The end of the game debate

I was conversing with JoJ over at Free Notherner’s Christian Masculinity, and was finally able to pinpoint the difference between the pro-game and anti-game debate that has raged about the Christian manosphere for the past half decade or more.

The part that got me started is that he came to the exact same conclusion that I did — the heart matters to God — but we came to exact opposite conclusions. This bothered me until I went back to the pyramid model and envisioned it from different angles.

The top-down (anti-game) view is this: We know that we don’t operate in a moral vacuum so therefore we can see that no “technique” or “tool” is void of spiritual ramifications. This is why game looks like a toolbox but is not — you cannot use a “tool” based in dark triad traits and expect not to be corrupted by it.

The down-up (pro-game) view is this: We know that a Christian man who has a heart for God is able to sort between “techniques” or “tools” which are good and bad, and thus he can confidently say that eliminating neediness is going to make him a more effective man in successful communication, while on the other hand he may not use anything related to the dark triad because he knows that it will corrupt him. In this way, “game” can be seen as a tool because of the discernment of the individual.

I’m pretty sure that we all agree that the knowledge by itself is not sinful (though some ways in which it is acquired can be). The main reason why I am “anti-game” per se is that it’s good to look at what “not to do” with game such as not be needy, not seek validation from women, not pedestalize them, etc. but be very careful on what to use from game on what we “should do.” It’s the “should do” techniques that may be subtly based in the dark triad that will corrupt. From the top-down view, that would be eschewment of game on a broader level as self seeking especially if you don’t know the spiritual ramifications of such, though if you can adequately distinguish between them (through the Holy Spirit) from a down-up it can be viewed like a “tool.”

The game debate, in the end, is indeed a matter of perspective it seems. I wouldn’t necessarily say that one side is right or wrong. In theory both views are adequately supported insomuch as God wants your both your heart and He wants good fruit/good works from Christians.

foundationofgodlymasculinity2

If we take a look at the pyramid from a top-down perspective, I know that as a Christian I can see that there are two pyramids and that implementation of knowledge (game) is spiritual devoid if it bears bad fruit which much of game does. It either falls into one camp or the other. One of God and one of the world. However, if I’m looking at the pyramid from the bottom-up perspective, I can see that it starts with the heart and therefore if you serve God you will only do things to please him which can include some of the “implementation of game knowledge” that will help you become a better Christian or see better the insight from Scripture.

However, in practice I think the top-down framework to view actions is best (the anti-game view) because it looks at the fruit of actions for not just the self but for everyone involved. This is why I still continue to say that techniques like dread game — which is rooted in the dark triad — are of the flesh. Although it may improve the marriage as an end result, it can also result in sin along the way. As Jesus said, “you shall know them by their fruits.” An improved marriage but with sin is not how God wants us to live.

I’ve already proposed a ‘filtering method’ for “game” that seems to adequately eliminate most if not all of the dark triad techniques while keeping the soundness of “tools” a Christian man can learn from the knowledge of and practice:

  1. It is good to know to learn about what to do and what not to do from the nature of intersex relationships from the Scriptures, godly mentors, prayer, fasting, meditation on the Word, etc.
  2. It is good to know what not to do from knowledge of the nature of the flesh such as game.
  3. But I would be very, very, very careful about what learning what to do from something inherently selfish like game.

Though, in Love, there needs to be a wholeness in the thinking of not just “self” but “us” as a Christian man interacting with a woman. Therefore, everything should be tested against the Scriptures and Holy Spirit in accordance with the question,

  • Are my actions drawing myself and others / women closer to God?

This is the heart that God wants, and the heart motivated to action and knowledge that will “bear good fruit.”

My final thoughts on game:

If someone is clearly putting God first in their heart and actions whether they are “pro-game” or “anti-game” I support them. Whether they see me as “repackaging game” or whether I’m building “godly masculinity” I don’t care.

The debate is utterly pointless and a waste of time.

What matters, ultimately, is that I can effectively get out knowledge of how to instruct those who want to be masculine men of God.

P.S. This is the last game debate post I will ever write (hold me to it!) because I consider it resolved. The rest of the Christian masculinity posts with references to game will be on filtering and implementation with theological underpinnings.

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16 Responses to The end of the game debate

  1. Jacob Ian Stalk says:

    Nice job. This expresses beautifully what I’ve felt in my heart from the start of my journey in the Manosphere. I eagerly look forward to reading your ideas about Christian filtration and the right-headed application of Game.

