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Rites of Passage

A Rite of Passage is a ceremony or event marking an important stage in someone’s life, especially birth, the transition from childhood to adulthood, marriage, and death.

In our modern society, for so many men, there is an extension of adolescence, with boyhood stretching well into manhood. Many modern men are still exhibiting boyish behaviours well into their 40’s and beyond.

This is not the fault of modern man. Many men never had the benefit of positive male role models, and almost all did not go through a Rite of Passage to mark the transition into manhood. There has been insufficient teaching about his powers and responsibilities. Communities of men are required to initiate boys into manhood, and today’s society is lacking in this regard.

What can we do about it?

I strongly advise all fathers (as well as non fathers) to consider joining a men’s group or men’s self-inquiry program in order to get the support of a strong and self-aware community of men. They may also wish to attend a Mens Rite of Passage of their own. Alternatively there are yearly mens gatherings run by organisations such as Mens Wellbeing

For younger men, a Rites of Passage program can be a great entry into Men’s Work.

Dr Dan is a senior facilitator for The Rites of Passage Institute and Powerhouse Programs.

The Rites of Passage Institute was set up by Dr Arne Rubenstein as a social enterprise helping people discover their passion and purpose, learn critical life skills and create a positive vision for the future. Watch the YouTube video here

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