The Way of the Superior Man – Book Notes

The Way of the Superior Man: A Spiritual Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Women, Work, and Sexual Desire (20th Anniversary Edition)
David Deida

Fear is lack of trust in now. Fear is saying “no” to some aspect of the present moment.
LOCATION: 122

Identified with money or accomplishments, a man feels weak when he compares himself to others who have more. But when he knows himself to be self-radiant awareness, conscious and lit up, awakening as man, he blooms in perfect harmony with the immense energy of reality. The infinite force of now is his power and his presence.
LOCATION: 126

Your capacity to embody this profound force of presence in your gaze, breath, and action determines your perceived value, sexually and financially.
LOCATION: 131

Sexual attraction is based on sexual polarity, which is the force of passion that arcs between masculine and feminine poles.
LOCATION: 204

men and women are clinging to a politically correct sameness even in moments of intimacy, then sexual attraction disappears.
LOCATION: 214

The “mission” or the search for freedom is the priority of the masculine, whereas the search for love is the priority of the feminine.
LOCATION: 238

Many people with true feminine essences manifest a whole range of disturbed physiological symptoms as their feminine energy “dries up” due to running excess masculine energy through their body, year after year, in order to fit into the masculine style of work. And many people with masculine essences, seeking to fit in with the feminine style of cooperation and energy flow, disconnect from their sense of life purpose and inhibit their deep truth, afraid of the consequences of being authentic to their own masculine core. Hence, the frequent complaints about too many ballbusters and wimps.
LOCATION: 279

It is time to evolve beyond the macho jerk ideal, all spine and no heart. It is also time to evolve beyond the sensitive and caring wimp ideal, all heart and no spine. Heart and spine must be united in a single man, and then gone beyond in the fullest expression of love and consciousness possible, which requires a deep relaxation into the infinite openness of this present moment. And this takes a new kind of guts. This is The Way of the Superior Man.
LOCATION: 315

Men who have lived significant lives are men who never waited: not for money, security, ease, or women. Feel what you want to give most as a gift, to your woman and to the world, and do what you can to give it today. Every moment waited is a moment wasted, and each wasted moment degrades your clarity of purpose.
LOCATION: 353

Closing down in the midst of pain is a denial of a man’s true nature. A superior man is free in feeling and action, even amidst great pain and hurt. If necessary, a man should live with a hurting heart rather than a closed one. He should learn to stay in the wound of pain and act with spontaneous skill and love even from that place.
LOCATION: 359

Look directly into the eyes of whomever you are with, feeling your own pain as well as feeling the other person. Only when the front of your body is relaxed and opened, your breath full and deep, and your gaze unguarded and directly connected with another person’s eyes, can your fullest intelligence manifest spontaneously in the situation. To act as a superior man, a samurai of relationship, you must feel the entire situation with your whole body. A closed body is unable to sense subtle cues and signals, and therefore unable to act with mastery in the situation.
LOCATION: 369

Make your life an ongoing process of being who you are, at your deepest, most easeful levels of being. Everything other than this process is secondary.
LOCATION: 425

There are two ways to deal with woman and world without compromising your true gifts or dribbling away the force of your deep being. One way is to renounce sexual intimacy and worldliness, totally dedicating yourself without distraction or compromise to the path you choose to pursue, free of the seemingly constant demands of woman and world.
LOCATION: 549

You can be a renunciate and live alone, apart from woman and world. But if you choose a life of sexual and worldly intercourse, you will feel trapped by woman and world unless you are free in the midst of “true fuck,” yielding yourself into the giving, holding nothing back, dissolving all time in the open of love. Through thick and thin, this is the way of the superior man.
LOCATION: 560

If you merely want support from your men friends without challenge, it bespeaks an unresolved issue you may have with your father, whether he is alive or dead. The father force is the force of loving challenge and guidance. Without this masculine force in your life, your direction becomes unchecked, and you are liable to meander in the mush of your own ambiguity and indecision. Your close men friends can provide the stark light of love—uncompromised by a fearful Mr. Nice act—by which you can see the direction you really want
LOCATION: 583

The core of your life is your purpose. Everything in your life, from your diet to your career, must be aligned with your purpose if you are to act with coherence and integrity in the world. If you know your purpose, your deepest desire, then the secret of success is to discipline your life so that you support your deepest purpose and minimize distractions and detours.
LOCATION: 597

A man must be prepared to give 100 percent to his purpose, fulfill his karma or dissolve it, and then let go of that specific form of living. He must be capable of not knowing what to do with his life, entering a period of unknowingness and waiting for a vision or a new form of purpose to emerge. These cycles of strong specific action followed by periods of not knowing what the hell is going on are natural for a man who is shedding layers of karma in his relaxation into truth.
LOCATION: 614

