COVID-19: coronavirus threshold crossed to a new world paradigm

The video content on this page is informative and educational pointing to a threshold we have crossed necessitating a new world paradigm and perhaps an improved way of thinking.  Prepped and Frosty is about increasing our self-reliance and sharing what we have learned with others. Central to future success at the individual and societal levels is self-reliant thinking.  Go from dependence to independence, to interdependence. You never were, nor should ever be a victim of anything.  When you claim to be a victim, you yield your personal power and your hope.

A disaster can leave you homeless.  Its okay, and can actually be beneficial.

There is no way, mix it all together.

Simple, Direct, Non-classical:  A new way of seeing, a new paradigm, a new foundation.

    • Existing concepts can be re-combined to create something new.
    • Remix and update your toolbox of concepts to be less rigid and more flexible to deal with rapid change (chaos).
    • You are on offense.
    • Lead with your strengths.
    • Learn to intercept.  Respond before, during , or after
    • It’s a subtraction process.  Remove waste to increase agility and speed.
    • Flow with sophisticated spontaneity to changing conditions millisecond-by-millisecond
    • As an example, Bruce Lee’s martial art Jeet-Kune-Do (JKD) is being practiced in the video below.

Suggested Next steps:

COVID-19 Global Pandemic – preparing for the worst by focusing on self-reliance

It is always good to hope for the best but prepare for the worst by cultivating your own self-reliance.  The dominoes have begun to fall with global efforts to control the COVID-19 Global Pandemic, and we don’t know when they will stop.  Here are some suggestions to help increase your self-reliance to aid in decision making and action taking in preparing for the worst during this global pandemic.  The seriousness of the situation offers an opportunity to establish a new paradigm for yourself that will serve you now as well as in the future.  You are responsible for yourself and the results you get in life.  This experience is being forced on us but is also an opportunity to learn and right-size our lifestyle in many ways.  As we monitor the developing situation, keeping these recommendations in mind will assist in determining needed assets vs. assets that may prevent flexible deployment.

This is a good opportunity to practice

But first, let’s consider the good.  The pandemic is an opportunity allowing for personal reflection and goal formation on how you want to live your life as an individual as well as being an example of how you would like the planet to be. In other words, you can be the change that you would like to see in the world and express yourself in a fulfilling way.  As Cody Lundin states “You benefit from acting on these principles whether Armageddon happens or not.”  At a relatively low cost, you can be prepared, flexible, adaptable, and agile. So now we have an opportunity. You can also do the planet a favor by consuming on a smaller scale. Living small is one of the most responsible things you can do and ultimately makes life better as practicing minimalists say.   A happy and successful life is more of a subtraction process than adding things.  Rightsize on the right things, and stop clinging to ineffective concepts and practices.   The world is different now, we need a new way to see.  Some people update their mental models better than others, they are called survivors.” – Laurence Gonzales.  Shoring up these principles in your life will help you now and when it passes.  The information presented here are simple, core understandings that build a foundation of a paradigm that will serve you your entire lifetime.

The world is complex and is very hard to understand.  Mental maps are hard to create.  It is hard, if not impossible to fully understand.  The complexity of our world will not fit onto our mental stage at one time.  By focusing on our own self-reliance, we can learn and understand these principles, deploy these principles now during the pandemic, and keep our resources aligned for the next crisis which will inevitably come again one day.  Building in flexible, nimble, agile, adaptable, and general principles is a smart way to deal with an uncertain future.

Principles of simplicity  (borrowing from Cody Lundin and other sources)

Complexity breeds waste and you have no resources to waste. Conservation of resources and energy is paramount.  A spiritual collapse will occur if you overextend yourself.  Simplicity needs to rule.  Strive for simplicity in all things.  Good old common sense. The easiest and cheapest way to reduce the variables in your life or survival plan is to keep things simple.  Even simple systems behave in very complex ways and can lead to disaster.  When you begin to outfit your home with self-reliant goodies, simply purchase more of the same stuff that you packed with your portable disaster kit.

Principles of survival

Here is an interpretation of the Survival Rule of 3’s.  This is a great outline of survival principles upon which you can maintain countermeasures to prevent death.  These are basic and fundamental.

