Answering the Secular World: The Dilemma of
July 6th, 2007
Preface: I just want to say right now that this entire article is about us as humans reclaiming our true sexuality; real masculinity and real femininity. It seems that in our current western society we have most certainly lost these important aspects of our biological design, and our denial is effecting our behavior. As a result, there is a lack of effective communication between the sexes, and people typically aren’t happy about that. Let me explain to you what I believe about the current state of our sexuality by talking about nice guys, assholes, and where women fit into the picture. Media, society, the mis-treatment of women over the ages, feminism, evolution theories, and new-age philosophy have all played a role in our misplacement of our sexuality. When I realized the other day that my sexuality was distorted, I decided to turn away and find a clear mirror so I could examine myself and see what was wrong. If you’d like to know the results, keep reading.
***Warning, this article is intended for a younger and somewhat secular audience who will be familiar with the terminology and cultural references. One particular term I use is "asshole". I certainly am not using this because it is my desire to swear/curse, but because it is supposed to articulate a particular persona within the mind of the young reader who will without a doubt know exactly what I'm talking about. Further, the tone of this article carries a particular bluntness which may not appeal to all audiences.***
Today I want to talk about nice guys; and, to an extent, assholes. With a little bit of reserach and much prayer, I’ve figured out the answers to the common questions of teens/young adults, such as “why do girls go after assholes instead of nice guys? “ & “do nice guys really finish last?” The answer is so incredibly simple.
So here’s the modern day dilemma between a male and a female that new age philosophy tries to explain as some evolutionary instinct. It process goes something like this: boy meets girl. Boy and girl become friends. Boy develops crush on girl. Girl dates some biker guy. Boy is heart broken. Girl gets mistreated and goes crying to boy. Boy happily gives girl counseling. Girl goes back to biker guy. Boy is heart broken. Biker guy leaves girl after sleeping with her. Girl goes crying to boy. Boy again happily gives girl counseling. Girl finds new biker guy. Boy is heart broken. Process repeats for 10 years. Girl then finally marries boy. Boy is happy. Nice guy finishes last. Not. Girl cheats on boy and has biker guy’s child. Boy may or may not find out. Either way, boy raises biker guy’s kid with girl. Girl cheats several more times. Weather he finds out or not, boy ends up being a faithful father, but has a nervous breakdown. His poor example raises a boy. Who meets girl. And the next generation starts and ends much the same way.
What’s wrong with this picture? If we were animals without a conscience who are accidents of an evolutionary process, this may not seem so out of whack. But we’re not. And as far as I’m aware, this sort of process has never really happened before. Entire towns have been sexually immoral to the point where everyone sleeps with everyone (Sodom and Gomorrah are two fine biblical examples) but as far as I know, there has never before been what I call “the nice guy epidemic”. The dilemma is that girls keep going for assholes, nice guys turn out to be "cuddle bunnies" only, and girls complain about the assholes, yet they never (or rarely) go for the nice guy; they stick with the asshole. Why is that?
The answer is simple, and I will put it very bluntly: a girl would rather have an asshole then a passive coward; or at least somebody who comes off as a passive coward. Just as men are typically attracted to feminine qualities, women are attracted to masculine qualities. It’s the root of our sexuality, the essence of our design. Long story short, assholes possess more masculinity then nice guys. Or, I should say, are expressing more masculinity. So, do nice guys really finish last? NO. If they do, chances are they’ll be cheated on or won’t have a successful marriage. See my above little story again.
But here's another issue. I'm sure you've heard a nice guy say “Women are confusing: they say they want a nice guy but then they go after the asshole. I'm sick of just being a friend. They just don’t know what they want”. NO, women know exactly what they want, and they are not speaking in some morse code either. When a woman is saying she wants a nice guy, she’s simply stating what’s lacking from her asshole. It’s fairly obvious that women don’t want an asshole; they keep saying that they don’t like assholes and I don’t believe for a second that they’re lying or fooling themselves. But assholes are expressing masculinity, and this is what women are going to be attracted to. A nice guy is typically everyone’s little helper. He’s submissive, comes off as weak, sometimes even a coward, he turns the other cheek and avoids conflict, he allows himself to be whipped in the first week of a relationship and is passive in his behavior. He may be terribly romantic and never abuse you, lie to you, or cheat on you, but are you kidding me? Even with the faithful romantic side, who wants to date a guy like that? I’m a guy, and even I can say that (I believe that if a guy can’t be a role-model for other men, he’s generally not going to be highly dateable material). There is a serious lack of masculinity in the nice guy behavior pattern. But this in no way means that a nice guy has no masculinity. Even worse, it means that it’s bottling up somewhere, somehow. And anything that’s bottled up eventually blows up. Does the story of an incredibly nice guy by appearance who is secretly abusive come to mind? I have read several stories of nice guys who get married and then end up turning into monsters because their primal instincts are lost and out of control. Or the reverse happens and they stay submissive and passive until their wives either end up leaving them, or they the men instead turn to drugs and suicide for comfort. Clearly extreme examples, but they are important to take note of nonetheless. Boys will be boys, and if that doesn’t seem apparent, something is wrong.
