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The Wild Man's Journey: Reflections on Male Spirituality

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  557 ratings  ·  64 reviews
The Promise Keepers, a Christian men's movement, is helping men find direction again. In a new Introduction to The Wild Man's Journey, Father Richard Rohr acknowledges the movement's contributions and analyzes its weaknesses, tracing the journey of a man's life and offering seven promises for a healthy spirityuality for Catholic men.
Paperback, 225 pages
Published September 1st 1996 by Franciscan Media
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Average rating 4.17  · 
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Erin Henry
I mean it's for men but contains a lot of wisdom. I hope a lot of men read and apply it.
John
In the search to read more books about "masculinity" and "becoming a man", I picked up this title from one of my favorite authors. It is thought-provoking, shaping, and intelligent and articulate.
It still lacks a sense of structure, which is understandable considering it is from Rohr and also the way it was written. But its content is something I will chew on for many months and probably come back to throughout the rest of life.

It is good to have a book such as this in the Christian circle, bec
...more
Gary Conachan
Jan 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Growing up in “Wild at Heart” culture, I was uncertain as to where Rohr was going to go with the notion of masculinity, or male spirituality. Yet his approach is wise and carefully thought out. He addresses the male journey with its challenges and woes, and distinguishes what it looks like for a man to become a wise man. His is a gentleness and honesty that is often neglected in male tropes and stereotypes - and for reasons he unpacks. I’d recommend the read for anyone wanting a less stereotypic ...more
Gilbert
A much needed critique and advice for men

I was incredibly happy to receive this book as a birthday gift! Not only have I yet to read anything substantial by this fantastic author on spirituality, but I have wanted to read specifically his comments and advice for males concerning male spirituality.

It’s not about gender. He argues well how being male affects spirituality due to hormones and how society projects the male image. Whether we like it or not, male image in our society is completely brok
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Ken
Jul 08, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Generally I liked it. Neat chart towards the end :) Certain parts were a little too new age-y for me but the general concepts are good in a sense that they challenged my established notions of what it means to be a man. It's useful in that it has added another set of lenses to view the journey of life with. What i wished he had done was to create a more cohesive argument, rather than just bunch together a collections of essays which were loosely connected to each other.
Linda
Jul 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I was more attracted to the author than to the title; however, I found that this book is good not only for men but for us women who are their family and friends. It's a thoughtful read, but very worthwhile. I love this author.
Circle of Hope Pastors
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: men
Richard Rohr's update of "The Wild Man's Journey (which is also on this list) is better. It would be useful for men's group meetings (and was designed to be so).

It's weaknesses: It's Catholic, so some references might be lost on some people. It is often too much about Richard. It can seem kind of obscure in places (talking about Duns Scotus! why?). It might seem too full of new agey type stuff and psychology for some.

It's strengths: It talks about the journey: stages of development for men. It r
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Bruce
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The book contains a lot of sound spiritual advise from Rohr. I understand powerlessness, the leaning that comes from failure, the need to not let my ego try to run my life by itself. I continue to work on a realistic sense of self-worth and the need for improvement without fretting about never reaching perfection.

But I’m afraid that I still don’t see why male spirituality is different from anyone else’s spirituality. I just don’t get “Iron John,” “Father Hunger,” and the “King, Warrior, Magicia
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Adam Johnson
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent book on men's spirituality, one that is gentle and yet also firm. It draws on strong Catholic traditions (Rohr is a Franciscan friar), and does so in a way that is not particularly alienating. You don't have to be Christian to get value out of this book.

Rohr covers a lot of ground in this book, with each chapter being short and punchy. He talks about grief (and how men typically carry unresolved grief), the expression of male sadness as anger, the four male archetypes, the ascent an
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Steven Fouse
I appreciate many things about Richard Rohr. Sometimes, he writes something so profound that it permanently changes the way I live or think or feel. This book, however, was not one of those.

