Why I Wrote A Call to the Sacred Masculine. ~ Lori Ann Lothian

Via on Jun 27, 2012

“What a bunch of pretentious, narcissistic spiritual masturbation.”

The above comment came from a man angry with me—or at least with my words as penned in A Call to The Sacred Masculine: Ten Daring Invitations from the Divine Feminine, an article that soared to 50,000 views and garnered 14,000 Facebook likes. In other words, a piece of writing (not the usual clever poster or video clip) that caught the collective imagination and sparked a deluge of fan-and-hate mail.

A sampling of the over 150 public comments reveal as much polarity in the male response as there is between north and south. There’s the exuberant (caps not mine) “YOU nailed it and YOU hit a HOME-RUN” and “BEAUTIFUL, INSPIRING, and MOVING!” to the vitriolic declaration the piece is “spiritual bullshit that you spew all over everyone.”

My favorite comment?

This is the kind of new age, naive nonsense that sounds to me like bloated heterosexual ego fantasies that belong more to eHarmony than to anything truly sacred.

But it wasn’t fantasy that sparked this piece. Rather, it was a muse-driven creativity, a kind of channelled demiurge with the muse hollering in my ear, not—as more than one reader assumed—because I am in relationship with a wimpy man who irritates me. Rather, this piece was written from three unrelated catalysts.

Photo: Michael Julian Berz

First, simple artistic inspiration sparked A Call to the Sacred Masculine. I’d been looking at a photo that invoked for me a quality of erotic monk meets noble beauty. This self-portrait (on the right) by a photographer friend, was one of the inspirational seeds that became the beanstalk of ten daring invitations.

Second, the muse began nagging me in the baggage claims area of the Palm Springs airport, disgruntled at the hoards of men picking up their golf bags. Don’t get me and the muse wrong, golf (or any sport) is great exercise and fun. It’s more the idea that semi-retired men of leisure with unspent potency are playing when the planet is screaming for all of us—men and women—to create a new order, a new way. Because the old is clearly not working and no amount of hole-in-ones is going to resolve a darn thing. (And yes, women give up some of your Botox and spa time and discover your inner-visionary, the world needs you, forehead wrinkles and all).

But possibly the most relevant seed for A Call to the Sacred Masculine? My mother’s death under the wheels of truck when I was a thirty-nine-year old housewife, sleep-walking through my life.

I had told myself I should be happy. I’d married my highly successful economist-husband-soulmate, birthed two beautiful children, lived in an affluent waterfront community and was healthy. What more could I ask for? I had all the prizes some people spend a lifetime acquiring.

Within a year of losing my mother (my father had died suddenly two years earlier), I was on a fast track to demolish a 15-year marriage by instigating a long-distance affair with a man I’d met (how cliché) online. Even as I knew that this man would not be my next-in-line, I dove heart-first into falling in love with a romantic projection of my own yearning for wholeness.

The hole my mother left by her dramatic leaving was a bottomless need inside my fractured psyche for a Big Love. I wanted something or someone to sweep me off my feet and into a place of vulnerability and mutual acceptance. I wanted to feel safe sharing all of me, all of my sadness, anger and despair, with a beloved. And not just any beloved—but a powerfully present male who would walk fearlessly beside me as I navigated the chaos of my grief.

Ten years and several relationships later, I came to the shattering realization the rescue of a Big Love that drove me to a divorce and propelled me through seven love affairs was, all along, a mirage.

Eventually, it became evident that the Big Love Lover I so wanted was not coming until I rose up in my own life and staked a claim to my own fierce feminine. If I was going to ask for a King, I’d darn well better act like a Queen.

In this way, it seems A Call to the Sacred Masculine has clearly struck a collective nerve, reaching into the imaginations of men and women who yearn for an elevated matrimony of man and woman. This yearning for a powerfully masculine and feminine presence is not romantic and stereotypical, as some would assume, but rather archetypal and alchemical.

The call for a Sacred Masculine to meet a Divine Feminine is not about new rules for relating or a better marriage formula. I did not write a list of demands as some men have suggested. Rather, this piece was meant to be a provocative invitation to men to engage the God-King-Warrior archetypes in their lives. To simply be heroic and human.

