When I was a teenager, the idea of “experience” was aggressively pushed onto me. The only way I could grow up and enjoy life, I was taught, was to get a lot of experience. It would make me a mature, responsible adult. I went on to rack up a lifetimes’ worth of experience all around the world, and now that I look back at it all, I see that it was a waste.

In 2007, I backpacked for six months through South America. I started in Ecuador and snaked my way through half of the continent, eventually ending up in Rio de Janeiro to celebrate Carnival. During that trip, I met hundreds of people and saw countless exotic sights. I drank in dank bars and had deep conversations with dozens of Australians about nothing. I went through six years of experience in only six months. Where is that experience now? How does it help me today outside of the specific task of taking a road trip?

If I were to write a memoir of my life, the most prominent lessons would be knowing how not to live, what not to do. I was floatsam on the river of Western culture and yet gained nothing. I traveled, developed worldwide notoriety, and “explored my sexuality” with female partners who wanted to do the same, and yet I’m firmly on my way to forgetting most of it. You could argue that knowing what not to do is valuable wisdom, but was it worth half my life?

When those who control the culture tell you to gain experience, what they’re really telling you is to gain experience with sin. They certainly don’t mean experience with prayer, going to Church, and understanding the Bible. Instead, they want you to exercise your sin muscles and develop addictions to money, lust, and achieving a level of status among other worldly people so you can convince yourself that they will all gnash their teeth in your absence, but experience is just a code word for sin, and the more experience you participate in that is disconnected from God, the more you please Satan and his efforts to condemn your soul.

I see experience as a shovel. Every time you embrace the world for a new experience, you dig out a chunk of earth from where you stand. The hole around you gets deeper. There is no pause between your experiences, or else you’d wonder why you are becoming surrounded by dirt, and by the time you get exhausted from all the digging, you find that you’re stuck in a pit of worms that your shovel can’t help you climb out of. Some people keep digging, because all they have is a shovel, but soon the pit becomes a chasm. There is no escape, and as you dwell with the worms, you look at the shovel and feel a sense of disgust. It wasn’t the tool of your salvation that you thought it would be.

If while in the pit, you see experience for the lie that it is, and beg God for help, He will lower down a ladder. You start the climb, nervous that the ladder will fail you. You step over the first rungs (prayer) and gain confidence that it will hold. You step over the next rungs (the Bible) and feel a brightness in your soul unlike you’ve ever experienced before. You can finally see the top of the pit, and then you step over the last rungs (the Church) until you lift yourself out and step onto firm ground. You crane your neck over the edge to look down into the pit and marvel that it’s so deep you can’t even see the bottom. You begin to lift the ladder out, and realize it’s as light as air, and you take it with you because you know it will come in handy for an even greater ascension to come.

Read Next: Poland Won’t Let Go Of Me

Loading new replies...

A Dead Bat in Paraguay is my favorite book of yours and I'm planning to do a trip like that after Corona is over (minus Game and the gastronomical issues haha). You make valid points Roosh but I think we all have to take that journey and learn those lessons ourselves.

Reply 9 Likes

A Dead Bat in Paraguay is my favorite book of yours and I'm planning to do a trip like that after Corona is over (minus Game and the gastronomical issues haha). You make valid points Roosh but I think we all have to take that journey and learn those lessons ourselves.

Don't necessarily agree, do you figure out math yourself or do you get a teacher? Do you jump of a cliff to see what will happen or do you follow the cautionary information that you've been told? Do you necessarily have to put your hand on the stove to find out it will burn your hand or do you follow the advice of your father who says don't do that cause you will burn your hand and you'll be an idiot? The shortcut to life is experience gained before us. Ignoring best practices in order to inevitably arrive at conclusions our forefathers have suffered for already is unncesessary and even one might say ludicrous. I am more than fortunate that I have looked for role models in order to avoid stupid stuff, and believe me I've done enough of that and suffered greatly for it

Reply 7 Likes

click to expand...

