“ManPipe and the Ocean Clan. New Myth #39.” “Myth Lab 2 – Imprinting the Transition for the New Mythology.” Willi Paul, NewMythologist.com


The Video Artifact for Myth Lab 2 @ Dunes Beach


The Myth Lab workshop is envisioned for neighborhood activists and media savor collaborators where a group of 4 – 12 participants spend 60 minutes to analyze a pre-selected Artifact and produce a new myth. New Myth # 39 is generated by Willi Paul and serves as a second example for creating new myths. The artifact is a video from a coastal beach ecosystem that serves as spirit and mythos for the New Myth #39 (see site map).

A process model is included that illustrates mythic imprinting with more depth.  The goal is to integrate permaculture, transition, Nature and sustainability with the values and struggles in the Chaos Age. The Myth Lab is designed as an interactive, open source and iterative experience. One goal is clear: we need to build our own messages and new myths to support our new food and governance systems.

Key Terms:

Artifact – The Imprintable Artifact is a Nature-Human combination; examples include graffiti, a bill board, historic sculpture, and a permaculture garden, with special powers and messages to the neighborhood.

Mythos – The pattern of basic values and attitudes of a people characteristically transmitted through myths and the arts.

New Mythology – Is a call for new Nature-based, globally integrated stories without allegiance to any classic mythologies. New Mythology incorporates new symbols, new alchemy and climate change era rituals and is built for the future.

The Transition Movement includes new business exchange schemes where waste is used by another business; Transition is garden sharing that allows gardeners to re-use barren lands; the movement encourages people to choose local food and offer support for smart bicycle and mass transit systems.

Mythic Imprinting – Imprinting is defined as a two-way interaction with a selected Artifact that has generates synergistic meaning for both participants and the Artifact. Called “mythic imprinting” in the Myth Lab, this iterative and transmutative process is grounded in the initiation, journey and hero work from Joseph Campbell and is one way that neighborhood artifacts can help neighbors generate new songs, poems and myths.

The Process Model:

Myth Lab #2 Process Model

5 Stages of the Mythic Lab Process:

Stage 1: Discover the Artifact –

Hiking at Dunes State Beach recently, we marveled at the interplay between sand, surf, stream, cliff and an old storm water pipe. Is there a story here? How about eco-alchemy for a New Myth? Journey on!

Step 2: Analyze the Artifact –

Artifact Myth Lab #2 – Source Video

sky view dunes beach

         Site Photo: Dunes State Beach, Half Moon Bay, CA

 Site Specifications:

Size: ~ 250’ x 350’

Address: Dunes State Park Half Moon Bay, CA








Stage Three: Analyze the Artifact

 Symbols – Ocean as Mother; Erosion as Death; ManPipe as Man’s Destruction of Nature and Race; Stream as Woman

Colors – Sky Blue, Ocean Blue, White, Sandy Yellow, Browns, Black

Textures – Grit, Cool Wind, Drift Wood Ruff, Iron Decay

Scene – Beach Erosion and Renewal

 Stage 4: Mythic Imprintation

Ocean:  “It appears that your time with the Ocean Clan is nearly over.”

Stream: “Pipe, you are rusty and leaking; another wind storm and snap, down you will go!”

Cliff: “Look at the erosion in my bank. Humans love my shapes and colors.”

Skeleton: “Tisk, tisk. Nothing flowing out of you now.”

Beach: “My sand is refreshed by Ocean now. No more garbage? Ha!”

ManPipe: “The humans have now changed course. Storm water run-off is now saved for the fields.”

ManPipe: “I will miss you Skeleton, even with so many trees and bushes washing -up on Beach, you are beautiful!”

Ocean: “We are the horizon now – the sounds of foaming spray and gulls crying overhead.”

Skeleton: “Don’t you recall the day that you called me “tree?”

Beach: “I do. You were a redwood branch then!”

Cliff: “I will look forward to rebuilding my edges back to strong walls.”

Stream: “My water will flow down to Ocean forever and ever, cleaned by the coastal marsh. Take care, PipeMan.”

Stage 5:  Share the New Myth with Community

Share the New Myth with the community through oral and electronic channels, generating additional ideas and Artifacts for new rituals and songs.


New Myth # 39: “ManPipe and the Ocean Clan”

* * * * * * *

Mythic Imprinting with Nature – Possible Outcomes:

One key outcome is that we design and share new artifacts that resonate from / with Nature.

We can create our own new stories, songs and myths without interference from corporate and governmental profit mandates.

The Lab can stitch together the ideals of permaculture, transition and Nature to further develop localization as the key guiding principle moving forward.

The Myth Lab is a low cost, high return process that can bring together all kinds of people: Nature lovers, poets and activists to create unforeseen synergies and messages.

As an incubator, the “Myth Lab” can use many types of human and Nature-based artifacts to achieve creative, far-reaching visions and global solutions.

Start to finish, this process is also akin to a “mapping” exercise, uncovering key issues and next steps in our evolution.

 Questions for Students:

1. What makes an object a good Artifact for the Myth Lab imprinting process? Does Nature play this role well?

2. Do you understand why mythic imprinting is a two-way (human – Artifact) experience?

3. What other sources for new myths can you list?

Willi Paul
New Mythologist & Transition Entrepreneur
newmythologist.com | PlanetShifter.com Magazineopenmythsource.com
@planetshifter @openmythsource @permaculturexch
415-407-4688 | pscompub@gmail.com

About [ open myth source ]

The [open myth source] project gathers conversations, symbols, songs, visual art and stories. Building a house for Myth in the Sustainability Age.
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