More on the Framework of Options

Reframing the choices from the Biblical viewpoint of the Prodigal Son.

Readership: Christian Men
Length: 2,100 words
Reading Time: 8 minutes

Introduction

I want to say a few things about the row between Eric and Oscar, since this has continued on for weeks now. Their back-and-forth argument is significant because it sums up the state of Christianity — not just modern Christianity, but the way it has always been.

According to my understanding of their argument, Eric wants to explore Option 1 in further detail, and Oscar is saying, “Don’t go there because it’s not a Christian approach.” Personally, I see nothing wrong in examining the choices, and I believe that clouding the choices with confusion, or to deprive one of a choice is somewhat evil. But this argument cannot be easily settled because there are more complicated issues involved, something like the iceberg analogy.

Our exploration of the Christian Conundrum is intended to help us understand the current situation of the SMP/MMP. Overall, we’re trying to build a coherent thesis that presents a collection of transferrable knowledge that might actually help somebody make sense of things. NovaSeeker did a nice job in laying out the options, and unfortunately, there aren’t many, and none of them are very attractive.

I know there is an assumption in the minds of readers that the main question of this exploration remains: “How can we interpret, understand, navigate, resolve, or ameliorate the conundrum?” …because everyone wants a “solution” to the suffering – and not only men, but some women too.

If we frame the options in terms of suffering, then this might help certain people get a better handle on things.

  • Option 1 (Adaptation/Compromise) has less suffering up front, but perhaps more later down the road of life.
  • Option 2 (Strong Hand/Law of the Jungle) offers success to only 30% of men, at most. Within this 30%, there are 10-20% who are naturals, and for them, there is very little suffering. The other 10-20% of men who are not naturals have to work to get into the game, and for them, there is just as much suffering as Option 1. For the remaining 70% of men who are not naturals and no amount of self-improvement can get them there, this option is a smorgasbord of suffering. Furthermore, this layout is highly unlikely to change as life progresses.
  • Option 3 (Single Tailored/Greener Pastures) has a great deal of suffering, but there is also a sense of adventure and challenge which may make the suffering worthwhile.

There is a fourth option, which has not been mentioned, and that is to form connections with people through faith, and see where that might take you. Personally, I think this is the best option, but it requires social dexterity, emotional vitality, charisma, and a certain level of spiritual maturity which is difficult and time consuming to obtain. The path of faith is unique to each individual, and too abstract to be able to wrap our minds around it and describe it in only a few words on a blog post.

Modern Prodigal Sons

The story of the Prodigal Son (a parable contained in Luke 15:11-32) comes to my mind here. (If you’re not already familiar with this story, please click on the link to read it at BibleHub.)

The older son believed that everything good in life was made and maintained by his own hands. So he made a special effort to do everything right, and he believed that he did so. He thought that since he was righteous (in his own eyes), then he deserved to have special favor. He thought that because he did everything right, then he should obtain the results he desired. But apparently, he was disappointed with the results he was getting, because he was still deeply dissatisfied with his life.

In other words, the older son was playing by Option 2, but he obviously wasn’t in the top 20-30% (described above).

This is similar to the “covert contract” described by Robert A. Glover in his book, No More Mr. Nice Guy. In Glover’s description, these covert contracts create social expectations and a roadmap for life that rarely results in the Nice Guy getting what he really wants. In comparison, the older son in the parable made covert contracts in his expectations of being (what he thought was) a good son, and when this didn’t turn out to be fulfilling, he became resentful towards his younger brother (an archetype of the fellow man) and his father (a figurative archetype of God).

It’s also the same story with the legalistic Judaizers whom St. Paul warned us against in Galatians 2:11-21. The Judaizers misinterpreted the words of the Covenant of Moses and assumed that God confines His expression of grace only to those who conform to the Judaic law (viz. those who follow the rules). The flip side of this coin carries the idea that God is “required” to grant certain blessings they desire simply because they can prove through semantic gymnastics that they obeyed the Mosaic law. In essence, it is a “salvation by works” approach to God. Jesus and St. Paul both warned us that this is hypocrisy, and that this mindset of legalism, once established within a social circle, is extremely difficult to escape. (See Matthew 16:6; Mark 8:15; Luke 12:1; and Galatians 5.)

From a mystical viewpoint, the root of legalism and hypocrisy is “pride” or “self-sufficiency”, but there is also an element of legalistic rule-keeping and a “works” mentality. It’s kind of like building your own little tower of Babel in your psychological outlook. In the past, I think I was like this in terms of me thinking that maintaining spiritual disciplines like prayer and reading the Bible should contribute to my spiritual growth and peace with God. I always thought there should be a cause-effect relationship there, but in my general experience, there is not.

PRODIGAL SON: L-R: Tom Payne and Michael Sheen in the “Pilot” series premiere episode of PRODIGAL SON airing Monday, Sept. 23 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. © 2019 FOX MEDIA LLC. Cr: David Giesbrecht / FOX.

Continuing on with my review of the story of the Prodigal son, the younger son took Option 1 in the context of the current discussion. He knew he was never going to get what he wanted most in life (women and sex) by being a Nice Guy — an outwardly good but inwardly resentful son like his older brother. He didn’t care about being right. He didn’t care about acting right, or obtaining any of the blessings thereof. He hated his father and his brother, and by demanding his share of the eternal inheritance to be presented to him in this present life, he rejected them and wished them to be dead. So he took a very practical course of action that would bring him what he wanted most – good times with some hot p*ssy!

