pneuma – breath
mythology – the study of myth
As a writer, I particularly enjoy creating new myths: allegorical monster stories with heroes, villains, and spiritual themes. In one sense or another, myth arises from or is based on reality, and so it breathes and is in some way alive (hence the play on words for my site title). Imagination frees us to consider reality from different perspectives, and it is therefore pragmatic when employed properly. Unfortunately, it is often regarded as little more than an entertaining escape in modern culture.
For fantasy to serve its greatest function, it must be entered into with a proper balance of intellectual discipline and childlike fascination. I advocate reading the myths conceived by the ancients. They feature the very things that attract us to modern stories, including character development, romance, action, convoluted story lines, and (of course) monsters. When it comes to compelling plots and fantastic creatures, contemporary writers have yet to outdo Homer, Ovid, and the writers of the Old Testament. Authors such as C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien understood this. A careful reading of Beowulf, for example, goes a long way toward providing greater understanding of the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
When I first read The Odyssey all the way through, I found myself enjoyably living in that epic tale. This is the service I hope to pay forward. By means of my own stories, I wish to stimulate my readers and to provide them with a satisfying intellectual space which they can inhabit until something real catches up with them.