Gold trail

On the trail of eternity

Editing the texts - basics and procedure

By on 19 July 2019

Shadow theatre

Editing the texts: basics and procedure

Interpretation and retelling of the traditions

Interpretation of the texts

On this website, the mythological texts are summarised and, where necessary, also reproduced verbatim. In a next step, they are examined more closely by analysing and interpreting the symbols and images that appear in them. This also leads to a decoding of the secrets and riddles they contain.

Retelling into another or a modern story

From the insights and statements gained through interpretation, a new, a different or modern story can now be written. This contains the same elements, but in a "translated" version. In this way, it describes the "true story" that is hidden behind the images.
In this new realistic narrative, the reference to the concrete experience of the readership can also be established. Thus the old stories gain in topicality.

Two basic principles are applied in the interpretation of the traditions:

1. symbolic interpretation: timeless and cross-cultural

The symbolic approach looks for universally valid statements in the traditions. The historical-cultural context of the texts is of less interest than their deeper message, which is relevant for human beings.

2. interpretation of the traditions like dreams: messages from the unconsciousness

Symbolic observation leads to the level of the unconscious. For with their sometimes bizarre figures, unconscious processes are also depicted in the traditions (see Images and Symbols - the Magic of the Unconscious).
Therefore, the various figures that appear in them can be interpreted as personality traits or characteristics of the main characters. This is all the more true where the characters are not real (such as wizards, witches or monsters; see Fairy Tales and Myths as Dreams or Shadow Theatre).

Interpretation of the texts like dreams

Acting persons as personality traits of the main character

Where it makes sense, the figures that appear in the traditions are interpreted as personality traits of the main characters.

Abstruse and unrealistic characters

The figures in dreams and also in lore become more interesting the further away they are from the main character and the more unrealistic they appear. As soon as "magic" is involved, it is an indication of the unconscious (s. Images and Symbols - the Magic of the Unconscious). (And the closer a character is to the main character, even in his real life, the more likely he is to represent a real, independent person in the main character's environment).

The fairy tale of Eisenhans is about the man's (and consciousness') path to wholeness. The king's son, the wild man, but also the king's daughter in the foreign castle can be interpreted as his own personality parts. The queen, who holds the key to the wild man's cage, symbolises on the one hand as the partner. On the other hand - in a deeper sense - she also symbolises the unconscious of the king himself.

King and Queen in Lore: The Conscious and the Unconscious

Basically, in traditions the king symbolises the loving consciousness, while the queen represents the unconscious, the body and the drives (see The Consciousness and the Unconscious). The goal is always that the human being overcomes his urges and thus attains wholeness and kingship in his own life.

Heroes and monsters: current images for the inner life of the human being

The hero, the princess and fearsome monsters, as actors of the inner life, reveal soul-spiritual processes in the main character. In this way, the traditions bring the unconscious and spiritual realities to consciousness. In the process, they make astonishing, illuminating statements on human themes that have lost none of their relevance today.

George's dream: the virgin

From the original text to free adaptation

From the pictorial story to the hidden backstory

The texts are worked through section by section, with the symbols that are subsequently interpreted underlined. The explanations and interpretations then lead to deeper contents, from which in turn a new story emerges. Placed in a different, often modern context, this tells what lies hidden behind the symbols or images.

Verbatim reproduction of the original texts and free narration

Also original text

Older traditions such as Sumerian and Babylonian mythology, both of which are less well known, are narrated and reproduced at key points in the original text. More well-known fairy tales are told freely. The underlined symbols indicate the following interpretations.

Symbols and Archetypes

Important themes are further elaborated directly after the surviving text. In the case of sophisticated interpretations (as in the Gilgamesh epic), the central points are additionally marked by numbers (1). They establish the connection to the corresponding interpretive element in the new story.

The other, the modern story

The new story is assembled from the interpretive elements. In this way, the traditions are updated. The aim is not least to make it easier for the reader to relate the old texts to his or her concrete everyday experience.

Further processing approaches: completely free or as a tabular comparison

Basically, the way the content is processed can adapt or change depending on the requirements of the interpretation.

Gold Plate for the Wholeness of the Twelve

Decoding magic and treasure hunt

Secrets revealed

It may be that the texts undergo a certain "disenchantment" of magic during editing. However, it should be said that "magic" appears in the traditions where something is to be covered up or concealed. Where the "mysterious" is broken down, however, a deeper understanding of the human being, its path and its destiny can emerge instead.

A true treasure hunt for the gold of eternity

Thus, dealing with the ancient texts becomes another kind of treasure hunt. For tracking down the larger contexts that lie hidden in them leads to amazement at how imaginatively and creatively they describe the human journey.

The Sumerian account of creation: "Then HE hoisted the sails ...".

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