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An Interesting Perspective - But serve with a good helping of Salt
on 2 August 2010
David Deida serves up a fascinating take on Masculinity in this work; outlining vital aspects, ideas and practises in a layout that's short, punchy and very much to the point. You don't have to wade through pages of text to gather the information you need out of this one. The book is essentially a colleciton of lessons and ideas, each with a few pages dedicated to their relative explanations. The entire work is unified under the masculine/feminine essence concept that Mr Deida outlines in the opening pages. So it's easy to read and even easier to leap back to for refences and reminders. So for a self-help book/guide - Excellent
The content, however, is a difficult one... The advice is practical, and the perspectives are an interesting alternative to what a lot of people are most likely accustomed to. These perspectives, however, MUST be seen as just that: perspectives. To assume the material is canon is a mistake, verging on potentially dangerous. It's easy to get roped into believing that his ideas are 'truth'... after all, he DOES paint a very convincing picture (and his wording does indeed imply this is 100% factual information).
Now, I know that made no sense, so here's an example:
Chapter 16 says "Women are not Liars", explaining that a woman's word is a reflection on her existing state of mind. In some ways, this is indeed true. I can think of many examples where women's words reflected the emotion more than fact - (When a woman comments how every boyfriend is the 'best bf ever' until he screws up and suddenly is the words biggest schmuck)... but at the same time, I can think of many which go against it. If you open your mind, you can generally find enough evidence to both prove and disprove his ideas.
And to be honest, some ideas are just downright unhealthy. The emphasis on 'masculine/feminine' essence which underlies the whole book is interesting, but dubious. To view women (or the 'feminine') as entirely different and attribute set behaviours to them (whilst assuming that men don't do this themselves...), is an easy way to stereotype and build a misguided view of the sexes. And as for suggesting that ejaculations 'weaken' a man's influence on the world... nothing like building an unhealthy attitude to sexual practice eh? I have not seen ANY evidence to support this (No, don't ask how I tested this. You will not like the answer)
Don't get me wrong - There's some wonderful nuggets of information here (such as the notion of 'purpose', living in the here-and-now and "unifying the heart and spine")... but its brought down by unhealthy ideas and perspetcives being shown as fact, making this book a bit of a minefield. Gentlemen, if you feel you can navigate the waters with an open mind - Then by all means, go for it. But take a ton of salt with you on your journey. Keep your feet on the ground by finding evidence to both prove and disprove Mr Deida's ideas. This allows you to extract the brilliant alternative perspectives wihtout getting caught up in the tides.