“There is often a conspiracy in each man against himself; he hunts for excuses to cover up his disobedience, but in a single moment, life can be changed– not by pulling oneself through the power of one’s own will, but by a response to Heaven’s inspirations which leave the deserts of the world behind.” — Fulton Sheen
Asking Many Questions
Do you get the impression that someone is waging a battle, now, against you?
Is someone ridiculing what you believe in?
Is someone making a punchline of who you are as a man, father, husband, brother?
Do you get the uneasy feeling that we, as men, have allowed unhealthy circumstances to develop around us and that over the last few years things have gone a little too far in the wrong direction?
If so, the sad fact is that people ridicule what they have no faith in. I think many people have lost faith in men.
We Ridicule What We Have No Confidence In
If you feel like things are a little out of balance between the sexes, you are not alone. I certainly think things are out of balance, so even if it is only you and I, you are not alone, brother.
Maybe it’s because what we all rely on to reassure us in any society is under assault. We have hesitated to stop that assault in little ways in our daily life. What really got my attention was when Camille Paglia wrote on the denigration of men. You can see her article here:
People around us– in the news, entertainment, advertising, the schools…sadly even young men– ridicule some of the most important ingredients of a good life. They are ingredients that are… masculine.
Clarity. Decisiveness. Commitment. Honor. Chivalry. Courage to confront danger. Self-control. Selflessness. Courtesy to those weaker than ourselves. Generosity. Stoicism.
My own experience has been that if I try to promote these qualities in a public setting I encounter sympathy from many men, but also skepticism at best, ridicule at worst.
Is it time for us to take action?
I think it is. I can no longer remain silent. I cannot afford that luxury. The fight has come to my door. The denigration of men in our society– indeed, around the world– threatens my family. My sons, certainly. My daughters in a more insidious way but no less certainly. This denigration of men threatens you and your loved ones, too, whether you know it or not.
Built for combat. Built for joy.
As men, we are constructed a certain way. We are made for combat, to confront difficulty. This doesn’t mean we should pick fights, obviously, because we are called first and foremost to make war on our lower nature. We must have self dominion. Prudence. Judgment. But we are made to confront and establish clarity. In this situation I think it calls for us to start a conversation and then… to suggest solutions. Clarity brings us joy. Clarity brings us order so we can find a way forward, but sadly, or perhaps, happily, we have to fight for that clarity now. Will you join me in a conversation about what it means to be a man? Will you help me to frame this discussion and then help me to propose practical solutions to the problems we face, our loved ones face, our societies face? It’s global. It’s big. It’s time.
Be bold. Be authentic. Be masculine.