The filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola cooked up an original screenplay he called “Megalopolis.”
Lesson / Koan : Micro gestures impact mega scales.
“It was a movie, in a nutshell, about a utopia – the idea that maybe the human species is so talented and so ingenious that we could at this point build life in the world that would be so exciting and great for everybody,” said the filmmaker.
“I set the story in New York and it had a kind of archetype of a master builder, like a Robert Moses but an enlightened kind of character, and it was all on grandiose terms.”
The script for “Megalopolis” had dealt with time in an odd way because, said Coppola, “obviously when you are going to build a utopia it doesn’t happen in a weekend.“
A friend had given the director a book by Mircea Eliade, now out of print, to read because it dealt with similar issues.
“I read the quotes about time because time is essentially unreal. We are humans can think about the future as a concept, but there is no such thing as the future nor is there such a thing as the past because we are always in the present,” said Coppola.
The film version of ”Megalopolis” has not been made, and is on hold…just as the future is.
Eliade's portrait on a Moldovan stamp.
Mircea Eliade…was a Romanian historian of religion, fiction writer, philosopher, and professor at the University of Chicago. He was a leading interpreter of religious experience, who established paradigms in religious studies that persist to this day. His theory that hierophanies form the basis of religion, splitting the human experience of reality into sacred and profane space and time, has proved influential. One of his most influential contributions to religious studies was his theory of Eternal Return, which holds that myths and rituals do not simply commemorate hierophanies, but, at least to the minds of the religious, actually participate in them. In academia, the Eternal Return has become one of the most widely accepted ways of understanding the purpose of myth and ritual.
The term “hierophany” (from the Greek roots “ἱερός” (hieros), meaning “sacred” or “holy,” and “φαίνειν” (phainein) meaning “to reveal” or “to bring to light”) signifies a manifestation of the sacred. It occurs frequently in the works of the religious historian Mircea Eliade as an alternative to the more restrictive term “theophany” (an appearance of a god).
An endowed chair in the History of Religions at the University of Chicago Divinity School was named after Eliade in recognition of his wide contribution to the research on this subject.