Our Greek would be doing this on his trip, and the psychological processes of anticipation, hope, and faith would already be at work. Thus he would be proleptically participating in his own “cure.” His conscious intentions and his deeper intentionality would be already committed to the event about to take place. For the one who participates in them, symbols and myths carry their own healing power.

The Courage to Create, Rollo May

The Ancient Greeks would take it upon themselves to conduct Pagan, Polytheistic Rituals such as visiting an ‘Oracle’ who they believed would answer pressing questions, help decide between choices or hint towards the ‘future’.

The journey to get to the Oracle however was a difficult one. The seeker of answers would often have to climb a large hill or mountain in order to ask his question.

This journey would have to be undertaken regardless of weather conditions. Keeping in mind that relevant attire was not half as available as it is to us today, the trek was a dangerous, difficult one.

Yet for a person to undertake such a journey, to see the mountain, it’s height and its difficulty and proceed yet anyway points towards a very interesting psychological theory.

Could it be that the person, while undertaking the arduous journey, had already subconsciously decided on an answer to his question? That he had with every step, with every near fall and every sound of rocks crashing to the ground become firmer in his chosen decision?

By the time he had heard the ambiguous advice from the inhabitant of the Peak, perhaps it was not uncommon for him to interpret the advice in the way his subconscious by that point deeply desired.

So how does this relate to our current situation at all?

Rollo May points out in this book that modern therapists have adapted this understanding to work in their own ways. They never tell the patient what to do, they merely ask the questions that allow the patient to understand the result they truly believe is the answer to their issues. By merely seeking out someone to help them, the patient has already begun the journey to answering their problems.

Keep this in mind when dealing with your own struggles in life.


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