Never Before Offered
Up until now we have never made this manual and accompanying materials available for implementing community oriented rites of passage without an intensive training within a setting like a community-based youth and family organization, religious, cultural or civic organization and school/community partnership. These are different time than 40 or 50 years ago. When we first started out there were very few ropes courses and no one ever heard of a “trust fall.” Now these and other technologies and techniques are very familiar. Many more people understand core concepts related to positive youth development, facilitating experiential education and outdoor wilderness programs. Decades ago this was all brand new.
Youth & community development through rites of passage initiatives like ROPE® are based on 30,000 years of rites of passage in history and lessons learned with community-oriented rites of passage since 1966. Up until now this Guide has never been offered or sold without an intensive community-based learning community to study and experience rites of passage. We have always considered rites of passage to be our “shared sacred story” and one that could not be marketed, or sold as an act of commerce.
First, when we began to study rites of passage together with people in communities there were very few rites of passage type programs around. There were no initiatives that used the story of rites of passage to organize a community around initiation and rites of passage designs in a whole systems approach to youth and community development.
Second, we believe there exists in every setting and community significant resources of knowledgeable people who can adapt the principles and methods within this manual. They did not exist decades ago. Furthermore, the lessons learned over 50 years doing this work have been documented and compiled in dozens of publications and several books. Millions of hours of experience by hundreds of guides in thousands of groups have continued to enhance and build this strategy into its present form. After 50 years of exploration and experience we thought, “if not now when?”
Third, the lessons learned have been documented and compiled in dozens of publications and several books. Millions of hours of experience by hundreds of guides have continued to enhance and build this strategy into its present form.
Fourth, over the past 10 years there has been a dramatic increase in the sale of many different types of programs for youth called rites of passage. Many people from around the world compelled us to make this information available for people to see how authentic rites of passage can be put into practice within a community and culture. After 50 years of exploration and experience we thought, “if not now when?”