Given the name of this site, I figured the topic of reclaiming one’s inner barbarian would be a good topic to tackle. A topic that is ancient, deep, and primal. I want to talk about violence, blood, manhood, and more. And I want to talk about these things not as distant ideas or ideals, but as real flesh and blood things. I don’t want to talk about them as concepts but as things to embody and live out through your day to day life.
The world has enough LARPers and pretenders, and it doesn’t need anymore of them. What it needs is men of action. Now before we continue I should say that I tend to wander in my thoughts and articles but I’ll do my best to keep this one on the topic of focus, which is how can men living in the modern world reclaim their inner barbarian and perhaps even more importantly why would a man want to?
And what does it mean to reclaim one’s inner barbarian? Does it mean lifting heavy weight? Eating lots of meat? Posting about both endlessly on social media? No, while there is nothing wrong with the first two things that is not what this is about. It’s about something far deeper and stronger. So let’s go ahead and dive in.
Why Reclaim The Barbarian
The first thing we need to start with is what exactly is the inner barbarian? I would say that the inner barbarian is that deep level of your soul where some combination of masculinity, strength, violence, heroism, and a great many other things reside. It’s the stuff of legend (and nightmare) and it’s something that most men have been disconnected from. It’s the thing that causes great wars and destruction and its also the thing that creates happy healthy kingdoms and families as well as brings prosperity and peace to a land.
It’s the primordial fire burning within a man’s soul. Or at least, that primordial fire that has the potential to burn. For many males this fire has long since burnt out (or tragically was never lit in the first place). This inner barbarian is neither good nor bad in the moral sense (not that moral sense isn’t important, rather it’s separate) but it is strong or weak. And for a man to live a life that is not one of “quiet desperation” he must awaken this barbarian, this primordial fire within his soul.
It connects one with all of the glory, pain, nature, and everything else that man was created to be connected with. Man was created in a certain way to experience certain things, and without this fire, the experience is cheapened and life is not fully lived. And as as far as I can tell, we only get one go through at life, this is not something that you want cheapened. And it’s not something that you want to miss out on. You want to live with a heart that beats strongly in your chest, a mind as sharp as a blade, and a body ready to take on all that comes against it.
Reclaiming The Inner Barbarian
Let me first state that this isn’t going to be easy. Sure, it’s easy to play pretend and “give homage” (but not really) to the warriors and heroes of the past without doing anything yourself. We’ve all seen the bearded hipster aping boxers and the like of the 18th century while being soft as butter themselves. We don’t need any more of this. We need men that don’t just give honor to an ideal with their words but embody it with their actions. Acta non verba. Of course the trick with this, is that it makes the process much much harder (but also real, and that’s what counts).
There are certain things that I could recommend to you to help reclaim your inner barbarian. For example fighting helps me (don’t underestimate it’s impact), as does writing, and the reading of old books (especially fiction). It could be something else like hiking, hunting, or a million other things. Whatever works to help rekindle the fire within you. But that’s the thing you have to test and experiment and find the thing that sets off the spark. It’ll be slightly different for each person (but there will certainly be some overlap).
Maybe it seems like I’m coping out here and being lazy because I’m not giving you a list of do X or Y (here is a list by the way) but rather it’s because I want you to discover this for yourself. And because the process of discovery is going to be important for you. Keep a journal if you want. Find things that give off a spark. That help to kindle that deep primordial fire within you. That fire that connects you with the creator in a unique way and that shines through your eyes.
We Were Not Made To Watch The World Go Dim
There is a great quote from the Warhammer 40k universe. It goes “Do not waste your tears. I was not born to watch the world grow dim. Life is not measured in years, but by the deeds of men.” and while it may not be a perfect quote there is much truth and power to it (those things tend to go hand in hand). We were not created to sit back and watch the world go dim. We were created to ignite the fire within our souls and surge forward spreading the light of life to the world around us.
Most males know that this is true at some level but also know that they feel unfulfilled and that something is wrong. And as we know pain demands a response, and the pain of your soul is no different. Just as a broken arm causes pain that needs to be remedied and fixed, so does a broken soul. But unlike a broken arm which is physical the soul is eternal and therefore so much more important to mend the brokenness in it. And a soul can be broken in more ways than one. So many males I see have souls that are under the bondage of weakness and therefore have souls that are broken.
Their fires have been snuffed out. You can see it in their eyes. And I’ve said throughout this essay/article/whatever you want to call it, this is not how man was created to live his life. He was made to live with his inner barbarian intact and roaring. And this is what I hope to inspire in you by these writings. Understanding is simply the first step, it’s action that defines you as a man and shapes your future.
Go & Take Action
Feel free to go ahead and look at the list provided above if you want direct things to try out. Or maybe you have a couple of things that are bouncing around in your head that you need to try. Listen to your gut/heart/intuition it’s there for a reason. The road isn’t going to be easy. It’s one thing to read that and go “Oh yeah, won’t be easy, hard core.” or whatever and another to understand it, accept it, and then go forward anyways knowing it.
Don’t be a pretender, be a man, which means having your inner barbarian intact. And means walking a path each and every day. It means you’ll experience pain and suffering as well as growth and development (funny how those things tend to always be proportional to one another). As Cody Jinks would say “It’s a long strange trip, it’s all insane. You ain’t never gonna be the same.” and hey man I wouldn’t change a damn thing about it.
See you out there.
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Great article Charles. Glad we could get a collaboration between us going again. Feels like the good old days.
Haha absolutely. Glad to do so. Think sites like this are sorely needed.