A Note from the Man Cave

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.

461 thoughts on “A Note from the Man Cave

  1. I feel we need to scrap education! Just start right back to the very beginning, the real basics, and make this the foundation, such as relationships … the relationship we have with ourselves .. how we feel about ourselves, are we able to say how we feel? if not why not. Do we have true body confidence, how are our relationships with others? Working with young people I see this the whole time, as in how they are not used to having these conversations, but when we do have them, just how important they are to them ‘Feeling so much, but not having practiced expressing these feelings’.

  2. “the sensitivity and tenderness that lives (not too deeply) behind all the bravado, drinking and standard mateship rituals.” What you describe here is very across the board, these are the standard behaviours men feel safe to be in to define themselves, yet underneath is that gorgeous, sensitive, aware and tender person. And doesn’t it highlight the call from other role models – men to show other men it’s safe to be who you naturally are, not what’s expected or you’re told to be.

  3. Life is all about learning to be and learning to be and express the tender, sensitive being that we naturally are is a gold star.

  4. I work in a male-dominated industry, years ago I observed that young men had this arrogance that they are going to change the world and make their mark on life and the industry. I have spent 40 + years in the same industry and have grown up with these men who started their careers in this arrogance and watched how these same men have mellowed as they come to their own realisation that by trying to out-compete each other and change a system that cannot at present be changed because they are feeding it by using the same attitude and work ethics as previous men before them. They have come to the realisation that they have missed out on their marriage and their kids that have now grown up not really knowing their Dad but seeing him more as the distant provider. These men are asking the question, was it worth it? Interestingly I am seeing a shift in attitude as I know quite a few young men who now they are married and have young children are rejecting the lifestyle of their fathers, they want to spend time with their wives and children and to do this they have taken so-called ‘lesser’ positions within a company so that they can spend more time with their families. I applaud these men that have the courage to say no to the brutal way we live in a society that we expect men to be the breadwinner, the go-getter without considering that men are just as sensitive as women and have feelings too.

    1. Mary there may come a time when men (and women) set a standard across the board to respect their family time, and work positions that require incredible dedication and time could be shared by two or more workers, instead of one person “at the top of the pack” so to speak. We may all begin to wake up to the harmful ways we approach life and work, and find easy and self supportive ways that tackle what’s still required in business and for the world, but prioritises love and care of ourselves and others – a rich way of life indeed.

    2. Isn’t it the best when we honour what we feel, rather than overriding it for whatever ideals and beliefs are held, that, like you say, when older are reflected on as ‘why did I live that way?’

  5. “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.” And the way to achieve that is to live that so one becomes a reflection for others as the reflection of Serge Benhayon has done for so many who are now reflections for others, as you have become Joel.

  6. “….. the more time I allow myself to be ‘real’, the more real life and other people become.” What we sow is what we reap is so true and being ‘real’ is one of the greatest things we can sow.

  7. There is so much in this blog. What struck me is that we have a choice about how we approach our lives, we are sensitive beings and we can honour that or we can retreat from that. One of the ways we can tell which we do is in our response to others when we speak, “I am learning that someone reacting to what I say is not always a sign I said something wrong”.

  8. The man cave relates to anytime anyone retreats away from life, I can certainly see I also go to cave time instead of looking more deeply at interactions and respecting and honouring my sensitivity and ability to speak up.

    1. I believe what you say to be true Melinda as a friend of mine recently expressed that because they have been unwell they have retreated into their cave. Having read this blog and the comments it is so easy to now see that when we allow our sensitivity to break free of the protection we surround it with we feel naked to the world and its censor of anyone who is prepared to be sensitive.

  9. “My tendency to ‘close down’ (create a Man cave) was not because I was unfeeling but because of how much I was feeling.” If we can accept sensitivity as our base, it would explain a lot of behaviours we go into, and the issue is not in sensitivity, but in not fostering and allowing its full faculty to be activated so that we are robbing ourselves of an ability to know and prepare for what’s happening around us and is to come.

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