This sacred masculine current is not about manhood anymore than the divine feminine current is about womanhood (these currents are in each of us, regardless of gender). Yet the fact is, I have a vagina that receives. A man has a penis that penetrates. In a heterosexual union both partners have the capacity to access their penetrative and receptive natures, for the man at times to be soft and the woman to be hard. And both have the capacity to reach for a more noble version of what it means to be a man, or a woman, in this world.

When the gender differences are elevated beyond the stereotypes of the brutish male and the delicate female, then we are calling to an archetypal potency within each sex. The purposeful, discriminating, courageous and magnanimous man. The nurturing, creative, intuitive and receptive woman. And in both, a call to move beyond the narcissism of personal growth and material acquisition. To grow beyond the modern-day affliction of psychotherapeutic navel gazing and all the excuses for less-than-greatness.

The Dalai Lama made headlines with his bold 2009 statement that, “The world will be saved by the western woman.”  Maybe he said this because he sees women breaking old rules to make new ones that work, or maybe he wanted to provoke men, stir them from status-quo complacency. But the way I see it, nothing of lasting value will be achieved unless both men and women unite in a quest for individual greatness and the greater good.

It’s time for all of us to be Sacred and Divine, which is nothing less than a call to see with an eagle-eye view and a mother’s heart, what the world needs.

And just maybe, to get off the golf course and out of the spa, and to act on it.

 

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About Lori Ann Lothian

Lori Ann Lothian is a spiritual revolutionary, divine magic maker and all-purpose scribe. She writes about love, relationships, enlightenment and even sex, at Huffington Post, Good Men Project, Yoganonymous, Origin magazine, Better After 50 and on her hit personal blog The Awakened Dreamer. She is also a senior editor at the online magazine, The Good Men Project, where she founded Good for the Soul, a section dedicated to the exploration of men and spirituality. Lori Ann lives in Vancouver, Canada, with her husband and daughter, where she has learned to transcend the rain and surrender to mega doses of vitamin D. Tweet her at Twitter or friend her on Facebook at Facebook.

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12 Responses to “Why I Wrote A Call to the Sacred Masculine. ~ Lori Ann Lothian”

  1. [...] an article that soared to 50,000 views and garnered 14,000 Facebook likes. In other words, a [...] Source nRelate.domain = [...]

  2. You're a brave one, Lori L. Thanks for championing this topic – and call to action – in all the many ways you are at the moment.

    This paragraph landed for me: "In this way, it seems A Call to the Sacred Masculine has clearly struck a collective nerve, reaching into the imaginations of men and women who yearn for an elevated matrimony of man and woman. This yearning for a powerfully masculine and feminine presence is not romantic and stereotypical, as some would assume, but rather archetypal and alchemical."

    Juicy.

    Your intensely broad perspective on this elevated matrimony and it's implication in the world at large – beyond "navel gazing" inspires me. Those three steps that led you to writing this article are fascinating and complex – I really appreciate the global and personal ingredients. Made me curious – both this article and an earlier one on your site http://theawakeneddreamer.com/: Why I Want a Real Man, curious to hear more and in depth, the story of your search for Big Love and how you ended that "perfect" marriage and what he felt and all – I sense that is a masculine feminine archetypal saga I could really sink my chops in, knowing how deeply you see and feel.

    Thanks for using the Disney image. ;) Wondering, how many who were touched by the article, felt the true invitation? And, how many are still wandering around eHarmony, looking for HIM? All good, I'm just a nut for efficiency.

    Thanks, Lori. xo Dawn

  3. Brooks Hall Brooks Hall says:

    I like the part about people with means contributing to meaningful causes, rather than so much spa-ing or golfing—as in your example. But I think the idea of becoming god-like as the word divine implies, and emphasizing a split in this divine-ness as you repeatedly do when emphasizing masc v/s fem is an endless circle of “you should” this or that because you have a penis or vagina. I don’t find that part helpful. And I saw the nod to the possibility of gender not being anatomy-driven, but then the article goes on to champion these “divine” differences that I don’t buy into.

    I would like to see the cultural imagination open beyond the old he/she split: then we might really be able to get to some world-healing business.

    Be as sexy and gender-beautiful as you want, but please do not confuse those impulses for some sort of divine order.

  4. [...] set aside their weapons and war making and just be man and woman. Beyond god and goddess, before sacred or divine—we are human, first. Beyond the “war between the sexes” there are small countries [...]

