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Men and the City Part 18: Masculinity Reimagined

Updated: Jun 3, 2023

Men in the city are in a state of rediscovery. The last two decades of turbulence, hardship and toxicity are forging a masculine renaissance. “These are the times that try men’s souls” when men are compelled to stare in the mirror with disgust at every defect, imperfection, and insecurity in the reflection, and confront the ugliness of what must change within us to mend a broken society. Whatever depraved Godheads of wokism bedevil us, men in the city are waking from the nightmare to revive a new masculine ethos. Men must go back to basics to harness the id, ego, and the imagination in a libidinous blend of masculine regeneration.

Self-image is the creation of the human psycho-spiritual machine. Maxwell Maltz, author of Psycho-Cybernetics and a renowned plastic surgeon experienced first-hand the transformative effects of self-image post-surgery. Surgical correction of birth scars, tragic disfigurements, or unflattering asymmetries (big ears, hooked noses etc.) as Maltz put it, “appeared to create an entirely new person.” Surgery worked for many but not all; some patients believed they looked unchanged no matter how extensive the surgery. For them, self-image reverted to the mean like states of happiness on the Hedonic Treadmill. Maltz believed results varied because the inner psychical projection – what he called the “creative mechanism” – simply overpowered any aesthetic changes.

Masculinity is undergoing a psycho-spiritual reconstruction of self-image.

Masculinity is undergoing a psycho-spiritual reconstruction of self-image. After decades of re-education, of bureaucratic emasculation, urban softening, and sinking testosterone masculinity is resurging. As has been well documented in this series, men are coalescing in new communities, adopting new methodologies, and hardening against political correctness, feminization, and bureaucratic sterilization. However, the red pill movement is only in its infancy, and most men remain umbilically tied to the Matrix. The self-image for modern men is deeply distorted and forcibly deactivated. Rebooting the creative mechanism in the male psyche is a process that requires a Neo-Masculinity rooted in ancient archetypes, biology, imagination, and mass empowerment.

Neo-Masculinity is Synchronicity

It is well known that male testosterone levels have fallen precipitously for decades. Experts speculate it is the estrogen runoff in the water supply, others argue it is a product of widespread use of plastics (see more here), and some believe GMOs in processed food are the cause. Remedies for testosterone depletion run the gamut: improved sleep, a healthy diet, increased Vitamin D, and regular exercise. At the same time, obesity has become an epidemic while the physical strength of young men – Millennials and Zoomers – has declined sharply compared to older generations according to the Journal of Hand Therapy. However, as much as environmental factors play a role the trigger is a warped masculine self-image.

The trigger is a warped masculine self-image.

Masculine is the inverse of feminine, but it is also a polarity unto itself. As discussed in the first installment of this series (read more here), masculinity is at once a force of instinct and intellect, a product of both nervous and endocrine systems. The inner masculine is a ruthless survival mechanism and a rational hive mind. Celebrated masculine archetypes harmonize these polarities to project the ideal man. James Bond, for example, is suave and sophisticated, he is also daring and cold-blooded. Despite claims to the contrary, these influences catalyze one another like a hybrid-electric engine. Unfortunately, masculine polarities are muted, worn-down, and discouraged in the modern world.

If libidinous energies are suppressed the inner masculine skips erratically like a scratched record on an 8 track player. Psychoanalyst Robert Moore and Douglas Gillette explain in King, Warrior, Magician, Lover that “something vital is missing in the inner lives of many of the men who seek psychotherapy." They were missing "an adequate connection to the deep and instinctual masculine energies.” In other words, raw masculinity must be unleashed, refined, and synchronized to transform boys into men. Moore and Gillette concluded: “In the present crisis of masculinity we do not need, as some feminists are saying, less masculine power. We need more.” However, reconnecting to the inner masculine is impossible without an empowering self-image.

Ancient and Modern Archetypes

The philosopher provocateur Nietzsche believed that passion expressed in the will was the wellspring of a higher consciousness. His first book The Birth of Tragedy asserted that the Gods Apollo and Dionysus inspired the peak of Greek civilization. Apollo – God of the Sun – ruled reason and order, while Dionysus – God of Wine – ruled emotions and chaos. The fusion of this Dyad – the Kunsttriebe – clashed and combusted to produce great heroes (Achilles and Hector), revolutionary philosophers (Pythagoras and Plato), iconic artists (Aeschylus and Sophocles) and an impassioned Greek ethos. Nietzsche claimed it was the deprecation of Dionysian verve in favor of Apollonian rationality that cooled Greek fire and led to the decline of Hellenic culture.

