The Rebirth of the Hero: Mythology as a Guide to Spiritual Transformation ~ Kieron Le Grice


The portrayal of the hero in classical myths and modern films continues to exert a compelling influence on the collective imagination, entertaining and inspiring audiences the world over. On a deeper level, the myth of the hero’s adventure is recognized as a fundamental pattern of human experience itself, a symbolic expression of the individual’s struggle for greater consciousness, psychological wholeness, and spiritual realization.

In The Rebirth of the Hero, Keiron Le Grice draws on the ideas and life experiences of C. G. Jung, Joseph Campbell, and Friedrich Nietzsche to explore the spiritual journey of the modern self, from existential crisis and the “awakening of the self” to the dramatic encounter with the underworld of the psyche and the arduous labor of spiritual transformation. In a work of wide-ranging scope and penetrating insight, Le Grice analyzes scenes from a number of popular films—Jason and the Argonauts, Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Pan’s Labyrinth, and more—to illuminate the themes and stages of psychospiritual rebirth and individuation, helping to make the deepest of transformative experiences more readily accessible and intelligible to us all.

Drawing interchangeably on classical Greek myths, Christianity, alchemy, Romanticism, and depth psychology, the author also relates the individual’s personal journey of transformation to the relationship in Western civilization between spirit and nature, reason and instinct, and masculine and feminine. In so doing, The Rebirth of the Hero demonstrates the critical significance of the archetypal pattern of the hero not only for the individual, but also for cultural renewal and the wider spiritual transformation of our time.


Keiron Le Grice, Ph.D.
, is a guest lecturer in Jungian and Archetypal Studies at the Pacifica Graduate Institute, California, and adjunct faculty in the Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness program at the California Institute of Integral Studies. He is the author of The Archetypal Cosmos and Discovering Eris, and the founding editor of Archai: The Journal of Archetypal Cosmology. Keiron was educated at the University of Leeds (B.A. honors Philosophy and Psychology) and the California Institute of Integral Studies (M.A. and Ph.D. Philosophy and Religion). In 2006, he was awarded the inaugural Joseph Campbell Research Grant from the Opus Archives at Pacifica Graduate Institute (in association with the Joseph Campbell Foundation) for furthering the work of Campbell, C. G. Jung, and James Hillman. Keiron currently lives in Wales with his wife and son.

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