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Hero's Journey: Examples of Joseph Campbell, Jesus and Mary Mackillop

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Jesus also had the life of a Hero’s Journey. Depending on how you look at it, there are actually two reasonable answers for Jesus’ Departure. The first one is his birth which marks Jesus’ entry into human history and the first step in his mission to defeat sin and save sinners. The second would be his baptism by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. After he came up from the water, the Holy Spirit descended onto Jesus in the form of a dove. The initiation involves him being brought before the Sanhedrin and is spat upon and beaten. Since they weren’t able to kill him before Sabbath, they send him off to Pilate, Governor of the Roman province of Judea. Jesus then goes through a series of trials that try to prove his crimes against the Jewish law. Pilate found no cause against Jesus, and sent him to Herod Antipas, the client king installed by the Romans over Galilee, whose jurisdiction Jesus fell under. Herod had Jesus beaten and mocked before sending him back to Pilate. The return for Jesus is the most humbling and intriguing. He simply re-enters Earth and begins interacting with the visitors, “start[ing] and frighten[ing]” (Luke 24:37) his disciples, and responding with a relatively nonchalant response of “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds?” (Luke 24:38). In addition, Jesus makes his return successful by pouring out all his supressed knowledge of the Heaven and God, and also “open[s] [the minds of his disciples] so they could understand the Scriptures” (Luke 24:45)

Individuals can grow and change through the different trails where he is out of his comfort zone. The hero is confronted with a more difficult series of challenges that test him in various ways. Obstacles are thrown across his path and he must overcome each challenge he is presented with on the journey which ultimately contributes to his growth. The relationships evolve as the Hero finds out who can be trusted and who can’t. He may eventually earn allies and meet his rivals who will therefore help prepare him for the greater ordeals that are yet to come. He’s at the stage where his skills and powers are tested and every obstacle that he faces helps the audience gain a deeper insight into his character.

Over the years, the majority of people have been working through their own various ordeals and it has finally become clear in relatively short, how potentially empowering and ultimately healing life’s hardest trials and lessons can truly be. It seems that if not overwhelmed to the point of being broken, the human spirit can become more enlightening and resilient when tested. This all too human plea is based on the recognition that we might not always be adequately prepared to undergo life’s most difficult challenges and to have our values, strength, character, and solidity of spirit tested.

Mary MacKillop is a good example of the Hero’s Journey. She was born on January 15, 1842 to Scottish Highlander immigrant parents and grew up with seven brothers and sisters. Her youth was spent gaining a comprehensive education mainly from her father. The Call of Adventure was that the family was frequently in financial difficulties and often without a home of their own. They found themselves reliant on friends or relatives for support. Her Departure was moving to a small private township of Penola in South Australia to become the governess of her Uncle and Aunties children. She then had a guaranteed income which she sent to her mother who was still caring for the four youngest children in Melbourne. The Assistance was when she came in contact with Fr Julian Woods, who was in his fourth year as priest-in-charge of the Penola Mission. The trials for her was opening the first St Joseph’s school in a refurbished stable in Penola. Then, drawn by the good work Mary was doing, her own sisters came to her assistance at the school. Throughout all her trails and tribulations, she never stopped giving and helping those in need, regardless of their circumstances or their religion. Her journey, however, was not without struggle and she often met with fierce opposition, from outside the Church and even from within it. At one of the most difficult points of her life, she found herself and her sisters in conflict with Bishop Lawrence Sheil of Adelaide due to her alleged non-compliance with his directives. This drama resulted in her being excommunicated from the Catholic Church in 1871. The return is Mary suffered a stroke in 1902 but continued as the congregational leader until the time of her death. Mary died on Sunday, August 8, 1909, aged 67 years. According to the Catholic Church, a “saint” is anyone in Heaven, whether recognized on Earth or not. Sainthood does not necessarily reflect a moral model, but the communion with god. Christians follow Mary Mackillop as she has officially been declared as a saint.

The Hero’s Journey is most definitely relevant in today’s society. It begins with the main character, or Hero who eventually changes both physically and emotionally. Campbell asserts that the Hero is the same regardless of the story, and that he appears in different forms. Everyone’s paths are different, but the journey is the same. The structure appears almost anywhere, although it is mostly recognized in movies and books. I believe that whilst the monomyth is exceptional for storytelling, and therefore exceptional for exploring cultural ideas, it can have just as great an impact when applied to an individual. Once the general structure is understood, it isn’t that difficult to plot journey’s in all aspects of life. All changes in life can fit into this structure, whether it’s realized or not, at any given time you’re going through at least a specific journey and acquire the ideology of the monomyth will make you overall more successful. Not only is the Hero’s Journey a lens for viewing change, but it’s also an excellent operating thesis for moving forward.  

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Hero’s Journey: Examples of Joseph Campbell, Jesus and Mary MacKillop. (2022, April 08). GradesFixer. Retrieved August 17, 2022, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/heros-journey-examples-of-joseph-campbell-jesus-and-mary-mackillop/
“Hero’s Journey: Examples of Joseph Campbell, Jesus and Mary MacKillop.” GradesFixer, 08 Apr. 2022, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/heros-journey-examples-of-joseph-campbell-jesus-and-mary-mackillop/
Hero’s Journey: Examples of Joseph Campbell, Jesus and Mary MacKillop. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/heros-journey-examples-of-joseph-campbell-jesus-and-mary-mackillop/> [Accessed 17 Aug. 2022].
Hero’s Journey: Examples of Joseph Campbell, Jesus and Mary MacKillop [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2022 Apr 08 [cited 2022 Aug 17]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/heros-journey-examples-of-joseph-campbell-jesus-and-mary-mackillop/
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