  • Immediate survival
    • In 3 seconds, you can die from panic
    • In 3 minutes, you will die without air
  • Short term survival
    • In 3 hours, you can die from exposure (lack of thermo-regulation)
    • In 3 days, you can die without water
  • Long term survival
    • In 3 weeks, you can die without food

A typical survival rescue scenario lasts between 1 and 5 days but averages 3 days / 72 hours.  Therefore, during normal societal conditions, it is good to inform someone of your outing plan prior to leaving.  If you don’t show up on time, a rescue will be triggered to find you and it may take up to 5 days.  You will not die of starvation, but you may die from a lack of water.  If we get into trouble, it is good to S.T.O.P (Stop, Think, Observe, Plan) which prevents a negative spiral of actions as panic sets in.  A panicked mind is a useless mind and can kill you. It’s good to know this for priorities, but also keep in mind that if you are not in-taking food and water on a regular basis, your energy level tanks resulting in poor mental and physical performance.

Countermeasures for the Rule of 3’s:  know your needs

  • Immediate survival
    • In 3 seconds, you can die from panic
      • Things which help you maintain composure.
      • “Thrashing does not save a drowning victim, but is natural.  Those who float quietly have a better chance at survival.” – Laurence Gonzales:  Deep Survival
    • In 3 minutes, you will die without air
      • Avoid situations such as drowning in water, suffocating from an avalanche, respiratory infections
  • Short term survival
    • In 3 hours, you can die from exposure (lack of thermo-regulation)
      • shelter
        • houses, buildings, vehicles, tents, tarps, primitive shelters
      • clothing / insulation
        • sleeping bags, blankets, coats, long underwear, hats, gloves, boots.
      • fire
        • matches, lighters, ferrocerium rods, flint and steel, friction fires.
      • In 3 days, you can die without water
        • Water containers and treatment methods
  • Long term survival
    • In 3 weeks, you can die without food
      • food supplies on hand with the ability to mobilize if you need to

Note that these survival needs can be met in many ways.  In normal house living, everything is in place and possibly not necessarily obvious to duplicate.  Should we have to go mobile for some reason, we will need appropriate countermeasures in having the right gear.  In a mobile situation, these needs can be met in a different way using different items.  The Survival Rule of 3’s gives us an outline of what can kill us and how to combat that risk.

Think like a backpacker

In When All Hell Breaks Loose, Cody Lundin recommends thinking like a backpacker.  This is a great idea for investing in survival gear.  A backpacking stove works out of a backpack, in a car situation, and in a building situation.  A house stove is limited to a house.  Thinking like a backpacker helps you to accumulate backpackable survival assets.  Add a vehicle to have more of those some assets.  Add a house to have even more assets.  I like to think of this as a telescoping system.  My backpacking gear is in my vehicle, which is in my garage.  I can leave my house, drive as far as possible if needed, then project out on foot should the need arise.  You can live out of a house, a vehicle, or a backpack or any combination you desire or are forced into.  Modern gear and technologies allow you to be independent regardless of the environment.

Bushcraft and primitive living

Bushcraft and primitive living skills enable you to meet the needs of the human body from the landscape.  Bushcraft teachings leverage the use of the knife, axe, and saw to interact with nature.  In primitive living, all of your gear comes from nature.  In these realms, there is a lifetime worth of learning to become proficient.  I try to practice and study in these areas and they are critically important.  Backpacking concepts are a stable, modern gear platform to become proficient in.  We have consumed so much of the planet’s resources and your chances of surviving off of the land are quite low, even if you know what you are doing.   As I mentioned, there is a lifetimes worth of knowledge and skills to acquire to be proficient here.  Backpacking skills work in any environment.  Bushcraft and primitive living skills are important, but difficult to learn and change with geography.

Bugging out

As Cody Lundin points out in When All Hell Breaks Loose, an emergency can quickly leave you homeless and backpacks make good bug out kits. He recommends we consider building bug out kits before outfitting your home. Backpacking forces a minimalist mindset which forces you do differentiate between needs and wants. Simply purchase more of the same stuff that you packed in your bug out kit to outfit your vehicle and home.

