"What's Your Idea of a Man?"

Last time we spoke we asked the question; ‘What did you come as?’

To have a foundation to do the rest of this conversation, we had to make sure we were addressing the real ‘us’ – ‘The us’ undiluted by layers of demands and expectations that distort our reality and our identity.

The journey we’re on can only achieve its objectives if it comes from our fundamental truth.

Any façade, or mask won’t cut the custard when we look ourselves in the eye and realise that nothing we are reflects the values that characterise our dreams and the unique personality that springs from the inner fountain of our soul.

So the first thing we addressed was Who Am I? – Next were going to ask and answer the question Where do I fit? – It’s all well and good coming to terms with who you are stating your true colours and declaring – This is what I came as! – However the foundational questions of our life’s quest is only half met, if we stop there without establishing also – where then do, I fit?

We may well discover in fact that we are Square pegs trying to fit into round holes’. – Souls trying to squeeze into a mould designed with someone else in mind. – An existence forging its way on a path never designed to transport its kind of cargo.

So let’s get into the mechanics of positioning an identity. Starting with our very own.

Your job is first of all to come to terms with this for yourself, if you’re like most people your probably very good at offering sound advice to others regarding what they should be doing with their time.

However, when it comes to our own lives we often develop blind spots, when it comes to identifying what someone like us should be doing with our lives.

It’s such a murky confusing realm of human experience because our confusion is in fact not accidental. Not to say these symptoms always stem from sinister motives. But what results can have some particularly destructive consequences.

To put it bluntly people often have their own ideas about us. And through their projections, and stereotypes, they pigeon hole our lives in order to maintain their confirmation bias, fulfil their fantasies, and get us to be what they need us to be. Like parents who need pristine avatars to complete their mantel place, with the image they want people they want to impress to see.

In all likelihood you have probably been guilty of this to some degree as well, it’s just human nature, the result of instinctual, unenlightened behaviour.

And the only way out of this predator/prey hamster wheel is transcendence.

Alain De Botton, I think probably quoting someone else once said; “Humans are extremely good at locking themselves in mental cages and throwing away the key.”

In so many cases we are the author of our own demise, that’s why a more enlightened, conscious approach as men, goes a long way toward helping us live lives for us, that has meaning to us.

And lives which contribute a lot more to others.

As men in 2020 it’s not long before you realise you’ve inherited a reputation which contradicts your best of intentions and thwarts your aspirations for a hassle free life.

You discover that men historically have abused their positions of power and exploited the more vulnerable in order to get short term objectives, without insight derived from hindsight. Just as parents don’t realise their kids are going to grow up and become adults. – Adults that can confront them about their nonsense. Our male forefathers arrogantly believed the well-crafted lies of misogyny and patriarchal privilege, naïvely hoping nobody will ever notice.

Like western nations seeking to convey moral high ground when calling out less wealthy nations for genocide and civil war expecting nobody to notice the glaring omissions that a backward glance at history provides.

Well the propaganda machine has been exposed and the world has articulated in no uncertain terms that it has no time for bozo’s who think they’re god’s gift to woman kind and the planet, Kats who think that with a simple snap of their fingers less significant mortals will fall in line and obey their every command.

They’ve used the backing of ancient scriptures and past cultural narratives as justification, and we still have characters who firmly believe that being a man is to be some sort of a demigod. And these Kat’s riddled with insecurity, a misguided perspective and unresolved anxiety are out there looking for prey amongst the guilty, vulnerable and disenfranchised of the earth.

But if you knew what your life was worth. We need to be aware that a demigod is far inferior to the divine being that we actually are and that a more insightful perspective initiates us into a sphere of human experience which gives us considerably more influence, power and meaningful interactions with our fellow travellers along this journey we call life.

So, let’s back track, as we discovered last time we spoke we are all connected to the source, to Spirit.

Spirit is not some ethereal entity out there somewhere but the very energy that permeates the universe and sustains and animates life. And when we recognise that and make it integral to your conscious identity, we can connect and identify as spirit and manifest the very energy that fuels every living thing in order to fulfil our unique purpose.

To illustrate my point let’s look at the example of the tree; a living thing that knows how to establish its purpose and how to thrive in its situation.

A tree’s posture is still and routed in the ground, its branches reach up and it receives its nutrition and everything it needs to survive and thrive from the universe. No fretting or running around. No fussing’ and fighting’ All a tree needs do to fulfil its purpose is to simply ‘be’.

Starting from very humble beginnings, ‘a seed planted in the ground’, a tree develops over time into a magnificent display of nature filling our landscapes, forests and countryside’s with the ever present posture of stability.

The wind and the rain crash around it, the animals and birds shelter and feed from it, human life appreciates and often takes resource from it and all the while its purpose is fulfilled from a stillness from which we can draw a very practical example.

How can we draw a practical example from a tree?

Well the posture of a tree reminds us of the posture of meditation!

What is meditation?

Amongst other things meditation is an opportunity to sit still, to tell the vehicle which is our bodies to just sit.

