May 28, 2017

The 4 Types of Masculine Psyche: The King & his Shadow.

*This is a four-part series, unpacking the four different types of the masculine psyche, based on the work of Moore and Gillette. While this article uses the gender pronoun “man,” it is not exclusive to those who are male by birth, but those who identify with the masculine energy. 


In every man, there is the potential to achieve a mature masculine expression.

There are four main types of mature masculine: the King, the Magician, the Warrior, and the Lover. As with all human behavior, there is a shadow side to each of those aspects.

The King, in his fullness, fulfills two major aims.

The first major aim is to provide order and leadership. This is seen in the man who adequately leads his home, provides solid leadership in the workplace, and establishes rules, laws, guidelines, and restrictions in his realm. The mature King energy serves to provide structure to those in his “kingdom.” Whether his kingdom is his home, his family, or his workplace, the King, in his fullness, can be counted on to undertake the necessary measures to ensure the ship sails smoothly through the waters of life.

The second aim of the full King is to offer blessing and fertility. While women are often seen as the source of fertility in our culture, it is wise to remember that there is another aspect of bringing forth new life, and that is the energy the masculine brings. In his fullness, the King who is fulfilling his purpose will be a vital life source, not only sexually, but also in creativity and nurturing. The King is not jealous or competitive, because he knows his worth. He is confident, secure, and solid in himself, and thus is able to foster the necessary conditions to help others fulfill their higher purpose.

The manifested King energy is one that encourages, rewards, and corrects others with kindness, yet rules with a firm hand.

Not all men reach the fullness of Kingship. The reasons for this happening are manifold. One major reason is that it takes a man to initiate a boy to manhood, an aspect that is missing in fatherless homes. In many cultures, there are rites of passage that signify these initiations. In some cases, boys are taken out into the wilderness and initiated into manhood. When they return, they are given a new name. The transition and the name change serves to show both newly-initiated man and the community that he has stepped into a new phase of his evolution.

When the initiation doesn’t happen, men may be stuck in what Moore and Gillette call “boy psychology.” In the King archetype, the “boy psychology” means the King would show up as either a High Chair Tyrant or a Weakling.

The High Chair Tyrant

The High Chair Tyrant is one who is not grounded, centered, or the master of his realm. Therefore, he sees the rise of a King as a threat. This is the type of man who hates new life coming forth and strives to strike it down, destroy it, or even kill it. The Tyrant is merciless, cruel, and harsh. He exploits others and is abusive. He pursues his own self-interests above all things, including the wellness of others. He despises beauty, innocence, and strength in others. He strives to snuff out those characteristics when he sees them. Because he lacks inner structure and strength, he fears his own secret weaknesses.

The High Chair Tyrant shows up as the man who is verbally abusive to his children, whose words are assaultive and cruel, aimed mostly at their hopes, talents, and interests. He may be outright aggressive or passive-aggressive in that he simply ignores his children’s accomplishments. This personality type is present in all men when they feel tired, stressed, or overwrought. However, it is most common in what we call “narcissism.”

The man who is possessed with a tyrant mindset will be extremely sensitive to criticism, and while he may not show that his feelings are wounded, will respond to perceived insults with rage. That’s because under the Tyrant façade, there is another side of the shadow—the Weakling.

The Weakling

The Weakling is actually what the Tyrant is hiding; he perceives his own weakness and hates it, so he projects it onto others and harshly rejects them for it. The Weakling craves worship and adoration so he might feel valuable and worthwhile. However, he tends to be paranoid, thinking someone will see his weakness and expose it, so he tends to engage in behaviors that will drive people away and will often result in the rejected party seeking to retaliate. The Weakling lacks a solid center, calmness, and security.


In order to access the King energy and to move beyond the realm of “boy psychology” that is reflected in the shadow aspects, one must be grounded and realistic. One must disengage from identifying with the King within and recognize that while one may have access to divine energy, that it is not to be used for selfish gain.

The true King recognizes that he is here to be of service—to his family, to his purpose in life, to his career, to his God, or simply to the service of humanity. He knows that it is not all about him and lives to lead and guide those in his “realm.” The King stands from an inner authority, not ego-based but rather based in an honest assessment of himself, his skills, and qualities. He corrects course when off it and commits himself to being a solid, trustworthy, and reliable leader.

The man living in the fullness of his King energy will be one who instantly calms those around him with his presence. He is not prone to anxiety and is calm, centered, and in control.

The King embodies and lives out the divinity of his nature by offering blessings, vitality, and encouragement to those in his charge. The man who is fulfilling his King energy will resemble the good kings we see in movies and read about in stories, those whose rule is unquestionable but whose hand is gentle when needed.

The good King is neither weak nor heavy handed, but a beautiful blend of both. In his presence, you can rest.


Author: Lisa Vallejos
Image: YouTube
Editor: Emily Bartran

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