  5. "I would like to see the cultural imagination open beyond the old he/she split: then we might really be able to get to some world-healing business."

    David Deida would say there are three levels to this. One, the stereotype of strong man/protector and delicate/need to be protected woman. 2. we are EQUAL AND the same, and polarity is neutralized… 3. An elevated acceptance of the masculine-feminine differences in a cherishing and mutally honoring and complementary way.

    i am surprised brook, that in a day and age where neurosiciene and endrocrinology and even evolutionary biology have clearly researched and pointed to gender differences be real and by the way, useful, that anyone gets bent out of shape by acknowledging men and women are not the same.

    Equality (fair wages/right to vote/run for office) is not the same as pretending women and men are alike. That is about fairness, not sameness. So again, I am back to this question–what is it for YOU that is bothered by the mas-fem split, which exists as the ida and pingala nadi's, the alchemical union of the hot and cold currents, by the yin and yang symbol even. World traditions have long acknowledged that heaven and earth, form and formless, even Bohm's explicate and implicate order are the POLES of reality that in UNION (or beyond duality) lead to a Oneness. But oneness comes from the TWOness merging….not from pretending two-ness is not real.

    • Brooks Hall Brooks Hall says:

      To which science are you pointing to? Are you saying that you are writing about science?? I read in this piece that you are “channeling” this. And I simply disagree with your take. Referring to “oneness” and “divinity” take the conversation beyond any rational possibilities. Here’s a post about that: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2010/11/how-transcendent-ideals-might-limit-us/ 

      It’s okay that I think differently from you, and that I’ve posted a comment saying so.

      • , I am back to this question–what is it for YOU that is bothered by the mas-fem split, which exists

        • Brooks Hall Brooks Hall says:

          I’m sorry if this is making you uncomfortable. I think people get focused on masc/fem as solid concepts as an expression that validates and maintains the current power structure. Some are also afraid that if we let go of some of the dogma/false beliefs that sex will somehow loose it’s sexiness.

          I don’t accept the part of your question that is demanding something from or accusing (?) me. My sense of the situation is apparently different from what you think you know.

    • Lori, thanks so much for bearing your soul in such a courageous way here!

      A couple of thoughts I'd like to share;

      I'm a big fan of David Deida and it seems that what you are proposing is what he calls the third level of relationship: intimate communion (a wonderful book by the way).

      When I re-read your original (and wonderful) blog on this topic, it seems to resemble a Reader's Digest version of Deida's book The Way of the Superior Man – another wonderful book. Perhaps issuing it as a "call from…" is what led to some of the negative feedback you received since I have yet to share that book with any man who was not deeply moved and inspired by it.

      Where my views diverge from yours (as written, but perhaps not in intent) is that men and women are not exclusively masculine of feminine but rather a mix of the two. For example, sometimes the woman wants to be strong a set the direction (masculine) and sometimes a man wants to be ravished (feminine). Most of us seem to be more of one than the other but we are often perplexed at what to do with the other one. Our socialization certainly does not help. For example, broader society tells us that its OK for women (or those mostly feminine) to be sad but not to be angry. At the same time, men (or those mostly masculine) are allowed to be angry but not to be sad. While neither of these emotions is mutually exclusive to either sex, we too often treat them as if they are.

      So, not only do we need to reconcile and embrace these two (on all levels) within our relationships (and society at large) but within ourselves as well. This is at the heart of what Deida writes but it also reflects what Brooks has been blogging of late.

      Now here is the real kicker. So many people in the yoga community believe in some form of reincarnation but don't often realize that this does not mean that you always return as the same sex. There may be a lot of goddess power in those golfers you saw and there may be plenty of sword wielding warrior power in those ladies getting botox treatments and breast enlargements. But if they remain unconscious to their true nature – whatever that may be, their chance of creating true happiness within themselves and with others is less likely.

      So, a call to consciousness for everyone (which is where I think you wanted to take this) is exactly what we all need…every day!

  6. [...] when the man is fully anchored within his own Shiva state of masculinity may the goddess have the room to fully bloom and blossom. Otherwise, it’s not possible nor is [...]

  7. Judy says:

    This is an important conversation, and I thank you very much for inspiring it.

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