Male Spirituality
#11
(06-04-2012, 01:31 PM)Scriptorium Wrote: 1. Is Yin/Yang considered "spirituality"?

Yes, in a sense. Yin/yang expresses that male and female are complementary, and that within the feminine is the masculine, and vice versa. Distinct, but complementary. In this too is the idea that male is forceful and initiative, while the feminine is yielding and receptive.

{note, taoism would say they are one spiritually [monism], but Catholicism holds that the sexes are two and separate, but complementary.)

2. Is it possible for women to have a masculine spirituality - and vice versa?

Yes. But all I see truly in these types of spirituality is an predominant appeal.

3. Do men have a distinctive, separate path to God?

No, not a separate path, but perhaps in most cases different duties and charisms.

4. IF there is a feminine spirituality, is it always secondary?


No.

5. Is not the spirit of both man AND woman passive/receptive in its relationship to God?

Yes, but the male is modeled on God Himself, while woman is modeled on the male. Both were created in God's image, but the man was intended to reflect God, while the woman was intended to reflect the man. We, however, are all receptive in relationship to God, so we all act in the feminine mode, which is symbolized by the Church and the image of the bride.

6. Is the idea of male spirituality a result of the so-called "wounded masculinity" movement where men think the church has been feminized by feminists and pious old ladies?


Yes, to an extent. Men in general want domains which are wholly masculine. A woman in the sanctuary, for instance, changed the dynamic greatly, and the men in general will leave. You might even say it is done out of deference to the woman at times. The issue is somewhat complex, but men in general need religious spaces which are wholly their own. In general this is how the sanctuary was reserved (not for these reasons, but sociologically why many men "signed up"). The problem many people have is that they see demarcation in church as an affront to liberty or equality. The Church's teachings are way to profound on these matters to conclude just that.

Scriptorium, thanks for that response. It makes sense to me. I guess I'm having a problem with the term "spirituality." I see deep psychological differences in men and women, and that would explain why men want domains that are wholly masculine.  I just don't understand how this touches the spirit and spiritual things.
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#12
Spiritual is a sort of catch word of our time. You can think a few things.

Religious preference. Practices and symbols which a particular sex tends to prefer.

A particular ethos. The "vibe" the devotion puts off.

There are also our prejudices, whether correct or not. (Rose has to be rose. It isn't pink!)

Usually when I see "spirituality" I read, a method of prayer or devotion meant to appeal to _____ .
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#13
Male vs. female discussions are just boring.

While there are innate differences between males and females, there's just Christian spirituality where gender differences are irrelevant.
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#14
(06-04-2012, 02:28 PM)Scriptorium Wrote: Usually when I see "spirituality" I read, a method of prayer or devotion meant to appeal to _____ .

I do too. Or I see it as a soul that aspires for virtue and is receptive to grace. There are obvious differences in men and women. I just don't think they go as deep as the spirit.
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#15
(06-04-2012, 02:35 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: Male vs. female discussions are just boring.

While there are innate differences between males and females, there's just Christian spirituality where gender differences are irrelevant.

I agree with you that gender is irrelevant in Christian spirituality. But,as for your first part, it's not so much male vs. female discussion. It IS about spirituality and I'm not the one who coined the term "Male Spirituality."
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#16
I've never thought about this before, so I'm not sure what I think yet, but I read a really interesting article by Alice Von Hildebrand once where she said that women have an easier path to God because by nature and social training they are more ready to submit and serve than men, and it rang true to me (although democracy and feminism have largely changed this, I think).
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#17
(06-04-2012, 02:40 PM)StrictCatholicGirl Wrote: I do too. Or I see it as a soul that aspires for virtue and is receptive to grace. There are obvious differences in men and women. I just don't think they go as deep as the spirit.

The soul in itself is positively without sexuality. BUT the body, which is in union with the soul, has sexuality. We were created male and female, so we can't posit a spiritual absolute for us that is beyond sexual difference. We are just too bound up with it. I think a mature person is not limited by sexuality. They are able to use spiritual goods without regard to that (but also not in contradiction to it either). Maybe what happens to us as we gain a better understanding of our sexuality is we would be less "weighed down" by worldly concerns and what often is petty sexual strife. (Think of how much bickering on both sides about Church doctrine and practice has almost nothing to do with love of Christ and His ways, and more about how to fight over pieces of the pie.) I also think that a spiritual ideal is wholeness. So the goal is to be completed by the other. Love seeks union, and that union will always be with the "other".
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#18
Scriptorium, I really like your thinking here. It is very true that older people are not limited by sexuality or weighed down by sexual strife. I, too, think the ideal is that of wholeness. Very good. I'm thinking this over.
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#19
(06-04-2012, 02:50 PM)Richard C Wrote: I've never thought about this before, so I'm not sure what I think yet, but I read a really interesting article by Alice Von Hildebrand once where she said that women have an easier path to God because by nature and social training they are more ready to submit and serve than men, and it rang true to me (although democracy and feminism have largely changed this, I think).

Yes, and I agree with her. She says "by nature." I don't have a problem with nature. I wonder how bound up it is with the spirit.. Maybe I see spirit as something different from the soul. That could be another problem. I'll have to get out the Catechism.
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#20
On another level, I'm not sure what a "male spirituality" would actually look like, but perhaps it is a reaction against the increasing feminization of Christianity over the past two centuries or so.

Also, one thing St. Thomas emphasized over other theologians of his time was the idea that matter and form come together to form a concreatum. This emphasized the unity of matter and form whereas some other theologians tended to see more of a gap between the two. So, I'm not sure that we should be overly dualistic in our thinking.   
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