Mentoring a Pacifist.
I’ve been mentoring another man recently at the request of a mutual acquaintance. I didn’t know this man’s background or much about him before I agreed to mentor him, but as we dug into his situation, it became apparent that this would not be an easy task. He belongs to a religious tradition that has a pacifist doctrine. One of my personal beliefs is a man must have the will and the capacity to commit violence – protecting his ideals, family, and tribe. My world view is at odds with pacifism.
On the flip side of the coin, his religious group has a highly structured family system with clearly defined gender roles and rules. Women are culturally feminine. They hold traditional positions as mothers and wives. Men are the de facto head-of-household – bestowed masculine authority by the church. It appears very wholesome when viewed from the outside.
But even in this seemly clean and pure culture, men are suffering the same relationship issues faced by secular people, evangelicals, and other cultural groups. A hierarchy bestowed by fiat lacks real authority. Men can just call-it-in and are not required to do real work to maintain their positions. This hierarchy disguises an underlying problem that only the male burden of performance solves. Desire is a gift that is earned, and authentic status is gained through valuable action.
So how do you mentor a religious pacifist that lives a seemly “Leave it to Beaver” lifestyle? How do you help a guy increase his wife’s desire for him when, by his very culture, affords him a traditional family hierarchy? It has been challenging. I chose to focus on three key areas that I estimated would get the most traction.
Men need to look like men. Being a pacifist doesn’t change this fundamental fact. Physicality projects male capability. Capability projects attributes like confidence, authority, and status.
Men inherently size each other up. With all things being equal, the man who is more fit with a better posture will command more respect from the community. Even preaching, evangelizing, and witnessing your faith, the man who looks more robust and healthier will command more respect and gain more ears for his message.
Being granted head-of-household status means nothing if you are called upon to fulfill your duties beyond giving verbal decrees. Can you rescue your wife and children if your house catches on fire? If someone you love is drowning, can you physically save them?
Most men will never be called upon to commit violence in their lifetimes; I will guarantee that you will be called upon to protect someone from unfortunate events at some point in your life. How are you to do that if you cannot even push your body off the floor from a horizontal position?
Generating desire with your woman won’t develop when she touches your arm, and it is indistinguishable from her own. You are bigger than her, stronger than her, yet you strive to be no better than her. Your most obvious biological gift is physicality. Develop it so that it will serve you and your loved ones.
Women want physical men.
Mentorship In Honor Groups
Men teach men. The more you seek advice from women (and covertly, I might add) on how to be a man, the more you will fail at being a man. For example, how many women have you heard say, “I think bodybuilders are gross”? Do you translate that to mean women don’t like guys with big muscles? If I told you that women like fit men who work out regularly, you’re going to think about all the women you heard saying, “they don’t like bodybuilders.”
My response would be to laugh in your face and tell you that you don’t have the discipline to be a bodybuilder – now start picking up heavy things. While she may not want Conan the Barbarian, she does want a man who feels strong when he puts her arms around her.
Men create hierarchy amongst themselves. We are competitive by nature. We inherently know where we rank inside of the groups we belong too. If you are in a computer club, you’ll perceive how you rank in intelligence compared to the others. If you are in a motorcycle club, you know where you fit based on your riding ability. You get the point.
Women form social (collectivist) groups. Men configure groups in a hierarchical (status) way. Men bestow status and remove status on other men within their respective honor groups.
This ordering of ourselves is a significant driver of our male psyche. As social creatures, you belong to groups—family groups, church groups, school groups, work groups, etc. You don’t get to choose to belong – you simply belong. Where you rank within these groups depends on your value to the group. Being grouped with only men is what produces an honor group. Your unspoken value inside of that group is your honor.
Honor groups are the places where men learn to be men. They learn how to be fathers, husbands, sons. Sitting in the pews on Sunday in mixed company may be your cultural community, but being a part of a men’s bible study group is an honor group. You will learn more about being a man in that honor group than attending a worship service.
Your church will judge you in relation to your compliance with church doctrine. Your honor group will judge you on the group’s internal code, and you will be ranked accordingly. Your contributions will have a direct impact on your group standing. You will not doubt how you measure up to other members, and you will be held accountable. Your rank in the group contributes to your overall status as a man.
Women want men with status.
Of all the things I wish I would have learned at a much younger age is regarding masculine and feminine polarity. Masculine is the counterbalance to the feminine. Like a magnet or an electrical charge, there is no change in desire without a polarity shift. Polarity is the precursor of desire.
Over several decades, we culturally drifted into an egalitarian mire – groupthink, equality, sameness. It’s all a bunch of crap. We’ve mechanized the workforce to a point where either sex can do almost any job. Women can do the physical work of men, thanks to technology. It didn’t make women physically stronger, but it allowed men to become physically weaker. If a man is no stronger than a woman – then there is no difference between them. No polarity.
Equal rights are one thing, but equal capabilities are entirely different. The prior is about opportunities; the latter is more about natural biology.
Status, resourcefulness, physical strength, practical knowledge, mastery of your world are the attributes that charge the masculine. These are the things for which you must strive. Too many men are grounded by their partners, sapping their charge, and killing desire. There must be a corresponding charge between the masculine and feminine in order for desire to flow – just like energy flows from positive to negative.
I have found that being masculine allows, or gives permission to, women to express more femininity. They’ve been operating by the same egalitarian playbook as men. Just as much as men have moved toward a neutral center, this is also true for women. One of the fastest and easiest ways to increase masculine polarity is to get stronger. It’s usually the first discussion you have with other men who are trying to become more desirable. Almost every other task will be about fixing your mindset – that takes a lot of time with very subtle results. The bottom line is to be more masculine so that she can be more feminine.
Women desire the masculine.
Wrapping it up
To revisit the original premise, can a religious pacifist become more masculine and earn his place as the head-of-household and his wife’s desires? I believe so. I don’t think it will reach the full potential of what it could be, but that’s not my call. Every man must choose his path.
Being trained in martial arts, being in a dangerous profession, or being willing to inflict violence is not the only path to masculine physicality. But, there is no excuse for not being fit enough to beat back Mother Nature or rescue your loved ones from harm.
Being around other men is another prerequisite for developing masculine traits. Since status can only come from other men, you must be apart of an honor group. Groups of men who reinforce masculine principles will help steer you from feminization.
Bringing polarity back to the relationship is the only way to increase desire. Learn to set boundaries, learn to say no, and develop your masculine traits. Set yourself apart from the feminine.
Every man has to find his way to his authentic masculine self. Not all of us will reach the same level – we’re hierarchy-driven, and some men will always be at the bottom. But that doesn’t mean we don’t give these men a hand when they ask for it. A man cannot be a teacher without students.
– The Discerning Owl
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