What is the #NewChivalryProject?
The New Chivalry Project is a Plan of Life. It is a tool for living the excellent life in order to transform my self, my family, and the world, and become a saint.
That sounds crazy. Is it original?
The New Chivalry Project is a manifesto, of sorts, but hardly an original one. It is my daily checklist for pursuing greatness in Body, Mind and Soul, and it will hardly be It is simply my version of a phenomenon that seems to be picking up steam in the world of men and men’s sites on the internet. For example:
- The Maccabee Society offers their 11-point daily checklist for the good life.
- Brett McKay at The Art of Manliness built his site discovering the art of living the good life, and offers a free “30 Days to a Better Man” e-book.
- Sam Guzman at The Catholic Gentleman addresses many of the same issues as , and while he does not offer a specific checklist as far as I know, he has many posts on becoming a saint in daily life.
- Jared Zimmerer has the simplest and most direct approach to the excellent life that I have seen so far, and is coming out with a book “30 Days of Optimal Living: Achieving Greatness in Mind, Body, and Soul” later this month (available on Amazon, January 20th)
- I recently became aware of the Order of Lepanto which uses recreation of historical European martial arts systems as a springboard to develop a vital, full-blooded Catholic Manhood.
- That Man Is You offers a long term and comprehensive curriculum of development for men.
In all of these sites and approaches, the common thread is the search for an authentically masculine approach to living “the good life” or the “excellent life.” All of these writers and practitioners are united in defining the “good life” as something far more than merely pleasure and entertainment. The different approaches reflect the different personalities and priorities and backgrounds of their developers, and I highly recommend anyone seriously interested in living the good life to check out their work. More than that, however, I recommend you check out their sources (many of which will eventually be posted in the “Erudition” section of this site.
Great! So what makes your list special?
Excellent question! With my list I have tried to keep things simple as possible, while still covering what I believe to be the essential purpose of every human life, i.e. “To know, love and serve God in this world and to be happy with Him forever in the next.” (No, I did not come up with that definition myself).
My list is:
- Influenced by my background in the military, hence the emphasis on training as a more holistic pursuit rather than specifically a workout program.
- Drawn from Catholic tradition, but easily applicable to the lives of non-Catholics or those with no faith tradition (i.e. substitute “mindfulness meditation” for “prayer.” You won’t become a saint that way but you will still function better as a human and who knows? might even get drawn into the Faith after all!)
- Uses historical codes of chivalry as a model, and is therefore naturally geared towards men and a generally martial approach. However, it can easily be practiced by either men or women.
So how do you divide it up?
I organize the pursuit of excellence into three areas of life:
- Soul (Holiness)
- Mind (Erudition)
- Body (Badassitude)
And then as a support to the life of the soul we tackle:
In developing this plan of life I have presupposed a Basic Level of Human Functioning. Make sure you take a look at that first before going on to the three levels.
Click on each one to learn more.