The No Bull Briefing Newsletter – April 2021

Silas Appreciation Day Meme Competition
July 5th is Silas Appreciation Day. To commemorate the day we are holding a meme competition. Submit your Silas Appreciation Meme HERE. The deadline for submittals is June 1st when we will turn over all memes to the totally unbiased firm of Dewey, Cheatham, and Howe for the selection of the winner. The top five memes will be featured in the June No Bull Briefing and the winner will receive a coveted Samson Society T-shirt.

An Alternative Form for a Samson Meeting
In 2008, several members of the Original Franklin Meeting wanted to go deep. They had several years of recovery and brotherhood through the Meeting Format and topic sharing. They craved cross talk. The question had been how to do it and maintain the safety of every man. It was a recipe for triggering.

They identified a groundbreaking book by Chip Dodd, entitled Voice of the Heart as the initial format for sharing feelings we carry every day. The eight feelings outlined in the book are Hurt, Sadness, Anger, Fear, Loneliness, Guilt, Shame, and Gladness. The initial impression you have is that all but one of these seem negative. As Dodd puts it, each are gifts for identifying ways to do self-examination in that there is a gifted side and an impaired side.

Sometimes a man can check in on both sides of one emotion. Many times, a man identifies with the impaired side of one and the gifted side of another. They seem to come out differently from week to week in check-ins.

The eight feelings comprise the check-in.

During the next segment, each man has the opportunity to “declare their work.” A structure was needed for that, and the Quaker Clearing/Clearance committee was chosen. When a Quaker man is faced with a decision or dilemma, they would seek a committee of men from their community. They would present the issue, and the men would ask questions intended for the man to have an opportunity to think through answers in ways he may not have thought of before. Frequently, the result is increased clarity for all of the men. Once each man declares his work, he states his willingness or unwillingness to work on it in a clearing. Many times, simply stating work brings clarity.

After each man has made their declaration and willingness, a group conscience is taken by having the men lay hands on the shoulder of the man whose work they most identify with. In the case of a virtual meeting, those using the app will enter in the Zoom chat the name of the man whose work they identify with.

After the work is identified, from that point on, the man gives additional data and background information about the decision or struggle. This informs and instigates the questions. The group is careful to protect the man from leading questions. The man doing work may want opinions from those in the meeting. While this is not the purpose of it, if helpful a man may precede his opinion with the phrase, “in my judgment” in recognition of the possibility they don’t have a full enough picture of the work. The safety of the man is closely guarded and if the question is triggering or offensive, any man in the group may say so without fear of retribution from the rest. Each man’s story is valued whether there is agreement or not. Strictest confidence is observed and not violated at any time. What is said in the circle stays in the circle.

After two hours, the meeting wraps up and all are invited to the next one a week later at the same time, 6:30 am central each Saturday in person and online. The meeting link is posted regularly in Slack.

After a dozen years of meeting, the format has stayed largely the same, however, as the meeting became “church” for many men who have wounds from traditional forms of church assembly, a prayer, worship, and scripture reading element were introduced in 2018.

I have experienced tremendous healing over the years. My initial “work” involved four sessions in which I prepared for disclosure to my wife. I involved my counselor through the process, and the men brought much clarity as they helped me draft my disclosure in a way that presented all information in a factual manner with hat in hand. Aside from some breaks throughout the years, I have attended since.

If you wish to get more information, please email me, or find me on the Samson Slack channels, @Jay Spiegel (D5A).

Food for Thought

Porn is not sex
Sugar is not food
Filtering is not beauty
Gaming is not exercise
Alcohol is not medicine
Attention is not respect
Comfort is not fulfillment
Vitamin D is not sunshine
Memorizing is not learning

Help Us Reach More of Our OWN Men
Many of the men in Samson Society in-person meetings are NOT in our database as members. Sadly, that means they are not getting the No Bull Briefing – we’re missing them, and they’re missing out. Ask the men in your group if they are getting the No Bull Briefing Newsletter. If they are not, go to the “My Groups” tab on the Samson Society website, if you are the administrator you can add them with name and email (you’ll see a list of all registered members). If you are not, you will need to contact the administrator of your group and ask him to add them. Our best guess is there are several hundred men active in Samson Society but not yet members (only true for in-person attendees). Let’s help them get on board and get up to speed!

Please consider this
Samson Society doesn’t have dues or fees, but we DO have expenses. We currently reach men in over 40 countries and we are stretched thin financially. If you can make a generous one-time or, better yet, monthly contribution, that will help us continue to do what we do so well … “rescue families by helping men live in the freedom of authenticity.”

You can make your contribution to the mission of Samson Society through Samson House HERE.

Thank you!

Tom Moucka