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Who is Dr. Corvalan?

An image of Dr. Jaime G. Corvalan, MD, FACSThrough the many journeys of his life, from his formative years, through his lifelong career as a doctor and healer, to his sweeping search for meaning and transcendence in life, Dr. Jaime G. Corvalan, MD, has energized innumerable individuals to live healthy, meaningful lives. Ask the doctor where he’s from and he’s happy to tell you, “I’m a citizen of the Earth.” The doctor sees all people as one, and feels that we are all on a journey of discovering meaning and a higher purpose in life; in fact, we’re here to take the greatest journey of all, the journey of our true selves, our souls.

Dr. Corvalan’s work reflects a life both steeped in the world of intellect (as an extremely well-known Urologic Surgeon, former UCLA Clinical Professor of Surgery, and alumnus of the Cleveland Clinic) and in the world of metaphors and language of the soul (through his extensive interests in Jungian psychology, symbolism, mythology, history, art, and classic literature).

I have been truly blessed in my life, and, as I enter the second half of my life, it is important to me that I share those blessings with others,” says the doctor. “I’ve come to realize that the most vital thing for us to understand is the importance of consciousness – everything is consciousness.

When we consider the entirety of human history – and, indeed, of the unfolding of the universe – the evolution of our awareness, of our recognition of consciousness, is at the heart of all that we’ve experienced, good and bad. My abiding hope and intention is to help to grow consciousness, in myself and within everyone, so that we can move to a place where we all operate from our hearts, from our most authentic selves – our souls.”

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Your Own Hero’s Quest

You may wish to ask yourself some important, penetrating questions when embarking upon your own Hero’s Quest: By What Truth Do I Live? Who’s Life am I Living? Who am I Being? To create your own life, to reconnect with the divine, you must break free of the constraints of your ego life by overcoming your fear and aligning your ego with your soul.

An image of the End of Act III of the opera Parsifal, by Wagner, wherein the Fisher King is healed and Parsifal - like we too must - becomes the Keeper of his Soul.
An image of the End of Act III of the opera Parsifal, by Wagner, wherein the Fisher King is healed and Parsifal  becomes the Keeper of his Soul – as must must also do.

The skills, knowledge and power you acquire in the first part of your life must be brought to serve your soul, not your ego. In service of the ego, power can be abusive, tyrannical, and will destroy you. What is required is what the great philosopher, Arthur Schopenhauer, called the highest form of human morality, compassion.

Dr. Viktor Frankl, neurologist, psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor, found that even in the most horrific conditions of Nazi labor camps, one could find meaning in life, that the human spirit is indomitable. We must accept that suffering is a part of our quest, and that it is required for us to grow and free our souls. “Suffering” has roots in the term “sacred,” and is an inevitable part of our Road of Trials . . . and with Compassion, we can share in and empathize with the suffering, the sacred experience, of everyone and everything.

Look deeper, let go of arrogance. What is Your Mission? What is Your Bliss? What is Your Calling? Like Parsifal, Siegfried, even Luke Skywalker, we must let go of hubris, arrogance, foolish pride. Your Soul, Your Joy, Your Adventure Awaits!

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Crises You May Face

Oedipus at Colonus, by the artist Fulchran-Jean Harriet, is a painting of the tragic play of the same name by the Greek writer Sophocles.
Oedipus at Colonus, by the artist Fulchran-Jean Harriet, is a painting of the tragic play of the same name by the Greek writer Sophocles.

Divorce. Bankruptcy. The death of a loved one. Financial Ruin. Debilitating Injury. Foreclosure. Disaster. No one is immune to the inevitable fall(s) that we all experience over the course of our lives. One moment, you may be at the apparent peak of your life – wealthy, successful, celebrated; the next you may be brought to your knees, humbled and humiliated. Just ask Oedipus Rex.

While the disasters that may befall one are often very real and painful, the meaning we attach to and take from them is what philosophers, artists and writers have focused upon down through the ages. The crises often involve tremendous loss, what Jung would term the metaphorical “death of the ego.” Greek tragedy, like Oedipus or Ixion, are replete with studies in the inevitable fall brought about by hubris and unchecked ego. Interestingly, Oedipus is saved only when he accepts his fate. Suffering is a part of life and, while we may not understand it, we are saved when we accept it and view it as a blessing.

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Sacred Space

There are points in our lives where we find ourselves in life-changing states, where the need arises for a “scared” space for us to carefully navigate the potentially rocky and treacherous path to a new level of consciousness. That’s the point where we need to transcend the world of the ordinary and enter into a sacred space.

Yggdrasil, the World Ash in Norse Myths, an example of the idea of Axis Mundi
Yggdrasil, the World Ash in Norse Myths, is an example of the idea of Axis Mundi

A sacred space need not be a physical location at all – although it often is – and it certainly will not be the same for everyone. Entering a sacred space has often been achieved through the benefit of a ritual experience, but the role and power of rituals has faded within Western society over the last few centuries. Still, the role of ritual is to “turn the dial,” to shift one’s perception from the daily, ordinary world to one where the sacred, indeed magical nature of reality, can reveal itself. Quieting the mind, silencing the incessant chatter of the profane or ordinary, can help you find your own sacred space.

Gaining awareness of sacred space, and experiencing the difference between it and the ordinary, is really an awareness that there are multiple ways to experience the duality of time and space.

Sacred space is the reality behind the illusion, it is recognition of the transcendent that imbues all of reality with something divine, something miraculous. The great philosopher Mircea Eliade called it the “axis mundi,” or the “center of the world.” An experience of sacred space reconnects us with that authentic, transcendent reality that is behind and beyond the world of time and space, it reorients us with the axis mundi and puts us back in touch with our own authentic nature, our souls.

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The Four Noble Truths: Pragmatic Buddhism

Zen Garden, Reflecting upon the Four Noble Truths of BuddhismThe Four Noble Truths describe the path to the cessation of suffering.

The First Noble Truth: Life Means Suffering. This is the nature of existence.

The Second Noble Truth: The Origin of Suffering is Attachment to the Impermanent

The Third Noble Truth: The Cessation of Suffering is Attainable

The Fourth Noble Truth: The Eightfold Path to the Cessation of Suffering


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What is the Hero’s Journey Portal?

Exploring the Hero's Journey Portal and Finding Your Own Way in LifeThis portal was created as a gentle, thoughtful and heartfelt guide to help you complete your own journey. It doesn’t tell you what to do – no honest person can. Rather, it is designed to share with you what we’ve learned from thousands of years of humanity taking this heroic journey. The portal for the Hero’s Journey embarks upon the greatest journey of all – the journey of our souls to become whom we were born to be!

This guide will help you to see the stages of your own journey, to become aware of the pitfalls and obstacles you may face, and to help steady you along the trip when you may feel lost or uncertain.

This portal draws from ancient and honored mythological / heroic stories, poems, philosophers, scholars, religious traditions and scientific discoveries to question, learn and evolve. The Hero’s Journey portal doesn’t purport to have the answers about your specific journey – but it does seek to help you ask the right questions to move forward.