But after he got what he wanted, and the consequences of his actions brought him to live among the pigs, he decided to come home, and he was enthusiastically received by his father (the archetype of God).

This is exactly what we see happening with those people who abandon the “rules” early in life. They navigate through the mess and eventually find what it is they were looking for, and then they “return home”. They resume a common Christian life script. They settle down, come back to church, get married, and so on. We know this to be the case with a few regular commenters, and we have even seen this happen with many men who were formerly PUAs, with Roosh being the star of the show. We might say that they learned to love God and His ways by experiencing first-hand the heartache and futility of the alternatives.

There are several takeaways from the story of the Prodigal Son. One is that both brothers got what they wanted, deep in their hearts. The older brother continually chose to be the self-righteous prig who was always “right”, yet remained emotionally distant, feeling unloved and unattached, and he got what he chose. Another big point is that neither son really loved their father and cherished their lives as His son. Instead, the older son loved his inheritance, legalism, and his own false self-righteousness, while the younger son loved hedonism and women. The older son insisted that everyone was wrong, including his father. The younger son faced the truth about himself, what he really wanted, and after going through that experience, he came to love and appreciate his father in the end.

Jesus said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37), but only the younger son was able to do that, and he was only able to do so at the end of the story. But we must not fail to notice that there was a cost to that. Ultimately, the older brother had to pay for the younger brother’s choices, which stoked his resentment to the maximum.

We still see this archetypal dynamic being played out among people today. Some might think this is a huge mess of a dysfunctional family. We might wonder how those two brothers ever managed to live together after the story ends. However, this dynamic glorifies God because it reveals our human nature as well as the depths of His grace and love — and that is the whole point!

The Return of the Prodigal Son, by Rembrandt Harmenzoon Van Rijn (1668).

Conclusions

Since we first introduced The Christian Conundrum at the beginning of this month, we’ve heard personal testimonies from various readers in the comments.

  1. Some people have followed the rules and got lucky in love and marriage, albeit a very small number of them.
  2. Others have followed the rules and lost out on a mate, or else had their marriages eventually blow up over some permutation of the issue of sex (or the absence thereof) in the marriage.
  3. Some broke the rules and ended up in solid marriages.
  4. Others broke the rules and then wound up divorced. I suppose we could say that this is the “expected” outcome.

Those stories that match (2) and (3) cause us the most confusion and frustration, because they are not the expected outcome. The resulting cognitive dissonance poses a challenge to our interpretation of the archetypal mythos because…

  • It destroys our mental concept of cause-and-effect.
  • It blows apart our false understanding about the nature of God.
  • It does not fit our human concept of what divine justice should be like.
  • It becomes impossible to form a mental model of an ideal “Christian” trajectory.
  • It makes us realize that we are not in control of our lives as much as we would like to believe.
  • We are reminded of the fragility of life, how helpless we are, and how much we must depend on God’s love and grace.

I tend to believe that those who broke the rules and yet were still “successful” were able to achieve these ends because their honesty, faith, and/or their love for their spouse (and God) was stronger than their shame, guilt, and/or fear of not adhering to the rules. Also of note, they were willing to do the Exploration vs. Exploitation Tradeoff and learn something and grow through the process. How many of us fail to take any action at all, because we know things won’t turn out as we want or expect (or from a darker perspective, because we know it will) — that there will occur some unexpected seismic shift by the hand of God that will change the entire context and put us at the mercies of God? Could this be a fear of trusting God? Or could it be a fear of suffering, turmoil, and paying the cost of maturation? Or maybe this is the same difference.

In summary of this post, as long as our mind is set on examining the rules, we’re still living under the law. We could be conscientiously examining the rules to see how well we measure up, or else we could be scrutinizing the rules looking for loopholes and justifications, and how much we can get away with. But either way, we’re still rule-minded and we’re still living under the law.

Instead of worrying about the rules, we should be concentrating on how to be more humble, opening our hearts, and exploring God’s will and purpose for our lives.

16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

Galatians 5:16-18 (NKJV)

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About Jack

Jack is a world traveling artist, skilled in trading ideas and information, none of which are considered too holy, too nerdy, nor too profane to hijack and twist into useful fashion. Sigma Frame Mindsets and methods for building and maintaining a masculine Frame
This entry was posted in Authenticity, Charisma, Conflict Management, Decision Making, Determination, Enduring Suffering, Freedom, Personal Liberty, Headship and Patriarchy, Identity, Introspection, Love, Maturity, Personal Growth and Development, Models of Failure, Models of Success, Perseverance, Prayer, Purpose, Relationships, Self-Concept, Stewardship, The Power of God. Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to More on the Framework of Options

  1. Eric Francis Silk says:

    There is a comic book adaptation of the Prodigal Son story that ends with the father telling the older brother “In his disobedience your brother is alive. You, in your resentful subservience, are dead. Do you think God wants mindless worshippers who can only follow instructions?”

    I’ve been the classic elder son for a long time. Followed the rules, didn’t get any results out of it, ended up resentful toward God. Now I’m trying to discover a way out of living like that.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. SFC Ton says:

    Being humble doesn’t get you any church going street cred

    Liked by 4 people

    • Jack says:

      “Being humble doesn’t get you any church going street cred.”

