Many of our emotional responses are a result of events in the past. Letting go of the past provides an opportunity to react differently and overcome recurring difficulties.
‘The mythological hero is the champion not of things become but of things becoming; the dragon to be slain by him is precisely the monster of the status quo: Holdfast, the keeper of the past. From obscurity the hero emerges, but the enemy is great and conspicuous in the seat of power; he is enemy, dragon, tyrant, because he turns to his own advantage the authority of his position. He is Holdfast not because he keeps the past but because he keeps.’
Joseph Campbell. The Hero with a Thousand Faces
Human emotional responses are just our own history being brought into the present by the current context. If our reactions are our history, and our reactions are our enemies, then our own history has become our enemy.
Steven C. Hayes, Kirk D. Strosahl and Kelly G. Wilson. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: An Experiential Approach to Behavior Change.
* In a series of posts I call mythology Monday, I look at quotes from the work of mythologist Joseph Campbell and consider them alongside extracts from books and papers on acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and related publications.