October 31, 2007

Journeyman - Documentary Film Premiere

It's finally happened. Some very good men have created a film that goes right to the heart of Man-Making. It's titled Journeyman. It is premiering in Minneapolis on November 15th, but will soon be available on a DVD. You can read all about the film, see a clip (bottom of the page), and soon be able to order the DVD at the producers website, mirrormanfilms.org

In you're involved in man-making work in any form, want to call men to serve boys, or just want to see what the bleeding edge of this work looks like, check out this amazing film. It's not Hollywood, but I guarantee it will change the lives of those who see it.

***** Highly Recommended

Remote Rites of Passage

This is one sacred rite of passage people rarely get to witness. It's usually done when no women are present. It's all about true male power and control, however remote.

Watch this and see if it doesn't hold some truth for you, even if you can't remember the transmission of this core masculine knowledge.

October 21, 2007

The Cost of Fatherlessness & Heroes

Brother Mustafa F. Mahdi is one of my Man-Making heroes. He is the founder and spiritual glue at The Rising Son, Inc. Young Men's Development Center, in Jonesboro, Georgia. The center's mission is to "reduce fatherless families by providing programs and activities designed to prepare young men for the challenges of manhood and responsible fatherhood."

In an world where the most common response to young males seems to be putting them in prison, Mustafa and his co-workers provide and amazing array of services through the Rising Son. After school and Saturday academic mentoring, summer day camps for boys, a Faithful Fathers mentoring program, and the Pathways to Manhood Rite of Passage program . . . just for starters.

As their website points out, "...our program provides Mentors to guide young men successfully on their "Journey to Manhood". Teaching our sons to be men before they become husbands and husbands before they become fathers, will break the devastating cycle of fatherless families."
"To be a man, you have to see a man"
To measure the challenge that this very good man and his allies are facing, check out the statistics just below, taken from their website. Because of the faith, courage, and relentlessness shown by Brother Mustafa and the good people at Rising Son, they are all my heroes and role models for all of us.


85% of all children that exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes (Source: Center for Disease Control)

90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes (Source: U.S. D.H.H.S., Bureau of the Census)

71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes (Source: National Principals Association Report on the State of High Schools.)

75% of all adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes (Source: Rainbows for all God's Children.)

63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes (Source: U.S. D.H.H.S., Bureau of the Census)

80% of rapists motivated with displaced anger come from fatherless homes (Source: Criminal Justice & Behavior, Vol 14, p. 403-26, 1978)

70% of juveniles in state-operated institutions come from fatherless homes (Source: U.S. Dept. of Justice, Special Report, Sept 1988)

85% of all youths sitting in prisons grew up in a fatherless home (Source: Fulton Co. Georgia jail populations, Texas Dept. of Corrections 1992)

The statistics above show that children from fatherless families are:

* 5 times more likely to commit suicide.

* 32 times more likely to run away.

* 20 times more likely to have behavioral disorders.

* 14 times more likely to commit rape.

* 9 times more likely to drop out of high school.

* 10 times more likely to abuse chemical substances.

* 9 times more likely to end up in a state-operated institution.

* 20 times more likely to end up in prison.

October 4, 2007

Be Very Afraid of Men!

In a recent post I profiled a September 6th, Wall Street Journal article titled Avoiding Kids: How Men Cope With Being Cast as Predators, written by Jeff Zaslow. In another article by Jeff, with the same theme, his title asks, Are We Teaching Our Kids To Be Fearful Of Men?

The article opens with this, When children get lost in a mall, they're supposed to find a "low-risk adult" to help them. Guidelines issued by police departments and child-safety groups often encourage them to look for "a pregnant woman," "a mother pushing a stroller" or "a grandmother." The implied message: Men, even dads pushing strollers, are "high-risk." Are we teaching children that men are out to hurt them? The answer, on many fronts, is yes. I really encourage you to read this article. As you’ll discover, Zaslow is naming a very dangerous trend.

The core message of the article is embedded in a quote from Peter Stearns, a George Mason University professor who studies fear and anxiety. Sterns says kids end up viewing every male stranger as a potential evildoer, and as a byproduct, there's an overconfidence in female virtues.

As a result of reading the piece I wrote to Jeff at the WSJ and thanked him for again identifying this alarming tendency to demonize men. I also asked, and challenged him, to use his position of influence to offer a counter point article. I suggested he profile just a few of the many good men who have overcome these formidable barriers and who are heroically committed to helping adolescent males step out on a positive journey toward manhood. We’ll see if he takes up that banner. But even if he doesn't, you can.

I challenge all my male readers to find something you can do, today, from your position of influence, to have a positive impact in the life of a young male? Will you overcome your own resistance, take a risk, make a difference, and buck the trend that is trying to cast all men as dangerous or uncaring?

The Man-Making book is full of suggestions for what you might do to get involved. I like to say that from the suggestions and examples offered up in the book, every man will find something he can do, regardless of his current level of commitment to this work. Just because I'm so worked up about this article I'm offering the Man-Making book to my blog subscribers at half-price. Here's the special link. Let's build an movement that fights this destructive notion about men and masculinity. Or how about just helping the boys. They are waiting.