Rites of Passage:

~ A ritual, event, or experience that marks a major turning point in a person’s life ~

Throughout time cultures around the world have made the coming of age of young men and women into a significant event, often marked by an act of accomplishment, often of a physical nature. In today’s increasingly digital world, it can prove to be a very significant rite of passage for a young person to set out and achieve a task of physical nature, a task that requires focused effort and overcoming limitations, physical or otherwise. When we offer our young people specific activities they can engage in, their sense of success and accomplishment becomes a keystone and conscious metaphor for their abilities to overcome them many unknown challenges and opportunities they will face as they enter the world of adulthood.

Rites of passage are powerful ways for people to grow into a new role in their self perception and in their community. Bimini is an ideal environment for many memorable rites of passage. Some possible rites of passage here include:

Freediving: Learning to hold one’s breath and dive beneath the surface of the sea, overcoming fears of death and drowning and learning to relax and become one with the vastness of the ocean.

Swimming with wild dolphins: Entering the vast blue ocean far from shore and swimming alongside pods of completely wild and free dolphins is for many people a profoundly uplifting and inspiring life experience.

Spearfishing: Learning to dive beneath the surface and use a spear to catch fish for the community is a very powerful rite of passage. Done with respect and loving intent, most everyone describes it as a life-changing experience.

Swimming with sharks: Everyone has fear of sharks, they are global icons of danger. Meeting one of the ocean’s apex predators face to face requires willingness, surrender and courage. It is a master course in facing ones’ fears, real and imagined.

Community Service: From carpentry improvements for ageing homes, cleaning and upgrading local playgrounds and planting mangrove seedlings to restore destroyed natural habitat, the scope of community service projects here on Bimini are limited only by our imagination.

As a therapist, life coach and nature guide I have facilitated nature-based rites of passage for people of all ages and abilities. Call me and let’s create a powerful, life-affirming rite of passage for someone you love.

Rites of passage celebrate the social movement of individuals into and out of groups or into or out of statuses of critical importance to the individual and to the community. Reproduction, the achievement of manhood and womanhood, marriage, and death are the principal worldwide occasions for rites of passage.— Marvin Harris