“Life is a journey, not a destination.”
A great deal has been made of the Hero’s Journey since the publication of Joseph Campbell’s book, THE HERO WITH A THOUSAND FACES, and while this journey is used even by therapists to help people overcome fear, it is not the only plotline for your story.
When we look at how the heroine acts, both in ancient mythology and today, we see that she is modeled after the Mother Goddess who was worshipped for 25,000 years before any God was placed in the sky as a remote ruler.
The Greek version of a hero is someone who fights or quests only for himself, his own honor and glory and he has informed much of Western Civilization. We get a somewhat more altruistic version in Indigenous hero stories when we see that the individual hero takes on challenges and dangers for the benefit of the community.
However, if we want to put back together our splintering world and our splintering psyche, male or female, we need to focus on The Heroine, who has all the attributes of the Mother Goddess, the first deity archetype to be worshipped and acknowledged as giving birth to the Universe and all of Creation.
-The Heroine does not sacrifice and struggle for herself, she puts her children first she is focused on the future.
-She is only interested in the health, welfare and growth of her family and community. She puts others before herself.
-If she needs help she is humble enough to ask for it.
-She is discerning, she sees through those who are simply using her and those who are truly committed to the same cause she is.
-Power and Glory mean nothing to her and her only investment in Honor is to act with integrity and decency even as she fights her battles.
-She recognizes talent and tenacity in others and is determined to put together the best team possible to assist her in reaching her “destination”, her goal.
-She always gives credit where credit is due; she shares the victory.
-She is willing to plant the seeds of change even though she knows she may never live to see them blossom, even if she herself dies in the process and her name is forgotten.
Great Enlightened Teachers such as Gandhi, Buddha and Jesus are often described as being equally feminine and masculine since they were focused on ending suffering for all through love, compassion and non-violence, qualities often attributed to women.
The Great Peacemaker of the Haudenosaunee is said to have had one side of his hair black and the other white, symbolizing the need to keep all in balance and harmony in order to sustain life and bring peace.
So this is not just a quest for women, it is a journey first into yourself to find the qualities of kindness, understanding, nurturing, compassion, humility, selflessness and love and then apply them to your own life. The Heroine understands that when we all work together we all get more and our jobs and our lives are much easier.
I always recommend starting a journal or two. This one could simply be titled, MY HEROINE’S JOURNEY. I suggest starting with 10-minute free writes (Thank you Natalie Goldberg for this format)
Set a timer, start writing and don’t edit as you go or lift your hand from the paper as you answer each of the following questions. You can even spread them out over 4 days if that seems more doable than all at once.
Just 40 minutes of your time can get you started on your Quest!
What seeds do I want to plant?
What inspires me? Remember the root of the word inspire means “with Spirit.”
Who and What am I grateful for right here and now that sustains life for me?
Who can I go to for help?