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Interesting read! The word panic is derived from this guy...

'In Greek mythology and in the ancient Greek psyche, Pan was associated with the darker side of Nature, and even human nature, as he was paired with things like nightmares and sexual violence. As he is bearded, hairy and beastlike, he is the archetypal wildman, representing wild instinctive energy, uncontrollable instincts. This debauched, short-tempered, rural god has bound up within him all of the darker aspects of ourselves. Pan is the embodiment, the personification of our dark human nature.

Pan is all about Nature, instincts and natural experiences so he also signifies a way to our spiritual side, to spiritual enlightenment through concrete physical experiences rather than just through examining things with our intellect. In our civilized way of life on our way to progress we often forget about Nature and our natural, instinctual side.

So in the notion of panic, in the actual physical and emotional state of panic, Pan is revealing himself with the wisdom of Nature, showing us this wild side of ourselves. As "civilized" beings we don't necessarily like this darker side of our human nature and want to hide from it, run from it - we panic.

In fact, we fear this aspect of ourselves so much that we have demonized it with our new religions. Pan, being so wild and bestial, became the Christian perception of the Devil. Our modern, popular, Christian notion of what the Devil looks like equates with the ancient Greek god Pan: goat-like legs, hooves, and horns, shaggy appearance and wild looks. Christian religion tells us that the Devil is pure evil so it is denying these natural, instinctual aspects of ourselves, aspects that can also lead us to a spiritual union with God, the Great Spirit, the Divine Presence, or whatever else you prefer to call it.

Pan, is a reflection of a different side of ourselves, a darker side that as civilized individuals we prefer to ignore or repress. So panic is a reaction to our natural instincts. I think it is time that we acknowledge our more instinctual side. I'm not saying that we should give in to the really dark and sinister urges that would harm another individual in any way, but to accept that we do have a darker side and sometimes we do have "not nice" thoughts, sexual desires, etc. By recognizing that this Pan-like aspect exists within us we can better understand our true selves and reach a deeper connection with our spiritual nature on our journey to being whole individuals.'
 

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Beautuful beautiful beautiful post with a brilliant insight there.

Now, however, all this talk about anamalism and instinct is making me want to find my boyfriend...rawr
 

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there is a lovely invocation of pan in 'the wind in the willows' by kenneth grahame. its in the chapter 'piper at the gates of dawn' when some of the animal characters are looking for the otters child and are led to an island.
 
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