Male Bonding in three parts… and in three minutes.

Part I: Late last Friday, I was at BigMike’s house doing the weight-training routine with Jerry and Mel. After we were done keeping our male-ego in shape, I grabbed a beer. We rested and began a small chat session. While combing through topics like 2pac’s legacy, the state of homelessness, and how to prevent prostate cancer, the thought of how to deal with success (if it ever arrives) came about. (Note to Self: What the fuck is success?) Humans by nature are selfish creatures. Therefore, there is the fear of being be swallowed by overindulgence in temptations as we age. But fear not. We concluded that in a civilized society, altruism is taught and learned. We aren’t gods, we are human… we are flawed, but to be self-aware as well as self-correcting, is to truely be a true human. Go on young ones, moderately indulge responsiblely in sex, alcohol, or reality shows. And teach what you have learned. The universe will be in the balance. Afterwards, we just went to the kitchen to grab more beer…

Part II: I had lunch with Eric finally this Monday afternoon. I don’t know why, but we got around to talking about the sensitivity of men and the conversation relatively swung to the point of whether other guys speak of “deep” issues. Or do all we do is talk about girls and sex? I mentioned how I’ve seen a lot of men cry (Don’t worry guys, I ain’t mentioned any of your names… I did talk to your girls about it though. j/k… hehehe…). Men get emotional too. But because of our male-egos, we tend to bottle it up. And, believe it or not, it’s not just because of girls! It’s a little more deeper then that…

Part III: Last night, I hung out at the local coffee shop with BigMike to just bullshit and get away from the world. Not to infere that the coffee shop is away from the world but it’s a neutral place that we’ve all felt the comfort to lose our minds in. Of course, with all guys, there’s the usual exchange of “Whassup?” Then we talk about work, females, movies we saw, etc. You know, comfortable topics… then eventually, a fresh mood becomes apparent out of the monotony of the conversation. What I never realized was that Mike had indulged in being a Muslim for 4 years in his early coming-of-age days. This puts some color into his “player” image that he use to brag about during his youthful years (sorry, Mike). And I interjected with my own story of how I had come to encounter Islam: Hip-Hop music. Of course, before the music genre of the “ghetto” was hijacked by corporate America to sell the youth fantasies about being pimps & hoes, legendary artists like Public Enemy, Poor Righteous Teachers, Rakim, etc. were breaking rhymes about knowledge, self-reliance, and respect for the females. Hip-Hop is in a state of ignorance now… It’s rebellious strength is no longer taken seriously… you know something is wrong when you see 50 Cent on the cover of Teen People’s magazine. Anyways, back to Islam. A lot of Hip-Hop pioneers were members of (or influenced by) the Nation of Islam and the 5 Percenters. Many will argue that the NOI is not Orthodox Islam, nor am I a candidate for “Black militancy”. I agree on both terms. But, these Knowledge Born Hip-Hop artists flaunted an image where seeking Wisdom as something cool. And, of course, it led me to looking into what Orthodox Islam was itself. Both me and Mike agreed that both our attraction to Islam was that it was an alternative to Christianity (which seems to be shoved down our throats by some in this supposedly age of “tolerance”). But, ultimately, religion was not for us. Mike is, I believe, is agnostic, and I’m athiest. Although, I consider seeking Wisdom and gaining “Knowledge Of Self” as my spiritual quests, my bizarre sense of wit and philosophy as an Individualist doesn’t allow me to take beliefs of faith seriously.

As-Salaam-Alaikum!!

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