I coined a phrase “responsible masculinity” in my last post and its applicable to all of us; not at all gender specific. There’s something I find off-putting about certain strains of feminism and its that its feels like more of the same “masculinity run amok” as we are collectively accusing the men of. What these times call for is an appreciation of what the masculine trait brings to the sum of all that we are; and how necessary it is…and a collective admission that not all expressions of masculinity are the same, that we need to be mindful of which version we unleash as ourselves.
If we see examples of distorted masculinity all-around us then the invitation is to be its other version, ourselves, without so much finger-pointing; whether we are man or woman…and to learn to discern the difference, regardless of the smokescreen of gender, so that we know what we are talking about.
Just as not all distortions of masculinity are modelled by men, not all men are modeling distorted masculinity and I am seeing them appear all around me at the moment; not least in the form of my husband, who is modestly modelling something quite new in all his guises, whether in his (on the surface of things…if not so, deep down, where he makes his quiet difference) “conventional” career, or as a yogi, as a father or as my husband. What is this thing that he models so well? Balance, between his masculine and feminine qualities, which he also possesses in abundance and is not afraid of admitting or demonstrating. Was this always the case? Well, maybe, at the blueprint level, he was born with this balance (perhaps all men are) but he wasn’t always capable of showing it, at least when I first met him. Over the years, I have seen him raise his feminine side up and temper his most distorted masculine aspects until they were able to lie side by side in quite a new format, one which shines out of him the most (in a sense) because he is male and it is more unexpected coming from the very male-looking package that he is.
Yet when a woman does this too, it is no less important or mark-making in the world than when a man finds his inherent balance. As a woman whose masculine intellect was so domineering for years (even though my inherent emotional trait is to be almost entirely feminine…what a mix), I have had to work on my own inner see-saw in countless ways to get to where I am today.
There are versions of masculine, versions of feminine…and then there are divine examples that we can strive towards (which is a masculine compunction…to grow upwards and extend ourselves outwards…in itself). See what I mean? We can’t make war on any of it without turning on ourselves; our aim has to be to discover and explore its better version, as ourselves, and then be that. When we model it, growing into this new-balanced version of ourselves, we make it more available to others, doing the work of promoting this thing effortlessly and without pushing or forcing anything in an aggressive way; which leads me right back to the very point that I am making.
Related post: When the sun comes up