Rite of passage ceremonies

Jonathan Nadlman, MFT Psychotherapist, shares advice on how to create a rite of passage ceremony for your son to help him move on to his next stage of life
Raising Boys | How To Create A Rite Of Passage Ceremony For Your Son
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Rite of passage ceremonies

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Rites of passage require a number of fundamental things. First and foremost, it requires a community. We have a challenge there in our culture because we have these sub-communities, but a community is witness. In order to create a rite of passage, there has to be a separation from that community. It has to be a leaving. That experience has to be felt by that adolescent for the key time like that. The second piece necessary for a rite of passage, is some type of confrontation, some type of test, or some type of ordeal; that which the expectation of completion is questionable. Third, and perhaps the most important, is the triumphant return. The triumphant return requires the recognition and the honoring by the rest of the tribe. The idea being that child, that man or woman, has been forever changed. In indigenous cultures, a boy or girl would be taken from the tribe, have the vision quest, perhaps be told to get an animal or track a red tailed hawk and get a feather. Upon their return, they would have their name changed. There would be no question that he or she had been honored into the next stage of their lives.

Jonathan Nadlman, MFT Psychotherapist, shares advice on how to create a rite of passage ceremony for your son to help him move on to his next stage of life

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Jonathan Nadlman, MFT

Psychotherapist

Jonathan Nadlman, MFT, is a licensed psychotherapist in private practice since 1995, and has been counseling adults, couples, young people and their families for twenty-four years.  For the past seven years, he has been teaching Human Development and puberty as a rite-of-passage at many independent schools. Jonathan was the supervising therapist at Pacific Hills Middle and High School for six years. In addition, he is a facilitator of rites-of-passage workshops for adolescents teens and adults.  When he is not working, he can be found trying to change wood into art, learning his djembe, or in the garden with his wife and seven year old daughter. Or on occasion, if there's a swell, riding the California surf.

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