I would be willing to bet that God is a lot more forgiving of your past experiences than you are, and you haven't fully accepted that forgiveness, and as a result you have a lot of regrets and are trashing your past self as a form of penance.

God is a master of synergy, and he can use any person and any choice, to his own purpose. Nothing and no one is wasted. You are always learning spiritual lessons even if you are an atheist. A lot of the things you do don't even make sense till decades down the road. They are just disjointed discrete insights that don't really hang together until the right situation and the right frame of mind arise.

Nothing wrong with having regrets or even things you have done in the past that make you wince. Just remember that God was with you all that time whether you felt him or not. He knew what you were and are going to do and it is all going according to his plan.

Experience is not a lie. Just try not to go hog wild. That would be my general advice.

The best way to put past regrets to use is not to beat yourself up. It is to allow you to be patient and understanding with people who now act as you once did. That is why the bible says that it is mercy and not sacrifice that is desired.

Reply 11 Likes

click to expand...

I would be willing to bet that God is a lot more forgiving of your past experiences than you are, and you haven't fully accepted that forgiveness, and as a result you have a lot of regrets and are trashing your past self as a form of penance.

I see that often in Roosh's articles and streams. He must accept what he did and that it made him who he is today. Without the sum of the good and bad and the decisions he made he wouldn't be where he is right now. His heart is hardened against himself to some extent. I do recommend Roosh a book that truly helped me in understanding the psychology and spirituality behind self-loathing and the fear of letting go. Once you understand that, be it through experience, reflection, advice, or literature you will feel free in a way you never had.

@Roosh You lived decades on acting on compulsion rather than satisfaction (true fulfillment) and contentment and it transferred into your Christian awakening. If you have the chance, do yourself a favor and read Fear of Life by Alexander Lowen (or any of his books for deeper understanding of man's soul and as to what constitutes fate). This book specifically addresses the rejection of fate (character structure) and the consequences and how letting go of trying to avoid your fate makes your fate evitable. With this understanding you don't only help yourself, but your fellow men as well. I do recommend it especially since you have enough experience and the proper age and mindset - such books should be read at 35 years of age minimum since I do believe younger men may not fully grasp (or may abuse) the content.

God bless you, Roosh, and don't beat yourself up.

Reply 2 Likes

click to expand...

This reads like the book of Lamentations. One of my favorites.
@Roosh Thanks for writing this... but speak to your priest about forgiveness and learning to forgive yourself.

Reply Like

A Dead Bat in Paraguay is my favorite book of yours and I'm planning to do a trip like that after Corona is over (minus Game and the gastronomical issues haha). You make valid points Roosh but I think we all have to take that journey and learn those lessons ourselves.

This reminds me of some guy who used to insist that he had to allow his children to sleep around because he did it in his youth, else he would be "hypocritical", completely missing the point that the whole idea of parenthood is to be able to guide your children what not to do.

Reply 6 Likes

I am sure that if you are really honest and God sees that will to change then he will forgive - if you make efforts to live the right way.

Reply 1 Like

I don't mean to be disrespectful but I disagree with this completely. This is like a right wing version of the left saying something crazy like gender doesn't exist and is just a construct or something like that.

God made the world beautiful so why wouldn't he want you to go out and experience the world and meet new people if you weren't hurting anybody in the process?

You sound very bitter about your time in Poland. I've heard on your podcasts you've said things like (and not an exact quote):

You'll go overseas, bang a bunch of girls and have nothing to show for it.

Yeah, no. Maybe that's how it went for you, but there's been plenty of people on this forum who successfully put down roots overseas or in a different state/region and I'm pretty sure some of them were religious if I remember correctly, and that was way before the forum's recent shift.

Roosh you've always (in my opinion) had a tendency to generally write about the world in a black and white type of lens, failing to see the gray area in between. If before you went to one extreme where you traveled to as many countries as you could and hooked up with as many girls as you could, you now seem to be going to the opposite extreme where you (I guess?) want to become a monk, based on what you have written in this article.