      No, it doesn’t. Humility is one of those few disciplines that is critically important for one’s relationship to God, but which is despised by other men. It’s also very difficult to be humble before God and proud in front of men at the same time.

      Liked by 4 people

      • SFC Ton says:

        I have a half formed theory on that which is most men never really f#ck up so most men never feel the real weight of their sin….. “I didn’t go to jail like that 81 guy so I’m a good dude and God knows it” type of vibe vs men feel the full weight of their sins, even if only occasionally

        Liked by 5 people

  3. Novaseeker says:

    Reading through this well-written post, I am reminded why I just don’t see how these kinds of discussions and disagreements can possibly lead anywhere productive, given that people are all over the place in terms of how they view broader spiritual issues, the spiritual life in general, their overall approach to religion and spirituality and the like. As I was trying to point out in my last post, we can compare notes about the same empirical phenomena we are encountering, and we can also compare anecdotal experiences and observations, but once you get to the level of prescriptive action, you hit an inevitable wall because this area is deeply and inherently involved in how one views one’s faith, one’s spiritual practice and process, one’s religion, how one fits this into one’s life approach in general, and related issues — all of which are most definitely not shared by the readers of this blog and the posters in these comboxes. So you get into areas that really are much less fruitful for discussion, and are much more ripe for wild disagreement precisely because they touch on these kinds of issues on which we so deeply differ, and which are, in turn, so deeply formative in each of us.

    It really is wall, and I do not think it is surmountable.

    My own tradition — Eastern Orthodoxy — tends to view these kinds of things as a question of corruption — whether one is indulging the passions or not in a way that creates a spiritual block inside of us — and not as legalism, or whether one is following the rules and avoiding punishment/cultivating a reward. But while there is of course always room for the prodigal son, that is an analogy that is used for all Christians at all times — we are always in need of constant repentance, until death — we are always all prodigals.

    So you don’t try to add to the problem intentionally by piling on more prodigality intentionally, and you do try to alleviate the problem by growth in theosis/holiness (which is really more a case of getting out of God’s way so that he can transform you), which is where constant return, constant repentance, constant forgiveness all are a part of the daily spiritual experience of an Orthodox. The idea isn’t either that one cant become a prodigal after one has been “saved” (we do not follow the tent revival model of Christianity), or that one can kind of duck the issue by pursuing prodigality because one has faith in God’s “ultimate” forgiveness/mercy/love or something like that, provided that one has a proper orientation towards works, law and grace according to 16th Century Swiss and German standards, but rather that one’s prodigality is a function of one being alive — we are all always prodigals — the “non-prodigal” son is, in fact, as much of a “prodigal” as the “prodigal” son is, in the eyes of an all-knowing, eternal God who knows all hearts and knows all of time. Our sin lies in judging others because we magnify the differences between us, which are small in the eyes of God, who sees us all as the prodigal sinners we are, and as more or less equal in this respect in his eyes. Orthodoxy proceeds from this premise to endorse personal effort and cooperation with grace (which we call “synergeia”) because salvation is a process due to our sinfulness — grace is open to us following baptism, true transforming grace, but it is not forced, it must be cooperated with, and every decision is a decision to cooperate with this transformative power, or to not do so. If you do not, then you are not transformed, and if you do that consistently, you can close the spigot of grace entirely, it is true, but the approach is not “rules”-based, per se, but rather the focus is on the kinds of things that you can do which close yourself off to receiving the transformative grace of God, and which therefore halt and, over time, can reverse the process of spiritual transformation that God works in you.

    This is why it is seen as an ongoing spiritual struggle — the struggle to get out of God’s way, to not place obstacles (sins) in the way of the operation of grace inside of us which retard or reverse the process — and not as a struggle to “obey rules to get a reward or avoid a punishment”. It isn’t a “law mentality” the way a Protestant would describe that, but it also isn’t a kind of “led by the heart” mentality, either — it is a true spiritual struggle, a spiritual war, a “podvig” in which salvation is not “won by works”, but rather is gradually made present in the individual by means of God’s transformative grace, provided one has not blocked/prevented/retarded that process by means of one’s own sins to the point where the process breaks down. In practice, this struggle means practicing the avoidance of sin by calling on God constantly to help you overcome sin when you face specific temptations to sin on a daily/hourly basis (relying on God, not your own efforts which alone will fail, but also being required to take the initiative and ask for his help, which means maintaining vigilance of oneself, and especially one’s thoughts and one’s “nous” (which is a word that describes one’s faculty for spiritual sight and communication — ones’ spiritual/soul eye), and where that is focused, and an maintaining an attitude of open communication with God on a constant basis by keeping the “nous” focused on God and not in passionate engagement with the world), and constantly turning to God as a prodigal with a repentant spirit on a daily, sometimes hourly basis, depending on our struggles, confident in God’s mercy, but also cognizant of our constant need for it and the help which is always springing from it as a gift when we ask for it in humility with a spirit of acknowledged need for it.

