We can identify a series of stages in our individual “hero’s journey”. We must embrace many symbolic archetypes to navigate each of them. Would you like to learn about their traits and integration strategies?
Characters that help you progress in life
The hero’s journey is not sequential, linear, or chronological, unlike notions of stage learning or developmental psychology.
In other words, it is cyclical and does not follow a set order that can be generalized, allowing us to go through the same stages again. In the different facets of our life, we are immersed in numerous parallel journeys rather than just one (work, emotional, family, health…).
As we go through the phases, we learn the skills that allow us to develop personally and socially, mature emotionally, and discover our vocation in life.
To do this, we employ a variety of archetypal roles, each with a specific purpose and goal. Some of the most important of these are listed below.
We are in a state of innocence during pregnancy and early life, as our parents or guardians take care of us and we are not concerned about our survival.
It is a situation that, for example, is described in the parable of Adam and Eve’s paradise. The exit from Eden, which represents birth, adolescence, liberation, or simply leaving our comfort zone, is the first test we must overcome.
Because, like the maidens in the fairy tales, our world extends beyond the fortress.
As soon as we begin to take responsibility for our well-being and stop relying on the same individuals and/or beliefs that guaranteed our security, our innocent personality begins to fade.
Up to that point, we play the innocent, innocent character. However, author Stieg Larson has said that there are no innocent people, but different degrees of responsibility.
The initial emotion that usually runs through our bodies after leaving our preconceived notions behind and stepping into the unknown is one of uncertainty, helplessness, or disappointment.
Many of us remember the moment we realized that our parents were fallible or when we stopped supporting a certain political party, administration, or religion.
To face our new existence more independently, we must overcome the conflict of seeing the futility of our old thought patterns.
The mentor, who may be our boss, a friend, or a family member, often appears at this time and inspires us to see new possibilities and healthier ways of living our lives.
It is a time when feelings of helplessness and fragility are common, but it is crucial to understand one’s nature.
Who hasn’t experienced the feeling of loss of direction in life?
This is a common problem for the wanderer. This stage is represented in literature by tales of the wanderer who travels on his own to discover himself and the world.
In our lives, this can be the time after finishing college or after ending a committed relationship, when we decide to jump into the unknown without knowing for sure what will happen.
Problems that previously caused us pain can then be transformed into challenges and tests that we must overcome to know ourselves and establish our personality.
Therefore, the central conundrum we will encounter in this section of the journey is: to what extent am I able to let go of my previous convictions and forge a new identity for myself?
A warrior does not believe; a warrior has to believe at some point in his life to create.
Carlos Castaneda once said that “when a warrior has to believe, he does so because he chooses to, as an expression of his innermost preference”. We can begin to defend our values as a strong cause once we have made judgments and established our positions.
Our activities take on new meaning and become the “battles” that allow us to realize our potential when we have a clear direction in our lives, whether personal or professional.
To do this, we must first have the ability to act by our truth and accept responsibility for any negative outcomes. We then discover that happiness or fulfillment is not found at the destination, but is part of the journey.
Integrating this archetype involves letting go of the fear of the outside world. As a result, we are free to be without having to justify our beliefs or establish our superiority.
We realize that we do not need to fight against anyone to be who we are after we have protected our identity and our way of thinking.
Our personalities can be shared from an awareness of unity rather than having to stand apart from others. When we get married or have children, for example, we can observe how this stage is represented.
Because doing so requires expanding our identities beyond who we are as individuals. Since we understand that we are part of the group, our behaviors should no longer differentiate us from others.
Because at this stage the individual must prioritize others over self, it may require a great deal of kindness. In return, this action may be tinged with a sense of sacrifice, as if performed by someone who puts others above self.
The advent of the Magician archetype marks the next stage of human progress.
When we are the Orphan, Martyr, or Warrior archetypes, we reside in a realm of alienation, guilt, and victimization. The fundamental belief of the Magician is that he is a component of the universe around him and, as such, is in charge of shaping his reality because it is a reflection of his inner condition.
One of the lessons of the Magician is to realize that the things he feared as an orphan, fled from as a wanderer, faced as a warrior, and gave his life to fight against as a martyr is but the unconscious components of his personality.
It is his responsibility to incorporate all the “dark” elements he notices in reality and alter them using his consciousness. The magician is aware that he cannot alter the course of events and that, instead, he must become the change he wishes to see in the world.
The Hero’s Journey
We are aware that the hero’s journey involves a process of transformation that requires the successful overcoming of all these archetypes. When we complete it, it invariably leads us to a new perspective on the world, one that recognizes our responsibility for our experiences.
Each archetype we experience is used according to the circumstances in which we find ourselves at the time, and they are the ones that motivate us to continue traveling and to learn the lessons necessary to return to a “paradisiacal” environment supported by the example of our consciousness.
With information from Enric Corbera Institute