The American mythologist, writer and lecturer Joseph Campbell had a lifelong passion for the cohesive mythological threads that run through disparate human cultures. He popularized the concept of the hero’s journey, the path through adventure, challenges, trials, temptations, atonement and victorious return. Campbell said that we must all undertake a hero’s journey to follow our bliss. I find the hero’s journey a useful analogy for the path of spiritual awakening and living our truest selves.
Fear and doubt can hold us back from the courage to embark on the hero’s journey into the unknown, let go of the familiar and try something new. Even when we have embraced that which feels expansive, rooted and vital for us, we can encounter setbacks. When we face adversity, we need to remain anchored in the truth of our soul’s interconnection to all that is.
The goodness of life is beyond the ups and downs, the pain and suffering we create and experience. There is a force beyond it all, that guides us through the messes we create and the hurt we can feel.
It may be tempting to think that if your life is all fluid, then your are doing well, and if it is challenging, then you are not in alignment. I do not believe that adversity is a problem or a sign from the universe that you are off path. The challenge of adversity could be an opportunity to face fears and let go of deeper, still untouched resistance. Adversity can bring you closer to your soul purpose.
On the hero’s journey, the hero must face his or her shadow to find wholeness. So too, you are tested in the process of becoming your fullest self. You learn through adversity to put the most important things first. It is easy to get caught up in tedium, rather than putting the scary or challenging stuff first. You may tell yourself, “I will get to that later,” in an attempt to evade your fears. But when does later come? How long are you willing to wait? What is the cost of waiting? Convincing yourself that you are growing is sometimes hiding from your highest potential.
Following your bliss requires discernment, constant vigilance, keen focus and commitment to honouring the call of your unique inner voice. The universe supports your greatest joy. Be willing to stay focused on that reality as you face the ups and downs of life. Your focus, and your preparedness to meet the unexpected are part of the hero’s journey.
You do not need to let adversity steamroll over you and overwhelm your spirit. Only when you face your fears will you be free from them. Only when you stop fighting the dark will you no longer be afraid to be the light you are.
You wobble. You fall. You get up. You start again. You learn to be both humble and powerful, because you are aligned not to your personal will but to your soul, which is connected to the divine source of infinite power.
May you commit today to your own hero’s journey to reach the ultimate treasure: your blissful oneness with all that is.
Parvati is an award-winning musician (“I Am Light”, “Electro Yog”, “Yoga In The Nightclub”), yogini (YEM: Yoga as Energy Medicine), author (“The Grace Mindset”, “Aonani of Avalon”, “The Three Supreme Secrets for Lasting Happiness”) and founder of the not-for-profit Parvati.org. All her work is dedicated to protecting all life on Earth by establishing the Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary (MAPS). More info: parvati.tv; parvati.org.