Lauda and Hunt channeled inner demons to master their craft and both were willing to die to win, embodying the apotheosis of the masculine-hero.

A modern depiction of masculine polarities is the story of Formula One drivers James Hunt and Nikki Lauda. Hunt was an unhinged daredevil and Lauda a calculating mercenary. The 2013 film Rush accurately framed how these two masculine archetypes competed to produce supreme excellence and death defying innovation. Both experienced discouragement from parents and peers, overcame serious setbacks (Lauda was terribly disfigured in an accident), and fought to prove skeptics wrong. Both channeled inner demons to master their craft and both were willing to die to win, embodying the apotheosis of the masculine-hero. It is the conflict and integration of raw and refined masculine archetypes that propelled Hunt and Lauda, and the same spirit is needed to inspire modern men.

Vitruvian Men

Masculinity (and femininity) is both an abstract and a physical concept unified in human anatomy. The Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci believed that human proportions revealed the design of God, what is called the "Canon of Proportions." Da Vinci attempted to frame man’s idealized proportions in the Vitruvian Man, male extremities perfectly arrayed inside a square and circle. While men are not Golden Ratios and few of us will ever realize the aesthetic symmetry of Renaissance statues, the principle of proportionality is what should govern our physical fitness, style, and dress. At a minimum, getting in shape, eating a healthy diet, exercising rigorously, and wearing form fitting clothing are essential to sparking the inner masculine.

Masculinity is psychosomatic and so honing your body is essential for the male psyche to develop properly. Maximizing physique is about self-improvement of mind and spirit, excluding narcissistic Instagram poses. Having a fit body and a tapered physique stimulates motor skills and enhances mental dexterity because the body – like the mind – is an instrument not an amusement park or a holding facility. Unfortunately, far too many modern men abuse or neglect their bodies: they drink too much alcohol, cover arms and legs in tattoos, lounge in front of video-game consoles all day and are sloppy in appearance.

A Neo-Masculine Blueprint

Michelangelo tragically wrote of himself “son d'esser bruto” – “I know I am ugly.” Many modern men feel the same and suffer from a negative self-image, especially when overloaded with filtered images of muscled influencers and cosmetically sharpened movie stars. Concepts of beauty and ugliness are quite real despite modern attempts to refute them, which is why the insecurities many men (and women) experience should be taken seriously. However, while it is crucial for men to looksmax, what is more important is to recognize that in essence men embody ideas. There is no better testament to this fact than Michelangelo himself, a genius of unmatched talent – a painter, sculptor, architect, engineer, and poet (see video below). He may very well have been ugly but he is remembered for sculpting David, by countless measures the most beautiful human model ever crafted.

Men are ideas and women are the output of those ideas. Men are defined by the values we believe in, which manifest in the wealth we create, the empires we build, the paths we blaze, and the innovations we invent. Frame is less about positional dominance and more about creating a world view, a system of beliefs that symbolize the life you lead and the mission you want to accomplish. Women, fundamentally, are attracted less to physical form or bank accounts than to the ideals you believe in and your commitment to those principles. Ideas reach their climax during reproduction when they are reborn in the next generation.

Women are attracted less to physical form or bank accounts than to the ideals you believe in and your commitment to those principles.

The values, world views, and the frame men create are limited only by imagination. Vision is the inception of the masculine journey and that begins in the psyche. The blueprint is sourced from a spectrum of masculine forces: instinct, intuition, and creativity. Emotions – inner demons, insecurities, hardships, hopes, and failures etc. – are the psychical elixirs that make dreams a reality. The mythical clash of titans occurs in the imagination so if you can synchronize these forces like Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Nikki Lauda, and James Hunt the inner masculine will break free and remake the world when it does.

I, Men

Neo-Masculinity is about a mass awakening. Men are desperate to push the boundaries of what they and society can become. The opportunity to realize that potential is here and now. As the Gerontocracy crumbles, the crises we face necessitate a mass movement whose mission is reconstruction. Breakdown is a necessary step in the evolutionary process leading to something greater. Now is the time for young men to dig deep, to reconnect with ancient archetypes, shed the skin of mediocrity and obesity, to reject “feels over reals” and reimagine the inner masculine.

The precondition is courage, the output is conquest, and in-between is adventure and struggle.

The key for young men is to come together. Find like-minded friends and family, build new companies and relationships, and embrace new ideas, take the red pill. Do not be afraid to go your own way, unlock corporate shackles, experiment with new approaches, and release your Dioynsian spirit by being adventurous, uncompromising and unapologetic. Embrace Neo-Masculinity and become a Neo-Alpha. The precondition is courage, the output is conquest, and in-between is adventure and struggle. A reimagined masculinity is up to you.


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