by Joel L, Western Australia
In spite of the focus recently given to the number of women who are students of Universal Medicine, there are also men. As one of those, I felt to explore some recent discoveries about expressing as a man.
Warning: this might be a bit like someone is explaining the landscape in a foreign land that they have not yet seen for themselves. The words may be familiar, but it is hard to grasp just how beautiful it is.
As I have mentioned in previous articles, the most profound shift in my expression as a man has been the recognition that there has always been a desire to recognise the sensitivity and tenderness that lives (not too deeply) behind all the bravado, drinking and standard mateship rituals.
I am coming to realise that my tendency to ‘close down’ (create a Man cave) was not because I was unfeeling but because of how much I was feeling. Feeling so much, but not having practised expressing these feelings, meant that the words usually came out in a clumsy or generally unproductive way.
The battle to try to explain what I meant/felt reinforced my view that life in the ‘man cave’ is not so bad (certainly easier). If my communication caused a reaction in another person, it was easier to blame myself and go back into the man cave rather than honour the fact that what I was feeling might be true. As such, the man cave was a safe haven and an easy retreat.
More recently, I have been popping my head out of the cave. I am finding a whole world of feelings that I have never really had to put into words.
I am learning the difference between not reacting to someone’s reaction to what I say, and to closing down… turns out there’s a difference. I am learning that someone reacting to what I say is not always a sign I said something wrong… and that sometimes it is. I am learning that the less time I spend getting my portfolio of achievements together and the more time I allow myself to be ‘real’, the more real life and other people become.
Finally, I am learning that other guys feel similar things and have the similar desire for tenderness to be their benchmark for life. What a world it would be once this becomes the norm, rather than the exception.