In the book, The Way of the Peaceful Warrior, the writer narrates the life of a character Dan. Dan is introduced as an enthusiastic gymnast who is in search of internal happiness and is transformed by a mentor into a peaceful warrior. Dan is capable to learn how to enjoy life by way of agreeing to its course. Dan is presented as a character from a wealthy household and enrolled in a university where he is an intelligent scholar with good grades. In addition, the character has good appears and an excellent knowledge of gymnastic exercises. However, the life of Dan experiences challenges as he has anxieties and fears that had led to sleepless nights and disturbing nightmares. He feels that his life is missing something that had caused this negative experiences. He meets with an old man that he nicknames Socrates who becomes his mentor and teaches him powerful life lessons that entirely change him into a happy person or a peaceful warrior.
What kind of person is Dan in the beginning?
In the beginning, Dan is successful in his academics and gymnastics. However, he feels that something is missing and he even experiences insomnias. Dan is presented as a person who strives to achieve his life happiness through victory but experiences the same unhappiness as other people around him. He is a person whose life is about ambition, looking forward, and one who does not thoroughly enjoy life as he tries to get the best out of life. Through the mentor, Socrates, Dan discovers that in order to have peace of mind and enjoy life is through the philosophy of unreasonable happiness (Millman, p.108). Therefore, in the beginning, Dan is seen as an unhappy determined and ambitious person.
How A Mentor Changes Dan Millman
In his sleepless nights, Dan wanders the streets and stops at a gas station where he meets an older man who they get talking. The old man has vast knowledge that he uses to take Dan through a series of physical and mental trials. Through these trials, the old man tries to reveal the things that Dan dreams for and what he chases in his life. The old man, Socrates, tells Dan that he requires strength and courage to cut himself free from illusions. According to Socrates, through disillusionment, a person is able to reveal things that may seem to have no meaning in life. Socrates states that Dan was getting involved in entertainments, playful affairs, and gymnastics as ways to avoid facing the source of his suffering.
In the book the protagonist, Dan has a willingness to experience change and new things in his life. According to Socrates, people are in prison and they must realize that they are in it since it has invisible bars. Dan gets a new realization and feels the huge bulk that his thoughts have on him that have greatly occupied his mind. He now appreciates the freedom he has finally realized and learns to live in the present that assures him his happiness. Socrates uses symbols to teach Dan the way of life. The House Rules implies the rationalizations why numerous things in life have to be done in certain ways. Dan is so frustrated that he cannot figure the purpose of these rules. These rules are as unclear as some of the rules that control the lives of many people. One of the main lessons that Dan learns is that he has to give up on knowing the answers to every question and just accept the mystery of the unknown. It is clear that there are things in life one cannot control.
How A Mentor, Coaches, or Leader Change People
According to McIntyre (2016, p.34), mentors are people who form friendships with other people majority who are younger than them to help them learn new life skills. In life, mentors are important as they are available to their protégé to turn to when the protégé needs comfort and support. Cohen (2012, p.24) states that through the mentoring process, an experienced individual tries to help another person to grow and develop their skills and goals through sessions that mostly involve face to face conversations and are time-limited and confidential. The protégé speaks about the issues that are affecting them to develop and in turn the gain input and wisdom. Protégés find encouragement and reinforcement from their mentors as the most valued mentoring skills as they respond to such skill well. The mentors, coaches, or leaders help people change through offering support and encouragement to challenges that the protégés face in life. In the sessions, there is an exchange of information which is important in helping people change by them gaining insight into the goals they hope to achieve. The protégé also tend to improve their skills in particular areas as they seek guidance from the mentor, coaches, or leaders in their life. In addition, they also seek guidance on the main life decision-making processes.
The mentors also help people determine who they want to become in their lives and how they can appropriately change to ensure they become these people. People get insights on how they can take advantage of the several chances that are available in life experiences to bring about the desired life changes. The mentoring experiences are capable of guaranteeing people especially those who are anxious and stressed that they have someone who readily looks after them and assures them they are alone in solving and facing daily life challenges. People are able to feel they are important in life through quality mentoring relationships that pose a positive impact on the professional, academic, and personal life experiences. Finally, mentors, coaches, or leaders help people change by connecting them to their personal development and growth and furthermore to economic and social opportunities.
How Those Mentors and Initiation into True Manhood Compare To Dan’s Mentor and Initiation
In life, mentoring and initiation into responsible and solid manhood was placed in the hands of the men. The young people are expected to tolerate through the initial period after which they feel mature and are affirmed of their passage into manhood (Lu, 263). In the book, the young character Dan is also initiated into manhood by an old man who mentors him into maximizing his athletic performance. Dan is initiated into the way of the peaceful warrior by Socrates. In the physical activities, which were performed in time-limited sessions Dan passes through a spiritual journey that helps him get a deeper understanding of himself. Dan realizes why he has a love for his gymnastics. These physical activity helps him not think much of life which to him is a holiday from his mind.
Cohen, Elliot D. The New Rational Therapy: Thinking Your Way to Serenity, Success, and Profound Happiness. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2012. Print.
Lu, C. “Transforming the Male Body: Sam Keen’s Mythopoetic Myth-Body and Dan Millman’s Embodied Zen.” Concentric. 40.2 (2014): 261-288. Print.
McIntyre, Gizelle. “Capture the Power of Mentorship: Development.” HR Future. 1 (2016): 34-35. Print.
Millman, Dan. The way of the Peaceful Warrior: A Book That Changes Lives. Tiburon, Calif: H.J. Kramer, 2006. Print.