Summary Of The Hero's Journey Or The Monomyth

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The Hero’s Journey Or The Monomyth

In every culture, there are stories that get past down from generation to generation (Campbell 1). Tales of knights who slay dragons and princesses who kissed frogs are a part of every culture. All over the world, stories share comment characteristic. Joseph Campbell introduces a theory based on this idea called the monomyth, the idea that stories all share the same narrative pattern, in the book The Hero with a Thousand Faces. Overall, this theory shows the same narrative pattern in stories throughout the world, which symbolically reveals all humans must tackle difficulties and overcome them many times throughout life (5). Specifically, Campbell’s hero’s journey is comprised of six steps, which, collectively …show more content…

When the story begins, the hero meets a herald who will bring changes to the hero’s life. For example, Campbell uses the beginning of the Grimm brothers’ “The Frog Prince.” A young princess meets a frog who wants to help her by returning her missing golden ball. Campbell says that the frog “signified no more than the coming of adolescence” (Campbell 42). Sometimes the hero will reject the call and a herald must aid them in answering it. In the example Campbell gave, the princess originally rejected the frog, but determined to make sure the princess kept her promise, the frog followed her until the king made her. The next step of Campbell’s hero’s journey is receiving supernatural aid. This comes from a figure “who provides the adventure with amulets against the dragon forces he is about to pass” (57). This is done in the East African tribe story about Kyazimba. Kyazimba is a traveler who feels lost in his search for the land where the sun rises when he runs into a little woman who transports him to where he needs to go. Symbolically this shows that everyone needs help and someone to give strength to those who need it. Even heroes that are strong themselves still need this help, like all human beings in real life …show more content…

The hero must share their boon with the world but, like the call to adventure, the call to return canbe refused. One such example is in the story of the Hindu warrior-king Muchukunda. When he won a battle against demons, he asked that the gods grant him unending sleep. He went to a cave in the mountains that separated him from the normal world. Muchukunda later returned to the land only to find that he was an giant compared to the man that inhabited it (Campbell 167-169).
Once the hero has returned, he must learn how to live in normal world again and must teach what he learned on his journeys. To explain this part of the journey, Campbell finishes the tale of Gwion Bach. He explained that due to his time on his journey, he received transcendental knowledge. With this knowledge, the hero was just one of many incarnations of the same soul, including Merlin, who looked after King Arthur (206-209). This transcendental knowledge of the “all” of a single individual explains that he is a part of everything and everything is a part of him, the hero and world are connected

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