In my previous post I discussed the unique aspect of the West: the Adventure.
The Adventure begins with a call or summons to begin a discovery. The call requires the cardinal virtues of wisdom and courage: wisdom to look forward and recognize the call, and courage to leap into the adventure that is illuminated by wisdom. Both of those virtues had to be attained prior to the adventure; as such, the Journey segment was needed to develop these virtues.
The adventure itself is the trials and temptations encountered to secure the boon, which was the reason for the adventure in the first place. The training and exposure activities of the Journey, coupled with the cardinal virtue of moderation earned during the Journey or the Adventure, are required to seize the boon.
The return back to the everyday world requires the cardinal virtue of justice and the love of the hero’s neighbor. Justice is the concern for the community of the adventurer earned during the Journey or the Adventure. Without this virtue, the adventurer would simply remain in the adventure, refusing to return. The love of his/her neighbor is what pulls the hero across back to the everyday world with the boon intact.
So, what does this all mean. Well, the adventure is the connection between the Journey (shared by all religions) and happiness (shared by all religions). This Western concept (not shared by all religions) is what pushes the individual to the top of Maslow’s pyramid – self-actualization. It is a concept of great myths as uncovered by Joseph Campbell. It is what brings happiness to the individual and flourishing to society. The flourishing then can be used to help others prepare for their road to happiness.
Final comments in my next post.