Archetypes are everywhere: within you, within others, and they create the very foundation of human behavior. There’s no doubt that archetypes play an important role in our lives and build our character. Did you know that you can work with archetypes to increase self-awareness and boost your spiritual wellbeing? This article will explore four masculine archetypes and their importance in relation to divine masculine awakening. You see, the more you develop the qualities of these masculine archetypes and integrate them into your life, the more you will feel connected to your soul and life purpose. Therefore, it is so important to know and understand the fundamental masculine archetypes and how to embody their powerful energy.
So let’s begin to explore the four masculine archetypes and their shadow characteristics.
What Is a Masculine Archetype?
In general, archetypes are behavior patterns that aid and influence our mental, emotional, and spiritual growth as human beings. From a metaphysical perspective, archetypes represent different types of energy that form the underlying framework of our being. It’s helpful to think of the different archetypes like facets of a diamond. Each facet has its own individual expression but the entirety of them make up the whole diamond.
The positive attributes of masculine archetypes are the highest expressions of masculine energies that men embody.
In the book “King, Warrior, Magician, Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine,” Jungian psychologist Robert Moore and mythologist Douglas Gillette propose that masculinity is made up of four fundamental archetypal male energies. Moore states that the problems we see with men today–violence, shiftlessness, and aloofness–result from modern men not adequately exploring or being in touch with the primal, masculine archetypes that reside within them.
According to Moore, there are four major masculine archetypes: King, Warrior, Magician, and Lover. For a man to achieve mature masculinity, he must be in touch with all four. When a man is not consciously aligned in a relationship with an archetype, he is influenced by its bipolar shadow, often switching back and forth between the active and passive poles.
Based on the principles of SO LAN CHA, everything in the physical universe is subject to the laws of polarity. This includes the 4 elemental building blocks of the universe, Fire, Water, Air, and Earth as well as the masculine archetypes. The two opposing polarities within elements and archetypes can either influence us in a constructive or destructive manner based on the degree of equilibrium we have achieved within the element or archetype.
According to Moore, each masculine archetype consists of three parts: the highest expression of the archetype and two bi-polar shadows of it. The shadow of an archetype is actually created by extremes in the polarization in the negative (SO) or positive (CHA). The goal of each man (according to Moore) is to reconcile and integrate these two bi-polar shadows to attain the fullest expression of the archetype. This integration, equilibrium, and achievement of harmony between these polarities are what we call (LAN).
Now let’s take a deeper look at each of the masculine archetypes.
#1: The King Archetype
The King archetype embodies the energy of the Divine Father. He serves his family, his community, and the world. The King archetype allows a man to discover the Divine masculine energy within.
The King archetype combines masculine consciousness and wisdom. This powerful combination allows him to create. He is committed to serving others and creating a harmonious environment of prosperity and well-being. A man who has matured into the King empowers others through guidance, discipline, and motivation. He is capable of making wise and precise decisions.
The King archetype represents powerful energy that transmutes chaos into order and emotions into balance.
This archetype is connected to the earth element – the element of stability and security.
The King in his fullness possesses the following qualities:
- inspires creativity in others;
- recognizes and honors others for their achievements;
- leaves a legacy.
When a man is not in touch with his inner King, he falls under the influence of the overactive (CHA) or passive (SO) poles of his shadow, the Tyrant or the Weakling.
The King’s shadow’s active pole (CHA) is the Tyrant. The Tyrant doesn’t care what others want or need; he only cares about his own goals and interests.
He possesses the following qualities:
- lack of inner structure;
- sensitivity to criticism.
The passive pole (SO) of the King’s shadow is the Weakling. The Weakling gives away his power over his life to other people, external circumstances, or even substances. He may develop paranoia or a dependent personality disorder. He wants to be adored, worshiped, and recognized for his unconditional authority.
The Weakling possesses the following qualities:
- lack of centeredness;
- lack of calmness;
- the incapability to act or lead;
- anxious need for approval and safety.
How to Channel your Inner King?
So, how do you come in touch with the balanced side (LAN) of the King? Here are some ideas:
- live and speak with integrity;
- always keep your promises;
- learn to create more and consume less;
- help others;
- establish your core beliefs, values, ethical norms, and life principles;
- develop leadership qualities;
- become decisive;
- leave a legacy;
- create a life plan and live according to it;
- avoid the corruption of money, power, and sex.
#2: The Warrior Archetype
Robert Moore gave the following characteristics to the Warrior archetype:
“He is always alert. He is always awake. He is never sleeping through life. He knows how to focus his mind and his body. He is what samurai called ‘mindful.'”
The Warrior has clear thinking and self-control. He is disciplined and has strong willpower. This archetype is connected to the Fire element.
The Warrior, in his fullness, possesses the following qualities:
- a clear purpose in life;
- flexible in his strategy;
- clear thinking;
- emotionally detached;
When a man is not in touch with his inner Warrior, he falls under the influence of his shadow’s active (CHA) or passive (SO) poles and turns into the Sadist or the Masochist.
