People have said to me, “Warwick, if you could write a book about ‘How to Love a Woman’, you would be a millionaire overnight.”
My problem is that every time I think I have learnt something about the art of loving a woman, and it is an art rather that a science, she changes, I change, the world changes and we are all back to square one again.
The words of John Mayer who wrote the song, ‘Daughters’ springs to mind:
I know a girl
She puts the colour inside of my world
But she is just like a maze
Where all of the walls continually change.
For many men love remains a mystery. That is why, when Gordon Dalbey, author of ground breaking book ‘Healing the Masculine Soul’, came to Australia to a men’s retreat, I made sure I got along there to do an interview with him.
Although written almost 30 years ago Gordon’s book remains a classic to this day for all those involved in the men’s movement. ‘Healing the Masculine Soul’ was actually written two full years before the other classic, ‘Iron John – Men and Masculinity’ by Robert Bly in 1990. Arguably Robert Bly drew some level of inspiration from Gordon Dalbey.
One of Gordon’s other books is called ‘Sons of the Father’ and in it he has a chapter titled ‘Loving a Woman’. Here is some of what he has written:
There are four things that are too mysterious for me to understand:
An eagle flying in the sky,
A snake moving on a rock,
A ship finding its way over the sea,
And a man and a woman falling in love. Proverbs 30:18-19
A hundred and fifty men sat waiting for me to teach on ‘Loving a woman’ and since I had taught on ‘Fathers and Sons’ the previous session, I took a quick poll.
“How many of you men”, I asked, “had a father who, when you were around age twelve or maybe a teenager, took you aside and said anything like, ‘Son, I notice you’re checking out the girls these days, and that’s fine, but I want to talk with you some about what’s going on in your body and spirit as you do that’?”
Of the hundred and fifty, two men raised their hands – about the same proportion I find everywhere I teach around the country. A third lifted his arm slightly and said aloud, “I don’t know if this counts, but once my dad …”
“It counts!” I interrupted, looking around the sea of men’s faces, their brows knit and heads shaking slowly. “If anything happened even to make you wonder, that’s more than the rest.”
In any other enterprise worthy of masculine energy – for example, starting a new job – a man would expect, if not demand, training and guidance from older men who had been on the job themselves for some time. Yet in relating to the woman – an enterprise comprising the very life mysteries of creation itself, upon which the future welfare of the species depends, requiring more of his true self than any other life investment of time and energy – a man is sent out utterly empty-handed.
Something spiritual happens when boy meets girl. Any boy young enough not to have eaten the world’s new grain know that. If I reach out my had and touch my desk, I feel my desk. That’s something physical. But a man can see a woman from across a room and, without ever touching her, feel something powerful stir inside him. That powerful ‘something’ has not been transmitted physically, but by some means beyond the power of men to engender or control. Thus, the father writing to his son in Proverbs confesses that sexual attraction is simply ‘too mysterious’ for him to understand.
So during my interview I asked Gordon the question on everyone’s lips.
How do you love a woman?
Yes, I know it’s a long clip, but figuring out how to love a woman takes a long time. To be honest it takes a lifetime, but at times it sure can be fun, Business Time being the best!
I lie. It’s not just Business Time that is the best, it is all the time.
You have to make time for your wife and make the time to learn how to love a woman. I will be working at it till I die.
I have two questions from the YouTube clip:
1. Will a man die from lack of sex?
2. What are the two keys to loving a woman from Gordon Dalbey’s perspective.
Yours for a happy marriage
PS. a) Today is the second day of 31 Days of Prayer & Fasting for Marriage & Families. If you want to sign up for a daily devotion by email, click here.
b) Congratulations to all those who have entered the Dads4Kids Instagram competition which closed last Friday. Judging has begun and we will keep you informed.