I keep coming back to the role archetypes play in the different influences the mentor makes in it’s appearance in our lives whether as teacher or mythical advisor.”
Thank you for returning to this subject; indeed, the Mentor is itself a potent archetypal figure, grounded in myth – and we ignore an archetype at our peril.
This, for me, is the central passage in John’s essay:
However, the mentorship process has become complicated in some corners of American culture. Many potential mentors are still focused on pulling their own swords from various stones. Others doubt they have achieved the valuable wisdom they assume necessary to pass on to those further down the path. Many young people have not yet discovered they need mentorship or rebel against the concept altogether. The overabundance of information we are exposed to online and in the media has many convinced that any wisdom that can be acquired is available with only a click of a mouse. In the midst of great progress, we can forget the value of experience and the important role that those who’ve acquired it play.
This does ring true. Archetypal energies will not be ignored. In the absence of a society that has space and place where such energy is observed and honored, what form might this dynamic then take? (I think of some mighty strange helpers and guides who have emerged the past couple years, initiating many, including a few of my friends and relatives, into strange shadowy worlds.)
How, then, do we properly honor this archetype? What I take away from John’s essay is that we do so not just through being mentored, but when we step up to the plate, actively acknowledging, embracing, and giving life to the Mentor born of our own experience and life wisdom.