I took a class in Graduate school on the Arthurian Legend. I wrote a paper on the duality of evil and good children in the myth - relating it to the Hollywood movies The Sixth Sense and The Good Son. Anyway. One thing I took away from that class was how the idea of doors as portals into other worlds is an old archetype located in the oldest myths and stories that have sprung from humankind's first stories. In the Hindu story of Krishna opening his mouth as a child to show his mother the universe, to the Celtic stories of fairy mounds and magical portals, to the Lady of the Lake breaking the surface of the water to reveal the legendary sword Excalibur. If you live in New York City, stepping into the underground concourse of subterranean subway tunnels is a daily excursion into the upside, downside aspect of city-living. The Netflix Television series Stranger Things is a recent foray into this genre. The show has created an entire mythology around this old concept in its imaginative world-building of the Upside Down. I like how Phillip Pullman in his fantasy series The Golden Compass has his hero wield a blade that cuts into the fabric of space and time, thus able to cross between worlds. Or, that famous image from the movie Poltergeist in which Carol Anne extends her hand toward the white, emanating glow of the television set. Portals can be sunken into the imagination of tales and storytelling told by the fire, but there is a truth in the telling. Fantasy fiction, as well as science fiction, uses portals and doorways. For example - Dr. Who's T.A.R.D.I.S. is the stuff of science fiction lore, but the idea of a quantum-powered engine that can skip across space and time seems plausible. And with images from astronomers showing us what Black Holes sort of look like, the idea of traversing across the universe through cosmic doorways seems real to me somehow. We (i.e., humans) just don't have the technology. Yet. I wonder if in the forthcoming centuries we humans will make the old legends true. We first have to figure out the problem of massive incoming changes in the earth's climate that is fastly becoming our next existential threat - but after that! - we have goals to tend to - ad astra!
|The original Poltergeist movie (1982) perfectly utilizes the |
ancient idea of a portal to another world.
I found this whimsical video on the video streaming app Tik Tok. I am not sure if this place actually exists - but if it does I want to go there! Video Source: @elliedothoe
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