This has been a real eye opening book, and I think its something every man of our generation should read. Its to do with Jungian psychology and deals with the 4 parts of ourselves Carl Jung theorised we had within, and the shadow, what happens when we repress aspects of ourselves to fit in and how to escape the trap of doing that.
The basics is that we all have a sovereign king aspect of ourselves who guides us and plans out our life. Think of your life like his kingdom which he rules over justly with integrity. Along with the king we have a magician who is all about finding information and doing research, he connects us to the mystical and is the wise one. To balance the magicians cold rationality out , we have the lover, that part of us that longs to connect with other human beings, and finally we have the warrior, who is like the worker and gets shit done in our lives, defends us and our loved ones, and stands up for whats right and noble, like a samurai.
In a well rounded, healthy person, these archetypes of personality work in harmony with one another. The king decides the course of life, if a problem arises, the magician is enlisted to work out how to proceed, the warrior then carries this out while the lover adds the ability to connect and get along with other people to work things out. All together, working perfectly things go right in life and the male can embrace his masculinity and be a man.
But when we repress certain aspects of ourselves, because of what others think or what our parents say (or don’t say) to fit in, we store these traits in our shadow, which is our subconscious. Each archetype can become enlarged or smaller and malfunction, leading to all of our problems. The author explains various aspects of each character that appear when they go wrong like being overly feminine, being a pushover, full of fear and anxiety or on the flip side, becoming a tyrant king or a bully, posing as a victim and much more traits all to do with each archetype becoming bigger or smaller in the shadow.
I was blown away by some of the descriptions in this book and how it relates to my life, and Jungian psychology is definitely an area of study Im going to continue with, inspired by this book. Anyone else out there who has problems and doesnt know how to solve them may enjoy this book too and it can be found free on Kindle Unlimited!