This blog is about our “unhealed wounds” and how we go about facing them and healing them: through art and entertainment; through meditation and spiritual quest; through humor and sharing with friends. The unhealed wound is the journey of the hero.
Heroes have flaws, plunge into adventures of the unknown, sometimes with great trepidation, and are reborn stronger, braver, and more compassionate. As Joseph Campbell notably observed in The Hero with a Thousand Faces: “The hero is us.”
The mythic hero faces life’s challenges because his/her own wound is a reminder of the unexpected shadows we all face. For example, Perceval in The Legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table is responsible for protecting the Holy Grail. He is wounded and incapable of moving on his own. Knights travel from far and wide to heal Perceval, the Fisher King, aka the Wounded King, but only the chosen can accomplish the feat.
Frodo, in Tolkien’s Lord of the Ring series, another hero with an unhealed wound, faces the daunting task of returning the Dark Lord’s ring to the fire of its origins. Inhabiting a world in turmoil, the hobbit and his friends struggle to survive. Old systems collapse, new ones emerge. Survival ultimately depends on Frodo and his friends.
Famously, Harry Potter’s thunderbolt scar throbs and pulsates whenever his nemesis Voldemort is near. And Bran Stark, in Game of Thrones, has been injured so badly that he can no longer walk and must be carried. Courageously, they both move on.
My debut novel, Things Unsaid (originally titled Unhealed Wound), will be published October 2015 by She Writes Press. The Buddhist theme of karma infuses the story. For Buddhists there is no wound that cannot heal. Things Unsaid is an unsentimental tale portraying family in all its emotional complexity, tracing back three generations rooted in guilt, karma, obligation, duty, broken promises and the heroic efforts demanded to achieve redemption and forgiveness.