I’m simply just a man, nothing less… nothing more. Like many of you, I’ve searched most my life for something more. Something that will help define who I am. Or what will help me be a better man? Sadly society today does not offer much to give a man in search of what he needs to define himself. In fact, society wishes to do nothing but look down its nose at us. Criticizing our meaning like some high browed noble would a peasant. There is hope for men like myself though. Through the grace of God and the paths of history, we can find what we need.
That very hope is what brought me to write this post. To pass on what I have learned and experienced to others also searching for meaning. And I pray that you all will pass it on to others in need of guidance.
Mightier Than The Sword
Words are such powerful and simple things. They can convey emotion, describe beauty, and inspire people to do great things. If you don’t believe me then imagine something the size of a peanut resting in the palm of your hand. Now image that peanut is jammed packed with the devastating and awe-inspiring force of a nuclear bomb. Even then you would only be close to the potential power of such an elementary thing.
There is an unfathomable number of words in the world but faith, hope, and love are three of the most powerful words to ever grace our ears. All three have the ability to inspire, create emotion and bring forth an image of beauty in everyone across all languages. It is no wonder the Bible is the most popular book in the world since it constantly tells us stories wrapped around one or all of those three words. But I am not here to talk to you about the Bible or to explain the concepts of those three words. We all have a very deep understanding of them so there is no need to do so.
What I do wish to talk about is a word that seems to get an extremely bad rap nowadays. It is an old word that has a meaning that is even older… Or so the historians say. This word was so powerful and needed at the time that it helped bring us out of the Dark Ages and created one of the most iconic ideals of a man… The Knight! They even made a Code based on it.
If you haven’t guessed it yet what I am talking about is…
In our current society, people have a tendency to find evil in almost anything. We are all human after all and no one is perfect. That very tendency can cause people to jump to the other spectrum of words, those opposite of faith, hope and love. Creating a world that is worse off than even the Dark Ages.
Now I know that knights are no longer a part of today’s lifestyle and a part of history along with the code of chivalry. But that does not mean that we can not learn something from them. The idea of a knight was the embodiment of a man with good virtues; courage, justice, mercy, generosity, faith, nobility, and hope.
Hmmm! Doesn’t it strike you a little odd that two of those virtues are two of the three words I listed above?
Anyhow, the code of chivalry that the knights followed was slightly different from one to the other. They all were worded in a way to keep the virtues of the knight true both on the battlefield and in everyday life. We can learn something just from that. Modern battlefields are not like they were in the Dark Ages but we can still apply the code or virtues in our everyday life.
Ever since I was a little boy I have always been intrigued with knights and the code. I’ve read many books on them before the internet even came to be an actual thing. I even surfed the web for additional info beyond what I already knew. Even now I have a few tabs up looking at even more. But none of these sources comes close to the importance of chivalry needed today than a book I recently read… Knights in Training by Heather Haupt.
In her book, She not only explains the code but how to also apply it to raise young boys to have the virtues I listed above. Becoming men that others will seek for guidance and role models. Below is the code as she has listed in the book.
- Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.
- Obey those in authority over you.
- Stand against injustice and evil.
- Defend the weak and protect them.
- Respect the honor of women.
- Refrain from wanton giving of offense.
- Speak the truth at all times.
- Be generous and willing to share.
- Persevere and finish the task at hand.
- Pursue excellence in all you do.
To Be or Not To Be
Many of you may be rolling your eyes or sighing with disapproval at what I’ve already said and that is just fine with me. We are all given the freedom to make a choice. Even though you may or may not know it, much good comes from the idea of what a knight was. Damn, even the idea of a gentleman had to start somewhere. And you would be right if your thoughts drifted to the knight, his virtues, and the code to help create that gentlemanly idea.
I’m not saying every woman is a damsel in distress and you are her white knight, like much of the social progressive movement is trying to say chivalry is. What I am saying is that they are human just like you and me. They should be treated with a kindness like anyone else. Being a gentleman, hold the door, or pulling out a chair for a lady, or anyone in general, is respectfully kind. Just like you helping an elderly couple with their groceries or crossing the road. It’s just simply kind to do so. Another powerful word… kind.
Chivalry is Not Dead
In a previous post (The Steward Model, Traditional Values In Today’s Culture.) I mentioned the way of a Steward. It describes an individual that believes in something more than themselves and that the only approval needed in life is that of God. That very description runs along similar lines as that of the knight. As I said above the idea of the knight is older than when it became popular. Even today it fights to continue as part of society within the hearts of not just men but women too. So no one can tell you that chivalry is dead because that simply isn’t true.
Chivalry is a state of mind as is being a gentleman or as I stated in that post, a steward. That means that we have a choice to live up to the lessons given to us by God and become something more than just mirror men. We have a choice to become great role models for our children, friends, family and the world around us. A choice to have our actions speak louder than our words. And after all that you’ve read here if your actions can do that very thing you can change the world itself.
Meaning that chivalry never died. It is not dead. We as a people walked away from it like so many other good things. It all comes down to the freedom of choice that God gave us all. Therefore I’ll say…