Does it get any easier – the loss of the father? Short answer: no.
is a commercial ploy to make money. These days, what isn’t? Nevertheless, the father is important. Because without him none of us would be here.
was both a complicated and simple man. Simple because he was basically what a good man is. Complicated because he was loved, feared, envied, resented, respected … etcetera and so on.
These are the times we live in – complicated.
is a book I wrote and dedicated to him. In it there is a chapter “The Missing Father” which I wrote twenty-one days after he died. Here it is:
The Missing Father
OCTOBER 31, 2016
My father died twenty-one days ago, and I’m having a hard time. During the last year of his life, we talked often, and he asked me if I missed my mother. I told him no, that I was a grown man and didn’t need her, a mother, anymore. He told me he missed her, and I told him I understood but that his and my relationship with her, his wife and mate and my mother, were different.
His short-term memory was gone, and so we couldn’t carry on the conversation, but we had it over and over again.
My son, my father.
His grandson, my son, late the night after he died, wrote a tribute to his grandfather and posted it on Facebook. He wrote: “He was my closest friend. He really got me through some tough times. My grandfather looked out for me, protected me, encouraged me, listened to me, and loved me. He lived a great life, did an outstanding job providing for his family, and taught me so much about being courteous and dependable and flexible and generous and kind.”
The essence of a father.
Isn’t that the essence of fatherhood and, in practice, life—as it is experienced? The human condition? A father is necessary to protect and provide for his family and to teach his children what it is to be a man and how to navigate the storms and hardships that are inevitable.
Hillary Clinton is wrong in that regard. It doesn’t take a village (to raise a child); it takes a man, a father (with help, of course).
What is undermining the human experience on earth is the feminization of life—the war, if you will, on men and the natural order of life.
What a man is.
A man, a real man, above and before all else, protects and provides for his family—his mate and children and then the other members of his tribe. That is universally understood and is as it has always been, regardless of time, place, ethnicity, and/or culture.
In the United States, that fact of life has been undermined by the politically correct movement, the postmodernists, by the unempowered, the weak, in attacking the power and force (i.e., the father) via subversive and dishonest methods. In other words passive aggression, guilt, shame, false information or propaganda, democracy (majority rules, regardless). And the reframing of history and ideas under the guise of freedom and liberty and education.
There are alternative facts or narratives concerning America and the world. Each storyteller or in-group has its version. One group’s freedom fighter/hero is another’s terrorist/criminal. Same as it’s always been.
If in practice, every father provided for and protected his family, I think 90 percent of the problems (joblessness, homelessness, addiction, mental illness, disordered personalities, the fear of death and dying) would be manageable and tolerable. For the most part, would go away.
These problems grow and expand into conditions that lead to conflict (which many thrive on) within and between individuals and societies and nations. Because of the absence of the father (meaning a man capable of providing for and protecting his family within the safety and security of a tribe).
To be clear, this situation may well be beyond any one person’s control. In other words it may be the result of the force of momentum, physics, and chemistry.
Said another way, reciprocal determinism, or the law of attraction. Which is a chain of circumstance (cause and effect, determinism, interaction of unknowable factors), a coincidence of circumstance (luck/ chance/random). A web of complex relations (unknowable, see above), permutations of complications, or God’s will (religion, the belief in a supernatural power).
In other words, what are you going to do? What ought I to do, given I don’t know the answer?
Laws and laws
Is it possible to make laws that trump that which is? Is it possible to make that which is unreal real because we imagine it? Want it? In other words, can we make something not true, true? By our will, prayer, collective prayer, and collective will?
Or is it as it has always been, as Blaise Pascal thought and said hundreds of years ago, “The empire of imagination reigns for a while and is sweet and unconstrained, but the empire of force reigns forever. The last act is bloody, however pleasant all the rest of the play is: a little earth is thrown at last upon our head, and that is the end forever.”
I miss my father every day. He wasn’t a perfect man, but knowing he was there, that he had my back, allowed me to be me, to be free, to soar toward the sun, to y. Even if my wings were held on only by wax, was of no concern to me. My father was there. Now it’s my turn, and I challenge myself to be up to the task.
This Father’s Day
I’m going to grill a burger on my balcony, throw down a shot or two of whiskey, toast my father, and make a wish: Happy Father’s Day. Cheers.