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the soul and the spirit

The Soul Is The Home Of The Spirit

This is the story of a young soul who grows into an old soul, who then finds a new young soul inside.

His soul is hidden inside his body. His body grows at a steady rate while seeming to run and crawl at the same time. Wrapped around the soul is a mind that wanders around trying to find the route to his soul, without realising it is tucked inside. Whenever his mind sees glimpses of this it rushes off to new places. The whole is buffeted by the storms of emotions that blow up out of nowhere like whirlwinds in the desert. His soul is the home of his spirit, the heart of his being, the core of his existence.

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men and relationships

A Conversation About Men And Relationships

Join Dr. Vibe and Sat Purusha as they host the discussion 'Men And Relationships'.

I write about health, spirituality and masculinity. I explore what masculinity means in relation to the rest of men’s lives. I love to talk to others about the issues that face men. Dr Vibe invited me to have a discussion on Men and Relationships, to explore how men react in relationships. This seems to be a problem for men who have a reputation for an inability to commit to long-term relationships. Is this true? Do men avoid women for anything other than sex? What is the truth about men and relationships?

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men and sexual abuse

A Conversation About Men And Sexual Abuse

Join Dr. Vibe and Sat Purusha as they host the discussion 'Men And Sexual Abuse'.

I write about health, spirituality and masculinity. I explore what masculinity means in relation to the rest of men’s lives. As part of my engagement with others interested the areas I write about I had a conversation with Dr Vibe. We looked at the area of sexual abuse, and its significance in the lives of men and in my life. It has become a cause celebre in thge Uk where revelations continue to hit the headlines. Why is this subject si important? What can we doi to change the situation?

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How to Find Your Bliss: Joseph Campbell on a Fulfilling Life

In 1985 mythologist and writer Joseph John Campbell sat down with legendary interviewer and idea-monger Bill Moyers for a lengthy conversation.

You have to learn to recognize your own depth.

The conversation continued the following year at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. The resulting 24 hours of raw footage were edited down to six one-hour episodes and broadcast on PBS in 1988, shortly after Campbell’s death, in what became one of the most popular series in the history of public television.

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Mens Movement – Awakening The New Masculine

Awakening The New Masculine is a new book by Gary Stamper. It focuses on The Path Of The Integral Warrior and is called a psychospiritual journey for men. It lays out his view of what men should aspire to based on his Integral Warrior workshops, as part of the mens movement.

It’s a brave attempt by Gary to outline a new paradigm for masculinity and provide a path for the mens movement to follow. It succeeds in outlining a spiritual path for men who are already on this type of journey, men who have already entered the castle of their own spirituality, but it fails to address what the new masculine means for ordinary men. It fails to account for the issues men face in the world of work and relationships and it fails to describe an accessible new masculine.

What is Awakening The New Masculine about?

The book is focused on the work that Gary does in his workshops and follow the structure of them. It expands on the work of David Deida by bringing in Ken Wilber’s Integral Theory and combining it with a modern view of Shamanism. As part of the look at integral Gary brings in Spiral Dynamics to help understand the idea of moving through levels. Towards the end he devotes a large section to the four major archetypes of men described by Robert Moore.

He starts by outlining the history of the Mens Movement and quickly lands at the feet of David Deida, The Way Of The Superior Man and his three stages. Deida outlines these three stage as stages of relationship in his book Intimate Communion. The first stage causes couples to be dependent on each other for what they lack in themselves. This evolves into the second stage where a modern ideal of two independent people coming together as equals creates a 50/50 relationship. The third stage, or Intimate Communion, is where a couple open their hearts and give the unique gifts that lie deep in their sexual, emotional and spiritual core.

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Gary takes these stages and applies them to masculinity and describes the ideal as a third-stage man, calling it the Divine Masculine. To simplify his explanation he describes them as:

  • First Stage: a man who only embodies his inner masculine nature.
  • Second Stage: a man who integrates his inner feminine with his inner masculine.
  • Third Stage: a man who re-integrates his inner masculine.

This idea is based on an assumption or given, that he touches on throughout the book, that we all have masculine and feminine inside us and that wholeness is dependent on integrating both within us. This idea gets confused because, if you pursue it, you end up with a second stage man, which is not where Gary wants us to be. This necessitates a rather awkward re-integration of the masculine to create the new masculine.

My general view aligns more with David Deida’s view that there are masculine and feminine qualities that we access to different degrees at different stages of life. This allows more of flow between stages and enables men to create a masculinity that is appropriate to them rather than following a stereotype. I feel that Gary’s stages fall too close to being stereotypical.

For me the three stages of relationship each have their own assumption or given. First stage relationships operate on an assumption of a man embodying masculinity and a woman embodying femininity. This assumption gives rise to domination and patriarchy as the basis of the interaction between men and women. Second stage relationships operate on the assumption that is espoused in the book, that we all have equal amounts of masculinity and femininity within us and that wholeness comes from integrating them within ourselves.

The third stage, the one we are interested in, must assume a flexibility that mirrors the reality of how we are masculine and/or feminine. We are all born with a core essence which is altered by life. Our ability to enter the third stage is governed by our acceptance of our core essence and our desire to balance our assumption of qualities associated with masculinity or femininity to create our own independent masculinity or femininity. Whilst there is a general correlation between this and gender, there is no fixed relationship. This stage sees the full integration of masculine and feminine within relationships that are free and demonstrate an equality in power between the partners without an equality in sexual essence.

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Awakening The New Masculine is heavily dependent on Integral Theory and Shamanism, neither of which attract me and which are probably too esoteric for most men and for the mens movement. Unfortunately that means that most of the book is of little interest to me and probably many others. I accept that these can be paths to a new masculine for men, but they are narrow, esoteric paths. Many disciplines have paths to masculinity but they are only paths for those disciplines. What I hoped for was a path that was beyond the acceptance of a specific theory of life and spirituality. The book will, inevitably, be sidelined as far as men in general are concerned, that is a shame.

The one aspect of interest that is touched on is the concept of the four quadrants that is essential to integral theory. This balances the importance of the interior and exterior with the individual and collective. This is a tool that could be used to explore the three stages a man goes through on a deeper level to find a path that can be followed by men in general. This is something I look forward to.

The book makes heavy use of Spiral Dynamics and the four major archetypes for men, King, Warrior, Lover and Magician. These are great tools for analysing and understanding men in general and can even be useful for understanding your own personal approach to life and, therefore, masculinity. They do not, for me, provide paths to understanding where to go. They are too general and applicable to all to provide any kind of concrete guidance for men. The four archetypes are too associated with the mytho-poetic men’s movement which is increasingly seen as out of date and inapplicable to modern life.

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Awakening The New Masculine will help a certain group of men to go beyond the mens movement and beyond their drumming circle but I don’t think it will help them to truly understand what it means to be a man awakened to the new masculine. Many men are still struggling to define this in a way that is both understandable and accessible.