Thursday, August 09, 2007

Unstructured Archetypes: The Mentor

He is Merlin. He is Yoda. He is Morpheus. He is Juan Sanchez Villa-Lobos Ramirez.

He is a man. There are no female Mentors. The nearest female Archetype is The Wise Woman.

The Mentor’s role is to guide the Hero.

The Mentor provides both moral and martial guidance. The former is the more important.

The Mentor is always older than the hero. He may also be of a higher social rank but this is not a requirement. Often the mentor comes from a place entirely outside of the Hero’s social system.

The Mentor will usually find the Hero, unless Destiny guides the Hero to the Mentor.

The Mentor is a keeper of secrets. His own origins are usually mysterious.

The Mentor knows how to fight but is not, himself, a warrior. If he fights, it is only out of necessity.

The Mentor can not defeat the Villain, nor can he Save the Day. He can provide vital assistance but he can not tread on the Hero’s domain.

The Mentor does not have a One True Love (unless she is buried deep in his past). The Mentor’s love is reserved for the Hero.

At some point, the Mentor will part paths with the Hero. This is necessary for the Hero to Fulfill his Destiny.

The Mentor is celibate; however, he can be Beguiled by a Fallen Woman.

The Mentor is both wise and learned. He is frustrated that the Hero is slow to learn.

If the Mentor is killed, he will be avenged. Avenging the Mentor must take a lower priority to avenging the One True Love.

The Mentor can be strict and can seem cruel, at times, but he is motivated by love for the Hero.

The Mentor is virtuous but tricky. He is also dangerous to his enemies.

The Mentor is spiritual but not religious.

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