THE MEN'S ROOM
An enquiry into modern manhood
An online programme
William Ayot and Nicholas Janni
William and Nicholas together bring over sixty years of experience, devoted to the interdependence of the professional, healing, artistic and spiritual traditions.
“The impact has been huge…”
"The Men’s Room opened up so many layers of myself.
I shall never experience myself in the same way again…"
We invite you to join a global community of men committed to exploring our deeper natures, our vulnerability and wisdom, our power and our hearts, and how we can best be of service in the world.
Our programme is a journey of deep enquiry that opens the great topics of a man's life without offering easy answers or solutions. No previous men's work is necessary, and men of all ages, races, creeds and sexual orientations are welcome.
“A unique space of intimacy, healing, and growth"
“I found the content & presentation to be profoundly engaging"
The programme offers nine live meetings, each devoted to one theme, between which we will encourage you to meet together in small groups to further support and learning. We will also have a community website where we will share relevant texts, research, insights and news.
“Helped me understand manhood like never before…”
As men we are surrounded by many distortions of manhood, with too few mentors or role models we can look to. Whether we are leaders or followers, alone or in relationship, The Men's Room offers a unique opportunity to have the honest conversations that men rarely have. We aim to create a safe space in which to be vulnerable together - an essential part of discovering our deeper selves and our hidden possibilities. In such a space we can refine how we show up in the world -preparing and polishing our finest contribution - ourselves.
"A must for any man who wants to reconnect deeply with the
essence of his manhood and his humanity..."
We intend to honour intellectual rigour while noting that we, as men, can use our intellect to avoid our feelings. In doing this we seek to bring our physical 'sensing-body' and our emotional 'feeling-body ' to as practiced a pitch as our intellectual 'thinking-body'.
“Profoundly moving, an invaluable journey in the richness of living”
Poetry will be a rich part of the programme as will meditative practices and the invitation to turn towards those parts of us, the wounded as well as the inspired, the dark as well as the light, that we have knowingly or unknowingly cast into the shadows.s
The Programme will consist of nine 3 hour live meetings with William and Nicholas, with integrational small discussion groups between the meetings.
“Look no further than the Men’s Room. Great value, huge reflections, and beautiful inner work”
To register: send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include your name, age, nationality, location and what draws you to the programme
1) Introduction to Men’s Work
An opening session that lays out the ground and terms of our enquiry, while exploring paradoxes and possibilities.
o The Paradox of Masculinity – Provider/Defender or Caring/Sharing Lover
o The Numbing of the Male Heart – The Cultures We Live In
o The Human Shadow – and Negative Potential.
o Male Naïvety & Denial – Avoidance and Escape
o Accessing Male Emotions – Soul work and the Feeling Body
2) Men and Feelings
Exploring our relationship to fear, grief, anger, joy and shame
Understanding feelings in the world of men, beyond ‘positive’ and ‘negative’
Which feelings are blocked in me, in my family, in my culture?
Finding the precise language for our feelings.
Discerning the difference between thought and feeling
Grief and Fear as the keys to male healing
3) Facing our Fathers
Every man needs to review, renegotiate, outgrow or heal his relationship with his father.
How the hurts of fathers are passed on to sons
Competition, emulation and expectation
The shadow of our fathers – failure and humiliation
The absent father – the hole in a man’s heart
Initiation and the need for blessing
4) The Darker Side of Feeling
While asserting that no feeling is ‘negative’, in and of itself, we look at how our present culture can toxify and poison our feeling-lives, and that of others.
Stressors and triggers that hold and provoke male anger
Distinguishing between anger, rage and violence
Emotional Fusion – my feelings or yours?
From Socialisation to Toxicity – Shame and the Roots of Addiction and Violence
Blocks and Binds – the feeling behind the feeling
Who am I and where do I come from?
Understanding our intellectual, emotional, spiritual and cultural inheritance
The ground of Belonging, the experience of Exile
Where do these feelings come from – personal background, ancestry or collective?
Trauma and deep ancestral healing
Discovering the ‘golden thread’ of lineage
In a world where men are expected to be ‘powerful’, but are often held down within masculine hierarchies, how do we develop a healthy relationship with power?
Winners and losers in male pecking orders
Power with vs power over, and the experience of powerlessness
Personal and cultural abuses of power
Smoke and mirrors – the illusions of power
Sourcing and recovering – the healthy expression of power
7) Exclusion and ‘Otherising’
Exploring the way in which men create
separation, alienation and false hierarchies.
The grounds and the consequences of ‘otherising’
Tribes, gangs and outsiders – where are we ‘in’, and where are we ‘out’?
Race, class, caste and sexual orientation
Self-destruction - internalizing the hatred and oppression of others
Money and poverty – the single biggest separator between men
8) Sex, Relationship and Intimacy
The patterns, habits and misconceptions that can inform, inhibit and distort male sexuality
The difference between ejaculation and orgasm
The ‘perfect body’ – male self-image and body shame
Male touch deprivation – rediscovering our responsive body
The tainted looking glass – pornography, distraction and impotence
Intimacy – gateway to love, caritas and compassion
9) The Holy Grail – Generativity, Creativity and Spirituality
In the end, we explore how ‘doing our work' can bring us to a deeper, more impactful level of agency in the world
The Waste Land and The Holy Wound – Regaining Male Generativity
The Gift of the Soul – Giving ourselves to the world anyway
The Call - What is being asked of me now?
