Awareness And A New Masculinity
Often times in my work I meet people who lament a loss in who they use to be. They want to turn back time and divest themselves of what they have become. I have a different view of this, that we must always reach toward the new, the self that has been informed by the past, but that learns from the present and takes the prior form and morphs into something new, fresh and unanticipated.
For me this is never more true than in what it means to be a man in modern society, in relationships, and most importantly to the individual himself. This is a new masculinity, one that does not limit itself to prescribed sexual orientations or definitions. It is one that looks to one's own heart for direction, but that does not ignore the needs of the family or our romantic partners.
Again this is not to say that we should not take any lessons from men and the role of men in the past. These models were my heroes, framed by people like Ernest Hemingway, John Wayne, Jim Brown, and Muhammad Ali. Each of us has flaws, and some of the lessons were not good ones, but they did have important things to say. They taught lessons like self sufficiency, facing failure and even death with aplomb.
However, at the same time society was also teaching racism, religious supremacy, misogyny. sexual intolerance and greed. This was represented in every area of life including the perpetuation of war, and the horrific damage to our natural world. When we focus in fear we create a toxic relationship to gender regardless of how we are classified.
Being in the moment, not clinging to a perceived role, adapting to what is. With deep listening we can find our way. We so not need to dominate women, or live in fear of them. Fear is the real reason for domination, or supplication. We can be secure in relation to those with different sexual orientations or identities. Through awareness we can have meet challenges with strength and find a new masculinity.