It’s becoming clearer to me that any growth that I experience in terms of my unfolding human spirit, very much depends upon letting go of many of the signature behaviours that I had been taught to think of as essential to being seen as a “manly man”. I think that they did more to take me away from what was authentic about myself than anything else. As a person, small in stature, I spent much of my time trying to become essentially “male”, taking on learned behaviors, and not paying attention to innate characteristics of my being.
Joan Chittister writes “The sorry truth is that the world bequeaths standards to us that are ancient and unproven, hostile and exclusive, unfriendly but determinative. What has “always been” takes on the aura of truth and requires us to commit ourselves to maintaining the system that spawned them”
To step outside that system and to explore a deeper truth requires courage and willingness to experience vulnerability. So taking a step back I ask, Who am I? Attempting to look beyond reductionist notions of tribe and clan and nationality and any other conditioning that might block me from seeing the truth of that I contemplate what it is to be human.