    What this means from a practical perspective in terms of the overarching discussion here is that one can’t, from an Orthodox point of view, endorse any approach that features approaching the issue with a premeditated idea of sinning in order to reach a specific goal — that is the opposite of a repentant attitude. However, it also means that one is very forgiving of someone who trips due to weakness, even repeatedly, by gently encouraging that person to understand that their weakness is shared (that is, not by playing the role of the so-called “non-prodigal” and chiding the “sinful” person in their sins or lecturing them) and encouraging them to turn to God in repentance for help in overcoming the temptation to sin. And then doing this seventy times seven times, not with increasing exasperation and a chiding, hectoring tone, or even worse a judgmental one (few things piss God off faster than when we claim to be less sinful than others, either directly or indirectly) as we watch them fall into the same pattern repeatedly, but always with gentleness and patience, as we see from Christ himself in dealing with people in serious sin.

    What does this mean in terms of how people approach the problem of finding a spouse in the current environment?? I think it means an Orthodox can only endorse avoiding sin to the extent possible — not for legalistic reasons of “earning salvation”, but rather so as to not block/retard/reverse the process of transformation at work in us through the Spirit’s action — but that, when sin happens (and we should expect it VERY frequently in this culture, given the specific challenges we live in), we avoid falling into the role of the “non-prodigal” son, but instead gently encourage repentance, seventy times seven times.

    In terms of actually finding that spouse, there isn’t an easy, overarching, turnkey, accessible-for-all solution that will yield the desired result, but it isn’t the church’s problem to solve. The church doesn’t tell you how to get a job, buy a house, invest in your retirement and so on — sure, you can scour the scripture and find guidance there, but the Bible isn’t a real estate investment analytical tool, a retirement portfolio analysis, a career counselor and the like. These are human challenges that we must bring our humanity to, and that includes an aspect of worldliness which is inevitable due to living in the world, yet one where must engage in the delicate dance of not becoming so worldly that we are spiritually tainted by the world and its values/ways/norms in a way that ends up retarding that ongoing transformative process of grace that is taking place inside of us.

    Again, we have to try to avoid sin not to avoid running afoul of rules and their punishment, but rather to avoid blocking this process of transformation — but at the same time when we sin ourselves, we need to be faithful enough to return to God immediately in repentance and ask for his help, and then in the future in temptation to ask with humility for his help in real time, constantly acknowledging our own weakness and our total need for his grace — and we need to be tolerant of others who are also failing in their struggles with temptation and encourage them, as fellow sinners, and not as the elder non-prodigal son. It’s a tapdance spiritually, for certain, and in a culture where sexuality is now one of the major culturally besetting sins (the other main ones being pride/greed/vainglory), the process of finding a spouse, which is tied together culturally with sex due to the tie-up of the SMP and MMP, is going to be very fraught with these issues. As a Christian, you need to be able to walk the tightrope in some of these tricky areas, and repent when you inevitably fall, and help others when they inevitably do as well – instead of approaching others with judgment, hectoring, superciliousness, superiority, chiding, and everything that reeks of non-humility (and which therefore brings more judgment on oneself).

    But I think this is very hard to do in the context of some Christian theologies.

    Many of the prevailing Protestant (or “I am not a Protestant, I am just a Christian” types of folks) types of theologies feature a kind of tent-revival Christianity whereby one is categorized as “saved”, or “not saved”, and which therefore does not see “salvation” as a process, but rather as a one-and-done event (with “sanctification” as being something that is clearly distinct from “being saved”, and, in the eyes of some, coming later as a process, but not being determinative of whether one is “saved”), the evidence of the effectiveness of which is assessed by means of “one’s walk with Jesus” (i.e., whether one commits sins, serious ones, after being “saved” … in which case perhaps one was not actually “saved” at all). That creates temptations for one to monitor one’s behavior in order to comply with the requirements of the law — but not as a means of “being saved”, but rather as a means of evidencing to oneself and others that one has “been saved” … of course — in a very strict way (because one who is saved would not, per this view, ever engage in a serious sin), and in a way that is trying to constantly separate the sheep from the goats, the wheat from the chaff so to speak — all while one claims that one is avoiding legalism and therefore spends a lot of mental energy constantly convincing oneself that one is not behaving legalistically. This creates an unending tension between the unavoidable reality of human sin, and the understanding of this theological system — a contradiction which tends to foster extreme levels of “supposedly non-prodigal son” syndrome, and precisely the kind of comparing oneself to others which lies at the heart of the admonition against judgmentalism to begin with, and it places these at the heart of the religious experience. In my view, this problem underlies much of the current problems being experienced by Christianity in North America, and in this specific context (“how can I find a spouse”) it has a substantial impact on viewpoints and perspectives.

    The Catholic approach to these issues has different problems (at least from an Orthodox perspective) that can veer into a legalistic mindset for a different set of reasons, but they aren’t my focus because they aren’t that influential either in these threads or in American culture generally –even among Catholics in the US themselves, most of the mainstream of which (i..e, novus ordo mass Catholics and not “TLM” Catholics) have a religious mindset that follows one or the other Protestant approaches, de facto, in the period following Vatican II.

    Orthodoxy has problems of judgmentalism, too (there’s a good reason why the Gospels are so hard on judgmentalism), particularly in our “uber-dox” fringe, but the main thrust of the faith is not laced with a kind of legalism like this, for the reasons I describe above.

    In any case, as I stated at the outset of this unfortunately long comment, this is where we hit the wall in these kinds of discussions, it seems to me. There is a point where we part ways, spiritually, with each other, in terms of such fundamental issues that we cannot see things the same way. We can understand our differences better, but we can’t see things the same way, and this will impact not only how we approach the “options” that are on offer, such as they are, it seems to me, but also how we will approach the threshold, prior, question of “how one should approach the question of how one should approach the options” and so on.

