Modern Male Elders and The Call to Save Humanity

Lewis Richmond is a modern male elder. So is his friend Peter Coyote and my friend Chip Conley. I met Lew in 1977 at Green Gulch Zen Temple in San Francisco where he was Head of Practice. I met Chip ten years later, shortly after he bought the iconic Phoenix Hotel, known back then as the quirky Tenderloin hotel with the rock ‘n’ roll soul. We are, literally, the last of a dying breed, at a time when humanity needs us more than ever.

As I write this on January 21, 2021, the world-wide death toll from the Coronavirus stands at 2,087,496, with 416,435 deaths in the U.S. alone. With numbers this high it can be difficult to remember that each death is a real person, in a family, where a mother, father, son, daughter, sister, brother, mourn their death. Though anyone can contract the virus, not everyone is at equal risk of dying.

Promundo, an international organization advancing gender equality and preventing violence, recently issued a report, “Masculinities and COVID-19: Making the Connections.”

Key findings show that:

  • Men appear to be more likely to die from COVID-19 than women, according to evidence from many countries around the world.
  • Masculine norms expect men to be tough, stoic, and self-reliant; this may mean that men with COVID-19 symptoms avoid or delay seeking medical advice.
  • Economic fallout from COVID-19 could lead to an increase in suicides, especially among men.

Read the rest of this article on Jed’s blog.

Photo by raza ali on Unsplash

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