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Life consists of various journeys and adventures that all share a similar foundational trait: a mentor. It is the mentor, whether it be a friend, family figure, or boss that provides you with the opportunity to recognize your skills and potential. In order to successfully embark on a journey, “heros” require guidance from confident and well-abled mentors. The wide range of favorable characteristics and values that mentors possess are necessary to pass the threshold and have a successful journey because mentors have the ability to recognize weaknesses and allow you the opportunity to improve upon them; a process that eventually leads to atonement and self-knowledge.
Though there may be a multitude of various relationship types, some being considered more nurturing or authoritation than others, mentors are necessary because they provide individuals with the obligatory push in the correct direction. Regarding Langston Hughe’s story, Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones embodies the ideals of a parent like figure when she tells the boy to “try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud”. Her telling the boy this advice is significant in the sense that she acknowledges that Roger is not a thief but rather an individual who is misguided and needs to be given the opportunity to enjoy the fine things in life. This is why she trusts the boy and provides him with an opportunity for redemption. Living a life of similar past misdeeds she is more experienced in what the path of wrong doing will take him and implies with the quote and the surrounding context that spreading positive energy can only be good and will allow you the chance to be more prosperous than a life of stealing would. Her motherly yet distant style of mentorship contrasts with the authoritative and overly involved style the mother employs in “Girl” by Jamaica Kincaid. Even though the mother’s advice may be caustic and unsolicited but she still has positive intentions and only wants what is best for her daughter. Thinking that domestic knowledge wins respect from both society and family members she teaches her daughter to “…how to sweep a corner;[and] sweep the whole house”. It is evident that the mentor places great priority on these domestic tasks and requires her daughter to do them regardless of what she thinks which ties back to the overbearing style of mentorship. With this scenario, the author is attempting to convey that people do not learn if they are not allowed to make their own mistakes, however a mentor, even an unnurturing one’s presence is still beneficial because of their previous experiences and personal journeys. These quotations both contend that without a mentor to provide you with guidance, you will live a harder life full of more misdeeds and mistakes. In source D the mentor is not the boys actual mother yet is more sweet and sympathetic to the boy compared to the mother’s bitter language in source C. It is this difference in approach that impacts whether the mentee perceives the advice positively or not however it is still advise that the mentee will have been made aware of and acknowledged which is the desired end goal for the mentors.
A constructive mentor is one that provides either themselves or others with a significant piece of knowledge that furthers their position in their journey. In Source B, Anne Currie serves as a mentor to herself. When she ends her letter to herself saying “It is time to be bold about who you really are”, she is talking to her future self after previously reflecting on her past mistakes and experiences. This demonstrates how she has a sincere level of fondness for the past version of herself and respects who she is enough to move on and become an even better person. She embodies various elements that are required for a mentor to be considered confident and well abled. She is content with who she is, and he acknowledges both her strengths and weaknesses so that she can address them and improve upon them. This emphasizes what Christopher Gardner was attempting to convey to his readers in the novel The Pursuit of Happyness ; that you must be content with your achievements, life choices, and asserts that you should never doubt your judgment and capabilities. When he says to “Walk the walk and go forward all the time. Don’t just talk the talk, walk it and go forward.” This demonstrates the need to go forward which is only made possible by his self determination and the mentorship from people who saw his potential, provided him with internships, and gave him professional advice. He never ceased to continue moving forward in his journey and that partly had to do with his resilience, but if it were not for the guidance he received he would not have been as successful as he ended up being. This reflects upon people’s need for help and simple pieces of advice. He was only able to undergo his substantial transformation due to his self mentorship and the mentorship from others. Both quotations contend that we are all just people, and that we are all flawed inserting the implication that we can overcome our personal flaws by working on them and by seeing what others have done in their journeys to overcome them. Christopher also acknowledged that he needed to change early on which allowed him the chance to pass the threshold. In Source G, “The threshold is the jumping off point for the adventure. It is the interface between the known and the unknown”. The “hero” is at first reluctant or refuses the call but are encouraged by a mentor to cross the threshold and enter a special world where they encounter tests, allies, and enemies. It is with these challenges that individuals such as Christopher Gardner and Anne Currie are required to sum up all of their potential and embark on their personal journeys. In some instances if you choose to not pass the threshold you will be unable to grow up and embrace maturation and this idealogy comments on Christopher’s view of the threshold that if you do not take a step forward and continue to move you cannot become successful or ever obtain any instance of self-knowledge. These quotations all endorse the reality of the situation: that mentors are vital for the completion and the commencement of the journey.
As individuals we all are on our own journey, however as we cross paths with other members of society we become both the mentor and mentee depending on what stage of the journey we are in. Considering that in most instances we are all mentors to each other in some way, without mentors we would all be significantly weaker in various aspects of our lives and we would never be able to undertake the journeys we either require or desire. We are all imperfect and it is through our imperfections that we have the opportunity to thrive as long as we seek out advice from others and reflect on our past.
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