Just a taste - Introdution from BECOME FORGED - MAXIMIZING MASCULINITY

Author: Mike Sonneveldt


Something's wrong. If we take the time to stop and look around, life seems normal enough. And through the day-to-day, the current becomes normal, so much so that we become blind to the unhealthy reality which constructs our society.


Unfortunately, it has become commonplace to cry out about all kinds of major problems in our society, and it has also become common place to scream, with the next breath, solutions at the top of our lungs. However, if a solution requires something of someone else, is it a solution, or an abdication of responsibility?

Stick with me here, there's a point to all this.


When we clamor for the increase of welfare, are we taking responsibility for the solution, or hoping other people's money will solve the issue? When we argue boys need to be more like girls, are we creating more wholly developed boys, or creating personality issues from the depths of their core? When we argue that the rich aren't paying their fair share, or that they're too greedy; are we solving the problem by lashing out with our own greed and envy?


Each problem in our world has complex solutions, if solutions exist. The issue of masculinity within the western culture is in fact one of those problems that every group is more than willing to shout out their solutions. But how many are truly doing something about it? And lets put aside simply molding boys into overgeneralized psychological profiles. We've also given ourselves the responsibility to create programs within public schools that reject inherent boyhood tendencies and force our young boys to reframe their whole life into a more feminine, or more submitted approach. If the damage is not carefully observed, we may have ushered in the collapse of the civilization and brought it about with great speed. All in our attempts to create society in our image.

A solution must use the tools and resources available to it. But this is not a plea for more studies, observations, psychological theories or heaven forbid – teacher directed programs and discipline. The solutions must result from truly understanding the nature of the subject, and if the nature of men is not understood properly, a whole host of misapplied theories and solutions can cause extreme damage to the test subject. And that is what a boy today truly is: a test subject.


In order to know “what makes a man” and how to forge a man, we must return to the beginning. Whether you're religious or not, the development of religious truth can be a vital gateway into knowing what lies at the foundation of humanity. Myths, parables and stories are examples of life, and shaped through real experiences (even those completely fabricated myths are shaped through reality.)


It's the human story, and since the enlightenment, we have shunned myth, fable and religion as old creations not fit for present consumption. What we replaced it with was scientific study and reason. The only problem is: science can answer how, but we must ask, “How deep can it really go?” One might argue religion has no depth either, though when carefully studied, religious stories will provide a vast treasure trove of truth about the human condition that just cannot be found in a textbook on evolution.

If we're going to know how to forge a complete man, we must start at the beginning, in the garden of Eden. If you are not religious, this is still valuable. If you are Christian, you will understand the vitality of the deeper truths apparent in this account.


In the beginning, God created Adam, as well as all animals. But He realized man was alone. And this was the first thing recorded that God said was not good. A lonely man is not a good thing, as any of us can attest, and if we look at the “new normal” of mass shooters, there tends to be a theme: lonely, mentally disturbed men who grew up without a father or poor fatherly relationship, and drugged up with medications for depression.


So God created woman, and created them male and female. The presence of the woman was considered very good, and the Biblical description of her was that she was a helper or a confidant. A partner in life. Do not forget, the woman was created from Adam's rib. Not his foot, or his hand, or his back, but his rib. This signifies the side-by-side position, as well as the intention that man and woman would reunite as one flesh in marriage and consummation.

Men were given dominion over the earth, and the Lord's order was for man to go forth, multiply and subdue the earth. Man was given as a steward over all the animals and plants. Creation was a gift.


Let's stop for a second. Man has been given purpose. In the first two chapters of Genesis, God presented man with a deeper purpose: to steward the creation. God did not steward it for man, but set him in the garden, and told man to go forth. This is a most fundamental purpose placed within men. This is what I call “the legacy gene.” Each man seems to have inherently within him a desire for legacy. This legacy gene is what drives men so often to strike out on their own, build wealth, secure a beautiful wife, have kids, land an awesome career, build buildings with their name, control large swaths of land, or create a pivotal shift in a society, culture or the world at large.


Each man wants to build something outside himself. And every boy is attempting to uncover and understand that deeply seeded legacy gene within himself. Men get into trouble by either not understanding what exactly is within them, or misapplying the drive into something that is at best shallow, at worst completely destructive. Men substitute greed and desire in misapplied attempts to build something outside themselves, and they consider the competition of resources and wealth to be the attainment of legacy.

If we don't raise our boys to aim their sights correctly, they will often fall off the path and attempt a shallow gratification of desires, not realizing that they are accepting an extremely poor substitute for true legacy. If discouragement batters them over a long period of time or they become distracted by addictions/time-fillers, they may lose the drive to fulfill the legacy gene. This in turn leaves them feeling depressed, worthless and disgruntled...or even numb.


The biggest shame is that our boys are not being guided by men who know how to develop as a complete man, let alone pass it along to their sons. Many fathers have fallen into the desire trap, either by leaving their families, or becoming so consumed by other things that they become useless or even harmful to the development of their sons. Many of our boys are raised in very female-centric environments, giving rise to the boy who does not understand his own masculinity, and once again: attempts to apply the wrong solutions to the problem. Women are vital to the raising of a well-developed man, but what boys are lacking is the forging that is required, and it cannot be instituted but by older men.


The value of the father-son relationship cannot be underestimated. And if a father figure is unavailable, a fair substitute presents itself: the mentor-mentee relationship.


Our goal is to solve the problem in the correct way, and that means developing boys into men. Mind you, "boys" is not a term used only for the young. There are many adult males who still feel like boys, and frankly are still boys in their outlook, maturity, ability and responsibility. This book is going to give the beginning of the solution, which is knowledge, direction and awareness. For boys to become men, the action must be applied over a course of time. Those boys must take on the task and understand their own responsibility in the process, but those leading the development must also recognize their role in the process. A boy's development into a man becomes a partnership between the boy and the family or community around him.

Only when our boys are given the tools and environment to fully maximize their potential as men, will those boys learn what they need to move forward in life. When that happens, you'll find the boy is happy to shed off his own boyhood for a chance at truly becoming a man.


excerpt from Become Forged - Maximizing Masculinity

Self-Evident Ministries


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