Wow. What a mess. It’s either one extreme or the other. What about that in-between happy medium? Assholes are no good, neither are nice guys, and nice guys who turn crazy are a far cry from the ideal man. So what is this ideal man and where did he go? This ideal man is called a “good guy”. Not a nice guy, a good guy; and he started to disappear from our western culture in the 1960’s. The 1960’s was full of revolutions which brought upon the downfall of masculinity to where it is today with the promotion of metro sexuality, oppression of masculinity, and prevalence of either nice guys or assholes (especially in our younger generation) with a swarm of women who want neither. Should I even mention the recent emo trend? The 1960’s was the age where they took prayer out of public schools, starting teaching more evolution, there was the boom of the feminist movement complete with a sexual revolution (aka let’s throw our sexuality in the trash), and hippies tried to take over the world with their distorted chronic peace messages. Now in mentioning the feminist movement, I realize whole heartedly that one reason the movement started was because of the oppression and maltreatment of women over the ages, and in that regard I support it 100%. But along with everything else at the time, the feminist movement gave some very misguided messages which have lead to the current oppression of masculinity, pushing men to the extremes of being either a nice guy or an asshole. Why the men of our society couldn’t hold our ground and start treating women properly while holding on to their masculinity is beyond me. Clearly, men are at fault just as much as women. And women aren’t exempt from losing their femininity from all this either. Because of the sexual revolution, woman have been lead to believe that their sexuality is supposed to be used to control and gain power over men, that men are evil and they don’t need them (we both need each other for very important reasons), unmarried sex can be simply entertainment (trying to deny or get rid of the commitment aspect) among a bunch of other issues such as pro-abortion as a form of birth control. I feel women are losing grasp of their true sexuality just as much as men are. In other words, the amount of dishonesty and promiscuity seems to be through the roof at the moment. But as I’m not a woman, I’m going to focus on talking mostly about men here. Now, in saying all of this, I don’t mean to point fingers at anybody. These are just some of the events and things I’ve seen which I believe have had a major impact on what we perceive our roles and behaviors as men and women to be. Men and women are equal, no doubt. But we’re different, and nobody should try to deny that. If we do, we end up with the boy meets girl story, which many of us can attest to being reality. However, biologically we have not lost our primal instincts. The very fact that a lot of men, nice guys included, get uncomfortable around flamboyant metro sexuality and emos is clear that we haven’t changed biologically as evolution might have us believe (The popularity of the movie Fight Club especially comes to mind also, and I believe it caters to nice guys who want to be released from their chains). But no, we haven’t changed at all; we’ve simply been misguided and wrongly influenced by both our parents and by society. If your parents grew up as part of the 1960’s revolution or later, then you can be carrying part of the generational burden I believe is influencing our downfall as sexual creatures.
But who’s really to blame for this epidemic and what can we really do? With something as broad as this we cannot accurately point fingers and effectively pinpoint the root cause. I realize that I’ve talked about feminism, hippies, the sexual revolution, and the subsequent lack of effective parenthood since then, but all of that is old news. What we can do now, is look at ourselves in the mirror and see if or how we are part of the problem. Change starts from within us. What I find really helps is thinking about the kind of example you want to set for your kids. I’m sure no guy wants their kid to think they’re a coward or an asshole, and I’m sure no woman wants their kid to see them as an unfaithful adulteress who lacks motherly qualities. As I look around, I see a serious lack of noble fathers. I don’t want to be part of that trend, and you shouldn’t either. And girls, you hold a level of responsibility in effective fatherhood as well (if interested in what you can do, I’ve heard good things about “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands”, a book by Dr. Laura Schlessinger. You can also try reading “Wild at Heart” by John Eldredge as it gives insight into a man’s heart).