It feels like Rohr just wrote some random reflections about male spirituality and decided to make them into a book. It starts abruptly, feels disjointed, and is almost like a too-brief introduction to other more helpful works.

If you are interested in male spirituality, this is either a book to start with for
...more
Philip Yoder
May 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really appreciated this book. While I think I feel a bit uncomfortable with gendered spiritualities, it seems as though our American culture is failing to guide our men into becoming "wise-grandfathers." Something is missing and Rohr has something to say about it. I am curious what a womanist or feminist would say about this work. Also, early on in the book, he says this book is not restricted to benefiting the spirituality of just men.
Emilie
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Though some might balk at the title, this book is really more about the masculine side of spirituality rather than just "spirituality for men." Fr. Rohr even mentions that all of us no matter what our gender have both masculine and feminine sides, and both must be developed. I rather enjoyed this book and appreciated its critiques of modern American culture, which doesn't really give the young proper initiation into adult life.
Abigail
Oct 25, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spirituality
Some good thoughts here; a nice follow to Everything Belongs, at least for me. Because of my background (academic, social, ecclesiastical) I found this book to be worth my time, though it definitely won't connect to everyone. The book does sort of feel like a work in progress more than a solid whole piece. I'd be interested to hear other thoughts from people I know.
Bryan Terrill
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Must-read for any man.

This book by Rohr has been more illuminating to me and my spiritual journey than any other top selling Christian book on male spirituality.
Matt Nixon
Jun 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
As with all of Rohr’s material, this book introduces a new way to think of male spirituality - one that is inclusive and embracing of change with age.
Liz
Mar 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A helpful inside look at masculinity and masculine spirituality. Rohr uses archetypes and mother/father needs to explore male spiritual development and men's needs at each step of their journey.
Jeffrey Diritto
Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read as a son, father and man.
Gabriel Smart
Jan 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting book.
Lenhardt Stevens
Apr 09, 2020 rated it liked it
Compelling synthesis of archetype psychological theories and Catholicism. Not just for men.
Alexander
Anyone with experience in the Men's Movement will find much to enjoy in this book. Rohr offers a great deal of consolation to men who grew up in a church that felt over-feminized and left them wanting something more. I found that as a young Catholic already comfortable within the Church, this book provided some interesting ideas and advice, but it is definitely written for a certain generation and a certain type of man.
Some of the talk about male sexuality and virility might seem strange to some
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Patrick
Just AS JESUS WENT TO THE MOUNTAIN TOP WITH TWO OF HIS DISCIPLES AND WAS TRANSFORMED THERE. WE TO ASCEND FROM BOYHOOD TO MANHOOD.RICHARD ROHR POINTS OUT TO US THAT OUR JOURNEY IN MALE SPIRITURALITY IS IN TWO STAGES THE FIRST PART IS THE ASCENT, THIS USUALY TAKES PLACE WITH THE HELP OF A (KING)THE INFLUENCE OF AN OLDER WISER MALE IN OUR LIFE. HE HELPS US AND GUIDES US TO BECOME WHAT IS CALLED (THE WILD MAN).But THEN ABOUT MIDWAY THROUGH OUR LIFE THE SECOND STAGE BEGINS.WE START TO LOSE THE WILD M ...more
Peter Walker
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book has been life-changing for me, particularly in how I think about my own identity, masculinity, and my role as father and husband.

As a feminist and a progressive, I feel like a lot of the language to talk about healthy masculinity has been co-opted by caricatures of alpha males and misogynists. It's hard to talk about maleness without raising alarms. I say that not as an example of "victimization" or reverse discrimination. It is the natural result of a long history of patriarchy and na
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Bill
Nov 18, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
From Wild Man to Wise Man,by Richard Rohr, presents a Christian perspective to the secular men's movement. He makes the case that there is such a thing as masculine spirituality, in which men find in Christian theology & stories answers to the traditional male excesses of agression, greed, and sexual exploitation without "feminizing" men. He compares the classic hero quest to the Christian Paschal mystery. He holds up John the Baptist as a "classic initiator" and St. Paul as a "master teacher."

