Friday, July 10, 2015

The Twelve Archetypes-Stages of the Heros Journey

The Journey of the 12 Archetypes

We are aided on our journey by inner guides, or archetypes, each of which exemplifies a way of being on the journey of life. We will explore the 12 archetypes in detail in future blog posts. In the mean time, and for you to become somewhat familiar with what we are going to talk about, you can find a brief introduction to the archetypes and the heroes journey in this post.

The inner guides are archetypes that have been used with us since the dawn of time. We see them
reflected in recurring images in art, literature, myth and religion. 

How do the 12 archetypes relate to us living life?
The quest itself is replete with dangers and pitfalls, but it offers great rewards: the capacity to be successful in the world, knowledge of the mysteries of the human soul, the opportunity to find and express your unique gifts in the world and to live in loving community with other people.

We each experience the archetypes according to our own perspective. There are at least five ways to explain what an archetype is:

  • Spiritual seekers may conceive archetypes as gods and goddesses, encoded in the collective unconscious, whom we scorn at our own risk.
  • Academics, or other rationalists, who typically are suspicious of anything that sounds mystic, may conceive archetypes as controlling paradigms o metaphors, the invisible patterns in the mind that control how we experience the world.
  • Physicists, Psychologists and other scholar study archetypes by examining their presence in art, literature, myth and dreams.
  • Religious positions may view archetypes as different facets of God, accessible to the psyche's capacity to imagine numinous reality.
  • People who are interested in human growth and personal development may understand archetypes as guides on our journey. Each archetype brings with it a task, a lesson and a gift.
The archetypes together teach us how to live. Every archetypes resides within each of us. That means we all have this full human potential within ourselves.

Stages of the Journey

The stages of the journey include 3 stages,
  • The Preparation
  • The Journey 
  • The Return
To understand the future posts about the archetypes you will need to understand the archetypal stages.

They are as follows:

Preparation: Includes the first four archetypes-Innocence, Orphan, Warrior, Caregiver.

With Innocence we learn optimism and trust. When we experience "the fall" we become orphans who are disappointed, abandoned and betrayed by life. The Orphan teaches us that we need to stop being co-dependent and rely on others to take care of us, but the Orphan feels powerless and helpless that its best strategy for survival is to band together with others. When the Warrior comes into our lives, we learn to set goals and develop strategies for achieving them. This creates discipline and courage. Then the Caregiver becomes active, we learn to take care of others, eventually to care for ourselves as well.

Four Attributes: Basic optimism, the capacity to band together for support, the courage to fight for yourself and others and compassion and care for yourself and others provide the basic skills for living in society.

The Journey: Includes the archetypes: The Seeker, Lover, Destroyer, and the Creator.
With the Seeker we begin to yearn for something beyond ourselves and search for something that will satisfy us in our lives. The Destroyer takes away much that had seemed essential to our lives
Initiated through suffering, is complements by an initiation into Eros, the Lover, as we find ourselves in love with people, causes, places, work. This love is so strong it requires commitment-we are no longer free. The treasure that emerges out of this encounter with death and love is the birth of the true self. The Creator helps us begin to express this self in the world and prepares us to return to the Kingdom.

Four Attributes:To strive, let go, to love and to create teaches us the basic process of dying to  the old self and giving birth to the new. This process prepares us to return to the kingdom and change our lives.

The Return: Includes the last four archetypes: The Ruler, Magician, Sage and The Fool.
When we return we realize we are the Rulers of our kingdom. The Magician activates in our lives and we become adept to healing and transforming ourselves and others so that the kingdom can continually be renewed. The Sage helps us know what truth really is so we can be completely happy and fulfilled. The Fool helps us learn to live joyously in the moment without worrying about tomorrow.
Four Attributes: Taking responsibility for our lives, transforming and healing ourselves and others, non-attachment and a commitment to truth and a capacity for joy and spontaneity.

Here is a brief introduction to the Archetypes
Archetype: Innocent
Stage of Journey: Preparation

Goal: Remain in Safety

Fear:  Abandonment
Dragon/Problem: Deny it or seek rescue

Response to task: Fidelity, discernment

Gift/Virtue: Trust, Optimism

Archetype: Orphan
Stage of Journey: Preparation
Goal: Regain Safety

Fear:  Exploitation

Dragon/Problem: Is victimized by it

Response to task: Process and feel pain fully

Gift/Virtue:  Interdependence, realism

Archetype: Warrior
Stage of Journey: Preparation
Goal: Win

Fear:  Weakness

Dragon/Problem:  Slay/Confront it

Response to task: Fight only for what really matters

Gift/Virtue:  Courage, discipline

Archetype: Caregiver
Stage of Journey: Preparation
Goal: Help Others

Fear: Selfishness

Dragon/Problem:  Take care of it or those it harms

Response to task: Give without maiming self or others

Gift/Virtue: Compassion, generosity

Archetype: Seeker
Stage of Journey: The Journey

Goal:  Search for a better life

Fear: Conformity

Dragon/Problem: Flee from it

Response to task: be true to deeper self

Gift/Virtue: Autonomy, ambition


Archetype: Lover
Stage of Journey: The Journey

Goal: Bliss

Fear: Loss of Love

Dragon/Problem: Love it

Response to task: Follow your bliss

Gift/Virtue: Passion, commitment

Archetype: Destroyer
Stage of Journey: The Journey

Goal: Metamorphosis

Fear: Annihilation

Dragon/Problem: Allow dragon to slay it

Response to task: Let go

Gift/Virtue: Humility

Archetype: Creator
Stage of Journey: The Journey

Goal: Identity

Fear: Inauthenticity

Dragon/Problem: Claim it as part of the self

Response to task: self creation, self acceptance

Gift/Virtue: Individuality, vocation

Archetype: Ruler
Stage of Journey: The Return

Goal: Order

Fear: Chaos

Dragon/Problem: Find its constructive uses

Response to task: Take full responsibility for your life
Gift/Virtue: Responsibility, control

Archetype: Magician
Stage of Journey: The Return

Goal: Transformation

Fear: Evil Sorcery

Dragon/Problem: Transform it

Response to task: Align self with the cosmos

Gift/Virtue: Personal Power

Archetype: Sage
Stage of Journey: The Return

Goal: Truth
Fear: Deception

Dragon/Problem: Transcend it

Response to task: Attain enlightenment

Gift/Virtue: Wisdom, non-attachment

Archetype: Fool
Stage of Journey: The Return

Goal: Enjoyment

Fear: Non-aliveness

Dragon/Problem: Play tricks on it

Response to task: Trust in the process

Gift/Virtue: Joy, Freedom

  In the next blog posit on the twelve archetypes, we will begin to explore each archetype as a whole. 
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 reference: Awakening the Hero Within by Carol Pearson