Five Tips on Surviving Culture
So just in case you think I am not about the practical manly stuff of getting my hands dirty, here a few starters on creating something from nothing.
1. Cultivate Perspective
Whether it is meditation, reading, walking in the hills or DIY, I think it is important for men these days to do whatever it takes to generate an idea of the bigger picture. Playing sport rather than watching it is also a good example. Anything which aligns you to the idea that you are part of something bigger, that you can gain a wholesome sense of self from being of service to, or in community with, another, or a larger group of peers. You can cultivate this actively or, as I said, in activities like meditation, where you are likely to encounter some home truths about the general inescapable unity of everything. You know.
Very important, and not always actively encouraged in young men in this culture. If it is cultivated, it is done in very limited ways and extra emphasis is put on excellence and achievement rather than simply relishing the process of innovating new work. All creativity works an essential muscle in a spiritually active modern man. That of evolving something from nothing. Without this we are screwed, so pick up the guitar, get messy with the paints, or even buy some fucking ballet shoes, I don't care. Just get innovating, for everyone's sake not just your own.
Yeah I know. So I won't dwell on it. We can all be more disciplined when it comes to working out, or getting our sweat on. But just remember how good it feels to be in that athletic flow state. I for one, never feel more of a man than when I am pumped, and can feel the testosterone shooting in my arteries. Apart from when I write poems, I feel it then too.
Thinking is not an indulgence. We need to philosophise our way out of this cultural mess we are in as men. We need evolve a new ideas about what it is to be a man. We need to block out the barrage of suggestions and generate new self-concepts, new perspectives and new first principles. We need to get into the business of thinking things through, rather than being reactive, impulsive idiot males.
5. Act With Courage
Easy, eh? Not a bit. But it is the most important step we can take to generating a new masculine culture. We need to act in new ways. We need to be able to face our fears, admit our fears and piss our way through them as well. On top of that, the very act of moving out your comfort zone will give you a similar rush to that of scoring a goal in football, or completing a bitching cardio session. We need to understand that life, with all its difficulties is inescapable. The here and the now is what is relevant. Our depressions come from a culture that has told that we can find relief from the slings and arrows, when it is those very slings and arrows that are our saving grace. Without challenges, problems and difficulties, we cannot evolve. Our masculinity wouldn't be worth a damn. It's not unmanly to experience fear, or even terror, to be sacred of a beautiful woman, or be petrified of failure and rejection. It is part of what it means to be a man. So, step out, screw up and dig in. Someone once said that courage is just fear that has said its prayers. The old paradigm of masculinity has told us that feeling fear is a cause for embarrassment. That fear itself is emasculating. If that's true, every baby boy that exists the womb is doomed never to be man. Fear is a fact of life. All the facts of life are just that – facts of life. Miles Davis said, “Don't be sacred to make mistakes, there are none.”