  2. @ Jacob

    Thank God who gave that inspiration to me!

    It really bothered me because I oscillated back and forth on the pro game vs anti game issue for a while and couldn’t pinpoint exact why I was doing it. I’m glad I have a firmer understanding now and am happy to go forward from here.

  3. The “not to do” vs “should do” part is a great way to explain it.

  4. jack says:

    David used a sword. I wonder if swords were invented by the righteous or the wicked?

    There is nothing on this earth that has not been touched by sin’s corrupting influence. Insistence on “purity” of source and intent in all things is likely to leave someone unable to function in this world.

  5. @ jack

    I don’t think anyone is insisting on purity of source.

    Main thing that the anti-game crowd and even one of the pro-est game proponents insists on is purity of heart (for God). That’s what most of us are aiming for at least.

  6. jack says:

    My point is that I am skeptical of those who say that teaching game might “tempt” a young man into sin. But so might alcohol, or even candy bars. Or teaching self-defense.

    I am not a believer in restricting knowledge or wisdom from people “for their own good”.

    The only humans that I have a right to be paternalistic with would be any children that I might have. And only until they are adults.

  7. @ jack

    I don’t believe restricting knowledge is good either (unless said knowledge is gained by direct sin such as fornicating to ostensibly improve sexual technique for marriage). I’m for providing knowledge as I’ve said many times.

    However, I do think that a solid foundation on Scripture and a heart for God should be done before giving a man knowledge about lusts of the flesh. Just as I wouldn’t give a man a gun before instructing him about firearms.

    I’m skeptical of implementation of techniques based in the knowledge in the line of the dark triad traits because we know that nothing is done in a moral vacuum. Traits that encourage manipulation will most likely corrupt the user

  8. jack says:

    You sure it’s “manipulation”? I think that is a prejudicial way to look at it. Is a woman’s decision to wear flattering clothes deception? Manipulation?

    I think that Christian men better get out ahead of game rather than mulishly trying to stop the wagon train. Game is now taking of in the Christosphere, slowly but surely.

    I think Christian men have two choices: Grab the wheel and start steering it, or get run over by it. Because no one will be stopping it.

  9. @ jack

    Let’s put it this way. Obviously, one way to make your wife more attracted to you is to preselect yourself with other women.

    Should Christian husbands be flirting with other women to make their wife more attracted to them?

    Although the end result is probably going to be good, would you want to stand before God and say that you were the steward of actions that although brought you closer together in your relationship your wife… she also committed sins by cursing you out, throwing things around the house, etc.?

    Clearly, it would be her choice to go crazy, but to say we’re not complicit in our actions for other people is to ignore passages like from 1 Corinthians 8. It’s the same argument for women to say… “our brothers in Christ as responsible for their lust so I can wear whatever I want.”

    Basically, as Christians our goal is to draw both ourselves and others closer to God. You just can’t do that with some game techniques, especially those based on the dark triad.

  10. jack says:

    Which is why the Church is about to lose the culture war in this era. I’m willing to go along with this, of course, as long as we all agree that while we stand on the sidelines as principled wallflowers, our women will seek strength according to the only template they know.

    Personally, if I met a girl I wanted to marry, knowing what I know now, I would bang her as soon as humanly possible, and then continue in that until I eventually married her.

    The number of women left for whom the correct path works is statistically too small to matter. I am willing to consign myself and my brothers in Christ to permanent celibacy if needed, but I am no longer sure it is needed.

    The “dark triad” does not own any of these tools. Only ill intent in using them.
    A certain minister used to go over and sit at the piano and play a few bars of “boogie woogie” piano. Then he’d yell “that’s of the DEVIL!!!”, to illustrate how many Christians react.

    There is a time for every purpose under heaven. And I reject that idea that darkness owns anything. It only perverts those things that already exist.

    So for me, it is game-on with any and all women I met for now and forever more. I finally saw the light.

  11. @ jack

    I think we’ll have to agree to disagree then.

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  14. Sigyn says:

    Which is why the Church is about to lose the culture war in this era.

    If only the early Church had gone ahead and honored the Roman pantheon! Then they wouldn’t have lost the culture war, and Jesus would be worshiped more than Jupiter!

    …Wait…

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  16. bear says:

    Very timely ! I was just beginning to utilize some Dread techniques to correct some negative behavior on the part of my wife. Every time I did it though my spirit was troubled. It truly is one part of the Red Pill approach that will have no place in my life and marriage anymore.
    Thank you for your clarifications on this subject using the Word of God as your basis.

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