient, creative, and capable of renewal. The sense of an innate genius imbedded in each human soul is an ancient and valuable concept and one of the few ideas that can stand against the onslaught of materialism, literalism, terrorism, and nihilism that increasingly characterize modern, mass cultures.
As “resident spirit of the soul” genius is both our natural connection to nature and our secret connection to the divine. As the source of uniqueness and spark of individuation in life, genius is essential for imagining change and re-creating culture. This workshop will focus upon the nature of genius and the necessity of myth for both the individual and collective levels of life.
Genius will be considered in its original sense as the innate spark and inner spirit that animates each soul, as the core imagination and mythic seed that makes each person born distinct and never to be repeated again. Whether appearing as guardian angel, inner muse, or divine twin, the genius within is the resident spirit of the soul that gives each person their unique way of being and perceiving life.
Rather than a heroic “monomyth” that defines a singular mythic pattern and path for the fulfillment of human life, the myth of genius offers more of a “multimyth” aimed at awakening the inherent gifts and innate style that make each person original and uniquely valuable from within. Whereas common ideas of a hero’s journey carry a masculine tone and aim at an outer boon, the genius myth seeks to reveal an original core of imagination and unique style of being already present and waiting to awaken in each soul regardless of gender or sexual orientation, ethnicity or social background.
In this older, deeper sense, human genius refers not simply to certain individuals who appear to be exceptional, but to that which is exceptional, unusual, and remarkable in each person born. At this level of myth and soul, each person born carries innate gifts and talents intended to be delivered to the world. Amidst the storms of climate change and the disruption of cultural institutions there is a desperate need for the inventiveness, creativity, and resiliency that are natural and essential to human genius.
No single hero or heroic effort can shift the current burdens of the world; no solitary idea or shared belief can solve the complexity of problems troubling both nature and culture. Yet, the accumulated vitality of many lives being lived more fully can restore and re-story the world without any single person or group having to bear the burden of change or lay claim to the human inheritance of creativity and imagination. When connected to an innate sense of “dharma” or genuine service to the world, human genius can become a light shining forth in a time of darkness.
At this time when human society faces impossible tasks in every area of culture as well as in most aspects of nature, we may be able to redeem geniusas an aspect of soulful presence that connects us to both the depths of nature and the mythic roots of culture. In mythic terms, the world is a place of continuous creation and our inner nature would have us contribute to the ongoing creation story of this world. Creation wishes to continue, yet can only work through the souls of those alive at a given time. There may be no better time for reimagining the nature and purpose of human genius and the wisdom and genius of myth.
Michael Meade, D.H.L., is a renowned storyteller, author, and scholar of mythology, anthropology, and psychology. His hypnotic and fiery storytelling, street savvy perceptiveness, and spellbinding interpretations of ancient myths are highly relevant to current culture. He is the author of many books including Fate and Destiny: The Two Agreements of The Soul and The World Behind the World. Meade is founder of Mosaic Multicultural Foundation, a Seattle-based nonprofit dedicated to education and cultural healing. For more information, visit www.mosaicvoices.org.
Space is Limited! Register Early! To register, submit the form on the webpage, or print and mail it to the Public Programs Department, Pacifica Graduate Institute, 249 Lambert Road, Carpinteria, CA 93013, or call the Public Programs Department at 805.969.3626, ext. 103. An email confirmation letter will be sent within 5 days of receiving your registration.
CANCELLATION To obtain a refund on your registration fee, send a written cancellation request via email to email@example.com or postal mail postmarked no later than thirty days before the event. Tuition less a $50 processing fee will be refunded. No refunds on your registration fee will be made after that time. In the event that the program is sold out with a waitlist and we are able to transfer your registration to someone on the waitlist, we will issue you a refund less the processing fee. Any registration transfers that do not go through our office will be assessed the processing fee onsite. For a refund on accommodations at the Ladera Lane Campus, cancellation with a full refund will be accepted up to 5 days before the event. Cancellations made 1-4 days before the event will receive a 50% refund. There will be no refund for cancellation on the day of the event.
The program will be held at Pacifica Graduate Institute’s Ladera Lane Campus at 801 Ladera Lane, Santa Barbara, CA 93108. Located on 35 acres in the foothills of the Santa Ynez Mountains overlooking the Pacific Ocean, this residential retreat center provides a unique and peaceful environment for these events. This campus has lodging, dining facilities, and parking.
ACCOMMODATIONS Pacifica’s Ladera Lane Campus 801 Ladera Lane, Santa Barbara, CA 93108
A limited number of rooms are available for participants at the following rates:
$89 per night single occupancy (one twin or standard full size bed)
$123 per night couple occupancy (one standard full size bed; not a queen)
$136 per night double occupancy (two twin beds)
plus 10% occupancy tax
Accommodations are simple, dormitory-style rooms with a shared bath and shower. Bed linens and towels are provided. Reservations for rooms must be made through Pacifica’s Public Programs Department.
Best Western Carpinteria Inn 4558 Carpinteria Avenue, Carpinteria, CA 93013; 805.684.0473
A limited number of rooms are available for participants at the special rate of $129 per night plus tax. These rooms are held for our group at this special rate until three days before the program. Be sure to mention PACIFICA PUBLIC PROGRAM to receive the special rate. Please note that Pacifica shuttles do not provide service to and from the Best Western for Public Programs.
Meals are provided to encourage ongoing dialogue and community exchange throughout the weekend. Included in your registration fee are Friday dinner; Saturday breakfast, lunch, and dinner; and Sunday breakfast and lunch. For early arrivals, Friday lunch is available for an additional fee ($19) and must be ordered in advance. Pacifica’s caterers make every attempt to provide healthful meals for our guests and include organic ingredients whenever possible.
Major airlines provide service into the Los Angeles International Airport located 90 miles south of the campus and into the Santa Barbara Municipal Airport, approximately 18 miles north of the campus. Information on ground transportation to and from Santa Barbara will be included with your confirmation letter.
A limited number of partial financial need scholarships are available for this program. Eligible participants are those who have an extenuating financial need or related hardship that would prohibit participation at the full registration fee and who have not previously received a scholarship in the current academic year. To apply, please follow the instructions online. Once your application has been reviewed, you will be contacted for payment information.
CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDIT
12 hours of continuing education credit are available for RNs through the California Board of Registered Nurses (provider #CEP 7177). Pacifica Graduate Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content. A $15 fee will be charged for each certificate requested.
DISABILITY SERVICES ON CAMPUS
It is the policy of Pacifica’s Public Programs Department to accommodate attendees with disabilities in compliance with state and federal laws and regulations. Please let us know in advance if you have special needs or require assistance due to a disabling condition while you are attending a public program. If you are accompanied by a service dog, please contact Disability Services directly (805.679.6125), as all animals visiting campus must have pre-approval. For additional information regarding Pacifica’s policies, visit https://www.pacifica.edu/student-services/disability-services/.