I would wager that 99% of men are not meant to live like monks. Maybe you're one of the exceptions, I don't know. But to say gaining new experiences, such as going to Europe and seeing the great Churches and Cathedrals built by the Godly blue collared men of their time (with voluntarily labor, in many cases) is ridiculous.

Saying "Experience is a lie" is something that 99% of the world's population just cannot relate to and yes that includes Christians who experience the joy (both worldly and Godly) of traveling in the form of Pilgrimages.

There may be a lot of trash in this world but there's a lot of good in it too.

I think this article is part of the forum's more recent trend, of shifting to extremes (and yes saying new experiences are a lie is shifting to a cultural and social extreme). I know I've recently been doing some thinking and after reading back over a few of the comments I've made on this site, I do sincerely regret and apologize for some of them and don't agree with some of them now, thanks in large part to some comments not finding much middle ground in my viewpoints.

I've noticed this forum has taken similar general shifts in terms of thinking in black and white in regards to the subjects of politics and cultural/social views.

In any case, I think it's a shame for yourself (Roosh) that you seem so bitter about your past and your youth. Not everything that you did was in sin and I think you're way too hard on yourself. Teaching men to have meaningful interactions with the opposite sex and working towards their goals is not a bad thing. I'm not saying I agree with every single thing you wrote about but at the same time, you shouldn't be ashamed and regretful of every single thing you wrote about either (which you seem to be based on articles like this but I could be wrong). There surely is some middle ground here.

By the way Dead Bat is one of my favorite books. You might think that your backpacking trip was a waste of time, but I bet that Brazilian girl who you developed heavy feelings for (I forgot her penned name) still thinks back fondly to the time that you two spent together. I can't understand how you wouldn't think the same.

Just my two cents, anyways.

Reply 9 Likes

click to expand...

Roosh you've always (in my opinion) had a tendency to generally write about the world in a black and white type of lens, failing to see the gray area in between.

I read on another manosphere blog that some people who lived their life to an extreme go to the absolutely opposite extreme around 35 years old or so. It may also be Roosh's case.

Reply 1 Like

Saying "Experience is a lie" is something that 99% of the world's population just cannot relate to

Roosh points out that "experience" like you or I might use it is not what is meant when people use the phrase. Experience of failure is instructive to good men for example. When most college professors, as another example, say "go get some experience" they almost always mean do drugs and screw.

Reply 1 Like

I read on another manosphere blog that some people who lived their life to an extreme go to the absolutely opposite extreme around 35 years old or so. It may also be Roosh's case.

Interesting point and I think there's a lot of truth in this... can you expand?

Reply Like

As someone who trod a similar path I get what you're saying Roosh, though I don't completely agree with your conclusion. When I did my travelling the world was a different place. Like me, most of my fellow travellers were hippies, even though that era was pretty much done. Still those hippie sentiments of peace and free love persisted and there was a certain tribal allure. Like the Leftist of today, we thought we had the answers, the moral high ground, when really we knew shit and were morally bankrupt. I found that out for myself by totting up the contradictions over time.

I banged at every opportunity and there were lots of opportunities. What I thought was meant to be an enjoyable experience was anything but that. Married women, women who had boyfriends, beautiful women, mediocre women, women of all nationalities, it didn't matter. Casual sex was the counter-cultural norm. It was a hollow and seedy way to be. How many times I woke up and crept out the door feeling guilty, like a dirty dog. It dawned on me that love (sex) isn't free at all, there are costs that I knew of and many that I didn't, but that my guilty conscience hinted at. Many of the girls instinctively attached themselves to me after sex and I had to resort to nastiness to get rid of them. They were sold the lie of no strings as well. The pill hadn't quite worked it's voodoo fully into the collective female psyche back then.