Prepped and Frosty planning for COVID-19

With this information in mind, here is our Prepped and Frosty COVID-19 preparedness and action plan that we are using to structure our thinking and actions and maintain composure.  A reminder from Laurence Gonzales in Deep Survival, there are 4 poisons of the mind:

  1. Fear:  > overcome fear with spirit and intellect, panic can kill you quickly
  2. Confusion: > get the information in the 40 to 70% range and then go with your gut
  3. Hesitation: > act decisively and with confidence
  4. Surprise: > plan for the worst-case scenario, then you will not be surprised by anything

We are striving to have all of these plans ready for deployment at the drop of a hat. The Survival Rule of 3 countermeasures can be met in many ways; substitute as required and keep them in mind when you make a move. Cody Lundin advises: having all of your eggs in one basket has been a bad idea since the beginning.  Hoping for the best but preparing for the worst, here is our telescoping plan:

  • Plan A: shelter in home
    • Following recommended guidelines per the federal and local leadership structure, plus a tad more to be able to help others who have their head up their ass and need help.
      • Social distancing, 1 month supply, plus some more to help others,  not hoarding
      • Always keep your chin up, be Radiant, Prepped and Frosty
  • Plan B: vehicle deployment
    • Should our local environment become non-viable, we will deploy in our vehicle to a better area. We do not think this will happen, but we are preparing for it.
    • If triggered, naturally all available resources will be loaded into the vehicle rapidly.
    • I have lived in my van for numerous years and have seen many people who have fallen out of society and are forced to their vehicles.  You can survive in your vehicle relatively easy.  The key is mental optimism.  Always keep your chin up, be Radiant, Prepped and Frosty.
  • Plan C: backpacking focus
    • Should our vehicle break down or gas becomes insufficient, we have our backpack systems packed and inside the vehicle for foot deployment. The collapse of world energy markets is a possibility discussed on various radio shows.
    • Get your backpacking gear ready to carry everything on your back if necessary
      • If you have no backpack, here are some alternatives
        • Blanket rolled up with gear inside and tied
        • Travel luggage of all types
        • Plastic contractor bags
    • With backpacking gear, you can live well. I recently lived out of my tent for 5 months traveling down the Missouri River. A lot of homeless people live in alternative shelters every day.  Always keep your chin up, be Radiant, Prepped and Frosty.

Other related blogs:


Simplicity, Complexity and the Yonder Shore

In this post, we explore Simplicity, Complexity, and the Yonder shore.   The quote below has been invaluable in my career and personal development.

“For the simplicity on this side of complexity, I wouldn’t give you a fig. But for the simplicity on the other side of complexity, for that, I would give you anything I have.”― Oliver Wendell Holmes

This statement is genius and provides us a rare clarification that there are different kinds of simplicity.  In my work career, keeping things simple is often cited as “preferable”.  Not many can argue with that.  The issue is that some simple solutions do not address the complexity of the problem they are trying to solve, and therefore do not work.  Simplicity on “this side” of complexity is not a solution at all.  The wisdom of the quote suggests we must understand complexity, and a simple solution is derived on the other side of that understanding,  This is extremely difficult to do.

In my personal development over the years, some authorities have delivered solutions that I would personally award the label of “simplicity on the far side of complexity”.  The nature of a concept that meets this condition is interesting.  It is a simple statement that summarizes complexity.  If you were to “squeeze” that simplicity, complexity will come pouring out of it.  You could use some of these concepts to be your standard for living your life and they would produce some results for you.

Here are some examples I consider being vehicles of “simplicity on the far side of complexity”:

    • Joseph Campbell’s “the hero’s journey” and “follow your bliss” concepts
    • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
    • Getting Things Done by David Allen
    • Bruce Lee’s martial art Jeet Kune Do (the way of the intercepting fist)

Many of these authorities have written multiple books trying to refine and clarify what they are trying to say.  It takes a very long time of persistent work, usually over a lifetime, to simplify and clarify their insights and test them out when possible.  When we apply these tools or concepts, they generally do give us a structure to work our way through real-world scenarios.  They offer us a way and work to some degree, thus helping us grow.

The Yonder Shore

Bruce Lee said of his martial art “Jeet Kune Do is merely a name used, a boat to get one across the river, and once across, it is to be discarded, and not be carried on one’s back”.  So the end goal is to reach the “Yonder Shore” of the river, then leave the boat behind.  Not to stay in the boat or carry the boat with you.  The idea is to subject oneself to training and understanding and then integrate that into a larger base, on the other side of the training.  Bruce then leaves us with two additional powerful statements.

