The Sun Door

EXCERPT:

“The traditional idea of initiation combines an introduction of the candidate into the techniques, duties, and prerogatives of his vocation with a radical readjustment of his emotional relationship to the parental images. The mystagogue (father or father-substitute) is to entrust the symbols of office only to a son who has been effectually purged of all inappropriate infantile cathexes–for whom the just, impersonal exercise of the powers will not be rendered impossible by unconscious (or perhaps even conscious and rationalized) motives of self-aggrandizement, personal preference, or resentment. Ideally, the invested one has been divested of his mere humanity and is representative of an impersonal cosmic force. He is the twice-born: he has become himself the father. And he is competent, consequently, now to enact himself the role of the intiator, the guide, the sun door, through whom one may pass from the infantile illusions of ‘good’ and ‘evil’ to an experience of the majesty of cosmic law, purged of hope and fear, and at peace in the understanding of the revelation of being.”— from The Hero With a Thousand Faces, by Joseph Campbell (p. 136-137): printed by Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey, 1949.

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