I wasn’t expecting to get blissed out at a lecture on mythology, but since Michael Meade was the one speaking, I should have known better. A thoroughly engrossing storyteller, Meade made his presentation in part to promote his new book, Fate and Destiny: The Two Agreements of the Soul (GreenFire Press, 2010). He began the evening by using stirring stories from his own boyhood to illustrate the compelling nature of the topics of his book. Here’s an example: When Meade was on the verge of adolescence, he asked his aunt to give him a history book as a birthday present. The aunt obliged, went to a bookstore, and standing on the tips of her toes, grasped for a book on the top shelf of the history section. Her blind reach, however, resulted in a fateful mistake. When Meade opened his present, he discovered not a book on history, but a volume with a flying horse on the cover, and the word “Mythology” announcing itself as the title. The aunt apologized and offered to exchange it, but Meade, struck with wonder, insisted on keeping the gift.

Not too long after this event, Meade got a glimpse of the life-sustaining roles that story and myth were to play in his life: One night at the movie theater Meade was attacked by a bunch of knife-wielding boys seeking retribution for an act committed by one of Meade’s friends. Terrified, Meade found himself weaving a story, the words for which seemed to appear from thin air. He told his attackers about the life of the boy they were angry at, about his troubled relationship with his dad, and other difficulties the boy had experienced. Perhaps because the description of the boy’s life so mirrored their own misery, the gangsters became mesmerized and put down their weapons, freeing Meade.

And so was the beginning of the life of one destined to become a mythologist-storyteller-healer. Via his nonprofit, the Mosaic Multicultural Foundation, Meade now uses the gift of storytelling that he once used to free himself to help at-risk inner city youth liberate themselves from the circumstances of their lives. And it was obvious from the wide eyes and dropped jaws at the lecture I attended that his yarn-weaving magic extends beyond the work of his nonprofit to anyone longing to discover the purpose and meaning of their lives.

Go to www.mosaicvoices.org for more of Michael Meade’s work, including a great video of Meade speaking on “Fulfilling the Genius Within,” a topic of his book Fate and Destiny: The Two Agreements of the Soul.

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Comment by Melissa Jane on February 9, 2011 at 8:11am
Bonnie: Thanks for your comment! He spoke of even more interconnecting events, which occurred over several years, that pointed toward his destiny to become a mythologist. It was astounding to hear about the the ways that his soul made it clear what his work was/is in this world. And yes it is amazing how how soul/Self truly does know us so well. That's a lovely way to look at it. Listening to Michael, I was so inspired to have faith in my own destiny, to believe in my own soul's calling. I agree that listening to or seeing him is the best bet. He is a thoroughly engrossing storyteller. Magical!
Comment by Bonnie Bright on February 8, 2011 at 10:56pm

Melissa Jane: Thank you for taking the time to share this. I've seen Michael speak a couple of times and probably own 5 of his cds, but I don't recall ever hearing either of the stories you share here. Isn't it amazing how "Fate" (or soul or Self) knows us each so well, even when we don't.

For anyone who doesn't know Michael's work, I highly recommend you listen to him (at least at first) rather than read. I'm typically a "reader"--love it beyond reason--but Michael's gift is definitely sublime to experience in audio (and visual if you can get it).

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