THE KING WITHIN: Accessing the King in the Male Psyche by Robert & Douglas Gillette Moore

THE KING WITHIN: Accessing the King in the Male Psyche

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Calling itself ""an operator's manual to the psyche"" of men (and a guide to their ""hardwiring"" for women), this is also a firm if rather theoretical response to critics who charge that men's movement gatherings and exhortations are silly, reactive, and shallow. Moore (Psychology and Religion/Chicago Theological Seminary) and Gillette (a pastoral counselor) write about ""the king within""--a psychological potential that each man apparently carries--with authority and total conviction, discussing the four Jungian archetypes (""King,"" ""Warrior,"" ""Magician,"" ""Lover""), recalling their many representations in ancient and modern cultures, and examining associated patterns of energy that empower men. Readers expecting descriptions of sweat lodges and exotic rites of passage won't find them here. The authors focus on myth and ritual as psychological skills in the quest for the king within, a mature man who strives to achieve creativity and make a positive difference in the world. Although Moore and Gillette acknowledge a variety of failed specimens, from weaklings like--they say--King Arthur and Jimmy Carter to ""Shadow Kings"" like Caligula and wayward CEOs, they concentrate on identifying positive qualities (caring, courage), on learning how to tap into them, and on empowering others to do the same. To the authors, the urge for power is no shame as long as it's channeled justly. Regrettably, Moore and Gillette rarely refer to contemporary situations and rely on alienating jargon: ""Since the fully manifested King experiences a passionate union with the Anima...Queen, a man can experience the deep Self approaching the Jungian exemplum, but his Self is likely to be asymmetrically masculine."" For a more accessible, reality-oriented view of similar territory, try Samuel Osherson's Wrestling with Love, reviewed below. (But those attuned to the authors' approach should note that a follow-up title, The Warrior Within, is due out in August.)

Pub Date: March 16th, 1992
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Morrow