If your deepest purpose is to meditate and realize God, you might find that before you can totally dedicate yourself to this practice you must work your way through the concentric circles of playing with sexual partners, using drugs, getting married, raising children, developing a career, and finally, having dissolved your fascination and need to do all of that, getting down to the business of full-time meditation.
LOCATION: 625

Whatever the specifics of a man’s purpose, he must always refresh the transcendental element of his life through regular meditation and retreat. A man should never get lost in the details of his life and forget that, ultimately and in truth, life amounts to nothing other than what is the deepest truth of this present moment. Tasks don’t get a man anywhere more conscious or free than he is capable of being in this present moment.
LOCATION: 737

The masculine grows by challenge, but the feminine grows by praise. A man must be unabashed and expressed in his appreciation for his woman. Praise her freely.
LOCATION: 885

self-discipline is not self-suppression. Suppression is when you resist and fight against your desires, keeping them as buried and unexpressed as possible. Self-discipline is when your highest desires rule your lesser desires, not through resistance, but through loving action grounded in understanding and compassion.
LOCATION: 1313

The divine masculine is consciousness. A superior man practices maintaining full consciousness in all situations. If ejaculation results in a decrease of your fullness, a diminution of your presence, a collapse of your consciousness, then you should not ejaculate. Even if your woman says she wants you to. Especially when your woman says she wants you to.
LOCATION: 1476

The thing your woman is complaining about is rarely the thing she is complaining about. It is a mistake to believe the content of what she is saying, and then respond to her complaints, point by point. When she complains about financial issues, she is usually feeling a lack in your masculine capacity to direct your life with clarity, purpose, integrity, and wisdom. The money itself is secondary. If you were poor but totally conscious, happy, full of integrity, fearless, humorous, loving, and giving your fullest gift to the world and to your woman, she wouldn’t complain about lack of money.
LOCATION: 1514

Your word is a demonstration of your purpose, of your masculine core. When you don’t follow through with what you say you are going to do, she feels that your masculine core is weak. She feels let down. She can’t trust your masculine direction. And so she feels a great loss. Over time, she will begin to build up her own masculine protection against your lack of integrity. She will begin to guard herself against the hurt that your lack of carry-through causes. She will harden herself, becoming angular and tense. To you, the garage seems trivial. To her, you have failed at your word. She can’t trust you.
LOCATION: 1523

You may take on your woman’s purposes because they are stronger than yours. You may adapt your need for direction to externally regulated purposes, becoming a cogwheel company man or a dead-ended husband and parent, without leaving yourself open to your own greatest vision.
LOCATION: 1578

Be careful not to substitute default responsibilities for true purpose.
LOCATION: 1580

It’s also easy to give up entirely on living a life of absolute commitment to truth, settling for the common life of absolute commitment to work, family, intimacy, and friends. Yet, you can only be a superior professional, father, husband, and friend when you are living these relationships as gifts given from your core, not as what’s left over because you don’t have the guts to discover your core impulse and live on its basis.
LOCATION: 1581

When you feel sexual lust or desire for any woman, breathe deeply and allow the feeling of desire to magnify. And allow it to magnify more. Don’t let the energy become lodged in your head or genitals, but circulate it throughout your body. Using your breath as the instrument of circulation, bathe every cell in the stimulated energy. Inhale it into your heart, and then feel outward from your heart, feeling the world as if it were your lover. With an exhale, move into the world and penetrate it, skillfully and spontaneously, opening it into love. Through these means, allow women’s sexiness to help you discover and give your gift, rather than beguile you into cycles of stimulation and depletion.
LOCATION: 1961

You won’t be willing to bypass ejaculation until you have experienced the much greater pleasures which lie beyond it. In the meantime, notice how you feel in the minutes and days following ejaculation. If you have accumulated a lot of tension in your daily life, ejaculation will afford you with temporary release and relaxation. But as you live your life with more and more true purpose, you won’t accumulate so much tension during the day. Then, you will discover that ejaculation, for the most part, actually depletes and weakens you.
LOCATION: 2095

It feels great for a few moments, but the price you pay for the genital sneeze of ejaculation is a much higher level of mediocrity in your daily life. You will find that you just don’t have the extra gusto necessary to live your life with utter impeccability. Excess ejaculations pave the road to living a good life, but not a great life.
LOCATION: 2100

Instead, feel your suffering, rest with it, embrace it, make love with it. Feel your suffering so deeply and thoroughly that you penetrate it, and realize its fearful foundation. Almost everything you do, you do because you are afraid to die. And yet dying is exactly what you are doing, from the moment you are born. Two hours of absorption in a good Super Bowl telecast may distract you temporarily, but the fact remains. You were born as a sacrifice. And you can either participate in the sacrifice, dissolving in the giving of your gift, or you can resist it, which is your suffering.
LOCATION: 2533