Every hero has two things:
- An oracle
- A mentor
The hero uses the oracle to connect with the power from which he is the mentor, as a guide. Much like in The Matrix, and excellent model for real life. The One (Our example hero) Neo, had “The Oracle” as his touchstone to enlightenment, and a mentor (Morpheus) to guide him through his adventure and support his needs for self-discovery in order to overcome the obstacle (Smith – the “glitch” – the challenge). We also have an Oracle – it’s an inside job. As writer’s we are tasked with the same journey, if not the same kind, as our characters. No wonder it’s the writing, itself that matters most.
There’s always a choice to be made, one that starts the adventure from which the hero can never turn back…
The mentor teaches his protege how to use the tools with which he is equipped –in fact, he may point out that the hero has it in the first place. Then the mentor teaches the hero how to use his talent. He convinces him again and again to believe in himself. He re-energizes the hero when the Antagonist tries to rob him of his life-force – to stop him from gaining his goal. The Antagonist challenges the hero’s fears, while the mentor shows him how to develop confidence and skills. He trains the hero for battle.
And every Hero needs an adventure, a journey which always starts with a challenge and a question from his/her “yang.” Will Shakyamuni find the answers to the question of life, and live to tell about it? Will Neo escape being killed by Smith? Will we overcome—insert blank –?
And remember when going for something of great good we will be challenged immediately.
Imagine someone or something will be there ready, blocking the gate to enter the adventure to test the hero’s worthiness; an obstacle that keeps you from “entering.” In life, it is the same. You set out for a goal, but the first sign of trouble sends us running. Or do we buckle down to employing the strategy of the Lotus Sutra, for example.