Rites of Passage Throughout the Lifespan
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Rites of passage were created and designed to guide and mark transitions from one stage of life into another.
~ Brett Stephenson
~ Looking for meaningful summer opportunities for your children
~ Ready to mark your transition into young adulthood
~ Searching for a way to mark a transition in your own life as an adult
~ Ready to step into Elderhood in conscious ways
The evening will begin with a talk on rites of passage and their importance through the lifespan by Jason Geoffrion, Ph.D. (Men’s Leadership Alliance Executive Director) and Melissa Michales, Ed.D. (Golden Bridge Founder).
You will then hear from a variety of organizations and learn about ongoing and upcoming summer programs for your kids, teens and yourself, including:
- Men’s Leadership Alliance – Redefining Masculinity
- Golden Bridge
- Feet on the Earth – Growing Community from the Earth Up
- Wakeful Nature – Awaken to Your True Nature
- Inner Life Adventures
- Reconnecting to Our Nature
- Men’s Eagle Council – Journey to Manhood
- The HeartQuest
- The River’s Path
After the talk you will have the opportunity to speak with those you are drawn to and learn more about their programs.
Below you can read more on the importance of rites of passage.
Please contact Jason Geoffrion with any questions: 303-444-9022, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rites of Passage
In its most general understanding, a rite of passage constitutes a transitional marking from one status to another. Through both individual and group rites ceremonial transitions cover the lifespan from topics of pregnancy and childbirth, through childhood and adolescence, initiation, betrothal and marriage, loss, significant change, and death and funerals, among others.
Rites of passage are ways of marking events with exclamation points, highlighting a moment of personal and social change as worthy of collective attention.
~ Ronald Grimes
If regarded in understanding at all, rites of passage in modern terms are often solely linked to the adolescent’s transition to adulthood. Children and adolescents grew up knowing that their extended family and wider community were active in their lives, not only to mark the transition to adulthood, but also to welcome them into the adult community by recognizing their strengths and gifts, and thus providing a place for them in society. Initiation was considered of paramount importance to group survival, as well as an individual and inner process of growth and development.
However, rites of passage were an innate part of all communal life. The entire community had ceremonies to ritualize important markers throughout the lifespan. This way of engaging and acknowledging developmental transitions created a cohesion and rhythm for everyone. These betwixt and between times, transition times, deserve special attention as constructive building blocks for change, or possibly transformation and initiation to another level of consciousness.
No recurrent events in human culture give clearer evidence of the archetypal structure of the human psyche than the initiation rituals or ceremonies that accompany the transition from one social status to another.
~ Victor Turner
Without the larger community to mark the various transitions throughout the lifespan, unconscious isolation and apathy toward community develops, and a lack of meaning becomes pervasive. Thus, unhealthy subcultures form that are not only disconnected from a feeling of unity with larger culture, but are also counter-productive to the entire system of society. These subcultures are sometimes formed because individuals feel the larger community is not supporting them or recognizing their needs or accepting the transition that is taking place. For whatever reasons, disconnects from the entirety of community are occurring and the lack of supported transition is concerning for both the individual and the larger community.
However, with proper support and guidance through transitions an individual can lead a life of intimacy, generativity, and integrity. Thus, the self-exploration and continuing identity formation of the individual must be held within, and is inexorably linked to the larger social context. Marking transitions helps individuals experience the significance of such a transition, while allowing them to feel guided by and connected to others who acknowledge the transitions they are in. Rites of passage are a social way to experience personal transition. They support poignant discoveries of self-identity while doing so within the context of a community of people, and infuse a sense of belonging and purpose, linking self-identity with the larger needs of society.
~ Excerpt from: Defining A Masculine Self: A Phenomenological Study on the Impact of Men’s Retreats ~ Dr. Jason Geoffrion
We hope you will join us to learn more about the importance of rites of passage in every stage of life, and discover upcoming rites of passage opportunities for kids, teens, adults and Elders.