hero is often considered
to be someone born with outstanding ability, courage, and
bravery. But are heroes really born that way... are they superior
Some heroes you are familiar with have
forged their strength and character through their experiences. Their
bravery and courage are developed in spite of fear and human failings.
Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz must travel with her companions
to develop qualities of courage, heart, and
brain before she can return home with a new appreciation for her
loved ones. And in the recent movie, Titanic, Rose must
learn to take hold of her own life and make it truly her own.
Television has its share of action heroes
and battles between the good guys and the bad guys. But perhaps
you could also think of these stories and images as reminders of
the heroic nature of your own individual journey--no matter how
ordinary you may think your own life is.
artists have depicted the hero's journey as a great battle with
evil or a quest for something sacred that will help their community.
Other heroes must complete a bigger-than-life task. We love these
stories! Gawain, Percival, and Galahad quest for the Holy
Grail and Jason for the golden fleece. Hercules must complete
twelve nearly impossible tasks as an act of penance.
A familiar theme in paintings is Michael
slaying the dragons. In our own lives, the dragons we meet are not
so much breathing fire on us as breathing fire in
us. Our dragons might be an illness or a loss or a great fear.
Or perhaps we have to conquer self-doubt. Slaying the dragon can
be an important metaphor for our inner quest for peace, truth, love,
What are your dragons?
Sometimes, the hero's journey involves learning to believe in ourselves
and our ability to play our part. We may even need to grow into
and accept our ability to lead others, overcoming guilt or confusion--you
remember Simba in The Lion King? Joseph Campbell taught
that the hero's journey is primarily a journey to the center of
yourself, an inner journey to wholeness and understanding.
it's possible to see your entire life as a hero's journey. And at
the end of your life, you have the opportunity to look back with
wonder, awe, and compassionate understanding at all that you have
learned and experienced.
hero's journey begins with birth...
it continues through many adventures.
It's all in how you look at things.
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