The Hero*s Journey

By: Luis Vazquez
Rustin 7th
The Hero’s journey is a cycle that is often found throughout many
stories for both children and even Greek mythology. The Hero’s
Journey consists of 3 main Stages, Including Departure, Initiation,
and the Return. Many Sub Stages are found in each main category,
today I will Connect two popular stories to a couple of these.
Through the Odyssey written by Homer, and the Lion King by Walt
Disney Movie Productions, these sub stages are commonly found.
The Supernatural Aid in The Departure, The Atonement with the
Father in the Initiation, and the Refusal of the Return in the Return,
these examples flourished the most through both stories.
The Odyssey
Refusal of the
with Father
Odysseus had been trapped
under the control of the
goddess calypso, and only
with the aid of an immortal
would he be able to get away,
“The strong god glittering left
her as he spoke, and now her
ladyship, had given heed to
Zeus’s mandate… O Forlorn
Man, be still. Here you need
grieve no more; you need not
fell you life consumed here; I
have pondered it, and I shall
help you go…” (Book 5, 4359).
For Odysseus, the
supernatural aid comes to
help free him from being kept
at Calypso’s island. Zeus, the
king of Mt. Olympus, sends his
messenger Hermes to
convince Calypso of freeing
Odysseus so he could return
home. The force, not being
directly physical in human
opinions, is an example of the
supernatural aid Zeus bestows
upon him to continue his
After being sent down to the
underworld by Circe,
Odysseus would face his fate
in hope to find remembrance,
“Now hear the grace I pray
for, in the name of those back
in the world, not here- your
wife and father, he who gave
you bread in childhood , and
your own child, your only son,
Telemachus, long ago left at
home” (Book 11, 40-44).
Odysseus would venture into
the underworld, following
Circe's command, only to
meet up a prophecy that
affects his destination alltogether. Odysseus is faced to
realize his forgotten father
role through one of his
deceased soldiers, telling him
of his family mourning and
their troubles. Throughout the
journey, Odysseus had lost the
sight of his father figure, only
keeping his home in general
in mind. The atonement with
the Soldier gives him his
epiphany of his previous
After a long and extraneous
journey, Odysseus loses his eye
for the main goal at each
challenge he faces, “The sweet
days of his life time were
running out in anguish over his
exile, for long ago the nymph
had ceased to please. Though
he fought shy of her and her
desire, he lay with her each
night” (Book 5, 47-51).
Though a long and perilous journey
that Odysseus had endured to
reach his goal, the smothering of
that original goal was always
common. His need to return home
was his immediate priority, yet
through each challenge, it seems as
if he settles down and sets it aside
for his other wants. With Calypso,
he is trapped at an island for over
10 years, he weeps daily for his
fading memory of home yet he
sleeps with calypso each night.
Through the quote, the idea of his
desire to return home is not his
priority anymore, as he has given
up with that fact, to only focus with
his unnecessary wants.
Supernatural Aid
The Lion
Refusal of the
Atonement with
the Father
In the Lion King, the Newborn
king is presented to the
animals of the kingdom as a
sign of hope and reassurance,
*The scene starts where
Rafiki, the wise prophet of the
animal kingdom (a baboon),
raises Simba over a cliff as a
cub, while the animals of the
kingdom begin to cheer in
praise of the newborn king. A
light Shines down from the
heavens landing on Simba,
causing all animals to bow
down at the sight* (The Lion
The most depicted scene out of
the entire movie, signifying the
greatest points. A light from the
heavens shines down on Simba,
marking him, as the future key
part of the Circle of Life. The
supernatural essence shown
gives the animals of the kingdom
a sense of loyalty as they witness
the ‘baptism’ of their future king.
The supernatural force would
begin to pave the way for Simba’s
journey, as a baby cub, to his final
After running away, Simba loses his way,
only blinded by a Utopian society,
requiring the force of a wise prophet to
help him remember, “Simba: That’s not my
father. That’s just my reflection.
Rafiki: No… look harder. You see? He lives in
Mufasa: Simba…Simba you have forgotten me
Simba: No! How could I?!
Mufasa: You have forgotten who you are so you
have forgotten me, look inside yourself
Simba. You are more than what you have
become, you must take your place in the
circle of life.
Simba: How can I go back? I’m not who I used
to be.
Mufasa: Remember, who you are, your are my
son, and the one true king…remember…
*Rafiki hits Simba in the head*
Simba: Ow! What was that for?
Rafiki: Doesn’t matter! It’s in the past! … the
past does hurt, what matters is that you can
either run from it, or learn from it” (The
Lion King).
Thrown into a perilous run, the
destiny of oneself can be easily
avoided and forgotten, Simba had
been visited by Nala, who failed to
convince, but through Rafiki, he
experiences a moment of his past
and his remembrance of his father
is climactic for the movie. With the
aid of both Mufasa and Rafiki,
Simba had been reminded of
himself and his forgotten destiny.
The restoration of oneself through a
wise prophet or father figure is
exactly what Simba had
experienced, leading to his new
born epiphany.
The meeting of Simba and his
best friend Nala is a dramatic
meeting, at which they both
face the fact of simba’s blinding
of reality, “Nala: What else matters, your
alive! And that means you’re the king…
Pumba: Your majesty, I gravel at your feet!
Simba: Stop it!
Timone: it’s not gravel, its grovel. And don’t,
he’s not the king…Are ya?”
Simba: No!
Nala: Simba!
Simba: No. I’m not the king; maybe I was gunna
be, but that was a long time ago” (The Lion
Through their dramatic reacquaintance, Nala is astounded
with the sight of her long lost
king and best friend. Simba,
however through the scarring
events and his new way of mind,
“Hakuna Matata”, Simba’s
opinion of being king no longer
appeals to him as it did as a
cub. He had set forth to live as
an outcast, due to which his
kingdom thought he was killed
in a tragic incident. Simba has
been blinded with a Utopian
setting, in lieu of his destiny.
The Odyssey: Homer
Homer, , and Robert Fitzgerald. The Odyssey. Garden City, N.Y:
Anchor Press/Doubleday, 1961. Print.
The Lion King: Walt Disney Movie Productions
The Lion King (A Walt Disney Masterpiece) [VHS]. Dir. Rob Minkoff.
Perf. Matthew Broderick, Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones. Walt
Disney Home Video, 1995. VHS.
"THEOI GREEK MYTHOLOGY, Exploring Mythology & the Greek
Gods in Classical Literature & Art."THEOI GREEK MYTHOLOGY,
Exploring Mythology & the Greek Gods in Classical Literature & Art.
N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Feb. 2011. <>.
(Pictures taken from this site)

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