    Liked by 12 people

    • penumbrated says:

      Wonderfully articulated graced based correct explanation Nova. You and Jack are indeed a blessing to your fellow believers. May God continue to bless both your efforts!

      Liked by 5 people

    • cameron232 says:

      I’ve seen EO say that one thing Protestantism took from Roman Catholicism is an obsession with one’s spiritual status, whether one is saved or not, etc. A Western Christianity thing. Contrast with EO’s focus on holy mystery.

      Don’t forget the sacramental life.

      And history may have misunderstood Luther.

      http://www.touchstonemag.com/archives/article.php?id=13-06-041-b

      Liked by 2 people

    • Eric Francis Silk says:

      Protestant background, personally.
      The caricatured picture of Catholics and Eastern Orthodox that I grew up with was one where they believed that they could sin as much as they wanted, then go to confession, say their Hail Mary’s, and then go on as if nothing happened. Think of mafia movies where the Don orders a contract killing and then goes to Mass the next day.

      On the other hand, the Protestant view of sin was that a Christian would have moments of weakness, make mistakes, etc. But someone who deliberately chose to do something that he knew to be a sin was someone whose salvation was in doubt.

      Since we’re on the subject of the sex:
      Having sex with your girlfriend because the two of you “lost control” in the backseat of the car was one thing. Understandable. A mistake that can be repented from. You just have to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
      Intending to end up in bed with her, preparing for it, and then fully intending to do it again? Well that was a different matter entirely.

      Liked by 2 people

      • cameron232 says:

        In Catholicism (the traditional not the hippie kind) the idea that you can do what you want and go through the motions to get absolution is usually considered the sin of “presumption of God’s mercy.” So it’s not a get to sin for free card.

        Since Catholics believe in purgatory, the cleansing of the residue sin leaves on the soul, it’s not like there aren’t consequences to sin even if one receives sacramental confession and absolution or performs an act of perfect contrition (confession directly to God).

        “On the other hand, the Protestant view of sin was that a Christian would have moments of weakness, make mistakes, etc. But someone who deliberately chose to do something that he knew to be a sin was someone whose salvation was in doubt.”

        In Catholicism, a mortal sin is a sin that is a grave matter, is committed with sufficient reflection and full consent of the will. Willful sin is enacted unbelief.

        Traditional Catholics will sometimes say that grave sins that are extremely habitual (to the point of being an addiction) may not rise to the level of mortal sin. It may not be possible for an individual believer to know for sure but this is probably why you are required to go to confession at least once a year.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Eric Francis Silk says:

        Yes, as I mentioned, it was a caricature. I know that it isn’t really what Catholics think.

        Like

      • SFC Ton says:

        LOL I pay attention to what folks do

        Not so much what they say and have no idea what they think but cathloics have 0 more al standing with me.

        Because of what they do/ don’t do

        Liked by 1 person

    • redpillboomer says:

      Well said! I remind myself that the men and women of the ‘Christian Manosphere’ inherently have a leg up on the ‘Secular Manosphere’ even though in utlizing our faith-based views of intersexual dynamics we tend to struggle syncing up the Truth (scriptural Truths) with the truth (studies, statistics, observations–ours and others, personal life experiences, etc). The ‘leg up’ is we have access to the Truth, capital T, and the secular manosphere does not. What I’m finding, is gradually in a roundabout manner, I’m working my way back to the scriptural truths on male-female relations in something like this pattern:
      Read the Bible for years, came across passages dealing with men and women, i.e. Genesis, Proverbs, Gospels and Epistles>saw truths, but had trouble linking it all up because it occurred as so spread out through 66 books> going through my adult life with a ‘Blue Pill mindset’ thinking ‘I get this stuff about the sexes’ becuase a) I’m a believer, and b) my life experiences mounting up over time>3 years of so ago–KA WHAM! I get ’emotionally t-boned’ and wonder ‘What in the he#@ just happened to me?’ Can’t figure it out>Go looking for answers, find secular manosphere on line, start to ‘get it,’ get enraged…with MYSELF for being so ‘ignorant’ about this stuff about the sexes>Listen to secular manosphere, learn things about female nature (male too), rage subsides, hunger to learn increases, BUT after awhile, my Christian conscience says to me, “Hmm, I can agree with these secular manospherians ‘up to a point;’ however, I have to find CHRISTIAN men (and women) who are doing the Red Pill thing because I can only go so far with these secular men’s views and how they want to apply those views out in the world (PUAs, players, MGTOW monks, etc)>Discover Dalrock and think, “Ah, this is much better!’..then he closes his blog down…Discover this blog next, “Ah, now I see there’s quite a few of us, men and women, working this stuff out together!” Fantastic!!>Now, slowly working on syncing up what I’ve learned the last three plus years in the ‘Sphere with the Scriptures realizing, it’s all in there, in the Bible, at least all the major concepts we discuss about the sexes>Once synced up, NOW I can better help others (already can help quite a bit), but still working a lot of it out for myself; however what I know seems to be way beyond what the average person in our society knows–same with all of you too! And there are people on here who seem to know WAY more than me, so this is great! Just GREAT to be with all of you in this journey to the Truth!

