This campground offers easy access to the Buffalo Gap Trail. Cloud-Cuckooland exchanging magic words with a limited cult or, worse, unwittingly cementing white male privilege with new mystifications and rationalizations. The lackluster response to the dilemma story contributes to a growing sense I have, especially from the men of color (who are increasingly known collectively as "the brothers"), of resistance to all the talk about kings, symbolic swords, archetypes -- the mythopoetic tricks of the trade that teachers like Bly and Meade use to create a "container" for men's work, an emotionally safe yet psychologically evocative ritual space. slammin' Cadillac doors.". This, by the way, is one of the reasons for men to meet separately. This powerful image conjures for me my unloved self, my unborn dreams, my disappointments. I think specifically of Brandon, a tall, fierce, somewhat haunted-looking social worker from Washington who has a wife and kids and a job at an agency with minimal job security because of cutbacks and layoffs; he works closely with Concerned Black Men, which provides mentorship and job opportunities for inner-city youths, and spends several nights a week doing political work. Being a poet he has great fondness for language structures -- rhythm, rhyme, alliteration and especially lists. Nobody takes responsibility because everybody's just doing their job. The theme this afternoon is “Whatever you’re angry about is bigger than you.“ The story goes like this: A hunter and his son have a fight, and the son runs away to another village where the king befriends him. "White men in the U.S. control everything of material value -- economics, entertainment, science, sports, law, the military. About 3,000 soldiers camped in the surrounding fields from April 20 to May 6." I'm annoyed at the way this speaker romanticizes the status of white men as thoroughbred horses -- as if no white men had alcoholic fathers and Jesus-freak mothers, as if no white men ever felt themselves to be shattered remnants of manhood! It's true that a lot of the emotional and intellectual baggage we brought with has been jettisoned: suspicion and apprehension we brought with us about other men and other races, ancestral fears and guilts and passions we've been carrying because we had no place to put them, media-stoked impressions about men of other races and what a "men's conference" might be like, anxieties about physical comfort in this summer-camp setting. Recreate responsibly during COVID-19. Here’s an actual tribal person who’s undergone a bona fide initiation! When he returned to his village as an adult, alienated and frustrated by his Western education, he submitted to the council of elders who recommended that he go through initiation. What replaces patriarchy is a sibling society, Bly says. It takes place in the meeting hall, an octagonal wood-paneled room adjacent to the dining hall and kitchen, with a tiny raised platform at one end and just enough space to cram folding chairs for 100 people. The lack of compassion for workers in service jobs. Larry, a But for the moment it seems important to own up to our own part -- past and present -- in the shameful game of race, and for men of color to witness it. The mainstream media assumption about men’s work is that the participants are marginal individuals, avant-garde visionaries if not borderline flakes. I couldn’t stand hearing that, and I got as far away from him as fast as I could. Abati, our firebrand from the first night, speaks out very much in favor. Official Tourism Website of the Commonwealth of Virginia ● © 2020 Virginia Tourism Corporation, 901 E. Cary St., Suite 900, Richmond, VA 23219 "White men need to stand up and say, 'This shit has got to stop.' Conservatives see it as putting a banal face on evil “special interests,” while the hip L.A. Weekly calls it “the new racism,” because of the ease with which multicultural initiatives fall into the same old tokenism. "It was one of the most painful things I've ever done." I can tell this isn't exactly the way Meade and Bly expected the evening to go. Historically, Hillman says, it was the English who first defined people by their skin color. Bly, Meade and Hillman event. Even without the myths, drums and charismatic speakers, Buffalo Gap would be a valuable reminder that this is where the Judging from the awestruck reverence that surrounds this discussion of male initiation, Malidoma’s reminiscence creates a deep impression. Buffalo Gap Retreat is located in Capon Bridge, WV. What follows is not a comprehensive account so much as selected scenes from the provocative, historic drama that unfolded. I came away from it convinced that it would make a significant impact on American culture in the next ten years, based on the quality of the men who were there and the work we did together. Find & reserve the best campsites near Capon Bridge, West Virginia. worker announced that the conference had reversed his spiral of feeling defeated; a schoolteacher registered a renewed commitment to working in conditions he’d come to consider hopeless. He grew up in a seminary where he was punished for speaking his native language by having to wear the smelly hide of a dead cow. ", Ever so casually, he mentions, “If you die in the course of initiation, it’s quite normal,“ then cryptically adds, “It doesn’t leave a body to bury.“ Thus, after initiation, he says, "I had no fear. "Siblings don't want power. And many of us left inspired and energized and focused on what to do. What, you might ask, is so remarkable about that? "How many say kill the king?" But there are disadvantages as well. Flinderation Tunnel (aka Brandy Gap Tunnel #2) 305 Flinderation Rd . Sign up for Virginia is for Lovers Emails now! Nods and grunts of assent throughout the room register this as a common fear among black men. Capon Bridge, West Virginia. They may have been poor, but by golly everybody worked even if they had to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. When we get into fixing things too soon, it’s awfully tempting to focus on the cuts and scrapes that are easily healed while mortal wounds go unattended. Here at Buffalo Gap, though, the mythopoetic language seems slightly alienating and abstract. ", Abati, a handsome 40-ish fellow who came from Houston with his 20-year-old son and 74-year-old mentor, goes on to say that black men need to do their own healing work before joining forces with white men to combat racism. There’s no better place to connect with nature and camp under the stars than Almost Heaven, West Virginia. What have we done since then?” If the key to making a multicultural society is inviting everyone to share their gifts, it’s sobering He sits down to an explosion of applause -- an outburst of relief, really, that someone has summoned the courage to leap in and nail some of the hot emotions a room full of black and white men unavoidably stirs up. Find nearby land, ranches, & farms for sale. ft.). He came from a redneck farming family in the Midwest. "Patriarchy requires that someone kill the king and take power," he says. In the conference flier, Michael Meade noted, “For thousands of years, men have been killing each other. Now we see each other more clearly. His topic this morning is white supremacy, a notion that he presents as embedded in our language and culture. The men’s movement is part of the These recruiting efforts would have had little effect, though, if men of color were being invited simply to another Bly’s ambivalence about these changes is evident. 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