The Hero’s Journey: Part 4b

Friends & Foes

The hero’s Friends and Foes have a large bearing on the Path of Trials. The Friends help the hero with making decisions and overcoming challenges. The Foes do the opposite, often confusing matters or deliberately hindering the hero. Sometimes people who appear to be Friends are actually Foes and vice versa. There are also the rare people who are Friends some times and Foes others.

Where would Harry Potter, Lance Armstrong, Frodo, Aung San Suu Kyi, and Spiderman be without their friends? Just as unforgettable are their foes. A hero is often defined by their Friends and Foes.

The middle school girl has many friends and a few foes among her peer group and teachers. As a middle school girl, she is perhaps the hero with the greatest number of friends who switch between friend and foe. The college student has found a few like-minded people to count on and encountered many people willing to knock him from his path. Our teacher has a friend in the new principal, but many of the teachers who supported the status quo from before have become foes. The entrepreneur has found a few friends in the field and a number of customers have become foes – not paying on time.

2 Responses to The Hero’s Journey: Part 4b

  1. Erik November 7, 2006 at 3:27 pm #

    Figuring out who is friend and foe is something that I feel just comes with time. How can you trust people when you don’t know if they will hurt you in the long run? In order to make a friend that can help you along your path you must trust them, but with so many people willing to undercut one another for a buck or two, how can we trust to make those friends?

  2. Matt Langdon November 7, 2006 at 3:39 pm #

    You’re absolutely right that you can’t know until the end of the journey who was friend and who was foe. The hero has to accept what seems to be – if a friend turns out to be a foe, it is merely another challenge to overcome on the journey. You can’t ever lose trust.