In the Land of Tears, Do Not Touch

I’m sitting in a men’s circle in Brisbane, Australia.  Across from me is a man talking about how his father abandoned him, his mother, and his sisters when he was 13 years old.   He stares without blinking at a singular spot on the tiled floor in front of him; his words thick with a  Read more

February 16, 2013 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor


“A Man Shall Leave His Mother….”

A few years back, while speaking at a conference of Family Studies teachers in Ontario about an adolescent boy’s need to separate from his mother, I saw a woman in the front row with tears streaming down her face.   At the end of my talk, she thanked me for helping her understand why her  Read more

January 26, 2013 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor


Descent Into Ashes…

“Ashes to ashes, dust to dust;” ancient words we’re not used to hearing these days.   Ashes are dry, lifeless flakes of things once living and now dead.  Christians are anointed with them on Ash Wednesday. In navigating the masculine journey, ashes are a symbolic reminder that many of our goals, dreams, and desires don’t turn  Read more

March 8, 2012 in Blog Post, Uncategorized by Patrick O'Connor


“Those Old Emotions…”

You smell a familiar perfume From a girl you knew long ago On a holiday weekend And you know… That you’re there once more In some forgotten story From your private library Of things that you’ll remember Then it comes back again, those OLD EMOTIONS And it brings back, those OLD EMOTIONS ~   The Spoons,  Read more

November 26, 2011 in Blog Post, Uncategorized by Patrick O'Connor


Tender Masculinity

Patrick O’Connor This short film is a wonderful example of a man who possess his heart and expresses it in tender beauty.   THE UNSPOKEN – Tropfest 2011 Finalist A confronting look at a filmmaker’s personal journey to reach out to his dying father. Directed by Jason van Genderen Tropfest Australia Runner Up 2011

May 19, 2011 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor

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Finding Balance

A friend of mine and I have been dialoguing about “polarities’ and finding balance in teaching and in the masculine journey.  She said, “However, just saying one should have ‘balance’ is not all that helpful to someone who doesn’t have it, doesn’t know what it looks like or how to get it.” This is a  Read more

May 2, 2011 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor

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Lessons in Leadership

I looked down among the leaves and twigs of the forest floor searching for some ineffable truth that would rid me of the anxiety that washed through me.  As I often do when I’m nervous, I escape to the woods.  It was a Friday afternoon in October, just an hour before I was to lead  Read more

April 16, 2011 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor


Haunted by Bobby’s murder: The Healing Journey of Juan Romero

Of the many fine writers at the National Post, Joe O’Connor is one of my favourites.  His story about Juan Romero, the busboy kneeling by the body of Robert Kennedy in that now iconic photo of American tragedy, is a profound example of the healing journey of a man’s heart. Juan Romero knelt before the grave in Arlington  Read more

February 24, 2011 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor

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