Nov 27, 2020
Rites of Passage: The Antidote to Fear
Mike Corey travels the world to overcome his fears, witnessing firsthand the widespread effects of the pandemic and climate change.
Before you read, remember this: Independent editorial isn't free. If you enjoy this article, please consider our message at the end of this article and support our journalism so we can keep going.
As introduced in Rites of Passage: Part 1, extreme adventurer Mike Corey travels around the world to experience tribal rites of passage that demystify his darkest fears. [Listen to this episode of the podcast.]
“There’s this primal human feeling that has kept us safe and gotten this species to dominate the Earth because we’re so fearful. We don’t have claws, we can’t spit poison and fly, so what do we have? We have fear.”
Corey’s hand-eye coordination skills and quick reflexes from his 12 years of competitive fencing come in handy when he’s train surfing in West Africa or handling a camera in a mosh-pit. Corey lives his life as an example that fear can be controlled by keeping an open mind to new experiences and continuously exercising our courage as if it were a muscle. Beating fear is a learnable skill, one that Corey has been developing for over a decade. [Learn more about Corey’s War on Fear Bootcamp here.]
“I think the antidote of fear is often knowledge and training.”
Corey’s motto of “Experience over Possessions” came way before today’s trendy #vanlife movement, and in adapting to Covid restrictions, he’s focused on traveling more conscientiously by going remote and moving slow.
Corey cares deeply about promoting the regions he travels to responsibly and inspiring people to take deep actions in their lives. He’s has made friends around the world who work in the tourism industry. These are people that lead him on immersive cultural experiences, and he knows that they’re hurting now more than ever.
“10 percent of the global workforce works in tourism. and I don’t know how many hundreds of millions of people that is, but I think of Thailand and Peru and Cambodia, these countries that so heavily rely on tourism, those dudes who drive tuk-tuks, the women who run convenience stores, the tour operators, what are they doing right now, they’re starving.”
Whilst looping the globe for the past decade, Corey has also witnessed the distressing effects of climate change on his travels, especially in the reefs in South East Asia.
“One of my very first trips a decade ago was to Sulawesi in Indonesia. I was able to return recently and dive some of the same coral reefs. It was very very different. It upset me quite a bit.”
Corey earned his degree in marine biology and began his career backpacking the world on conservation projects. He is also a divemaster. You can watch his underwater exploration around the globe from Cozumel to Camiguin.
In this episode of The Outdoor Journal Podcast, Corey discusses how he became a self-taught filmmaker, how travel is changing due to Covid, and how to become the superhero version of yourself. [Listen to the full episode of the podcast.]
Check out Part 1 of Rites of Passage with Mike Corey.