    • “Use no way, as way”:
      • Our personal path is unique and is on the yonder shore of training and adventure.  If you are using someone else’s concept for yourself, you are still on the boat, limited by that concept.
      • Your style needs to be your own.
    • “Use no limitation as limitation”:
      • The human body is limited, you should transcend it.
      • Express yourself maximally.
      • The ultimate style is to have no style.

The training/concept/tool is the boat that takes us across the river of complexity.  The yonder shore is the simplicity on the far side of complexity and there are multiple ways of explaining it.  Boats that can take you across the river of complexity include The 7 Habits, Getting Things Done, Joseph Campbell, and JKD.  They are valid vehicles, each expressing characteristics of the grand mystery we find ourselves in.  What is super cool, is that each boat has commonality in the skill areas of spirituality, mental thinking, and taking action.  Each concept incorporates all three but prioritizes differently.

    • Spirituality
      • “Follow your Bliss” by Joseph Campbell represents his latest thinking in terms of personal development.  The spiritual message dominates.
    • Mental Thinking
      • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey encourages us to step back from the stimulus, think, and choose a better response.  Here we are trying to optimize, to strategically think about what our plans should be before executing.
    • Taking Action
      • Getting Things Done by David Allen emphasizes the next action management to real-time stimulus, fighting multiple enemies at once to keep your head above water.
      • JKD is about expressing your physical body with speed, power, and flexibility all while conserving as much energy as possible.

We need to be good at spirituality, mental thinking, and taking action

So which concept is best?  Which one do I need?  You need all three to be ready for deployment at any time.  These three critical competencies are interdependent.  Each one affects the other two positively or negatively.

Let me mention three other subjects we all need:  happiness, brain function, and survival.  All of these are incorporated in books that discuss these important topics and offer suggestions on how to overcome their respective challenge.   The suggestions on how to understand the challenge subjects are yet again, variations of the above methodologies.  Below I try to show how these three topics use the above critical skill areas.  What I am trying to show here is that each topic requires all three critical competencies.

  • What Happy People Know by Dan Baker Ph.D.
    • Fear is our #1 enemy of happiness and we are to overcome it with spirit and intellect.
    • Happiness tools are about taking action.
  • Your Brain at Work by Jacob Rock
    • We need a director to help control what gets loaded onto your mental stage and to not be stuck in our default “lost in thought” existence.  Otherwise, you are missing the needed information because you are not paying attention.
    • Five functions of understanding, deciding, recalling, memorizing, and inhibiting make up the majority of conscious thought.  These functions are re-combined to plan, problem-solve, communicate, and to perform other tasks.  They use the prefrontal cortex intensely and require a lot of resources to operate.
    • There are severe limitations to optimal brain function.
    • The brain requires everything to be just right for it to operate at peak performance.
    • No matter who you are you cannot sit and make brilliant decisions all day.
    • Once you take an action, an energetic loop commences that makes it harder to stop that action.
  • Deep Survival, Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why by Laurence Gonzales
    • Survivors go inside.
    • Some people update their mental models better than others, they are called survivors.
    • Take correct decisive action – transform thought into action, take risks, large jobs into small tasks, do each task well, deal with what is within your power and leave the rest behind.

Wow, this simplicity stuff is complex!

Exactly.  Simplicity and complexity are opposites.  One does not exist without the other.  As the Yin Yang symbol shows, there is a little bit of one in the other.  Simplicity has complexity in it.  Complexity has simplicity in it.  Squeeze one, and the other pops out of it.  Simplicity is order, complexity is chaos.  One begets the other. This is the cycle of change.

The “Yonder Shore” is the completion of the journey. The return.  Having completed the journey, crossing the threshold to the unknown (complexity) in a boat (adventure with certain gear, team, rules, concepts), battled against obstacles, finding treasure, and returning it back to the known (simple) world, we are bigger for the experience.  Saying no to the boat ride means stagnation and no growth.  Saying yes to the boat ride is saying yes to adventure, physically or in our mind. We should not carry our boat with us on our backs, we should find another one to adventure in the next time.

The “who we are today” in the simple known world, must adventure into the complex unknown world, overcome trials and tribulations (fight/wrestle with), obtain the treasure, and escape/return back to the known/simple world to grow the individual self into the “who we are after the adventure”.

OK, I need a boat to adventure in that is robust to ensure my safe return.