However, beyond our personal battles, society and the media tag team as I mentioned play a big role in our perception and influence. I’d like to give a few examples of the media nice guy plague. First, as much as I love “Friends”, are Joey, Ross and Chandler really what you would consider to be real men? Or are they passive cowardly nice guys? What about Eric Forearm? And should I even have to mention Will and Grace? It’s so bad that in order to be politically correct in keeping the character Starbuck, the new Battlestar Galactica series had to turn him into a girl. That was pathetic. If they wanted a tough girl in the show, they should’ve kept Apollo’s girlfriend from the original. Now, I don’t even need to ask if girls find the above guys attractive (although I’m sure some do to an extent), but I’d like the girls who are reading right now to list all the movie characters that come to mind when you think of an attractive guy. If characters played by Russell Crowe, Mel Gibson, Kevin Costner, Keanu Reeves (for some), and Brad Pitt come to mind, then my point is proved. They often play noble characters that could be considered good guys or what I’ll soon be talking about, tender warriors. But none of them would be labeled as either nice guys or assholes.
So let’s start defining what a good guy is. You’re probably sick of hearing about nice guys and assholes; why not start to focus on the positive instead? What really makes a good guy? How is a good guy different from a nice guy? What is true masculinity? How the heck can we men reclaim our sexuality??? First, let me lay out the four pillars of masculinity – king, warrior, mentor and friend. These four pillars I believe define the scope and nature of true masculinity. So to define what a good guy is supposed to be, let's take a deeper look at each pillar of manhood. Man was initially designed to be a king, a ruler. When G-d created Adam, Adam was given dominion over the earth (which he later gave to satan, who still controls it today; this is why things are so messed up at the moment). A king has the responsibility of protecting his kingdom and its people; to oversee the future and provide direction. A man should be able to protect his family and secure its future. An asshole can’t do this because he lacks compassion, and a nice guy can’t do this either because he lacks assertiveness. A warrior also protects his kingdom; as well he serves his king and fights for a noble cause. This means a man, as strong as he is, always has someone whom he answers to, whether this be his own parents (whom he protects into old age), his Heavenly Father, or his country. He will also chase after, fight for, and protect the love of his life. As corny as it sounds, a man should be a knight in shining armor that sweeps his girl and takes her on an adventure. Life wasn’t created to be boring! An asshole is incapable of being a warrior as he does not value the needs of others, only himself. A nice guy cannot fulfill the role either as he cannot deal with conflict and fight for what he believes in. As we mentioned, nice guys are typically passive in their behavior. But if we go halfway and take the compassion of a nice guy and masculinity of the asshole, we get what's called a "tender warrior", which is a term I like to use to represent masculinity in balance. Next, as a mentor one provides guidance in life. A man must be able to guide his family spiritually and prepare them for the world. The role of a father is so incredibly important. He must set an example for his daughter so she understands true masculinity and is therefore able to seek it out in a future husband of her own. He must show his son the ropes and teach and inspire him to grow up and become a true man as described in this very paragraph. How many fathers do you see who are fulfilling this role? Most people when you ask them about their father get a look of disappointment on their face. Why do you think that is? Assholes are incapable of fulfilling the mentor role because they first of all lack wisdom to pass on, and second of all, they lack the compassion and leadership skills to want to do it and also to effectively do it. A lack of effective fatherhood will poorly influence the next generation, and distort their perceptions of their Heavenly Father. But a real man guides, serves, and sets a good example for his family. It would be very difficult, however, and sometimes even impossible for him to do without a strong mother at his side. Although I’m talking about manhood and masculinity, I want to throw in here how important a wife is to her husband, and how important motherhood is. Both husband and wife are equal, but they are different. If you put a car and a doll in front of a 6 month year old baby, nine times out of ten the baby boy will reach for the car and the baby girl will reach for the doll. Nobody taught them that, it’s instinct. We’re different. The last pillar of masculinity is friend. A true friend is accountable and trustworthy. A man therefore must be accountable to his friends and his family. He will be his wife’s best friend. An asshole cannot fulfill this pillar of masculinity because he is not going to be trustworthy, and the only thing he can be held accountable for is satisfying his own needs. He may seem to satisfy your own needs, but it’s in order to get what he wants, therefore making the gesture a selfish one. If it was a true gesture he would not be an asshole now, would he? A nice guy will most definitely be trustworthy (at least in the beginning), and he may seem accountable… but accountable for what? As we all know, if a nice guy can fulfill this pillar of masculinity but be lacking in all other three, what does that make him? A friend. And isn’t that what all nice guys typically end up being… just friends? There is a reason for that, and Lord help you if you don’t get it by now.