      Liked by 4 people

    • lastholdout says:

      @Novaseeker
      “Reading through this well-written post, I am reminded why I just don’t see how these kinds of discussions and disagreements can possibly lead anywhere productive, given that people are all over the place in terms of how they view broader spiritual issues, the spiritual life in general, their overall approach to religion and spirituality and the like. . . .”

      I’m not Orthodox but got a lot out of your (long) comment. This is a well-moderated blog and it seems to attract men of like mind who are looking to understand –men who aren’t afraid of hearing something that challenges their belief which in turn helps them get to the next level. We have to police ourselves and recognize when we’re becoming antagonistic rather than respectfully sharing or challenging. I see it as iron sharpens iron.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Sharkly says:

      “few things piss God off faster than when we claim to be less sinful than others, either directly or indirectly”
      If that were true, Job’s friends would have been right about him. But God said that righteous Job, who had protested and maintained his relative innocence compared to other men, was right, saying, “For ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath.” Then God said He was angry with the friends instead and made them ask Job to pray for their forgiveness in order for God to forgive them.

      Job never claimed to be sinless, just that most of it was in his youth.

      I’ll make this simpler. God doesn’t like hypocrites. But, the very righteous, or relatively more righteous aren’t silenced regarding their testimony. It just bugs people, not God. God knows their heart. Don’t make our God guilty of anthropomorphic flaws like woke human indignation at a man’s honest claim of superiority. If a man claims to be smarter than another, it will bother the other whether he is right or wrong. Likewise, if a man claims to be more acceptable to God than another it will bother the other whether he is right or wrong. However, just because something might sound like it was spoken out of pride, doesn’t make it so. And to “humbly” say otherwise in false humility could make you guilty of lying, or the sin of flattery.

      Jesus doesn’t want to be represented by a bunch of silver-tongued politicians. He himself was a rock of offense. Don’t presume that God is angered when the relatively innocent protest their relative innocence or maintain their integrity like Job did. Even if it might bother others. God was proud of Job, and even instructed Satan to consider Job’s ways of fearing God and fleeing from evil. That’s a pretty powerful endorsement by God Himself of a man who maintained his own integrity even in the face of “churchian like” accusations of pride. You don’t have to keep your light under a bushel basket of false humility. The apostle Paul said, “Be ye imitators of me, even as I also am of Christ.” Did that piss off God? Or was Paul right in saying that they all should try to step up to his level?

      Just make sure that you’ve got it, before you flaunt it, so that you don’t wind up a hypocrite. But don’t be hindered from speaking the truth, especially for a good cause.

      Liked by 4 people

      • lastholdout says:

        In other words, if we wait until we are sinless before we call out sin in another (especially a husband to a rebellious wife –as the modern churchians seem to propagate) then it will never happen. I like to look at the apostles as a model for how sinners should operate. Although sinners, they carried forward with the Gospel and didn’t hold back citing the sin of others.

        “Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.” (Heb 12:4 [KJV])

        Matthew Henry provides a balanced view of Hebrews 12:4:
        “He owns that they had suffered much, they had been striving to an agony against sin. Here, (1.) The cause of the conflict was sin, and to be engaged against sin is to fight in a good cause, for sin is the worst enemy both to God and man. Our spiritual warfare is both honourable and necessary; for we are only defending ourselves against that which would destroy us, if it should get the victory over us; we fight for ourselves, for our lives, and therefore ought to be patient and resolute. (2.) Every Christian is enlisted under Christ’s banner, to strive against sin, against sinful doctrines, sinful practices, and sinful habits and customs, both in himself and in others.”

        Liked by 2 people

      • Oscar says:

        In other words, if we wait until we are sinless before we call out sin in another (especially a husband to a rebellious wife –as the modern churchians seem to propagate) then it will never happen.

        Exactly.

        I like to look at the apostles as a model for how sinners should operate. Although sinners, they carried forward with the Gospel and didn’t hold back citing the sin of others.

        And each other. St. Paul called out St. Peter’s sin in Galatians 2. God commands us to warn sinners of His judgement. He doesn’t hold us responsible for the sinner’s repentance, or unrepentance. He holds us responsible for our obedience, or disobedience.

        Ezekiel 3:18 When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. 19 Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul.

        Liked by 3 people

    • One request, Novaseeker: can this be elevated to a post in its own right, please? It’s well worth it.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. professorGBFMtm2021 says:

    ”Leave a legacy that others will not soon forget”!You want more sacred OPTIONS,”If your living a dull&uneventful life”?Most prodigal sons will have to go trans-daughter, like tfh/anon use to say!!Evidence?The trans-evangelist pioneer sister
    Paula neilsen,taking it all off(Which will soon be enshrined in law!) in traditional holy living year of ’63!
    Be free to sin,divorce&disobey anything you want while having a highly desirable, rocking body, worthy of all minz&wimminz worship
    I’m suppose to take churchians serious?Really!?
    P.S.All should be careful,vaginas are easily ”scared” or ”abused” depending on the individual one!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oscar says:

    @ Jack

    According to my understanding of their argument, Eric wants to explore Option 1 in further detail, and Oscar is saying, “Don’t go there because it’s not a Christian approach.”

    Nope. That’s not what I’m saying at all. I never told anyone what to do or what not to do. I warned about God’s judgement. Heeding the warning or ignoring it is entirely up to the listener.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Eric Francis Silk says:

      You’re warning about what you have decided will result in God’s judgement, which is tantamount to telling people what to do.

