This post is from a New Warrior Training Adventure brochure that I worked on for the Carolinas Center. Good reading.
Bravehearted Old-faithful Wolf
Over the years, men have asked many questions about the New Warrior Training Adventure (NWTA). We have collected some of those questions and added responses to better explain who we are and what we do.
What is the New Warrior Training Adventure?
The NWTA is weekend training sponsored by the ManKind Project (MKP), an international, non-profit organization dedicated to helping men live meaningful lives. The purpose of the training is to take men on a journey to connect head and heart, examine their lives, and create deeper, more powerful, and more joyful ways of living. The training is an initiatory experience relevant to our times that honors the sacred masculine and empowers men to action in the world.
Joseph Campbell described initiation as a transformational experience involving separation, descent, ordeal, and return. Many of us have experienced "pseudo initiation" through divorce, death of a loved one, puberty, induction into the military, or incarceration. These are often transformative experiences, but they are usually incomplete and wounding and do not connect us to our authentic selves or to healthy ways of living. The NWTA provides a complete and healthy initiation relevant to our times where a man is separated from his known world, taken into a descent to face his limitations, challenged to grapple with his destructive as well as generative aspects, and then welcomed into a new community of authentic men committed to service to the world.
The Sacred Masculine
In our culture, so called "masculine" traits have been viewed differently at different times. In earlier times, such traits as aggression, fighting, strategic maneuvering, conquering, and destroying were valued in the battlefield warrior who was called on to defend the tribe and conquer other tribes. Later, many of these same traits were valued in the athletic, corporate, and military arenas in service to team, company, and nation. These warrior traits became synonymous with what it meant to be a man. We assert that this definition of manhood is incomplete and no longer serves us, humankind, or the planet, well. We affirm the need for a "new warrior" energy channeled into service of the betterment of humankind and the planet. And we claim a "sacred masculine" energy that embraces all aspects of our nature and that we believe is essential to healing ourselves and our world.
Action in the World
The NWTA model calls for men to live lives of service guided by vision and action. “Integration Groups" are available around the world to help men integrate their learnings from the weekend experience. Called I-Groups, these ongoing gatherings provide a place for men to support and challenge each other in their ongoing growth and healing and in living lives of service. I-Groups often have their own external missions of service such as working with men who have been abusive, mentoring youth, or other work in their communities. Other trainings are available to help men continue to grow, heal, and reach their full potential as mature men.
My life is working fine, so why should I do this training?
The NWTA opens a window that will allow you to expand your life regardless of where you are right now. Men who take the training come from all walks of life and are succeeding at many levels. Regardless of where you are in life, you should do this training if you are ready to look deeply at your life and begin a journey with other men who will support and challenge you to claim your full potential.
Will this training help me with work, family, and other relationships?
Being more in touch with your gifts, focused on your purpose in life, able to access your deepest feelings, aware of your shadows, working on healing your wounds, and being supported by authentic men should help you in all areas of your life; work as well as family, relationships, and your communities.
Many men have been betrayed and hurt by other men. Why should I trust that this will be any different?
Many men have good reason to distrust and be angry at the men who have broken agreements with them, betrayed them, and sold them out for personal gain. The hard truth is that if we have been wounded by men, most often men will be required to be part of our healing. The NWTA places men in ritual time and space where profound transformation happens. This experience creates a common bond of identity and shared purpose. New Warrior men are not naïve--we see men as they are. We do not put them on pedestals nor do we demonize all men. We understand the shadow side of men, have developed effective ways of embracing the shadow, and are discerning about dealing with the destructive aspects of men.
How does New Warrior view women and women's work?
We support all work aimed at healing people and the planet. We support women in their work to heal and reclaim the sacred feminine. We support Women Within, a women's initiation designed and run by women for women. In the NWTA, you will have an opportunity to look at your reliance on women throughout your life, including the positives and negatives of how you relate to women. You will get to look at how both parents shaped your development and how your relationship with your mother when you were young may be impacting your relationships with women today.
Why don't you give more details about the training--like an outline or a syllabus?
The weekend is meant to be experiential and transforming. If you know lots of details, your mind will form lots of preconceptions about what might happen. You would miss a lot of the mystery, beauty, and surprise of the weekend and it would be less transforming for you. We want you to have your own experience as it is happening.
Can I get a cheaper version of the same kind of experience?
The NWTA has been carefully developed and tested since 1986. It has been validated by more than 40,000 men. Over 30 men are involved in delivering each training. It is priced to cover expenses. The MKP is a non-profit organization. Scholarships are available for men who need financial help to attend. If paying the tuition is a problem, talk to the contact man at the end of this flyer.
Are there age limitations for attending?
You must be at least 18 to attend. The majority of men are between 30 and 50 but men older and younger attend and get great benefit.
How do I know this training is right for me?
Look at the web site at http://www.mkp.org/, read the material about the weekend, talk to men who have competed the training and joined an I-group, and attend an open house. Then ask yourself: "Does this feel right for me?" If you feel anxious about doing the weekend, or if issues arise, talk to someone who's been through the training. This training is not for everyone--men who are not ready to look deeply at and take responsibility for their lives should not attend.
Can I do it later?
You get to choose when and if you do this training. But ask yourself this: "Do I often put off things I need or want to do because of fear, procrastination, etc.? How has this pattern caused me to miss out on life?" A door is open to you right now while you're reading this. We encourage you to step through the door and claim a life that you may have only dreamed about.