Instantly the higher dimension of our experience has asserted its dominance. Then as we bring our conscious attention onto the unconscious process of our breathing we can consider the tree, breathing in our carbon emissions and releasing oxygen so we can breathe in the fresh cleansed air.

We then use our minds to metaphorically ‘as it were’ – step into the shoes of the tree. Now consider the tree, no care about where it’s going to receive its sustenance. It knows all it has to do is ‘be a tree’, all that’s being asked of it today is to simply “be a tree”, and as long as it’s a tree everything it needs for its perfect sustenance and development is marvellously provided from the nutrition in the universe.

Then consider your purpose. Each of us are here for a reason. We all have unique gifts we can contribute, different takes, approaches, insights, talents and desires. And every single one of us can bring so much to the table.

The issue like so many things is simply one of perspective. If we don’t see it, we miss it. Unless you recognise it you’ll never live it.

I’m here to tell you about your intrinsic worth. To convey by my words and actions how valuable you are.

The specific unique strengths you have are not accidental; they are part of what you’re here to do. If for no other reason than that you’ll get the most fulfilment, and be able to live the most productive meaningful life for yourself when you recognise this, that alone is a good enough reason to align yourself with yourself and live out your own truth, for your brief stay on planet earth.

Where do you fit?

Wherever you damn well chose, is where!

Ask your soul the question, what makes the ultimate most sense to you, how best can you fulfil your purpose and be the best version of you, you can be.

If the answers you’re getting back are all destruction, mess and mayhem. Perhaps you need to dig beneath some layers.

Were all Yin and Yang, composites of our proverbial dark and light sides. Perfectly balanced with as much of the one as the other, with a little bit of light in our dark, and a little bit of dark in our light. And neither side is any worse of better than the other, but both are to be embraced and cherished and held in perfect harmony in order to be a whole and perfect example of a complete and conscious person.

This however is not destructive and self-deprecating. So when you find that every urge and impulse within you is destructive and has no regard for yourself or your fellow man you have become disassociated from your humanity due to trauma and false ideas that prevent you from seeing your worth.

In the world in which we live many of us were not raised with repeated confirmations of our worth. Our parents may not have showered us with reminders of our divinity and innate right to be here. In fact, many of us are raised being told that we are born deficient and need to apologise for our very existence. Some religious notions disguised as ‘the good news’ would like to convince you that you need to apologise for your existence so that you can be washed as white as snow. (I’ll let you come to your own conclusion about that one).

However, one thing I can assure you is that the recognition of your true worth and the fact that you’re here to fulfil a unique function that is instinctively you. That who you are, as you are, is of such immense incalculable value, that it’s imperative if you are to live the life you were put here to live that you do not, I repeat do not apologise for your existence, but manifest that reality as only you can.

So many of us try to fit into the rounded holes that others have fashioned for us. Some of us even fashion round holes for ourselves, and keep getting our rough edges scuffed and squashed and wonder why our lives are dysfunctional, without context and don’t seem in sync with the universe or the alignment of the stars. Perhaps it’s not a retrograde pattern in the solar system that’s effecting your mood but the fact your edge is being crushed into a spherical hole.

You’re going to need an edge as a man, something that’s distinct about you and that sets you apart from the crowd. ‘Playing your edge’ as David Deida puts it is what differentiates you as a superior man. It keeps you pushing the edges of your capacity and prevents stagnation. Don’t let anyone try to shave off your edge, resume the position of the tree, draw from the nutrients of the universe and get your edge back.

Do the inventory, what are your gifts, what are your aspiration. Remember never compare yourself against others, comparison is what I call a covert excuse, it’s secretly sabotaging your own progress, by gazing at a shiny example you’ve convinced yourself is somehow better than you.

Better than you at being who they are your right, but no one else can do a better job than you at being you. That is exclusively your role.

The alternative more empowering perspective is instead to compare yourself against your own potential.

So be honest about the capacity within you. The extent of your ambition, the energy and drive and the talents you have and the gift’s you can cultivate.

What can you, if you lean into your strengths, utilising the resources available to you, realistically accomplish if you put your mind to it?

How much do you want this life? The fullest version of yourself life? How much do you want to leverage your gifts to have a life spending your time and energy doing something you love, feel passionate about and can realistically contribute to and make a difference by doing.

Do that thing, stop looking over your shoulder concerning yourself with how you’re not matching up to such and such’s success, or so and so’s wealth.

Nobody was asking that of you in the first place, even less the universe. All that’s being asked of you is that you do you boo.

To not is to rob the rest of us once again of an opportunity to witness a self-realised actualised human being unashamedly live their truth. To not is to rob yourself of the opportunity life is presenting to you every moment. To grab your life by the horns as the most valuable thing you possess or ever could possess in fact. More valuable than that Ferrari you may have had your eye on. That house, that watch. Your own intrinsic value far exceeds all these things.

And it’s in the process of realising your own worth and utilising your intrinsic gifts that you can leverage your talents to obtain the life, possessions, and prosperity that goes along with a life well lived.

