By Jacob Aliet
I will comment on Man Enough while its still under discussion by among others, Silas Gisiora Nyanchwani Chomba Njoka.
Young men are encouraged in Church to enrol in the program each year at a fee to go through what will make them adequate men.
They go somewhere with older men and do whatever they do.
When they come back, the show up on one Sunday wearing robes and suits, clutching walking sticks and looking all manned up.
They stand before the congregation like graduands and plant their feet on the ground, chins stuck out.
Then they rattle out some sort of anthem like scouts (is being part of a herd a requirement for manhood?).
Then, in unison, they roar “Auuu! Auuu!”. The Church shakes from their booming voices and the gathering claps for them.
Then they are declared men amid back clapping and tearful eyes from their mothers and aunties. If you look at them, chubby cheeks and soft looks, you see eating of pizza, playing video games and having things handed to them.
The first problem I had with it is the notion that somehow, there’s an implied inadequacy about modern men and so men need some kind of top-up, some catalyst, some program, some “other” to be added to them to make them “man enough.”
I found the name “man enough” invalidating and manipulative.
Why not think of something affirming?
The shaming expression “man enough” has been used to manipulate men into complying to things they don’t want to just to prove to the manipulator that they are “man enough.”
Are those who haven’t enrolled not man enough?
How could they have an outfit whose very foundation commits a no true Scotsman fallacy?
Secondly, are we implying that women are enough and it is men that need to be “sorted” for everything to be ok in our society?
Who made that determination?
Granted, we have a lot of single parents today and there’s a need to cater to a demographic of boys raised by women and clueless men.
But being a man is not something you get from a boot camp organized by the Church, an institution whose very essence is to stifle your dark side and make you nice.
Boys learn by watching and exploring. Men become men by chasing goals and facing adversity.
Embracing your dark side is what makes you a man.
That is why beauty loves the beast. It is why Loise Lane loves superman and loses attraction when he becomes the compliant Clark Kent. Delilah only brought Samson down because he listened to Delilah and lost his dark side (signified by his long black hair). In Genesis, Adam is punished first, for listening to Eve, secondly for eating the forbidden fruit. The Church leaders gloss over this and dont dissect these lessons for men to learn from. Theres much more but I cover them in my next book.
Manhood is complex and covers such a broad range of issues.
These cannot be dispensed by spitting ideas to young men over a weekend then sending them back home with a charge to wash dishes and say thank you after every meal.
Not that gratitude and helping out are bad things.
But manhood is found amidst injuries, bleeding noses, sweat, confrontation and exhaustion.
For example, if you’re living with your parents in your 30s, man enough cannot save you. There are things a man must do for himself – once he comes of age – whether your parents are capable or not is irrelevant.
There are things you cannot be taught, the same way courage cannot be taught. You become brave by facing threats.
I have spoken to men from the programme. And I have seen them engage in mate-guarding.
It means they come from those waterfalls and camps in Naivasha with a scarcity mindset.
Do they teach about passive dread, hypergamy, abundance mindset, game, the burden of performance and the importance of chasing your purpose?
Man enough can not red pill young men as much as heart breaks and crisis in their lives ever will. Without awareness, blue pill men remain blue pill. Because it is a conditioning. Thats why we have serial monogamists in the west. Their own experiences have been unable to make them aware.
The Bible itself is very red pill, including the character portrayed as “God” and the patriarchs. But the Church has perfected pick-and-choose theology and they gloss over the red pill content and exclusively feed the blue pill content to the congregation.
Consider marriage. Western capitalism hijacked weddings and retooled them to serve commercial interests, loading them with ideas like oneitis and mandating honeymoons, gold rings, wedding dresses and the like.
And the Church has only been too complicit in aiding and abetting as couples spend lavishly on weddings only to split up later.
On this account, the Church is unfit to deliver on this mandate