      Hosea 4:14.
      The modern world will not be punished; it IS the punishment.

      So how do we survive in the midst of it?

      Like

      • Oscar says:

        @ Eric

        You’re warning about what you have decided will result in God’s judgement

        Wrong. I don’t get to decide what “will result in God’s judgement”. And neither do you. God does.

        which is tantamount to telling people what to do.

        Wrong again. I’m not telling you what to do. The Holy Spirit, through your conscience, is telling you what to do. If you choose to continue to ignore His voice, your conscience will become “seared as with a hot iron” (1 Tim 4:2).

        Hosea 4:14.
        The modern world will not be punished; it IS the punishment.
        So how do we survive in the midst of it?

        Who’s “we”?

        Joshua 24:15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Eric Francis Silk says:

      “I don’t get to decide what will result in God’s judgement”.
      Thanks for the admission. Now stop talking as if you do. You don’t speak for God.

      “Who’s we?”

      Old (not very PC) joke:
      The Lone Ranger is faced by a horde of Indians.
      He turns to Tonto. “We’re sure in a lot of trouble this time”.
      Tonto replies, “Who is ‘we’, kemosabe?”

      Says it all, really. I’ll let you figure out which one is you in this analogy.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oscar says:

        Hey, I got a better one for you. What fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)

        Liked by 1 person

    • Eric Francis Silk says:

      For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers-,Matthew 23:4

      Is that you Oscar?

      Was man made for the Sabbath or was the Sabbath made for man? Did David sin by eating the showbread?

      Again, I’ll point you to Hosea 4:14. The young people of today didn’t create the world we now find ourselves living in. Our parents and grandparents left it to us. We aren’t responsible for the sexual revolution. We aren’t going to overthrow it in our lifetimes. The best we can do is try our best to survive in the midst of it and do what we can to make it easier for others. What can we do other than work, sleep, and do the best we can?

      Like

      • For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers-,Matthew 23:4

        Is that you Oscar?

        Was man made for the Sabbath or was the Sabbath made for man? Did David sin by eating the showbread?

        Again, I’ll point you to Hosea 4:14. The young people of today didn’t create the world we now find ourselves living in. Our parents and grandparents left it to us. We aren’t responsible for the sexual revolution. We aren’t going to overthrow it in our lifetimes. The best we can do is try our best to survive in the midst of it and do what we can to make it easier for others. What can we do other than work, sleep, and do the best we can?

        Uh, no.

        The NT epistles were written to men and women in a MORE sex saturated culture than us. Men and women were openly banging temple prostitutes, having sex with their father’s wives (1 Corinthians 5), and things like that. Pederasty/pedophilia (men having sex with young boys) was common in Greek and Roman culture.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pederasty_in_ancient_Greece

        Scripture called these men and women to avoid sexual immorality and save sex to marriage.

        Your “cultural relativity” arguments don’t work. Stop advocating for Christians to sin.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Oscar says:

        For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers-,Matthew 23:4

        Is that you Oscar?

        No. I never bound any burdens on anyone. I never even told you what to do. Nor did you ask for any help. In fact, I offered possible solutions, which you rejected. Remember?

        By the way, did you notice how I answered your question directly and honestly the first time you asked it? Why are you incapable of doing the same?

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Lance says:

    Of course we know what will result in God’s judgement, sin. We are called to call out sin, we are called to judge. There’s a way to do it that I don’t claim to be good at, but we better not be the non-judging types.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. The older son believed that everything good in life was made and maintained by his own hands. So he made a special effort to do everything right, and he believed that he did so. He thought that since he was righteous (in his own eyes), then he deserved to have special favor. He thought that because he did everything right, then he should obtain the results he desired. But apparently, he was disappointed with the results he was getting, because he was still deeply dissatisfied with his life.

    In other words, the older son was playing by Option 2, but he obviously wasn’t in the top 20-30% (described above).

    Agree with the first paragraph but strongly disagree with the conclusion (2nd paragraph).

    The older son is jealous of the attention the younger son is getting from the father (e.g. Pharisees are jealous of the attention Jesus was giving to the sick, sinners, and the poor). The father reminds him that everything he has is already his, so there’s no reason to be disgruntled. It’s an inferiority complex. It’s in no way advocating that the older son is either in the top 20% or not top 20% in any way or the other.

    If anything. however, one could say that the older son is already in the top 20% (he has everything his father has) but he thinks he’s bottom 80%.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Jack says:

      Deep Strength,
      You could be right. Being either an older or younger son doesn’t correlate to which Option is chosen, nor one’s SSMV ranking. But I think being in the upper 20% does correlate to satisfaction. That’s why I came to that conclusion.

      Like

  8. professorGBFMtm2021 says:

    EVERYBODY
    Words,facts,proper grammar,chartz&graphz,life-style &nothing else matters, if you desire to be conformed to this devolved world!So go forth all prodigal sons&daughters of the false king into the brave new world of neo-fertility cults!!Just don’t call us evil judgemental types,When your new friends leave you for newer friends is mainly what were saying to all the little neo- hipsters!P.S.All my chapter&verses good enough to prove anything&keep others out of the lake of fire!?