I should take the time to write an entire note dedicated to good guys; a portrait of genuine manhood and masculinity. At the same time I should also set aside the time to praise true femininity, something that is disappearing because there are no good men to win over the hearts of these women (and part of the reason there are no good men is because of a lack of true femininity… I don’t know how it started, but let’s not go in circles). But to finish off, let me leave you with an unusual example of a true good guy who was in no way an asshole; yet the furthest thing from a stereotypical passive / cowardly nice guy. This is a man who rebelled against the norm. He confronted proud and self-righteous men, telling them exactly what was wrong with them; how hypocritical they were. He stood up to political leaders, showing them how incompetent they were and how twisted their laws had been. He faced such men who could have sentenced the death penalty to him, and yet he showed no fear. He openly debated these sorts of men in public, unashamed and hiding nothing. He was tempted by a dictator to conform to his lies and rule with him, but in good conscience exposed the fool and cast him away immediately. His students are sometimes afraid to ask him questions because they’re fearful of what his response may be. He even has called his students dumb and dull, asking how long he will have to endure their presence. He then tells his students that people will hate them for following him. This man also hangs out with drunkards, prostitutes, and government officials most of us would like to see out of office. He was tempted by some of the most beautiful women, but resisted, remaining faithful. He was an outdoors man who escaped to the wild for rejuvenation. He actually had no permanent place to live and was also jobless for several years while he dedicated himself to accomplishing his goal. He was bold, assertive, blameless and strong willed.
But yet, in the midst of all this, this man had done absolutely nothing wrong. He had broken no law, nor had he done anything unrighteous. He was a perfectly sinless man who did what he did out of true love. And we killed him for it. That man is Yeshua the Messiah, He whom the world calls Jesus Christ, and He allowed himself to be killed so that we might be saved from the consequences of our wrongdoings which result in death. The reason I use Messiah as an example is because our view of Him seems to have become skewed, and Christian men are expected to act like the skewed portrayal of Messiah, a source of the nice guy epidemic. Yeshua did preach love, truth, grace, and hope, but only to those who were humbled and appreciated such a message. To the rest of society He was anything but a passive, weak, cowardly nice guy figure. But He was also no asshole. The Good News of Mark most adequately covers the rugged events in Yeshua's life. I hope that men take after such an example and re-claim their masculinity instead of trying to be a nice guy and bottling up their true instincts; instincts which will be forced to come out one way or another.
The reason I’m writing this is because I was for a time, a full fledged member of the nice guy epidemic. When I decided to go back to school, it was a decision to turn my life around and become a “good kid”. In doing this I tried to conform to what society was telling men they ought to be like… nice guys. As a result, I kept most of my masculinity a secret and the only masculinity I seemed to have going for me was Taekwon-do training and working out, both of which ended up having to be cut out of my life due to injuries. I was then a portrait of the ultimate nice guy, void of masculinity and trying to be everything to everybody while denying who I really was. This denial eventually caused me to lose several friends, and that was the start of a series of wake-up calls. 2x4’s across the back of the head if you will (see my previous article “What really matters?”). I’m now posting this to share what wisdom I seemed to have acquired. It may not be much, but it’s my two cents. Specifically for the nice guys out there who are saying to themselves “what’s going on eh?” or “wtf mate?”
Seriously, as both men and women, it’s time we reclaimed our sexuality and act the way we’re designed to act. G-d made us sexual creatures with sexual desires and a whole bunch of other feelings and emotions for a reason. Let’s not misuse, abuse and distort that. Rather, let’s embrace our sexuality and get rid of pansy nice guys and stupid assholes. MEN: G-d calls on us to be righteous and holy – king, warrior, mentor, and friend - not emo. Amen to that!