Not only do you have the ability then to obtain wealth, but the opportunity for your soul to gain immense fulfilment along the journey, which may prove more precious than any material gain obtained along the way.

Life as we know it is short, nobody in fact knows for sure if or not we’ll come back, or in what form. We therefore need to value these moments and use as much of our time as possible doing that thing which is our ultimate purpose and reason for being here.

Perhaps at the moment you can only afford an hour a day. Due to the pressure of bills and responsibilities your time and energy may be predominantly occupied in maintaining a steady income.

As you align yourself with what we’ve been saying, perhaps a stirring to do what you’ve always wanted to do is beginning to quicken inside.

Perhaps your experiencing the subtle stirrings of a dream once shelved on the altar of reality. The years have rolled on and occasionally a jolt from the proverbial defibrillator to your soul reminds you of the things your ultimately here to accomplish.

The reason I’m encouraging you to discover and express your true purpose is to avoid one day looking back on the life you’ve lived and knowing deep down that you’ve missed the point, and that the gift of energy and time that the universe has granted you was spent propping up someone else’s corporation, enabling others dreams to come to reality and distracting you from the meaningful insightful adventure of self-discovery.

The world is full of so much missed potential, the grave in fact, is the richest place on the planet said Myles Monroe, so much unrealised potential, dreams that never came to pass. Pictures never painted, albums never made. Songs unsung and books never written.

We often think of gifts as the things that make people famous, songs, books films. Maybe you’re supposed to make furniture, houses, repair things be a part of the healing process in a medical or psychological profession, perhaps science or maths fascinates you. Maybe you can’t get enough fiddling with computers, or inventing new food. Master your craft. But stop settling for less. It won’t be easy it never is. But the reward is the sense of purpose routed in the depth of your soul that stands un-swayed by the alternating currents of the wind and waves around you.

Knowing your purpose and making that your north star, setting your compass to unwaveringly head in the pursuit of your dreams both aligns you with what you were put here to do and firmly establishes you as a man on a mission.

This new posture of soul secures the backing of the universe, like the tree whose sole role is to be a tree, fulfilling what your intrinsically put here to do, means the universe is responsible for your sustenance, nutrition and ultimate growth. Did it do a good job with the tree?

Force the universe to get involved, it will bend to your efforts and reveal to you its secrets. If you’re a man who aligning yourself with its divine plan, you can command it, it doesn’t make mistakes, demand of it to assist you in the purpose it brought you forth to fulfil.

To some of you I’m speaking hocus pocus, this is what I call practical spirituality were going to need some of that if we’re going to survive. And we’ll tackle the issue of survival next time we talk.

But for now let me encourage you. Observe an animal in its natural habitat. Observe your fellow humans in their day to day life, now compare and contrast. What we recognise differentiating ourselves from the beasts is a consciousness of mind and heart that predisposes us to have longings and aspirations for an existence transcendent of simply our animal need to survive. Yes, we must eat and drink and procreate and rest.

But our souls long to do these things in as many creative and interesting ways as we can imagine. We love to sit listening to our favourite tunes, eating exquisitely prepared meals, gazing longingly in to the eyes of our beloved, and drinking the finest of well-crafted beverages. Followed by nights on soft luxurious bedding preferably accompanied by the body of our dearly beloved. Transported between these two settings in fantastically engineered powerful carriages. Truly the soul has transcended the animal state.

But many of us are not participating in the transcendence of our human experience not due to poverty or lack. But as a result of the limitations of our minds. We don’t recognise that we live in a world of abundance, or that this gift of life is a privilege and an opportunity.

All we see is competition, others to compare ourselves against and pull down if we are to succeed.

It’s not limited to individuals, whole nations and quote on quote civilizations have been created on the notion that if we’re to survive we have to annihilate other quote on quote less advanced societies.

This level of un-enlightenment stands between us and the realisation of the fulfilment of our soul’s purpose. Everything you need to fulfil your purpose is in you and around about you. You need not take anyone else’s in order to get yours, in fact being a part of the process of enabling and assisting others to get theirs is a viable craft in itself, one I in fact I myself am engaged in as I encourage you to go get your birth right, and live your pure unadulterated truth.

No one else can do for you what you should be doing for yourself, so don’t wait for anyone else to give you the break the golden hand shake that you with a little more effort outside the box thinking and insightful perspective could provide for yourself.

This concludes our discussion on being square pegs trying to fit into round holes, next were going to explore survival, and once we’ve done that we’ll have completed the initial quarter of our twelve-week discourse, and this initial section on self-discovery. Having laid our foundation, we can move on and get into practical matters of daily life. Business, recreation and Money. But now that we’ve discovered who we are and where we fit. Let’s tackle How to Survive and thrive as the unique individual we’ve discovered ourselves to be.

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Hi I'm Omar Zac Phillips and I’m a writer. My Blog; theideaofaman.com is where I journal my experiences as a man and share The Idea of a Man Project, a 12 step process of self-discovery.

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