the tao of jaklumen

the path of the sage must become the path of the hero


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A Hero’s Journey: Superman & the Abyss

The Hero's Journey: The Abyss

The Hero’s Journey: The Abyss

Deleted scene from Superman Returns, 2006.

Superman Returns follows the events of Superman II, and uses some footage from Richard Donner’s cut of that movie (see Superman & the At-One-Ment With The Father).

In Superman II, Kal-El experienced Transformation (forsaking his powers for the love of Lois Lane) and Atonement and Gift of the Goddess (returning to the Fortress of Solitude to receive his powers again from the last spark of Jor-El).

In this scene, Kal-El (Superman) revisits the Abyss– the destroyed world of Krypton, before the Return (returning to Earth to resume his role as Superman) and a repeat of the Monomyth cycle (reconciliation with his own son).


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The path of the hero.

I am not sure how to put this into words, because so much of it is intensely personal.  So personal and so precious, that I cannot bear to have it mocked.

I read Dad’s last revision to his personal history a few days ago.  There is a certain portion that he is worried about– worried how family will receive it.  It is indeed sad, and lays bare some of the spiritual wounds and sufferings of his parents, his brothers, and his children.

But for me, for the first time, the path is clear.  For at least twenty years, I brooded about how I could connect my past to my future, to make a foreordination a destiny.  Now I understand what I must do.

I think my mother-in-law is right.  There has been hurting for too many generations, traditions that festered and destroyed from within, but a chance to heal has come, a chance that I can take.  I wouldn’t be so arrogant to assume it is all on me; I’ve implied above that my father recognizes it.

“The son becomes the father, and the father becomes the son.”

Her eldest daughter, who is my wife, suggests that the change must come within me, starting with myself.

I must trust in my Master.  Trust that He knows the way for me.  Trust that is complete and unconditional, right down to laying everything I have and am right on the line.  There is so much contention and discord about Him… but I know what I have seen, felt… remembered.  I will be true despite the mockery, hoping and waiting for the day of reunification.  The rifts that were suffered will at last come together.

Till all are one.

The Hero’s Journey: The Death of Optimus Prime

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The Hero's Journey: The Abyss

The Hero’s Journey: The Abyss

In this instance, The Abyss (Death of Optimus Prime) triggers the Threshhold/beginning of the Transformation (Hot Rod becomes Rodimus Prime). The Hero’s Journey is not about Optimus Prime, but about Hot Rod. I think many fans miss this.

From the perspective of the storyline, I think it’s brilliant, but it upset so many young fans so deeply that Optimus was later resurrected. It set the tone, however– portions of the Monomyth were repeated in G1, Beast Wars, Beast Machines, and later Transformers series.

Till All Are One


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The warrior-priest of the sagebrush steppes

Read this as an epic tale, or a real life account, as you will.

Once, I was an Idealist, but not in the Platonic sense.  I still believe in the spirit element of all things material, but I was as Troile’s children, who fought for the ideals of an ancient kingdom, or even a world, like Caprica.  I was wont to despair if others did not share my ideals.  I was prone to pontificate, or at least to preach those ideals boldly.

But I was to know pain.  Seeds of destruction planted in my youth began to grow to fruition, and my dreams seemed to shatter against the rocks.  Although I wrestled with demons and claws of damnation, I had vowed to never forsake the Light that had shone in my soul, though I might chase through clouds to get to it again.  But a growing sense of iconoclasm burned in my heart.  It did not burn those elements of idealism, but began to forge them in hellfire and flames of purification.

It was a steel that was to be folded hundreds upon thousands of times, honed thinner and thinner on its edge.  It would never be finished, but to be softened, folded, and honed again.  It was a blade of pure indignation that could not be fully purified of fear.  I asked the master smith whose hand I felt there that it be truly purified one day, and that gold and silver might be culled from the dross, for that which was malleable and that which could bear his reflection upon it.

I took up my blade and swore that justice would be done.  Justice that would be merciful to the weak, the powerless, the helpless.  Though I knew it had been smelted by pure fear, I looked to the skies and hoped that it would be quenched in the waters of peace someday, and that the day would come that it would be no longer needed, and be beaten to a building tool.

And so I walked the way of the warrior.  But battles were fierce, and I felt those seeds grow like a plague.  I knew I could not fight forever.  To *know* justice, I must *know* mercy.

I would not receive the salves of the healers that belonged to the army I fought for.  It was not the salve itself; I felt that their bedside manner was lacking and was aggravating my recovery.  I was impatient.  I wanted their treatment to be gentle and soothing, instead of deliberate attempts to rip the cancer from my heart– rather that only I could do so, asking for the hand wielding the Divine Scalpel.

And so I began to wander, from battlefield to battlefield.  Upon one, I met a young sifu, and I implored him to teach me The Way of the Silk Road.  He questioned my assertions, and at times, the circles we both had walked upon in the past.  I would find him again and again on my journeys, and he recently questioned also my distrust of the healers.  Normally, I would mortally wound a man where he stood for such bold declarations.  But he saw the Tao of the Ascending Sun, with eyes from the East.

Thus my quest began to study the lore and writ of my upbringing through the eyes of the Tao, or rather, to study the Tao from the principles and standards of my childhood.  I knew I would be scorned to cling to something perceived so Western– but I had seen flashes in my dreams that this was much older than East or West.

Though I had written the many words I had studied upon my unquenchable blade, I took up the Divine Flail, and the Shepherd’s Crook.  I dug through Time and Space, and began to *know* that these were tools of the One.  I would cut a swath through injustice, but it was time to scourge the plague from hearts of stone beating on hearts of glass.  Too many times had I seen the oppressed rising to oppress their oppressors.

It came to pass that the blade became *teeth*.  My teeth.  I took up flail and crook in hand and swore an oath in my heart that I would strike the balance between that of waging war and that of suing for peace.  I would that I should stay the smiter’s hand, but that I must fight betimes to find peace for the innocent.

And thus did I take up the mantle of Warrior-Priest.  Not a Paladin, but a Warrior-Priest.  Dreams of the Ages, of the past, of hopes legion and ancient, began to flood my mind once more.  Slowly I have begun to understand the visions.  It grieves me that I may be asked one day to smite the ancient homeland with blood and pestilence, to cry the arrival of the One.  It is a day that I have feared, but I have sought comfort that it will not be my hour, but His.  One day, the gold and silver wrought by the Refiner will be made manifest in my eyes, and foreordination would be sealed destiny.

One day The People will know that the Warrior they have sought was also the Priest that was ever by their side.  He will not only fight their battles, but minister unto them and show His face.  And one day, I will again find The Song of the Stars, that echoed through space and soul, a sound of clarity, purity, and piercing tranquility.  This is my mission, and my goal.

I will not rest until my mission and goal are complete.  I live for the One, I die for the One, until all are one.

(Read, and know, for eventually this record will be sealed.)

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