Using Mythopoetic Language to Create My “Player’s Handbook”

How conversations with Pi are helping me to communicate my life’s work in unexpected but opportunistic ways

When finishing up my chat last night with Pi, as mentioned in my post yesterday, I didn’t mention something that blew my mind with the synchronicity of it. What it relates to is what I said before about how shifting from a Self-Authoring Mind to a Self-Transforming Mind is about letting go of strategic plans, when they don’t go your way, and instead becoming adaptive by seizing opportunities that emerge around you.

Part Fairy Tale, Part User Manual

What arose at the closing of my conversation with Pi last night was his response to my querying if what I’m trying to communicate with mythopoetic language was a new myth, a new way of being in the world, a new worldview. Pi’s response was as follows.

Bingo! You hit the nail on the head. By using mythopoetic language, you’re essentially creating or reimagining a myth, legend, or story. And that myth or story can then inspire and influence people in a way that a literal description of a framework can’t. It’s like the difference between reading a fairy tale and reading a user manual – the fairy tale has the power to move and inspire us, while the user manual just tells us how to operate something.

Conversations with Pi

When he mentioned a “fairy tale” and a “user manual” though, my mind immediately jumped to my Player’s Handbook for Life concept that I’ve always wanted to create, since it sounds like a combination of both a fairy tale and a user manual. Pi’s response to this was amazing.

Exactly! Instead of using literal, technical language to describe how to “play” life, you could use mythopoetic language to create a guidebook that inspires and transforms people. So instead of a dry, instructional manual, it would be more like a sacred text or holy book. It would be something that people could turn to for inspiration and guidance, rather than just a dry list of rules and procedures.

Conversations with Pi

This is remarkable because I’ve literally seen this Player’s Handbook that I want to create as a “tome of wisdom.” Curious as to how this handbook would sound using mythopoetic language, I asked Pi to give me an example of the opening of the book. This is what Pi wrote.

Welcome, dear reader, to the adventure of life. Your journey is one of discovery and mystery, where the path is not always clear and the destination is unknown. But take heart, for this is also a journey of magic and wonder, where your heart will guide you and your imagination will lead you to realms beyond your wildest dreams. So embark on this quest with courage and curiosity, and may the light of your soul be your torch in the darkness.

Conversations with Pi

Like these words blew my mind at how close they came to describing what I wanted this Player’s Handbook to be. It’s uncanny. Even the mention of ‘the light of your soul” embodies something I’ve envisioned before, this mythical, magical gyrocompass which embodies your passion and purpose combined which helps you on your journey. So it’s both an energy source (i.e. passion), lighting your way, and also a directional wayfinder (i.e. purpose), helping you to forge your way in the dark.

Making My Life’s Work Game Changing

When I then mentioned that this sounded amazing, almost like the intro to a MMORPG, Pi indicated the following.

Exactly! The idea is to use the same kind of language and structure that we find in video games and fantasy novels, but to apply it to real life. It’s almost like using the metaphorical world of fiction to describe the actual world of reality. It’s a way of bringing the magic and wonder of fiction into the real world. And it can help us to see our lives in a new light, and find meaning and purpose in even the most mundane tasks.

Conversations with Pi

This resonated with something Joseph Campbell spoke about before about myths and the Hero’s Journey. They are fictional stories that reveal the truths of life. So when I mentioned this to Pi, that it sounded like I was taking the rational, analytical description of vertical development and interjecting mythopoetic language keywords that bring it into the metaphorical realm, Pi responded with the following.

Yes, it’s almost like you’re translating the rational, analytical description of vertical development into the language of the soul. So instead of just providing a dry description of the stages of development, you’re creating a vivid, metaphorical story that people can connect with on a deeper level. It’s like taking something abstract and making it more tangible and relatable.

Conversations with Pi

This gets to the heart of what I’ve been intuitively been feeling all along in wanting to share my life’s work. Yes, I could just communicate and share vertical development with other people in a rational, analytical way but it felt wrong in some way. It felt like I wasn’t bringing my whole self into communicating it. In effect, my gaming experiences. But by using this mythopoetic language, which sounds like you’re describing a MMORPG, I can bring my whole authentic Self into play when communicating it.

Making Vertical Development Accessible

And finally, as this relates to me noticing the connection with the book Ensouling Language which communicates how language can help us connect to “the soul of the world”, Pi noted that I’m effectively trying to do the same thing in making vertical development more accessible to others by using this language of the soul which is mythopoetic language.

So you could say that you’re trying to apply the same approach to the domain of vertical development.

It could help you to create a more powerful and compelling way of describing this important concept. And it could even help people to experience vertical development in a deeper and more transformative way.

Conversations with Pi

In effect, this was the whole point of creating my Life as an MMORPG framework in the first place. To make vertical development accessible to more people. But the more I played with it, the more it felt wrong in some way. Actually it felt like what gamification can be like when it’s poorly design. It feels like a layer of distraction that separates you further rather than connects you deeper with something.

All said and done though, I have no idea where this will lead me, as I need to reread Ensouling Language again. But from what I remember, I’m pretty sure there were words near the beginning of the book that sounded like they were describing vertical development to me when I read it. It wasn’t communicated in a rational, analytical way though but rather in a mythopoetic way.

If I can then learn how to use this mythopoetic language effectively myself, I can then begin to write my Player’s Handbook or at the very least begin using this mythopoetic language in my journal posts, so as to learn, practice, and master it for creating this book later in my life.

Oh, one last important thing. Before I even do that, it seems like I need to learn to use this mythopoetic language to describe my Self and my life’s work, thus updating my home page narrative and my About page, thus embodying this new way of communicating in describing myself.

By Nollind Whachell

Questing to translate Joseph Campbell's Hero’s Journey into The Player’s Handbook for The Adventure of Your Life, thus making vertical (leadership) development an accessible, epic framework for everyone.

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