Hero’s Journey & the Quest for Self.

Pippin: I didn’t think it would end this way.
Gandalf: End? No, the journey doesn’t end here. Death is just another path, one that we all must take. The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass, and then you see it.
Pippin: What? Gandalf? See what?
Gandalf: White shores, and beyond, a far green country under a swift sunrise.
Pippin: Well, that isn’t so bad.
Gandalf: No. No, it isn’t.

Yesterday, a few friends and I were watching The Lord of the Rings:  Return of the King and a discussion ensued about man’s epic quest and the “hero’s journey”, a phrase coined by the late Joseph Campbell.  In the greater sense, we are all on a hero’s journey simply because we exist and need to experience this journey of self realization. Life offers plenty of obstacles and challenges which forces us to seek answers to this very mystery:  Why are we here and what is the purpose of life?  Everyday we struggle, strengthen our resolve and learn to find meaning in this reality.  It is this very quest to understand one’s true nature and mature through life processes which ultimately allows us to evolve as sentient beings and return home knowing who we are.

The movie was supremely enjoyable and ended with Annie Lenox singing “Into the West” during the closing credits. LOTR was exceptionally epic in scale, and the song hauntingly soothing and enchanting.

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