The active pole (CHA) of the Warrior archetype is the Sadist. The Sadist creates unattainably high standards for himself and those around him. He can’t stand weak, vulnerable, and helpless people; and can even be hateful towards them. The Sadist can be cruel, commanding, critical, and even violent towards his wife and children.
He possesses the following qualities:
- violent emotionalism;
- wanton brutality;
- often feels empty, lost, and bitter;
The Sadist feels insecure about being “man enough” and projects this insecurity onto others.
The passive shadow (SO) of the Warrior is the Masochist. He is obsessed with succeeding and doesn’t like to take care of himself. The Masochist feels powerless to change anything in his life. If somebody disrespects him, he will not defend himself. He often feels stressed, overwhelmed by exhaustion, and self-pity. A man of this archetype dreams but never be able to act to make his dreams come true. He may hate his job or the relationship he’s in, but instead of quitting and moving on, he just tries harder to become who his wife or boss wants him to be, which leads to more abuse towards him.
The Masochist possesses the following qualities:
- inability to defend himself;
- lack of personal boundaries;
- avoids confrontation and conflict;
- always stressed and depressed;
- feels powerless to make changes in his life;
- lacks vigor;
- tends to procrastinate.
How to Channel the Warrior?
The Warrior energy propels men to dream big, set big goals in life, and fight for a worthy cause. Men in touch with the balanced side (LAN) of the Warrior archetype are greatly needed today. So what can you do to channel your Inner Warrior? Here are some ideas:
- practice martial arts;
- do something that scares you;
- develop focus and concentration;
- don’t let other people’s opinions control your life and affect your self-value;
- find your core values and life principles;
- participate in competitive sports games;
- work on becoming more decisive;
- develop self-discipline.
#3: The Magician Archetype
Robert Moore calls the Magician “the knower.” This is the archertype of insight, knowledge, reflections, awareness, and thoughtfulness. He gives this archetype the following description:
“All knowledge that takes special training to acquire is the province of the Magician energy. Whether you are an apprentice training to become a master electrician and unraveling the mysteries of high voltage; or a medical student, grinding away night and day, studying the secrets of the human body and using available technologies to help your patients; or a would-be stockbroker or a student of high finance; or a trainee in one of the psychoanalytic schools, you are in exactly the same position as the apprentice shaman or witch doctor in tribal societies. You are spending large amounts of time, energy, and money in order to be initiated into rarefied realms of secret power. You are undergoing an ordeal testing your capacities to become a master of this power. And, as is true in all initiations, there is no guarantee of success.”
Thus, all knowledge, the acquisition of which requires special training, is the prerogative of the Magician archetype. When we are committed to studying any profession or field of knowledge, we are connecting to our Inner Magician.
The Magician archetype is connected to the Air element.
The Magician is the archetype that possesses:
- deep connection with inner resources and inner truth;
- inner wisdom;
- emotional detachment;
- compassionate application of technology and knowledge;
The Magician has the gift of explaining complicated spiritual, mental, and material theories in ways others can easily understand. You can easily recognize this archetype in action when someone starts explaining complex theory by using simple examples or metaphors.
When a man is not in touch with his inner Magician, he falls under influence of the active (CHA) or passive (SO) poles of his shadow, the Detached Manipulator or the Innocent One.
The active pole (CHA) of the Magician is the Detached Manipulator. The Detached Manipulator doesn’t guide others but manipulates and guides them in ways they cannot see. He teases others with the promise of learning his secrets, but he does not give them all his knowledge. This allows him to feed both his pride and his wallet. He charges a ton of money for that little information he provides, which is usually just enough to demonstrate his superiority and feed his ego. Unfortunately, many spiritual teachers today have fallen victim to this archetype. As students, it’s essential to understand this concept to avoid such teachers, or you might just wake up one day realizing you are a member of a cult.
Here are some examples of how the Detached Manipulator can be manifested:
- The teacher attacks his students, trying to kill their enthusiasm.
- The lawyer charges tons of money and doesn’t inform his client that their case is actually hopeless.
- The medical specialist withdraws important information from his patients.
- An advertiser manipulates the public psyche and lies to feed his greed and succeed in his job.
- The politician whose promises are worth nothing and only designed to manipulate people to get what he wants.
- A spiritual teacher that promises you enlightenment if you take his $10,000 course.
Do any of these examples look familiar to you?
Here are the qualities that the Detached Manipulator possesses:
The Innocent One
The passive shadow (SO) of the Magician is the Innocent One. The Innocent One wants the power and status that belongs to the Magician, but he doesn’t want to take the responsibilities that this status requires. He has no desire to share, teach, or help others.
The Innovent One can get very excited about a new project, a hobby, or a job, but when the easy part has passed, he realizes how much hard work and effort is required to get really good, he gives up. He doesn’t want to make any efforts to become a skillful professional.
Men with the shadow of the Innocent One want to be millionaires but aren’t willing to put in real effort and work years to achieve it. They are fascinated by the idea but are unwilling to take the necessary steps to achieve it if it takes more time than expected.
