Introduction to Level 2
Exploring Issues

At this level, we've already covered some of the basics - how the group is going to run itself, what the 'container' looks like, and now we are ready to throw some 'ingredients' into the pot.

Why do we come to group? - To know ourselves better and to get to know each other. Which means we start to focus on and talk about what is going on for us in our lives, and probably significant experiences of the past which colour the events of today. As we share we may get insights into behaviour patterns or perhaps new understanding of why we feel the way we are feeling; maybe we're seeking to change how we experience life, but aren't quite sure how to do that. As we witness other men and the journeys they have taken we may gain a greater appreciation of what it means to be a man and what issues other men are going through.

Insights - understanding - appreciation etc - all of these add up to the possibility of mutually shared support and healing of old wounds, in an environment that increasingly is about deeper and deeper 'becoming', and deeper and deeper bonding, based on the truth of our (sometimes parallel) experiences and on our mutual willingness to take the risk of being open and intimate.

This doesn't just happen by itself. We each undertake a demanding inner process of finding the courage to step into vulnerability - despite the fact that we've been there before and we've been wounded or hurt in some way, by someone who was unable to appreciate or honour the boundaries of appropriate action towards another human being. We are also here to grieve the fact that we too may have inflicted wounds on those around us, this we acknowledge, and perhaps may be able to move into a place of being able to offer an amends.

And so we begin to share what is really going on for us…

Note:

There may be a tendency for us to judge ourselves (or another man) as inadequate, or perhaps 'weak' as we go into those vulnerable places, as another man reveals his stuff - these are just our old tapes playing again - tapes that say 'a man is supposed to be/do…(whatever)' - what we need to realise and tell ourselves is that we're attempting to speak our truth and move away from the denial that has probably blocked our feelings and ability to experience life to the fullest. Again, part of the difficulty is that we're learning this as we go along, and none of us have had role models for this behaviour.

Level 2 - Meetings

2-1 What it means to be a man…
2-2 Fathers
2-3 Intimacy
2-4 Noticing the Energy
2-5 Trust
2-6 Shaming
2-7 Anger