by Rosalyn J
This day has been a long time in coming, six months in fact and I think the only way to sort of express what I am feeling today, and to encourage, is to be a bit vulnerable. This ceremony represents a “call to adventure” and it's interesting that there is just a “call” and not any “preparation” stage (from the hero’s perspective). Six months ago I tried to create that, thinking I might be better suited for the role if in my mind it wasn’t something I officially took on until I knew I could/would do it.
But here is the thing about this journey. Though the official preparation stage is not there in the cycle, it does happen. The hero feels “flung” or “thrown” into a new journey. So the hero feels this way, but Campbell says that “the adventure that the hero is ready for is the one that s/he gets”. I could never be prepared for this, because life, because this vocation, this journey, will be full of new adventure each day.
Because the challenges are different each day, the risks are unique in each journey, responsibility does not mean having all of the answers to everything we will meet. I didn’t have “any” of them when I took on this role. Responsibility is simply having the ability, though perhaps not the answer, to respond; to take the step forward into the unknown, to rise with the challenges, to grow with them, through them. It means taking a “leap of faith” responsibly.
I realize now (though I don’t regret it) that during these six months I was firmly in the stage of “refusal of the call” and we all do this (it is after all a part of the cycle). There is a bit of trepidation on a new adventure. If there isn’t, isn’t it a bit arrogant? or do we truly know we are being called to something new? I say that I realize, but I realized much sooner what stage I was in, and even with that realization, I couldn’t “move” myself beyond it. I hadn’t decided I would do it, I didn’t feel comfortable with it. When I thought about why, my dragon came to the forefront. And there I was in the belly of the beast. It seems all my dragons are one dragon wearing the mask of many different situations. But in any case, the dragon of “surety” met me. I have this idea that I must know what I am going to get into before I leap. If I know what I am up against, I know what I can conquer and what I can avoid. In short, I know what I can control.
But life is not like that. Even if we can replay similar scenarios in hopes that we don’t fall into the same traps and make the same mistakes, life creates a more vast array of means to take us outside of our zones of comfort. To really go on this journey (again and again) requires faith. Faith in the truth that whatever journey we are thrown into is the one that we are in fact prepared for. So I am taking a risk today, and you may be doing that as well in your own journeys, whether its embarking on a new one or moving through a stage in the current one and we may all be a little unsure, but we are all here together, holding one another, supporting one another, celebrating one another, walking with one another. This is what the Temple is.
And I leave you with one of my favorite quotes here:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other
people won't feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of
God that is within us.
It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.”