Handprints in the Cave - What we pass on and what we leave behind as men
Connecting to the Other – Into Great Silence – Re-Finding Nature
Returning Home – Compassion and the Healing of the Wound
Nine 3 hour live meetings
Zoom video platform
Each meeting will include:
Input from Nicholas and William
Guided reflective exercises
Sharing in small groups
Sharing in the large group
Suggestions for takeaway reflection topics
October 23rd, November 6th/20th, December 4th,
December 18th 2022
January 8th/22nd, February 5th/19th 2023
at 2.00pm UK, 3.00pm CET, 6.00am PT, 9.00am EC, 9.00pm HK
Each meeting will be recorded, audio and video, and posted on the private programme website
Please note: we hope that by the time we meet, the worst of Covid-19 will be behind us, leaving us to deal with the aftermath and any changes it may have triggered. On that basis we reserve the right to alter dates and timings for the benefit of the group as a whole.
In the hopefully unlikely event of changes we will of course refund you if requested.
Cost of programme: $1125 + 20% VAT for payment from a personal account
A limited number of bursaries are available
To register: send an email to email@example.com
Please include your name, age, profession, nationality, location and what draws you to the programme
William is an award-winning poet, author, teacher and ritualist. Over three decades, he has facilitated men’s groups, led men’s rites of passage and worked with men in rehab, prisons, personal development and organisational contexts. He uses poetry and the arts to teach leadership in boardrooms and business schools around the world, and currently teaches at INSEAD. William also designs and leads rituals for individuals and groups in his purpose-built ritual garden in Monmouthshire, Wales. He has published four collections of poetry, a prose book on ritual, and is currently writing a book for and about men in a time of epochal change
Nicholas has devoted his life to the development of consciousness, and the study and practice of awakening and healing. In his first career he was a theatre director. He taught acting at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, and directed his own theatre company. He also studied drumming in West Africa and Japan. For the last 25 years he has mentored CEO’s, organisations, NGO’s and senior leaders worldwide, and teaches at the University of Oxford Said Business School and the IMD Business School in Switzerland. He has led
intergenerational and collective trauma group work in the UK, US, and The Middle East, and his book “Leader as Healer, a new paradigm for 21st century leadership" was published in March 2022
Profoundly moving , an invaluable journey in the richness of living
This is the peak I have climbed across many group and personal transformation programs. William and Nicholas bring the combination of the aesthetics and transpersonal to guide us on the journey home to our hearts. This program is for all men who seek to work on ourselves in order to serve others more effectively, but also for men to help our fellow men in order to work on ourselves.
If you have a desire to hang out or to have more interaction with Men in your life, if you have men’s work to do, if you seek a sounding board, or wish to explore your masculinity, look no further than the Men’s Room. Great Value, huge reflections, and beautiful Inner work.
It was the best value for money I have ever spent on a development programme.
“The programme was as rich as it was measured, as intimate as it was inclusive – and led by two veterans of the men’s world in the form of William & Nicholas who both truly embody the work. I found the content & presentation to be profoundly engaging, encouraging me to go deeper into questioning & better understanding myself. The environment was also extremely supportive, thanks to both the programme facilitators & the conscious collective of men who came together to experience themselves more fully.
The impact has been huge
The Men’s Room is a unique space of intimacy, healing, and growth, for committed men from around the world.
I think the brilliance of your content in this course has been plain to see and appreciate for all. What made it alive and urgent for me was your personal generosity, both, in our meetings. You exemplified, in the way you worked, how to live those key existential questions: What is the work that is mine to do? What do I stand for? What do I stand against? I am noticing these questions percolating in the depths of my being.
Nicholas’ and William’s work with men was very inspiring for me. It opened up many doorways in vast unexplored territory in my inner world that are badly in need of being seen and integrated. I can only recommend it to any man who wants to make a contribution to the world as it is. Without that inner clarification process our work on the outside will stand on the fragile legs of inner incoherence.
Very special and unique journey crafted with love by Nicholas and William.
A must for any Man who wants to reconnect deeply with the Essence of Manhood and Humanity.
My understanding of what being a man meant was based on the men I hung out with – it was all wrong. I discovered in this class that I was more of a man than I gave myself credit for. It also exposed to me to the parts of me I was not connected to and set a strong foundation for further nurturing my manhood.
The topics in the class helped me understand manhood like never before
The program had truly profound impact on how I see the world around me and how I connect the outside with the inside.
Nicholas and William, the wizard and the word-master - their powerful combination brought light, understanding and purpose for what being a man means for me.
Men’s Room opened up so many layers of myself. I shall never watch, live, experience myself in the same way. My colours have brightened, my air is clearer, my emotions are in high definition.