Thirteen men of the past and present Dog Soldiers circle drove to Hawkwind Retreat Center in Valley Head, Alabama for a gathering with a man named John Lee, an understudy of Robert Bly. John’s work with men has spanned 30-plus years as a guide, therapist, author and poet. He credits his success in large part to Robert. Our journey included connecting on a different level – a Native American traditional sweat lodge, followed by a large meal together.
In this most successful experience for all in attendance, several men answered the question, “What did you leave the John Lee weekend with?” Below are the responses
“I left the John Lee weekend with a greater sense at how to communicate as an adult and identify those things that get in the way when I don’t. In addition, I experienced the depth of love and support that our circle offers.”
“Sometimes I regress and do not act like an adult. What somebody feels is none of my business. My job as a man is to act like an adult. I have men in my life that I love and that love me.”
“John Lee provides some distinctions all men should hear and that in my 67 years, many trainings, numerous workshops and countless team meetings, I had never heard. At a minimum, the difference between anger and rage alone was worth the whole weekend! Each and every man at this weekend matured in some way!”
“Rocked my soul. Gained some wisdom that I will gravitate to till the end of my time. Left a whole lot lighter.”
“This was my first exposure to John Lee’s teachings. I learned the difference between anger and rage, how to manage my regression triggers, and free myself from emotional impedance. I left the weekend feeling blessed there are men like John Lee I can call a mentor.”
“The weekend was chock full of information, and the things I left with were knowledge about the differences between anger and rage, how they are manifested, how they are communicated, how they should be communicated, and unfortunately how much rage and pain I have been carrying around with me. It was easy to see how the majority of information fit into my life, yet my feelings around the things I didn’t agree with, were quickly changed once I communicated the way John Lee suggested. Simply put, admitting and understanding how I was communicating and bringing my pain and hurt onto my family, gaining new tools to do it a different way, then applying what I learned has remarkably changed my relationships with my family in just one week. I will be forever grateful for this opportunity and can’t wait for our next weekend.”
“I came away adjusted in my thinking about regression and how long I have been stuck in a state of rage. Mr. Lee was informative and patient. The whole setting enlivened my sense of dedication to learning that I must ask for help. Learning to make myself number 1, within a reunion with the elements made the occasion one of legacy.” Bridges
“I left my John Lee weekend with the knowledge I need to be around my men, even when I don’t feel like being with my men. The John Lee weekend gives me strength to grow, heal and move forward in my life as a man right now, becoming the man I want to be tomorrow. Also, the “maturity” of the weekend has opened up a new door of growth for me that gives me a sense of pride in myself.”
Overall, the weekend spent was revealing, rewarding and healing. John’s way with men is extraordinary. The next of these weekends won’t come soon enough. Look for it February 2017.