The other day, I was thinking about the next article to write and the importance of the subject matter. Specific content relevant to readers was the driving force needed to some of the questions I was asking myself. I don’t want to waste your precious time with meaningless, useless, empty words. I began to write out the questions to help me arrive at some answers.
- What is missing today?
- How does culture affect character?
- Why is it so hard to be truthful with self and others?
As I began to study the questions, I arrived at the startling revelation that Chivalry, Honesty, and Integrity are deprived from our society. Men today lack the basic knowledge that help forge our culture. I don’t trust that our culture should be so strong in that it dictates the decisions we make daily, but it does, and that’s why we’re in a tailspin of moral decline.
Unfortunately, younger men have less opportunity these days to learn valuable skills that make them men because their fathers received little to no training themselves. It’s a rare thing for a man to change the course of his history and legacy by standing up to say, “I’ll be better than my father, I will show my sons how to do life right.” It’s much easier for them to follow the model they were accustomed to while growing up. It worked for their father and grandfather, and it’ll work for them, right? Here in lies the problem. Please, don’t get the idea that I’m assigning failure to all fathers, because I’m not. Your father may be great and honorable. My dad was, but he would be the first to tell you that it was his mission to train me to be better then him. He always said that it was important for me to know that I was only successful if he provided strong shoulders for me to stand on.
In this article, I want to take a closer look at the role fathers play in the lives of their sons in society by measuring with certain variables their progression, or in some cases, recession to becoming men. I will set out to answer the first question with the knowledge gained from my own experiences over the years and from the wisdom passed down from my father.
What is missing today?
That’s a good question, and a tough one too. I could think of several things off the top of my head that are missing elements from the culture in which we live:
- Thinking: Reading, meditating, reflecting
- Communication: Engaging in mature conversations
- Morality and decency: Courtesy, civility, dignity
- Patience: Fortitude, calmness, composure
Chivalry. This word is the sum of the above-mentioned bullet points. It’s the starting point for becoming a man in a culture gone mad with self-inflicted narcissism. Chivalry is not dead, just forgotten. It embodies four distinct components missing today. They are: Courtesy, Generosity, Valor, and Dexterity of Arms (the ability to use your hands to work). Chivalry is MIA. Our adversary, the devil, has made one point very clear: Take away the four components of chivalry and mankind breaks down internally. He has succeeded in doing so.
Have you noticed that not too many men hold doors open for their wives or girlfriends or anyone? When was the last time you witnessed a young man walk through a door after someone else? Or help someone load up something heavy in their vehicle? The Golden Rule can’t be caught, it must be taught!
The same goes for valor. No one stands up for another in a dispute or argument anymore, fearing rejection or bodily injury themselves. We don’t want our easy little lives to be even more complicated with someone else’s mess, especially a strangers. Doing what’s right has been exchanged for complacency. Being brave and standing up for one’s own beliefs is deemed outdated and unpopular, Neanderthal, and archaic. This thinking has led some in our culture to reject our brave men and women in the armed services regrettably.
Lastly, the ability to use our hands to work is almost non-existent. We live in a culture that teaches the idea of working hard and learning a skilled-trade is what our parents did. Young men today are satisfied with living in dad and mom’s basement pursuing a career in professional video gaming, or becoming the next greatest YouTube sensation with some silly gimmick in hopes of making millions. There’s no drive or ambition to succeed or become someone that betters themselves and society.
Being chivalrous is not nerdy or showing weakness. That’s the persona it seems to exude. I believe it’s the opposite. It represents someone with unmatched character and moral integrity that brings balance to their personality, exhibiting strength. You’re not born chivalrous of course, but you can learn it to be the example for future generations to come. There’s a perfect passage of scripture that fully represents chivalry. It’s found in 1 Peter 3:7,
“You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”
Chivalry doesn’t look down on everyone else as weaker individuals. It comes along side with understanding, honor, and the grace of life, like Apostle Peter mentioned.
Did you get something out of this first part to “Raising Men in a Culture of Boys”?
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