I've been asking myself lately why I'm so concerned with my own Men's Work. And why do I want to make it available to my brothers?

Naturally, all my egotism, ambition, fear, and uncertainty are operative. But that doesn't explain it.

It's clear to me the specific issues I confront -- relationships, sex, money, proper work, anxiety, drivenness, boundaries, parents, friends -- are outcroppings of some much larger question I'm asking: something like, what shape do I really want my life to have?

When it's finally over, what does the real me want my story to look like?

In the past, I believed my question implied some grand religious or philosophical system was "the answer" to my life. My sole task was to conform myself to what it demanded. What else was there, after all?

But Men's Work has taught me I was being profoundly misled. The only answer for me is me. Just as the only answer for you is you.

That's clear from the way any of our events or exercises really work.

Recently, one man told me he no longer comes to the DRUMMING CIRCLE because he feels bored and purposeless.

I was enthusiastic! I said I believed that was a great response. He had an opportunity to investigate why he had such feelings at so energetic and physical an event. His look told me he knew I was nuts.

A similar thing happened at a PATHWAYS MEETING. One man became angry at another who was very judgmental and gave advice to everyone in his Brother Circle.

Terrific, I said! What a gift that meeting gave you! ... Nuts again. He no longer comes.

I believe the issue is clear. I need to do the Men's Work not to arrive at "ideal" good feelings, free from all darkness and pain. I need to become aware of my own feelings as they are, whatever they are.

They are the clues I need to understand the larger direction I want my life to move toward. What helps me? What obstructs me? What does life want?

Without awareness of them, I remain colonized, controlled by what remains unconscious. Any hopes I want to achieve remain abstractions without a foundation in what I will really do.

So, strangely enough, the point of Men's Work does turn out to be "spiritual" in the real sense of that often misused word.

What is the larger point or direction of my life? What's my story? What myth do I walk in? How will I relate to my self? ... to those I love? ... to animals? ... to the earth? How can I become greedy for as much life as I can possibly live?

I can't see anything more important for myself than this. In the great scheme of things, as I do all the things life requires, do I have any point after all?

So where the hell are you guys?! We mail our notices to 5,000 men around NYC. But we don't see more than 2 or 3 % of you at our various events.

Come do this Men's Work with us. Without you, we can't do it. And, after all, what do you have to do that's more important?!

John Guarnaschelli


© copyright 2002 Men On The Common Ground, Inc.
This site is maintained by BabyFace Software, Inc.