A Men’s Group In Melbourne Garners Insight From Tribal Traditions

Every fourth Tuesday, in a quiet suburban yard in the modern metropolis of Melbourne, a community of guys face the ill-famed Melbourne weather to assemble around an outdoor fire and participate in the ‘Mens Fire Circle’. In the week just passed, the Mens Fire-Circle honored its fourth anniversary, so in acknowledgment of the occasion, I met with the organizer and creator of the Mens Fire Circle, David Mollet, to learn a little bit more in respect to what exactly the group does as well as why it started.

Reporter “So David, what led to you beginning the Men’s Fire Circle?”

“It was around the time of turning fifty. It was a fairly substantial occasion and then in the ensuing days I noticed myself reflecting on life, and in the middle of all of that, one of the issues I was thinking about was just how disappointed I felt with the spiritual leadership to be had in this culture as it is today. It seems like our spiritual establishments have actually depleted the majority of their ethical authority, and also I noticed myself fantasising about what my life would be like if I inhabited a tribal culture where people knew themselves as part of a tribe … It was about then that I had an ‘Ah-Ha’ moment and I said to myself “You have now reached fifty Dave, that makes you an elder, so exactly what are you planning to do about it, whine like a victim or step up, be a leader and be part of the solution.”

“That notion really hit home and in the days that followed I decided to begin a mens-community based upon the time-honored tribal values of Men meeting around fire to inquire into men’s issues, and the idea for the Mens Fire Circle was created.”

Reporter: “Why did you go for a Men’s Circle, why not just a circle for every person?”

“That’s an important point. At that time I really felt a compelling aspiration to study tribal cultures for my vision. I intended to return to something closer to nature, and it also appeared to me that in tribal cultures there was a definite underlining placed on coming of age events as well as an understanding of both the different needs, and also roles among each of the sexes. Moreover I really felt that if in their experience, leaders of tribes had witnessed merit in men and women getting together by their specific gender to inquire into and also counsel each other through the trials common to their own gender, then I concluded, it would be a wise idea for the circle I set up to follow that path also. I also think that there’s never been a more important time for advancing male leadership in a really mature and heart centred way”

Reporter: “Just how have you found the gender restricted parameters to go, have you found it to be valuable or do you miss out on the balance of the feminine?”

“Originally I felt uneasy about this, however paradoxically, what I have seen is that it appears a lot easier for guys to be in contact with the feminine aspect of themselves in circle if women are not there. I sense there are 2 points contributing to this phenomenon. One is that, more often than not men want to articulate dilemmas they’re having in their personal partnerships, and doing so only with their own gender seems to provide them a bit more scope to exchange openly as well as honestly concerning the way they really feel about ‘the lady’ in their lives. I believe they are aware that other men are often able to grasp their issues a lot better. Perhaps it’s because we’ve all received the very same social conditioning, so we are operating from similar beliefs.

The other aspect is, when the circle is all men, there are no sexual diversions, I mean there’s no striving for the attention of the women, no seeking to “make it” with the opposite sex. With the majority of potential sexual complications gotten rid of, this appears to enable everybody to be far more soul searching.”

The Men’s Fire Circle convenes at 7.30 pm on the fourth Tuesday each month, in Greensborough, an area of Melbourne, in the state of Victoria, Australia. You can easily look up the meetup site with all the details of upcoming events, as well as the option to subscribe for email alerts of the gatherings, click the link above or check them out on meetup.com look them up under Mens-Fire-Circle-Greensborough-Victoria