Luckily, we know that our survival/effectiveness/happiness kit is inside us.  We just need an efficient way to load massive complexity on our extremely limited mental stage, in a simple fast way.  The method must address spirituality, mental thinking abilities, and taking quick decisive action.  We roll this up into striving to be Radiant, Prepped and Frosty.

  • Radiant – spiritually alive
    • Lead with your strengths, they are your weapons of salvation to cultivate your personal power.
    • Trust in yourself and keep fear at bay.
    • In the end, security is an inside job.  Learn to live inside out, not outside in.
    • Align your inner-outer worlds for greater performance.
  • Prepped – strategic planning
    • Use your brain as much as possible, but it is extremely limited.
    • Your brain is powerful, but not sufficient.  You simply do not have all the necessary information and never will, even with a computer chip implanted in your skull.
    • Fear lives in the brain and will challenge us our entire lives.  It is the #1 enemy of our happiness and growth.  We must have the courage to adventure into the complex/unknown realms that are out of our comfort zone.
  • Frosty – tactical action
    • Be able to take quick action on instinct without thinking.
    • Hesitation can be deadly, you cannot afford to intellectualize every moment.

Simply saying the phrase: Radiant, Prepped and Frosty loads your mental stage rapidly with the tool-set needed for any and all situations known and unknown.  As the complexity of life oozes out of the Radiant, Prepped and Frosty mindset, you now have a flexible, adaptable, and powerful tool-set to deal with it competently.  They function independently when necessary, and complement each other into a balanced solution for the majority of life situations.  Make Radiant, Prepped and Frosty your core, then add your own needs on top of that.  The universe made you to be you.  Let’s make that happen!

Suggested Next Steps:

Lead With Your Strengths For Better Results

Leading with your strengths is a good idea and delivers better results for you.  Nobody is good at everything.  When we understand our strengths and lead with them, we gain not only confidence but competence.  Sophisticated, spontaneous, competent action comes from leading with your strengths.  Let’s explore why.

Your personality style has strengths and weaknesses

Do What You Are, Discover the perfect career for you through the secrets of Personality Type by Paul D. Tieger, Barbara Barron, And Kelly Tieger help us navigate our personality type and discover what occupations we may enjoy.  We each have 4 preferences that we use to comprehend and deal with the world around us. They consist of  1) the dominant function, 2) the auxiliary function, 3) the third function, and 4) the fourth function.  “As long as your dominant and auxiliary are in command, you are functioning well.  When your third and fourth functions take over, it’s as if the kids climbed over the seat and started driving the car (with predictably disastrous results). ” (pg. 65) This is an incredible reference to identify your personality type, then to understand what careers are suitable for your strengths.  “Do what you are” is therefore about finding a career that matches your strengths, your natural abilities, your preferences in life.

Your brain works better when utilizing your strengths

Your Brain at Work by David Rock is an absolute must-read.  When your strengths are engaged, a state of arousal is created which helps create a flow state, which further creates a positive spiral.  Positive spirals are created when you are focused and energized and are the main contribution to your happiness. You need to be interested in what you are doing to achieve optimal brain performance.   The upward spiral explains why people perform better when they are happy. Doing things that are significantly new can lead to a negative spiral of decreasing dopamine levels.

Happiness involves utilizing your strengths, they are your source of personal power

In his book What Happy People Know,  Dan Baker Ph.D.  informs us that Focusing on our strengths 1) works, 2) feels better, 3) creates the energy necessary for transformation, 4) Is self-sustaining because it is full of rewards and 5) encourages us to play to win because it works better.  Interestingly, our weakness’ can be disguised as strengths.  Workaholism, perfectionism, materialistic ambition, desire for domination, and status-seeking are all derived from fears.  Our individual character, our personal power lies in utilizing our strengths.  Without a feeling of personal power, than can be no happiness.  Leading with our strengths helps us to make our own rules and own our days.   Happiness tools are all about taking action.   Dr. Baker encourages us to shift our focus from our problems and weaknesses to our possibilities and strengths.  When we use our strengths and exercise them every day, we become increasingly intelligent and can turn those strengths into careers.  We are to not confuse what we wish we were good at with what we are actually good at.

First Things – the tip of your spear

In The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey enlightens us about what it takes to be effective in life.  The spiritual dimension is explored in Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind, to determine what is important to you to accomplish in your lifetime.  These important things are “first things”.  Habit 3: First Things First is about prioritizing these first things over everything else.  First things are the important things, your calling, your bliss, they resonate and excite you, they are your strengths.

