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Passing the Threshold

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Today we're exploring the fifth stage of being a hero (from Joseph Campbell's book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces):


5: The hero passes the first threshold.

He fully enters the special world of his story for the first time. This is the moment at which the story takes off and the adventure gets going. The balloon goes up, the romance begins, the plane or spaceship blasts off, the wagon train gets rolling. Dorothy sets out on the Yellow Brick Road. Bilbo heads out his front door with the dwarves; Frodo and Sam leave the shire. Buffy kills her first vampire. The hero is now committed to his journey... and there's no turning back.

Something to think about:

This is where I always seem to get stuck. It takes a mighty kick to send me over that threshold. What about you? Can you think of your last "point of no return"? Are you looking at it right now? Does it tend to sneak up on you and suddenly you realize that you're committed? Or is it usually something you consciously decide? Is this the scariest part? or is that yet to come?

And sometimes I wonder if every action, every decision, every new day, is a threshold of some kind. And if that's true, does that mean we can change our story at any time? Can you change your story right now by doing or deciding something different? By getting up on a different side of the bed? Or does the drama have to play out first....

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