In this bestseller, Sam Keen presents his vision of what it means to be "a full-summed and spirited man." He offers a survey of masculine styles from the early hunting societies through the post-modern era and finds many of these to be wanting. The author argues that traditional rites of war, work, and sex with their accent on aggression, success and performance have alienated and impoverished men. Keen suggests new routes to wholeness with a sampler of heroic virtues including wonder, empathy, moral outrage, right livelihood, and much more. He challenges men and women to grow together in relationships and to make the most of their common vocation which he calls "an ardor for the earth."
Our favorite section of Fire In The Belly: On Being a Man is at the end where Keen offers "Travel Tips for Pilgrims" for those who want to take an inventory of their personal story alone or in the company of friends. There are questions, exercises, and projects on recovering your personal history of manhood; warfare, conquest and competition; power and other values; work, money and vocation; sex, love and intimacy; feelings and emotions; changing the male body; cultivating solitude; rituals, ceremonies, and symbolic events; spirited and virile action. This primer on being a spirited man is just the right book at the right time for those who want to explore new territory for self-transformation.