Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hero’s Welcome

Joseph Campbell (1904-1987)
The Hero's Journey is inspired by the teachings of Joseph Campbell, the great American mythologist.

After studying stories from across the world and through the ages, Campbell found that all stories are expressions of the same story-pattern, which he named the "Hero's Journey."

Adolf Bastian (1826-1905)
Campbell built on the pioneering work of German anthropologist Adolf Bastian, who first pointed out that myths from all over the world seem to share the same "elementary ideas."

Carl Jung (1875-1961)
Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung named these elementary ideas "archetypes," which he believed are the building blocks not only of the unconscious mind, but of a collective unconscious. Jung believed that everyone in the world is born with the same basic unconscious model of what is a "hero", a "mentor" an "ordeal", or a “reward”, and that's why people from unrelated cultures and separated by centuries can enjoy the same stories.

One of Campbell's key insights is that the "Hero’s Journey" is more than the underlying archetype of a good story; it is our internal compass that teaches us how to live well.

We as human beings are all on this universal Hero’s Journey, regardless of whether we are conscious of this fact or not.

Failure to recognize this basic premise is why many people feel that life is endlessly "doing it to us".

The Hero’s Journey is the Holy Grail buried deep within our unconscious, waiting to be unearthed. Through awakening, we realise that the Hero’s Journey provides us a rich and useful road map, based on a timeless tale of personal trials that lead to transformation, and the discovery of one’s true self - the treasure of who we really are.


  1. Wow, you've got an awesome blog. Good stuff, fueled by your love for your children!

    Alfred Chung

  2. Thanks Alfred for your encouragement. I look forward to your insightful comments which I enjoy and learn much from.