In the end I had to stand before God and my confessor before I could be worthy of the grace to be set spiritually free. I don't think that task is complete by a long shot, but the night after sharing my sordid tales I got down on my knees to give thanks and barely did I get past the first sentence when a shower of bliss overwhelmed me. I've done a lot of drugs in my time, but nothing, NOTHING, came even close to that experience. So overwhelming was God's outpouring of love I had to ask Him to stop. I didn't feel worthy of that love, of any love really. It seems God thinks otherwise.

"What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance"
Prodigal_son_by_Rembrandt.jpg

Reply 2 Likes

click to expand...

The sin of pride. The sin of greed. The sin of envy.

A lot of "experiences" people have are just to show off how much better they are than others -- money-wise, friend-wise, etc. I've had problems with this since high school, when the school snobs would leave ski lift tickets on their winter jackets after they went on their rich-kid ski trips with their families.

Needless to say, the way people behave on social media makes those braggarts look like shrinking violets. These days, you get the feeling people only take trips so they can show off the photos.

I've gone in the opposite direction and stay home and read.

Reply Like

Interesting point and I think there's a lot of truth in this... can you expand?

Can we continue this conversation in private?

Reply Like

Roosh points out that "experience" like you or I might use it is not what is meant when people use the phrase. Experience of failure is instructive to good men for example. When most college professors, as another example, say "go get some experience" they almost always mean do drugs and screw.

No, Roosh does not point that out. In this article he criticizes things that have nothing to do with drugs, alcohol or having sex. For example, he says:

During that trip, I met hundreds of people and saw countless exotic sights. I drank in dank bars and had deep conversations with dozens of Australians about nothing.

And the way that he seems to criticize meeting new people and seeing new sights is by saying this:

I went through six years of experience in only six months. Where is that experience now? How does it help me today outside of the specific task of taking a road trip?

When Roosh says the quote in bold he is using the same logic that used to be a very popular sentiment around RVF and is still used on sites in the broader manosphere, where that everything you do must be productive and must serve a purpose. Where the 24 hours in your day cannot be used for leisure but instead, it's an unhealthy and constant focus on productivity productivity productivity. Only now it has shifted from productivity in the money and girls sense to productivity in the religious sense.

How is meeting new Australians and going sight seeing not bringing people closer to God? How are those activities that God would not approve of? You're interacting with God's world, that he created, in part for you to enjoy, are you not?

To me this article and its message comes across as purity spiraling and having a Holier Than Thou Attitude, rather than having any amount of humility or humbleness of not judging others or even judging your own past too harshly (because again, how is meeting new people, traveling and sight seeing a sin or something that God would disapprove of).

And unfortunately I've seen this type of purity spiraling slowly creep onto this forum over the past year or so, where I've read things where people wrote (not exact quotes) about how entertaining things like concerts or sporting events are sinful or somehow not worthy of doing for a Christian man.

The pattern of moving to extremes is very common in people who make sudden and drastic life changes. Whether it's the recovered alcoholic of wanting to see alcohol banned from the world or the born again Christian who thinks that experience is a lie.

I know it's none of my business and I only say this because I have enjoyed your public writings over the years, but I do sincerely hope that you (Roosh) eventually find some middle ground in your world views as you continue to grow as a Christian.

Reply 3 Likes

click to expand...

The struggle of a Christian will never ends until he/she dies an joins the Heavenly Father in his kingdom. Many tell Roosh to forgive himself, but in my opinion, Roosh talks about his sinful life from a place of humility. Many of you, and forgive me if I'm misrepresenting you, feel "Proud that you learned your lesson" and are a new person. We're all sinners and we have to always be on the lookout for the temptations of the evil one.

Even Paul the apostle consider himself one of the biggest sinners:

This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.
1 Timothy 15

Reply Like

click to expand...

Experience is the greatest teacher; however, for me, one purpose of having parents and other elders, maybe learning from our history, is to not do the same mistake. For instance, why would you do something that you know the outcome wouldn't be favorable. Would you say you'd do it for experience then? When you know that stealing would put you in prison, would you steal for experience? That's just my thought.

Reply Like