    Like

  9. Random Angeleno says:

    I think it comes down to taking solace in Job and Hosea.
    For most men, it is our lot in life to suffer. That can’t be papered over and won’t be anytime soon. So it’s back on us to decide how we will bear that suffering as that is the only thing left that is really under our control. Since every man has his own course of action, there can be no consensus across most men. None. I now understand more why Rollo always stuck to the descriptive while avoiding the prescriptive. All that time I read him looking for the prescriptive, there was little of that in his writing and definitely no consensus among his commenters.

    I played the blue pill older brother. Today I have little to show for that, but at least it is not nothing as there are still things in my life that I am grateful for. I could be angry and bitter, but I have chosen not to. This is a conscious choice I have to remake regularly even now, long after I reverted to the Church. There are days when I feel like that tax collector in Luke 18:9-14 and those days will never go away. So what I do for Lent these days: pray every day with as much gratitude as I can muster. Women? Sure I would still like one in my life even at my age, but the available ones in my SMV range are all as broken as I am and the glass shards … let’s not go there. I’ll pray again for gratitude. And again. And again. Seventy times seven.

    Liked by 7 people

  10. professorGBFMtm2021 says:

    SOME of you:ITS OVER PROFESSOR!!!NOTHINGS OVER!!!(Professor:YOU CAN’T JUST TURN IT OFF!!IT WAS’NT MY WAR!!YOU ASKED ME!!!I DID’NT ASK YOU!!WE TRIED TO WIN!!!BUT SOME OF YOU HUMBLE GUYS, STILL WON’T LET US WIN!!!!MGTOW PSA PAID FOR BY FRIENDS OF THE OLE’CHRISTIAN MANOSPHERE!!!
    WARNING… ”TRUE” HUMBLE REDPILL PSYCHOLOGICAL NUDITY from decades (’82-’89) ago!(wild heavy guitar&drums begin!)A TATTOED MADMAN!I’M HELL ON WHEELS!MY FATHER WAS THE WIND!MY MOTHER WAS THE FIRE!BORN A WICKED(LIKE MOST HUMBLE YOUNGER BROTHERS!) CHILD(SAVED BY GRACE!!!)I WAS RAISED BY WOLVES!I’M MEAN(HUMBLE!!)EFFIN’MAN!!!I MUST SCREAM!!!,,,,,,,,Why don’t all of you humble redpill men speak on this!:”Don’t judge by mere apperances,but judge correctly”!!Some of you who love the ”younger son”.still hate your mgtow ”non-fornicating” brothers in your non-judgemental lovin’ hearts!I don’t care what churchians of sodom&gammorah say a ”blackish” red pill is the real redpill!!!Most redpillers still don’t beleave only mgtow can bring about change!No. ”the ex-prodigal sons will marry our daughters”!Realy? P.S.None of this sound familiar from since the genesis of the roissysphere which later became the manosphere!?
    most men are becoming mgtow,so who is going to marry all these daughters of the king?

    Like

    • SFC Ton says:

      What is there to say?
      A lot of mostly decent dudes are stuck with some seriously unpleasant options and most Christians would rather get high on their own vagina fumes and ride their moral high horse then deal with them like brothers

      Liked by 3 people

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  13. Lysimachus says:

    Regarding the Eric – Oscar exchange, objectively speaking Oscar is certainly correct. Moral law revealed by God is objective and cannot be subject to change due to circumstances, as that would introduce moral relativism and erode the very foundation of faith which is absolute truth of God. Nonetheless, I sympathise with Eric very much. While the solution he suggests is wrong, it is not enough to simply say to Christian singles “stay chaste or you will go to hell” (as true as that may be). An average or unattractive Christian man who has little to no options in the dating market and very slim chances for true Christian marriage, will have to suppress his sex drive for 30+ years, which is incredibly difficult to do. Obviously, it is possible, but as common sense and observable results of the new mating market indicate, it is unrealistic to expect most Christians to achieve that. Faced with decades of raging libido and no licit sexual outlet, most unmarried men men, even true and commited Christians, will sin sexually to varying degrees. Admittably, it does not look like any workable solutions to this problem are on the horizon, but simply saying “stay chaste or God will judge you” is not enough.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Eric Francis Silk says:

      I don’t think that moral law should change with circumstances. You can easily mistake my reasoning for moral relativism but it isn’t. My view is that things are so dysfunctional right now (in the arena of sex/marriage) that a State of Emergency has to be declared. As I am fond of saying: There is no norm applicable to chaos. If moral law isn’t sufficient to address the problems at hand then it need to be temporarily suspended until we can return to a state of normalcy.
      This is a very important distinction to make. A progressive welcomes the Sexual Revolution and thinks the Church needs to get with the times. I think that the Sexual Revolution caused things to go so catastrophically wrong that playing by the old rules is no longer possible.

      Like

      • Jack says:

        Eric, your description sounds something like “martial law”.

        Like

      • Eric Francis Silk says:

        Bullseye.

        Of course, you can’t literally declare martial law in response to a moral issue like this. But that’s how we should be conceiving our approach to the issue. Churches can’t just preach individual behaviour modification, tell unmarried people not to have sex, and the expect everything to work out. That approach hasn’t fixed a thing.
        The idea behind martial law is stepping outside of the law in order to preserve it. You don’t need to literally call in the army to do that. That is precisely what I meant when I have mentioned a State Of Exception.
        I’m well aware that I’ll get objections to the effect of “but there’s no Martial Law option spelled out in the Bible”. There doesn’t need to be.

        Like

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