You can see many examples of the Innocent Ones in the spiritual community. When men want to be spiritual, but without all that prayer, meditation, disciplined behavior, or study. Such a man would parry any attempts to confront him. He would keep you out of balance by involving you into an endless process of questioning your own intuitive feelings about his actions and behavior.
The Innocent One possesses the following qualities:
- inner desolation;
- lack of effort;
- inner desolation.
How to Channel Your Inner Magician?
If you want to come in touch with the balanced side (LAN) of the Magician, here are some ideas to start with:
- perform walking meditation in the woods or in the park;
- commit to lifelong learning;
- work with your hands;
- study spiritual scriptures;
- invest time in introspection;
- develop conscious discipline;
- increase your willpower;
- learn to concentrate;
- spend more time connecting with nature.
#4: The Lover Archetype
This is the archetype of emotion, creativity, deep sensuality, feeling, unity and idealism. The Lover experiences life in a sensual way. He seeks to experience as many dimensions of life as possible, using all of his senses: seeing, touching, smelling, tasting, and hearing.
This archetype relates to the Water element.
The Lover lives in a world of sensory pleasure. He feels deeply connected to his inner depths and those of others.
The Lover is passionate about his goals, women, and life in general. When you channel your Inner Lover, you feel alive with energy and inner power.
The Lover is the archetype that possesses the following qualities:
- deep sensuality;
- in touch with his emotions;
- lives life fully.
When a man is not in touch with his inner Lover, he falls under the influence of the active (CHA) or passive (SO) poles of his shadow, the Addicted Lover or the Impotent Lover.
The Addicted Lover
The active shadow (CHA) of the Lover is the Addicted Lover. The Addicted Lover is forever searching for that one thing, person, or experience that will make him feel truly alive. We see two problems here:
- the Addicted Lover is always looking for something but doesn’t really know what he’s searching for;
- he has overinflated expectations.
Because of this, the Addicted Lover never feels satisfied. His energy becomes destructive and even self-destructive when he becomes a prisoner of his own passion and sensitivity. His constant search for pleasure locks him in a prison of immobility he cannot escape.
The Addicted Lover is a collector of possessions, experiences, or women. However, he has no structure The Addicted Lover is a collector of possessions, experiences, or women. However, he has no structure or life philosophy to connect the things he collects. Therefore, his life feels fragmentary instead of whole. Due to a lack of focus, his energy dissipates in a million directions.
The Addict Lover is what we call the Don Juan syndrome. He is moving from one woman to another and getting lost in the world of sensual experiences. He lacks centeredness and rootedness – qualities that are inherent in monogamy and mature masculinity.
The Addicted Lover possesses the following qualities:
- never satisfied;
- addicted to pleasures;
- lacks focus;
- destructive and even self-destructive.
The Impotent Lover
The passive shadow (SO) of the Lover is the Impotent Lover. The Impotent Lover tends to be bored, listless, and chronically depressed. Such a man feels dead inside. It seems like nothing brings him happiness or joy anymore. He has lost his passion for life. He lacks libido and sex life. Underneath all of this apathy, there often lies suppressed anger towards his wife, stress at work, or worries about money.
The Impotent Lover can arise in a man who is too demanding of himself, too strict with himself, and disciplines himself too much. This is often the case with men in a spiritual community, who laden themselves with overly strict rules and feel shame when indulging in life’s pleasures.
Here are the distinctive traits of the Impotent Lover:
- lack of zest for life;
- monotone voice;
- a lack of connection with others;
- isolation from family, co-workers, and friends;
- feels cut off from himself;
- may speak about himself in the 2nd or 3rd person;
- chronically depressed;
- disconnected from his true feelings and emotions;
- doesn’t enjoy life;
- lack of sex life;
- overly strict with himself.
How to Channel the Lover?
If you want to come in touch with the balanced side (LAN) of your Inner Lover, here are some ideas to start with:
- take more time to really enjoy the things that bring you pleasures in life (but, at the same time, make sure to cultivate the virtue of moderation);
- instead of reaching for more, enjoy the things you already have and do in a deeper way, using all of your senses;
- invest your time in a hobby that you feel passionate about;
- read more;
- spend more time outdoors close to nature;
- practice tantra;
- make time for romance.
The Bottom Line
For a man to achieve mature or what we might also call divine masculinity, he must be in touch with all four of the masculine archetypes in a harmonious way. When a man is not in a balanced relationship with an archetype, he falls under the influence of its bipolar shadow, often switching back and forth between the passive (SO) and active (CHA) poles.
The poles are magnetic and electric or masculine and feminine in nature. If we do not consciously make the effort to maintain an equilibrial or balanced state between the poles we end up using the destructive energy of the archetype instead of its constructive creative power.
The practices and principles of SOLANCHA are to recognize and harness the rhythm of these energetic states and qualities such that we can harness them in a constructive manner and actualize our own divine potential and purpose. Therefore, it is so important to know which archetype dominates too strongly in your psyche or is animated in the active or passive shadow poles. This provides an opportunity for healing and integration, resulting in more power, achieving mature masculinity, and aligning oneself with their true potential, power, and purpose.