July 24, 2010[Left, Michelangelos' "David." A measure of what "Confucian" is saying below: it was difficult to find images of manliness either on Google images or Flickr, almost as if "manliness" is being erased from our consciousness. (Henry Makow did not write this article but endorses it.)]
Confucius has been regarded as the central philosophical figure of Chinese thought. An attempt was made to destroy his work during the so-called Cultural Revolution of Maoism. But a similar attempt had already been made during the reign of the Emperor Chin Shih Huang-ti around 215 BC. That attempt failed, as the thoughts of Confucius became the official religion of the Han Dynasty and continued throughout other dynasties until the revolution of 1912.
A central concept in Confucius' Analects is that of the gentleman. For Confucius, a gentleman is someone whose words do not outstrip his deeds. For precisely that reason, this article is written anonymously, to ensure that the author's words do not outstrip his deeds. We may just regard them as thoughts to consider, without any person claiming to possess the quality about to be praised. That must eventually be determined in the battlefield of life by the assessment of fair observers.
The quality is Manliness.
There is perhaps no quality more hated by the Integrated Control System referred to variously as the Illuminati, International Bankers, or whatever other label seems most appropriate. It is clearly the target of their most concerted attacks, linked with what they call a Patriarchal Power structure, machismo, sexism, etc.
One of Kipling's greatest poems, "If", embodies the hated quality in its explosive last line. After laying out a superb list of personal characteristics, he sums up the triumphant reward: "And -- which is more -- you'll be a man, my son."
The Spartan women allegedly proudly boasted that only they produced men.
The essence of the targeted culture of the Afghan and Pakistani Pathans is Pashtunwali, an ethical system embodying hospitality, chivalry, courage...and above all manliness.
The tortures and humiliations at Abu Ghraib made no sense from the point of view of mere prison control. Clearly their target was Iraqi manliness.
The well-funded attempts to empower women internationally by selective grants to them over their husbands are clearly another attempt at international emasculation.
The welfare system that removes the need for the father is yet another facet of the program to eliminate manliness.
St. Paul is one of the thinkers most hated by international emasculators. His admonition that wives should obey their husbands in all things and that no man should ever be subordinate to a woman arouse the utmost fury. He was crystal clear that in order to fulfill his role in society and the family, a male must become a man. That is not an automatic promotion due merely to age. No, manliness involves a great deal more.
A manly person is gentle.
A manly person respects the dignity of others, as he insists on respect for his own dignity.
For a real man, there is no worse stain than a justified charge of cowardice. He must be unrelenting in the defense of his religion, his family, his nation, and every other voluntarily chosen affiliation.
There is no lack of manliness in refusing to defend an affiliation that he did not voluntarily choose. On the contrary, real manliness in that case requires defiance.
Real manliness is not embodied in the hormone testosterone, which can result in loutishness or mindless aggressiveness. On the contrary, such chemical facsimiles are endorsed by the control system, as a way of twisting the powers of traditional manliness into a tool they can use to subjugate others.
Real manliness consists in the ability to say: "I am not going to do that." Whether the refusal is to step over the line at the draft center, volunteer for the naked body scanner, to shoot an innocent victim, or salute a value one despises, the effect is the same. The manly person is uncontrollable.
Luther's famous words embody the essence of manliness. "Here I stand. I cannot do otherwise."
The heroes at Lexington Green in 1775 refused to lay down their arms. They could not be stripped of their manliness.
Demosthenes, by contrast, is a horror story in failure of manliness. After delivering some of the most stirring orations known to man, the Philippics, opposing Macedonian hegemony in Greece, he reportedly showed up in person at the final battle... and ran, leaving his shield on the field, the ultimate disgrace for an ancient Greek.
The Spartan women allegedly had a saying for their menfolk as they left for war: "Come back with your shield or on it."
The Spartans had a proverbial horror of talking too much. They felt that it was very easy to come across as a Demosthenes. So they were famous for keeping their mouths shut and letting their actions decide whether or not they were men.
Confucius, in his usual understated way, said that a gentleman... or a man, as we would put it... should never allow his words to outstrip his action. We should all see what we can really do, and then tailor our words, if we choose to use any, to stay within those boundaries.
But what is more admirable than the silent hero, the man who is so afraid of letting his words outstrip his deeds, that he merely prays thankfully after passing the test of courage that he has not disgraced his family name or his own?
If these words enlighten you, remember the much-vilified Kipling, who dared to praise manliness in the Afghans, Englishmen, and wherever else he could find it.
Remember St. Paul, who was not afraid to praise manliness. Remember the understated Confucius.
As for myself, I merely pass on these thoughts anonymously, for fear of being another Demosthenes, fear of letting my own words outstrip my deeds. All of us who aspire to be men must pray that when our manliness comes unmistakably in question, we shall conduct ourselves as men.
First Comment by Inwau:
I like very much what was presented here, but what Confucian is describing is a strong-willed adult /human/. It is perfectly possible,
in fact necessary, to be all these things and still be a good woman (not just female) and a good wife in subjection to her husband. What
good woman is not gentle? What good woman does not respect the dignity of others and insist on it for herself? What good woman is not
unrelenting in the defense of her religion, her family and so forth? Naturally, their battlefields are different, but a wife that does not
put her family, her religion and herself above outside forces is nigh worthless.
A common misconception on both sides of the 'traditional household' debate is the idea that the woman must be unable to think for herself,
must be unable to make any decisions, must be unable to have any input, must be unable to correct her husband when he makes a mistake
(tactfully and respectfully, there's no need to be a shrew about it). If the man is the Captain, then the woman is the First Mate. How can
the Captain run his ship if the FM is a bumbling idiot? If the FM must be micromanaged down to the tiniest detail and is incapable of making
a decision on their own? The Captain would spend all his time doing the FM's job and be without the time or energy to do his own. How can
he run his ship if the FM is not allowed to say, "Actually, Sir, given that the blah blah is such and such, it might be more prudent to.."?
He might have overlooked a grave danger or not caught a brilliant idea. None of us are infallible, but through the beauty of teamwork,
reason and stepping away from the ego, we can hold each other up and have a well-run ship.
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Henry Makow received his Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Toronto in 1982. He welcomes your comments at