I was curious to know who inspired and influenced Joseph Campbell. It seems it was a German researcher by the name of Heinrich Zimmer who studied and wrote about oriental mythology. He wrote the ‘Philosophies of India’ which recounts Indian mythology, philosophy and tales as well his own interpretation.
Some of the tales leave a lasting impression.
The boar carrying on his arm the goddess Earth whom he is in the act of rescuing from the depths of the sea, passingly remarks to her:
“Every time I carry you like this . . . “
For the western mind, which still believes in single, historical epoch-making events, this casual comment of the ageless god has a gently minimising effect.
Philopsophies of India – Heinrich Zimmer