H
...more
Tommy
Feb 02, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
some very good insights. I would give 5 stars for some of those insights

but I cannot give anything over 2 stars
And I cannot recommend it to friends, unless they are very well grounded theologically.

... because Rohr got a problem with hope. ... He writes with a feeling of history being conspiracy theory, and it ends up being very tiring and hopeless. (simply type his name in Youtube)

he always repeat the same things about how the church has been so bad... especially bad toward "gays" apparently.

so
...more
Daniel
Jan 28, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Daniel by: Matt Taylor
I appreciated Richard Rohr's insight into masculine spirituality. In a time when spirituality can feel feminine it was helpful to have a well articulated picture of a spirituality that reflects masculinity and works out of the strengths of masculinity.
Granted, some things Rohr says are a bit out there! However, overall I found the book insightful and helpful for me.
Quick comparison to Gordon Dalbey's book I just read. Rohr's book felt less evangelical (which makes sense!), more idea oriented
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Art
Mar 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: men
Some of my favorite quotes:
"We don't think ourselves into a new way of living, we live ourselves into a new way of thinking" (pg 9).
"Mere bosses, coaches, and teachers tell a young man how to get out of his problems. A true mentor guides him into them and through them" (pg 39).
"Enlightenment is a second and chosen naivete" (pg 54).
"No civilization has ever survived unless the elders saw it their duty to pass on gifts of spirit to the young ones" (pg 60).
"Unless you 'walk your talk', unless yo
...more
Hud (Bob) Huddleston
For many of us in our late 40s, I beleive this book rings true. I appreciate that even though Rohr is a priest, he questions whether the church properly ministers to its flock or instead worries more about laws and man made traditions. This book has made me curious about attending a MALE retreat. I was so turned off by the Promise Keepers type approach, and my need to get away from the hubba bubba of constant bombardment of "stuff," that his approach and a return to sensibile approach to being a ...more
Dan
Nov 19, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book after hearing Rohr speak at a Reviving Our Spirit conference and being stimulated by his talk. This book is designed for a discussion group. I suspect I would have gotten more out of it if I had had that benefit. Just reading it, it became somewhat repetitive in the middle. Rohr's perspective on the stages on a man's developing spirituality is interesting. It would be worth discussing.
David Woods
Dec 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to David by: Steve Straus
Richard Rohr is a Franciscan Monk. This book had some really great stuff. A few of the chapters didn't really resound much with me, but a few of them struck me so deep it made up for the others. Overall, great thoughts and reflections on being a man of God. Morris Dirks pulled some material from this that he shared at Salem Alliance's men's retreat a couple years ago, which was fun to see. There are a handful of chapters I think I should keep rereading every couple months indefiniitely!
Ian
Aug 20, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really stimulating reading. The book is organised into short chapters for men's groups. So far, the book has got me thinking through the nature of belief/fundamentalism, the nature of Biblical salvation, the place of spirituality in life, where I am on the journey that Rohr maps out. I always come away with something from the chapters, and have read only a chapter at a time, finding it necessary to take a few days to mull over what I have read.
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Fr. Richard Rohr is a globally recognized ecumenical teacher bearing witness to the universal awakening within Christian mysticism and the Perennial Tradition. He is a Franciscan priest of the New Mexico Province and founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation (CAC) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Fr. Richard's teaching is grounded in the Franciscan alternative orthodoxy—practices of contemplat ...more

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“There are two ways of being a prophet. One is to tell the enslaved that they can be free. It is the difficult path of Moses. The second is to tell those who think they are free that they are in fact enslaved. This is the even more difficult path of Jesus.” 16 likes
“Carl Jung, in his Collected Works (8, 784): “We cannot live the afternoon of life according to the program of life’s morning; for what was great in the morning will be of little importance in the evening, and what in the morning was true will at evening have become a lie.” 2 likes
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