speak out

Elsewhere I came across the following question, which I would like to pose here as well:

What is YOUR definition of MANHOOD?

Men, women, children of all ages please respond.

9 Responses to “speak out”

  1. libbie Says:

    that is such a good question.
    And I want to say that manhood is when
    you understand that your actions affect
    everyone around you even the stranger you never met
    and you take responsibility for those actions
    but in the end i guess that just adulthood.
    I guess it doesn’t really help any that I’m a girl.

  2. Paula Says:

    I am a 41 year old married woman.

    I believe manhood is the state of positive masculinity in which the male is operating in his role as protector and provider, rather than mis-using his power, becoming predator and/or abuser.

    Please understand that when I say protector/provider, I don’t mean protecting his “property”, his “woman”…but rather all that he comes in contact with, children, women, younger men, senior citizens, puppies…my statement could be misunderstood to seem that I think men are superior to women, and that is not what I mean at all. I do, however, think that males and females have different roles based on their sex. When we function within these roles in a positive way, it is a beautiful thing! But when men mis-use their power, or when women abuse theirs, it is a terrible thing.

  3. Belladonna Says:

    I had a conversation about this at church recently when we came to a scripture about how husbands were to RULE over their wives.

    To make sense of this we went back to Genesis to read how during the creation of the world the Lord gave us the sun to RULE the day and the moon to RULE the night.

    So, it seems that in God’s vocabulary, RULE means to provide an environment of energy, sustaining nurishment and balance to allow for growth.

    That fits for me.

  4. Matthew Says:

    I find it a statement on the current situation of man hood that women have been to only ones to respond..

  5. Matthew Says:

    Okay, so since I took the shoot across the bow I am obligated to respond. It seems there are conflicting terms in our society. You can be physically mature, legally able to vote and still not be considered a man. Yet, there is no initiation into this difficult status for you young men. Many cultures have certain traditions which after you participate you are considered a man. From my perspective this is an important rite.

    So, what is manhood? I would say that it is the point in ones life where you stop becoming the center of the universe and put others first. In the Orthodox world it is when you start loving your wife as Christ love the Church prepared to sacrifice your will for the betterment of those you love. To balance that it is also can be when you choose that marriage is not for you and you choose the Monastic path in which the above applies but you are wedded to Christ and are obligated to fulfill.

    Now in many cultures you are considered to be a youth until you are 30. This is interesting to me since men’s brains function differently until about this age. So it seems the working definition needs some criteria to be met before hand but this is not always the case. Perhaps it is one of those things which we have to take an approach and say what it is not rather than what it is

  6. Spoke Says:

    Wikepedia:Manhood is the period in a male’s life when he has left behind the innocence of childhood. It is during this period that the peak of a man’s lifetime is reached. Throughout history, especially in the ancient cultures, boys would undergo many different, sometimes dangerous, ceremonies or sacrifices in order to be recognized as adult in their own right. This rite of passage from childhood to adulthood was very important to these emerging members of society, and many factors of their adult life would sometimes have been affected by this one transitional period of a male person’s life.
    I think the netter question would be:
    What is it , to BE a man?
    To me, a man should always be mindful of those around him. He should be available to assist anyone in need around his community. To put himself after other people should be a definite character trait. He must protect women and children…to respect them always. He must provide for his family should he be blessed to have one.
    Above and beyond all of this, He should love the Lord with all of his heart, soul, strength and love his neighbor as himself.
    That’s the type of man I admire the most!

  7. Sophocles Says:

    Papa Herman,

    Thought you might enjoy this:


  8. papa herman Says:

    I find this to be an interesting question that has a variety of angles that one can approach the answer from.

    The first thing that came to my mind when I read the questions was: An active acceptance of one’s responsibilities that is manifested by (and in) one’s actions. Manhood is not just lip-service.

    If you would like to read other’s responses to this question (this is the source where I first came across the question) go to: http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=31136970&blogID=297071083

    I continue to ask your responses to this question.

  9. symphonyguy Says:

    I appreciate everyone’s thoughts. Interesting topic that generates more questions than answers, at least in my mind. A few thoughts: often easier to define something like this by using negatives (manhood is “NOT” demonstrated by beating women); I also think any definition of manhood should have some exclusive attributes, don’t you all? Much of the comments above could also apply to women. If that’s the case, how is manhood any different than womenhood or personhood or?

    As I thought about this subject, I was reminded of the poem “Ulysses, ” particularly the last few lines that have always spoken to me in a powerful way…

    …Come, my friends,
    ‘T is not too late to seek a newer world.
    Push off, and sitting well in order smite
    The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
    To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
    Of all the western stars, until I die.
    It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
    It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
    And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
    Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
    We are not now that strength which in old days
    Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;
    One equal temper of heroic hearts,
    Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
    To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield

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