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015 Boy to Man – Extreme coming of age with Tim Noonan

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Extreme initiation & rites of passage into Manhood

I was first introduced to Tim and his work via his TV show ‘Boy to Man’ back when it initially aired in Australia 2016. A show in which he travelled to 12 extremely remote locations to spend time with people still living in their traditional ways and partake in a series of coming of age boy to manhood rituals.


I remember being captivated by the first ad I saw on TV, for two reasons; one. I am deeply curious about rites of passage rituals and the journey from boy to man. At the time, this was something I was looking into more and becoming increasingly aware of via its glaringly impactful absence in most modern societies and cultures. I still am, for what it’s worth.


And two, I love me some adventure into strange and wonderful places, which is something this show has by the bucket load.


Oh and three, at the time I was beginning a deep dive into a historical novel series based on the life of Ghengis Khan and his descendants, so with an episode going to Mongolia and taming a wild eagle – I was hooked before it even began.


The show didn’t disappoint. With wild adventures, remarkable rituals and captivating situations that Tim got himself in, it was something I tuned in for every week.


Not long after I reached out to Tim about having him speak at a Beyond The Beers event of mine on his adventures and what he learnt going through all of these coming of ages rituals. Unfortunately, we couldn’t make the timing work.


So when I started getting a list of people I want to speak to for this podcast, I knew Tim had to be on the list.


And today, we bring you that conversation.


In this Episode:

Since that show, Tim has also gone through another series of initiations, believe it or not. The first being another show with his fiancee PJ called ‘Extreme Engagement’ (now airing on Netflix globally) in which they, wait for it… set out to travel the world to remote occasions and villages to partake in ceremonies and challenges designed to test a couple before they commit to each other for life.


Yeah, Tim has a thing.


He has also gone through an initiation like no other, one I am extremely familiar with myself right now – fatherhood.


So in this episode, we touch on these rituals, what he experienced, the things he went through, what he learnt, what he saw in the other participants, especially the young men doing the coming of age rituals with him.


We cover some of the most challenging moments he has faced, and the invariable ‘death’ that needs to occur in these rites of passage so that the new man can arise from the ashes, as it were, and become a mature, integrated, and valuable member of the community.


Integral to all of these adventures and experiences was the fact that he was the film crew – he was capturing all the footage and capturing it in a way that would make not only a great TV show, but each adventure had to be a complete episode. He took one friend with him to run the sound and any filming he couldn’t do. That was it. An extra level to all of this, something we touch on in this podcast episode as well.


Given all of the adventures Tim has been on, we could easily talk about it for hours. The stories alone are endless. However, I didn’t want this episode to simply be him telling outrageous epic stories, I wanted to get into the experiences and learn from him so we can all learn from him.


So, we cover a bit of everything in this one.


I trust you will get something from this conversation. Please share it with someone you think would enjoy, benefit from, and potentially be lovingly challenged by its content.


As always, if you have questions out of it – ask me. Hit me on social media @mikecampbellmc on Instagram or @Mike Campbell Man Coach on Facebook


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