Men’s Search for Meaning

When your desires are strong enough you will appear to possess superhuman powers to achieve.
– Napoleon Hill

I do not believe that a Man needs a wife to be whole or complete. Marriage is one of a number of possible roads to fulfilling something that men need in their lives.

There is a need hard-wired into men for service: Our strength means nothing if we can’t use it. Our competitiveness and aggression doesn’t bring us total satisfaction unless it leads to a long-lasting reward beyond the high of victory. Our mind atrophy if we don’t find fresh and valuable challenges for it regularly. Our needs for respect requires we have people in our lives that are constant and we have meaningful relationships with. Without these things we are essentially incomplete beings, we begin to develop holes where those needs aren’t met, and those in turn begin to eat away at our physical wellbeing.

Most importantly we need our lives to be meaningful. We need something worth pursuing and something worth sacrificing for. These needs, added up, can give a man that meaning.

When we have all of that, it becomes a feedback loop: Men put out their strength, their minds, and their competitive/aggressive energy, and are at their best. They reshape the world with it in the name of the Meaning they’ve found. In return, they replenish the source of their meaning, and get back even more love, more challenges, more respect. They find it all the more Meaningful.

Many men find completion in Marriage and Fatherhood. His hard work, the product of his strength, and the money he earns can go to creating a home, raising feeding, and creating a future for his children. Struggle in the workplace feeds important long-term goals of becoming a better provider and better protector. In a good marriage, living with a wife provides a man with an endless series of puzzles and mysteries from trying to connect with another person over the chasm of Gender. Raising children is an endless series of logistics puzzles and moral dilemmas. Both hone and sharpen the mind. A good wife provides a husband with a sense of respect and accomplishment.

It is not the only road to completion. Men can find all of these things in religion, in cults, in the military, in fraternal orders, in gangs, in social clubs, in working for an organization devoted to a cause, or in charity. I believe that before we can really begin to create a world in which Men can be whole and live lives that are healthy and happy we first need to understand this. That Meaning is something we find when we find a group or a cause that fulfils these needs.

To respect Men we have to see them as more than a provider and protector for Women. We need to see them as wells of Masculine Power that can loan their strength, and shape the world on behalf of anything that helps them find Meaning.

I believe that this is a fundamental part of the shift we need to make: instead of making men feel unwanted and unwelcome, our society will learn to start courting men, offering them a place to belong out of desire for that Power. We will cease to treat single men as suspicious outliers, and start seeing them as wells of potential to make a change and make the world a better place.

This also means we have to learn to respect men as human beings with needs, because it is through kindness, respect, and acceptance that the well is replenished.

I believe Women can already see this in Men, and it is part of what attracts them to us, and one of the reasons why they choose to marry. The current crisis in Marriage, I believe, stems from the fact that so few are raised to honour the potential that every human being represents, and realize how much we get from people by such a simple act of giving. Marriage gets disrupted by disrespect, hurt, and selfishness. We stop getting and so we stop giving. The Marriage stops providing Meaning and it takes great courage for one spouse or the other to get over themselves and begin giving again.

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