The El Dorado myth

[Original in German]

Do we sometimes think a change of place could solve our problems? Or do we determine, without even thinking about a change of place, that a harmonious, fulfilled life is not attainable right where we are?

Then we are acting somewhat like the Spanish conquerors in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries who set out in South America to look for a city steeped in legend called El Dorado. The place was never found, but the search for it did not cease, despite the difficulties and privations that were endured.

This legendary city was so attractive because it was supposed to have been, as one dictionary says, "a place of fabulous wealth, abundance, or opportunity." But since this place wasn't found, we need to ask if those explorers were just looking in the wrong direction or if the city didn't exist at all.

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March 17, 1986

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