With Jim Savage, LCDC


©2015 Jim Savage All Rights Reserved

Part II: Finding Yourself in the Story

Part II examines The Gnome from the perspective of the Hero's Journey. Jim Savage discusses how he uses the story as a metaphor for the recovery process in his work with substance abuse treatment clients.

1. The Hero's Journey: A Psychological Roadmap For Us All

a. Stories are expressions of man's understanding of the world around him and his experience in life. When familiar patterns are identified in stories from thoughout time, we see there is a universal theme that can be used to help us understand the process we all go through on our journey to wholeness.

b. A mythology is created by the stories that bind a culture; it represents the the experience of the culture, while at the same time influencing current attitudes and beliefs.

Episode 1 (Part II)

The Hero's Journey

A Storytelling Adventure with Jim Savage

2. Cultural mythology: Art imitates life; life imitates art

A. The mythology of a culture is frequently expressed and defined through the creative arts. Artistic portrayal of one's experience of overcoming challenges represents a powerful way of influencing behavior and eliciting positive change.

3. Separation: Loss of Innocence

A. The call to adventure: The Hero must leave the Kingdom to meet the challenge that has been set before him.

B. Life itself is the journey to recover our own lost innocence.

C. Eating the apples leads to the princesses' disappearance. Comparison is drawn to the Garden of Eden and the loss of innocence.

4. Initiation

A. The role of the elder, or mentor, in leading young people through the process of healthy development. The dynamics of gang initiation in the context of adolescent developmental needs.

B. Initation takes place in dark, remote areas: the belly of the whale, underground, the desert, Yoda in the swamp. Yoda was Luke Skywalker's mentor.

C. Stories would be used for passing on the teachings of the community as part of initiation.

5. The Youngest Brother: Spiritual Connection

A. The youngest brother's ability for intuitive thought, or intuition, is what separates him from the other brothers. Intuition represents the ability to listen to the inner voice, which might coincide with spiritual connection.

B. The spirituality of doing our own inner work: "Religion is for people who don't want to go to hell. Spirituality is for people who have already been there."

6. Facing Our Dragons

A. To recover our own lost innocence, we must go down deep within ourselves, where we find that we all have our own dragons, or personal demons to confront.

B. Slaying our dragons leaves a messy battlefield; the Hero has to remain there long after the initial confrontation, patiently working at cleaning up, or restoring the the battle field.

8. The Golden Harp

A. "It's in the darkness that we find the gold." Going into the darkness within and doing our inner work leads to discovering our own inner beauty and becoming able to express this.

B. The final stage of the Hero's Journey is the Return. The return to the Kingdom typically represents a transformation; the Hero is reunited with the King, or becomes King himself.

C. Thge Hero must be prepared for betrayal and be ready to prove that he has indeed slayed the dragons. The ability to avoid sabotage is the key to successful transformation

9: "All the people were satisfied, and they all lived happily ever after."

A. The final stage of the Hero's typically involves some sort of reward or boon that benefts not just the Hero himself, but the entire kingdom. Each part of the story represents a part of ourself; positive resolution in the story represents the acheivement of wholeness and fulfillment for the individual.

B. The Trickster. Question remains as to the Gnome's role in the story—is he a good or bad character? The concept of "trickster learning" suggests that effective teaching or guidance is not always accomplished through a clear and direct explanation of the intended lesson.

7. Finding the Gold

A. One of the most fundamental of all theological principles is the concept of light coming out of the darkness: The new sunrise, death and resurrection, finding gold hidden in dark places.

10: The Hero Shuffle (Reprise)

I'm gonna be a Hero, going on a journey now

Well I'm gonna be a Hero, going on a journey now

I'm gonna be a hero and find the King's daughter's somehow

When you're a Hero, you do hard and scary things

When you're a Hero, you do hard and scary things

You ain't got time to worry about tomorrow will bring.

I'm gonna be a Hero, set those princesses free

Well I'm gonna be a Hero, set those princesses free

I'm gonna be a Hero, so they can write books about me