The idea of a deity having a role in making me more masculine is something I found rooted deep in my youth, most likely from watching and reading about Greek mythology or Biblical characters such as Hercules and King David and just the culture I was brought up in; the images of these incredibly masculine men who seem to be able to take life by the testicles are fascinating to me. Why did God intervene in their masculinity and not mine? Has their been outside intervention in my development as a man? King David, for example, found strength in the Judaic God whom he worshiped while out in the wilderness as a shepherd. Legend has it that the supernatural confidence imparted to him enabled the conquering of a lion, bear, and even a giant with simply a sling and stone. Now Hercules on the other had was the son of Zeus and a mortal to my understanding; he went on a myriad of outrageously epic adventures that required the strength given to him by the Gods. These images of masculinity indirectly implanted a mentality in my life that God was what will make me a true man. I hope to displace this belief on some levels from my life.
Now I am not saying that spiritual encounters aren’t capable of empowering my personal growth on this path of my humanity. Rather, what I am trying to expose is the fact that I spent years of my life passively waiting and wanting a God to intervene in my life and do all the hard work for me; to make me into a superman that those around would look on in envy and respect. This mentality has had a direct effect on me taking a passive posture towards my life.
Recently as I have been on this journey of exposing my motives, I have found that grasping more and more self-ownership for my existence on this milieu is an excellent thing; it has a direct correlation to comfort in my skin. Sure growing older and experiencing life has had a vital role to play in this as well. But the passive reliance for someone else to alter my life in such a way that I have to put little to no effort in is just absurd.
Now, to be clear, I am trying to make this subject as black and white as possible, but the reality is people are on their journey, and going through personal evaluation and discovering motives is different for every single individual. I just have recently started to feel frustrated with this topic as most of the conversations around masculinity I seem to be having as of late, are laced with the expectation of a deity intervening rather than aggressive action to making practical steps for fighting towards personal goals. I feel a personal vendetta of wanting to fight that shit mentality.
For example, as an electrician, I find the number of fire hazards and work that needs attention on people's homes staggering. Either out of ignorance, lack of finances or just no personal motivation, they ignore the issues at hand. Seemingly, though, in ignoring it they hope it will just magically fix itself, or they are busy with other things which distract them from the issues at hand. Regardless I find this to be an excellent parallel. Many times in my life I have avoided my emotional issues because I believed I didn’t have the capacity to deal with them, hoping somehow it would sort itself out or that someone else, like God, would do the diligent work for me, and it would magically all be okay. I have found this to be false, which to some of you reading I am sure is a no brainer but the reality is things that are obvious are not always recognized or the topic of conversations.
When I started to take the initiative of putting in some actual hard work on myself to becoming a better man my life has begun to shift drastically in directions I would never have imagined, it is as though I awoke from a coma and started to move my atrophied muscles. My emotions as a man have grown tremendously in a direction of health that I did not know was possible. It does not mean life has been easier on any level, and I feel a deeper sense of direction and confidence in my pursuit of identity and security.
Do you think levels of reliance on an outside spiritual force to assist in daily life is good? I have begun to wonder if this is just a coping mechanism of a culturally acceptable scapegoat which is an enabler to maintain a life that is stagnant. It feels as though I am harping more on a self-ownership topic than anything. I want to grow in this area more personally, and see myself not passively waiting for life to go better for me magically because chance happened.
Even as I am writing this article, I struggle with what to do with my life. I wish there were moments where I could be like King David and have a clear painful destiny set before me so that I would at least know what to expect. Rather here I am with my hands stretched in front of me like a zombie explorer going down the shaft of a cave with no lights to assist in the dark adventure tripping over every rock and running into every wall possible.
Is it plausible to rely upon, and hope for a deity to intervene in life specifically about masculinity and still take personal ownership for the cards that I am dealt?
I am not upset or trying to shift blame for the internal struggles I wrestle with day in and out. Rather I am trying to explore thoughts and motives that are so deeply engrained into my identity that I find it simply destabilizing to even begin to grasp the fact that what I may or may not believe is false.
At the end of the day, my goal is to take ownership for my life and become a better man. What are your thoughts about this article? I know I do not have the answers, and I am earnestly looking for them, so if you seem to carry wisdom in this realm, please do share!