To date the Promise Keepers organization continues to support Robert Hickss book The Masculine Journey. As we have reported previously, Hickss book is not based fully on the Bible, but rather on his own personal experience of what it means to be a man. Hicks forms arbitrary stages in which to place his own personal experience and subjective psychological notions. By giving biblical labels to these stages and mixing in some biblical truth, he makes it appear that the Bible validates everything he says about manhood.
Hicks contends that "this word [zakar] reflects the phallic male in his distinct sexual aspect." He says:
Hicks reduces the biblical definition of manhood to one body part. He says, "The Bible simply defines manhood by the phallus" (p. 49). Needless to say, Hicks is attempting to squeeze biblical manhood into his categories. He says:
One book on which Hicks relies is Daniel Levinsons The Seasons of a Mans Life. Hicks says the book is true on the basis of his own experience and on the basis of what he considers "excellent research." Levinson investigated the lives of forty men and came up with what Hicks calls "certain predictable eras in the male life cycle" (p. 19).
Levinson admits that the study was influenced by Freud, Jung, and Erickson, but also included others, such as Wilhelm Reich (p. 5, Levinson et al). In reviewing one of Reichs books, Alan Morrison says:
There have been various phallic cults throughout history, such as the Celts and Druids. Barry Fell, in his book America B.C., has a chapter on "The Ritual Phallic Monuments."
Hickss book The Masculine Journey and the Promise Keepers continued support of it are one fatal flaw in the movement. And, speaking of phallicism, is it mere coincidence that the Promise Keepers hope to assemble one million men around the Washington Monument in Washington, DC in 1997?
(From PAL V3N4)
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