July was the month of the French Master Key Experience (MKE) Live Event in France, and during this joyful event most participants are living one or more new experiences which could truly be qualified as the Hero’s Journey.
Honor your hero’s journey!
This year, we had again a great harvest of the Hero’s Journey among the participants.
The concept of Live Event has been designed by Mark and Davene to gather in person the most motivated participants who successfully achieve the MKE online course, and who know each other only through their voices or little Zoom images.
The MKE Live Event is 6-day long and is designed to be especially fun and transformative for the participants, hence the Hero’s Journeys that some of them are living.
It’s not that the many different activities offered to the participants are especially difficult and challenging by themselves; in fact, they can all be performed easily by a 10 year old (except driving a car 😊) and each participant is fully free to participate or not to each of them.
But the spirit of alliance and the energy which prevail during every Live Event are naturally driving the participants to choose to…participate, including to activities which are out of their comfort zone, hence the Hero’s Journeys!
Let’s take some actual MKE live event attendees and compare their journeys!
Jean, Joan and Cathy* decided to participate to the hiking activity despite of their lack of training and their slight overweight condition.
I had prepared and tested a nice 8 mile walk in the surrounding hills, woods and lavender fields with, in the middle, a 1 mile climb to the top of a hill offering a beautiful 360° view on the country.
I knew all of the three could do it, as the distance was reasonable and they would receive encouragements and even help if needed from all the other hikers all along the way.
But the Universe had decided to challenge our three girlfriends, and to use me as its unexpected instrument (creating a mini-hero’s journey for me too)!
When approaching the climb of the hill, I took another much steeper path than the planned one…
By the time I realized my mistake, seeing the three girls struggling much more than expected, it was too late to turn around, as all three were now too afraid to go downhill, leaving to themselves no other choice than to make it to the top!
It would be too long to describe here all the adventures they lived and the support they received from the group during their ½ mile ascent, but all three were truly heroic, and when they finally reached the top of the hill, it was under a thunder of applause and cries of joys from the other participants.
Cathy had her turn during the Adventure Day, a special day in the middle of the Live Event as a pause between the training days. The adventure consists of kayaking during about 9 miles down a beautiful river, the Ardèche, which has carved out a gorgeous canyon in which it flows peacefully, except in a few places where slides for the kayaks or little rapids are slightly accelerating the speed of the boats.
Once again, the activity is within the reach of a ten year old, but the length of the ride, the slides and the rapids are good enough to create some doubts in the mind of the unprepared participants…And this is what creates the juice of the adventure of course!
Although Cathy knew she couldn’t swim (but she didn’t know it is not necessary to safely achieve the Ardèche ride), she decided to join the group anyway…
During the first mile of the ride, the river is quiet and slow, which gives all the newbies the time to learn the very basics of kayaking, and how to coordinate with their more experienced teammate.
Cathy was just starting to feel reassured when the first slide came in view.
Her fear quickly raised until the kayak engaged in the slide, and then, unlike most people who are laughing or shouting like on a rollercoaster in an amusement park, she let out a huge cry of terror and by the time the kayak had reached the quiet water at the bottom of the slide, she was completely paralyzed by fear!
It took a while before she could recover her calm, but from there on, thanks to her courage and tenacity, she could improve her capacity to control her fear and her emotions obstacle after obstacle…
Nonetheless to say that she was totally exhausted but happy and proud of herself on the arrival.
And of course, Cathy was also spontaneously recognized by the group as a true Hero, every kayaker warmly hugging her and saluting her for her feat.
My last story for this time is to show that MKE Guides are also exposed to the risk/opportunity of living a Hero’s Journey during a Live Event, and that the acquisition of the MKE is a progressive and continuous process rather than a “have it” – “have it not” one time event.
Jeffrey is a three times repeater of the Live Event, and therefore he knows quite well what the downstream trip of the Ardèche in kayak looks like, a nice and fun adventure lived by many vacationers every day during summertime.
But this year, according to his own words, he started the descent with an irrational apprehension in his mind, something like ”what if something goes wrong?!”
He’s perfectly aware of the Law of Growth (“what you focus on grows”) and of his “backward thinking” in this instance … but … well, he can’t help himself … his teammate is his 12 year old daughter Fanny, another source for his uncontrolled anxiety…
Fanny is a sporty nice girl with a pure Red-Yellow character, and the way she told us afterward how her and her father turned upside down with their kayak in one of the rapids was just hilarious.
By contrast, the narrative of Jeffrey was of a very different energy:
“I really scared myself and I thought I was really going to drown in this 12 inches deep water rapid…I felt trapped below the kayak, and it is only when I had no other choice than to let go that the current of the river helped me to surface again…”
The story doesn’t finish here…Because during his underwater struggle Jeffrey had lost his glasses, and although he spent one hour looking for them in vain with the help of a few vacationers, he had to let go again and leave without them…
Law of Growth
This time however, he put the Law of Growth in his favor and started focusing on the idea that he would recover his glasses anyway…The next morning he received a happy call from one of the vacationers who had promised Jeffrey to continue the research with his diving mask…The glasses were recovered!
Many other Hero’s Journeys like these occurred for the other participants during the week, and this is why all of them returned home with nourishing and heartful memories of their MKE Live Event experience.
If you too would like to experience one of these events in the future, it is easy: register for the upcoming MKE session which will start again next Fall, and achieve the six month online training…By that time, you will have learned to face any kind of challenge and will be ready for a great Live Event Hero’s Journey! 😊
* All the names have been replaced to protect the intimacy of the participants