Follow your Bliss – follow what excites you, lead with your strengths

I equate “leading with my strengths” with “following my bliss”.  Following your bliss is a mechanism of personal development offered by Joseph Campbell through his career evaluating myths and religions of the world.  When something resonates with you, it is a major hint of where your interests and associated strengths are hidden.  Follow that feeling of bliss.  Here are some concepts that I collected over the years from Joseph Campbell’s books noted on our resources page link below.

As we love ourselves, we move toward our own bliss, our highest enthusiasm.  Following your bliss is not self-indulgent, but vital, for your whole system knows this is how to be alive in this world, and the way to give to this world the very best you have to offer. The most heroic of all acts is the courage to discover who you are and what you would like to be, to slay the savage dragon of the ego, and to follow your bliss to the truth of your life.  There is a track just waiting there for each of us, and once upon it, doors will open that were not open before and would not open for anyone else. Everything does start clicking along and mother nature herself supports the journey (flow, magic).  The lion of self-discovery is meant to kill the dragon of thou shalt. Our job is to straighten out our own lives.

Martial Arts factors

Fighting has been said to be a good analogy for life.  I happen to agree with this.  In a way, we are all seeking a way to express ourselves and your strengths are your expression.  In the combative arts, there is considerable discussion and confusion as to which side should be lead with, the dominant or the weak.  Leading with your weaker side is an attempt to hold the dominant hand in reserve, ready to deliver a knockout blow when the opportunity presents itself.  It is a home run swing.  Leading with your dominant side; the aim is to prioritize timing and speed over power.

  • Jeet Kune Do (JKD):  Bruce Lee’s martial art puts your dominant side forward.  The leading weapons are the dominant hand and leg.   This allows for optimizing the priorities of a fight better:  distance, timing, speed, power.  JKD, a relatively new martial art, is the result of combining Wing Chun Kung Fu, fencing, and American boxing.  The on-guard stance of JKD is largely defined as placing your dominate side forward.
  • Fencing:  You hold your weapon in your dominant hand
  • Boxing:  Some famous boxers who place their dominant hand forward are Oscar De La Hoya and Victor Lomachenko.

Radiant, Prepped, and Frosty methodology:  leading with your strengths breakout

  • Be Radiant
    • Your survival, happiness, and effectiveness kits are inside you.  Re-frame your life to recognize your strengths and weakness’ and to lead with your strengths.  It was how you were made, it is why you exist.
    • The spiritual dimension is where you discover self authorization to be who you are.  Do what you are.  Do what you are good at.  Lead with your strengths.
    • There is only one spiritual message:  be who you are, follow your bliss and lead with your strengths.
  • Be Prepped
    • For strategic planning, your brain works better when you are doing work that interests you.
  • Be Frosty
    • For tactical execution, leading with your strengths allows you to rapidly adapt to emergency stimulus in the fastest way possible.  Your strengths are how you naturally approach problems, reducing the amount of thinking required, thus increasing your reaction speed.
    • If you are leading with your strengths, you can act spontaneously without hesitation.  Leading with your strengths increases both your speed and your competency.
    • In emergency situations, where you have no time to think, you must act spontaneously.

Suggested Next Steps:



Prepped and Frosty’s Logo Explained

Our logo is based on Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey with a core methodology at its center.  Our logo is meant to represent the “anatomy of adventure”.  What adventure looks like, how to execute adventure, and how to repeat adventuring to bring about increased awareness and happiness in our lives.  Our logo represents a paradigm and methodology that establishes a map to navigate life, allowing a sense of awe to reach you, yet keeping you firmly grounded through all stages of maturity from birth to grave.  Our logo is a map and methodology enabling you to become and then express your greatest self.

What is The Hero’s Journey?

The Hero’s Journey is also known as the monomyth.  After years of study and teaching about mythologies throughout the world, Joseph Campbell concluded that they are basically all variations of the same story.  The one-story, the monomyth, is about historical spiritual heroes and the journeys they underwent.  “The labyrinth is thoroughly known” per Joseph Campbell.  We think of The Hero’s Journey as a map and we can follow it without having to get lost in the labyrinth of life.

