Somehow the modern man is supposed to be able to be a conscious, liberated being of light, a tantric sex master, emotionally available at every moment, and an amazing parent.
In addition, for some families, bringing in the proverbial bacon and being the handyman, counselor, protector and beyond. A paragon of service in the community, this kind of man is supposed to always be happy, have the answers, and be strong.
The conscious man is expected to be a new kind of superman. It’s objectification mixed with spirituality.
When we fall short, as all men do—as all human beings do—superman is dethroned.
Nobody loves a fallen hero. The conscious man knows this, and keeps silent, bears his own burdens, sharing little of what is really going on within.
The conscious man still has burdens and challenges and has learned to be silent.
The conscious man wakes up to the truth of how our world and society is stacked against us. Knowing full well our own power and capacity, the awake walk alone. Why diminish our power, presence and authority for anyone who is dangerous or unloving. There is no time for people who sap our energies, resources and capacity to serve and love.
This is the birth of conscious stoicism.
The old face of stoicism bore the burdens of life in silence. Modern man is just the same as men of every generation. We are told to shut up, sit down, be quiet, and behave. Mostly by the people closest to us, people who say they love us.
We become stoic because it’s the only option.
Men face increasing insecurities in relationship. Marriage isn’t safe. Raising children is fraught with danger. A man’s life can be destroyed by a womans simple accusation. All of one’s efforts, prosperity and vitality can be taken away by a judge, or a crazy woman.
Men are faced with pervasive ideas such as, “All men are predators,” “men only want sex,” “men aren’t capable of emotions,” “don’t cry,” “don’t be sensitive,” and more. We are told to be not-men.
And we are supposed to feel good, loving, warm, affectionate on top of those messages. This is paradoxical and the conflicting messages are difficult to navigate. It takes time, a journey some don’t make, and many do.
When a man wakes up to their life and who they are, the truth of being conscious still doesn’t fit the image and ideal the common woman holds.
The conscious man is well aware of the fact of how perceptions and ideology remain prisons.
As the masculine wakes up to their strength, presence and opportunities the open heart also recognizes how alone one is.
The conscious man doesn’t have networks of people who really understands who he is and what he is about. People appreciate the image, the service, the gifts of such an individual. The person remains untouched because people observe the image, the exterior, and miss the interior.
This is a deliberate choice for the conscious man. One is fully aware of death, how little time there is, and who to give time and love to. Give no time to fools, only to tribe, family and the beloved.
It is far simpler to operate in solitude and silence than navigate the mindstuff, emotions, denigrations, rejections, arguments and beyond of people who are unloving.
The conscious man, skilled in communication, is often misunderstood. People see a man and act with normal programming and assumptions. The person who is contrary simply isn’t worth the time. One day, the body will be gone, why waste time with people who destroy one’s serenity and prosperity in life?
The conscious man is aware of how dangerous women are. A harmonious partner can uplift the soul. Unfortunately, women in general aren’t as loving, aware and feminine as the conscious man needs. There are plenty of people who want to have sex. We know boys chase tail, and remain saddened by masculine and feminine immaturity. Modern women are just as lost in relationship as men. Who doesn’t need compassion when it comes to understanding the opposite gender and growing in love?
Firmly rooted in self-knowledge and unable to settle for less than love, the conscious man stays respectful, maintains space, and moves forward graciously. This is non-attachment in action.
Secure, safe, sane sensitive and emotionally available women are just as rare in this day of age as men of similar qualities.
Women are fortunate in the support they receive from other women. And while there are men’s circles and groups forming, they are few and far between and even the idea is a stretch for many men. The idea of men’s support groups is laughable. Especially in Western society where we see homes for women who need help and absolutely nothing for men.
Men are laughed at if they share they have been abused. Men are denigrated when sharing they are hurt or have feelings. It’s better to be silent.
Then men are cut down for not feeling. For not being sensitive. Or for being too sensitive. Or for not being spiritual in the right ways. And when we do get around to feeling those repressed emotions, anger is always the first thing to arise.
Feeling emotions and expressing them is a vulnerable space. When we don’t express emotions with skill, the angry man gets judged and abandoned.
The aware man knows this truth, and keeps silent. Or they are very careful with whom they share their heart with.
The conscious man knows who he is, and recognizes the futility of pleasing society, adapting to fit cultural norms, or striving in any way to please shallow people. We recognize the layers of double standards, for all genders, and operate with compassion. There is no completely safe life-path involving other people.
Recognizing one can only pour from a full cup, and not an empty cup, the conscious man has learned self-nurturing.
Cultivating his environment, relationship and life is primary. Rest assured, the awake man has identified the traits he wishes to live with for himself, and in the people who are close. He has boundaries, and often unconventional ones. In a moment, the conscious man will assess and know how to move forward.
While unusually patient and understanding, this type of man has zero tolerance for drama. There is no time for it, and people who instigate drama are quietly withdrawn from. Who needs stress? The first indications of criticisms, judgmentalism, shaming and put downs is the green light for a conscious man to walk away with peace.
Only the people who are really loving, supportive, nurturing and in alignment remain in the life of a conscious man.
For these people, the stoicism drops and the light-heart and soul blossom.
Because more than anything, the conscious man knows how vital relationships are for his well-being, and will take steps to nurture the genuine, authentic, loving people in his life.
Conscious men are all around. We are silent, powerful, and in motion. We are not on dating sites, at bars, or on Tinder. We are living our lives, in the community, with our families, and on the path. We know how living our truth is where we find like-hearted companions.
If you can’t find a conscious man, it isn’t a matter of not looking in the right places.
It’s a matter of misplaced priorities and not seeing with a clear mind and heart.
And if you are a conscious man, keep it stoic my friend. Keep your heart sacred, trusting only the loving. Remain true, for there are many of us out here. Perhaps our paths will one-day cross.
Author: Keith Artisan
Editor: Travis May
Image: Flickr/Jonathan Kos-Read