Life, as we know it, is a process with no definite destination. It is essentially a journey of growth and development, and each of us will embark on different paths that lead to different outcomes. There are, of course, similarities that our individual journeys share with another; bound by the unconscious. However, according to Individuation (and when look towards the 12 archetypes), each of us go through 4 different stages of life during our lifetime. These stages are…
4 Different Archetypal Stages of Life
The Athlete stage, the Warrior stage, the Statement stage, and the Stage of the Spirit.
The Athlete Stage
During the Athlete stage, we are mostly preoccupied with our looks, with the way our body looks. Think of this stage as archetypal infancy – without direction, without knowledge, and without conception. We are dependent on others for survival, similar to how infants are dependent on their parents. But beyond that, it is also a stage of superficiality, and we see nothing beyond the surface of what life has to offer.
During this stage, we might stay for hours looking and admiring our reflection in the mirror. Our bodies, our external appearances are the most important things to us, nothing else. This doesn’t necessarily have to be taken literally. It can also mean that we’re still being taught our functions in society, and that is why we’re constantly looking for the approval and guidance of others. Towards the end of this stage, we begin to learn that the expectations of others should not define our actions and decisions. Instead, we start to look inwards to create a path for ourselves.
The Warrior Stage
During the Warrior stage, our main concern is to go out there and conquer the world, to do our best, be the best and get the very best, to do what warriors do, and act like warriors act. This is a stage when we continually think of ways to get more than everybody else, a stage of comparison, of defeating those around so we can feel better because we have achieved more because we are the warriors, the brave ones.
Towards the end of the Warrior stage, we return to the main question – the problem that we’ve been aching to answer for the longest time; who are we? And in turn, we begin to embark on a long, arduous journey of experimentation to discover our true identities.
The Statement Stage
During the Statement stage, you realize what you have achieved so far is not enough for you to feel fulfilled, to be happy… You are now looking for ways to make a difference in the world, for ways to serve those around you. You are now preoccupied with ways to start giving. Your mission in life becomes abundantly clear, and you have the clearest sense of direction.
You’ve never been more ready to unleash your potential to make a real, actual difference in this world instead of indulging yourself in materialistic pleasures. The Statement stage is all about the statement that you’re going to make with your life; the legacy that you’re going to leave. Your thoughts and actions mimic your beliefs about leaving the world better than when you first found it.
The Stage of the Spirit
And during the Stage of the Spirit, we realize we are more than our body, we are more than our possessions, more than our friends, our country and so on. We come to the realization that we are divine beings, spiritual beings having a human experience, and not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We now know this is not our home, and we are not what we thought we are. We are in this world but not of it. We are now able to observe ourselves from a different perspective. We are now capable of stepping out of our own mind, out of our own body and understand who we really are, to see things the way they are.
We become the observer of our lives. We realize that we are not that which we notice but, the observer of what we notice.
Not everyone will be able to reach the Stage of the Spirit… Some are not even fortunate enough to have reached the Statement stage.
Regardless of whatever stage you’re at right now, individuation and the use of jungian archetypes aims to guide you towards the Stage of the Spirit – a pinnacle period that will grant you true enlightenment, and true wisdom.