The Hero’s Journey is, therefore, a template of the collective spiritual messages from myths and religions around the world as to how we should conduct our lives.   The story resonates with us all because it is a manifestation of the energies that work interior to us all.   Many popular movies, such as The Matrix, Star Wars, Harry Potter and others have used or mimicked The Hero’s Journey.  The Hero’s Journey resonates with people because it is inside everyone.  When watching these movies, we resonate with them, and we feel good.

The importance of being familiar with The Hero’s Journey:

It can help you because it is a map of the treasure you are seeking in your life.  It is actively being used against you as well.   The Hero’s Journey is the one story for us all and marketing takes advantage of this by indicating you have a problem, they have a product to fix the problem, and you are going to fail without their product.  As Alan Watts once said, “If you can be fooled, you deserve to be fooled.”   It is also a bit malicious as well.  Advertising and marketing are actively working to manipulate you from becoming your greatest, best self.

Key Elements of The Hero’s Journey:

The Hero’s Journey is the total sum of key elements of all mythologies, containing universal patterns, and can be complicated, with multiple variants.  It is well documented. “…A good life is one hero journey after another.  Over and over again, you are called into the realm of adventure, you are called to new horizons…”  (Pathways to Bliss. pg 122, Collective Works of Joseph Campbell).  We like a simplified version as follows below.

  • The Known World
    • There is a call to adventure: the universe taps you on the shoulder inviting you to adventure and it is time to leave the existing place behind.
      • Saying no leads to purification, a drying up of life occurs.
      • Saying yes requires courage.
    • Sometimes there is a mentor: one who is the source of the adventure.
  • The Threshold Crossing
    • Two cherubs block the entrance to the unknown and are frightening, but will not stop you if you do not let them.  They are actually benign.
      • These are also known as the “clashing rocks” or the symplegades.
        • These represent the active mind that generates the world of opposites, i.e. fear and desire, right and wrong, black and white.  We have to have the courage to go past these apparent obstacles and venture into the unknown world.  We have to go beyond our comfort zone.
  • The Unknown World
    • Trials and tribulations will test you.
    • Magical aid will be there to help you if you are worthy.
    • You will either:
      • be killed and resurrected
        • Motif from plant-based societies.  Group, priestly view of the world.
      • find treasure
        • Motif from Hunting based societies.  Individual, shamanistic view of the world.
    • Escape and return to the known world where you are to and integrate your treasure into everyday life and share with others.
      • Sometimes your treasure is accepted by others, sometimes rejected.

Our Logo is a simple representation of The Hero’s Journey, with a core added:

  • The left triangle represents the “known world” and is brown to represent fertility.
  • The two dots reflect the “clashing rocks” generated by mental thought.
  • The right triangle represents the “unknown world”, is green and slightly larger than the “known world” to represent new growth.
  • The red arrow through the middle represents a core that is meant to depict a sword bridge that is required to execute the adventure.  Its cross-section is our Radiant, Prepped, and Frosty methodology.  A methodology of bare essential skill set adjectives we should be able to describe ourselves with to be effective adventurers.
    • Radiant is a spiritual message that represents what is inside us all and suggests we should lead with our strengths, mitigate our weaknesses, and have confidence in who and what we are.  It is our source of energy, personal power, and courage.
    • Prepped is using your active mind to strategically plan.
    • Frosty is about taking tactical action.
  • The bottom arrow represents the return of the adventure back into the known world, where the treasure found is to be integrated into a new plateau of awareness.  It also represents a smile.  It engulfs The Hero’s Journey in its entirety and hints that your happiness lies in executing this process.   Adventuring is how we bring about happiness in our lives.
  • The cyclical nature of the arrows indicates we are to repeat this process over and over.

Suggested Next Steps:

  • Check out our core Radiant, Prepped and Frosty methodology we use to maximize adventuring in our life.
  • We have our favorite Joseph Campbell books listed on our resource page for your consideration to read.
  • “Finding Joe” is a great movie explaining The Hero’s Journey.
  • The Power of Myth is an excellent introduction to Joseph Campbell’s collective work. It is a is PBS interview between Bill Moyers and Joseph Campbell and is available as a book, a CD set, and on YouTube.
  • You can find other Joseph Campbell works at the Joseph Campbell Foundation.
  • Read our review of  What Happy People Know by Dan Baker PhD.
  • Read our review of  Deep Survival by Laurence Gonzales.