7 Signs You are a Senstive New Age Guy & How to be a Soulful Sexy Dude Instead

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Lori Lothian believes it’s time for SNAGS to go the way of the Dodo bird.

 

I’m a woman who has been around the personal growth, consciousness-raising circuit long enough to spot a sensitive new age guy (SNAG) almost immediately. And while a man open to spiritual inquiry is attractive to me, what is decidedly a turn off is when a man tries too hard to play a ‘spiritual guy’ role. (Think the Austin Powers version of soulful—goofy caricature instead of authentic presence.)

I’m not sure exactly when the Sensitive New Age Guy showed up on the Western cultural scene but it was probably sometime just after Flower Power and bell bottoms—About when Ivy League educated Richard Alpert left for India and returned months later as Ram Dass, with instructions to his buddies to Be Here Now. Suddenly spiritual was cool, and by 2013 men had a plethora of ways to dress the part, from breathable yoga wear to mala bead necklaces to  fair trade, natural fiber business suits for power meetings done in the Power of Now consciousness.

But sometimes, SNAGS are easier to spot (or not) by habitat than apparel. Typically, the best places to find SNAG-less men is in boardrooms, bars, pool halls and Superbowl Sunday parties. Where SNAGS hang out most is meditation circles, yoga classes, kirtan chant circles, ecstatic dance events and any kind of neo-pagan ceremony. Ideally, there is the third option guy, what I call a soulful sexy dude. Frankly, I think you find these rare fellows running particle accelerators, playing in rock bands or writing the great american novel.

The rest of the men made wimpy limp gestures that no more resembled a punch than a ballet pliet resembles a hip hop dance move.

The other day I ventured into a SNAG habitat, a full moon cacao ceremony (think molten chocolate imbibed like communiion wine in a priestess-lead circle). Even though I was pretty sure most of the men there were SNAGS, it wasn’t until the sacred dance portion of the evening—when the priestess asked us to punch the air while we danced—my suspicions were confirmed.

Only one guy out of about the ten men present actually, you know, punched the air. The rest of the men made wimpy limp gestures that no more resembled a punch than a ballet pliet resembles a hip hop dance move. Damn it, my punches packed more oomph than those guys. (Later, I asked the one guy who was punching if he had studied martial arts—bingo.)

I know, I know. Men have been told it’s not okay to be aggressive, that soft and gentle is in. But for gosh sakes, we are taking about punching the air while you dance, not knocking out a person or bashing a hole in the wall.

So, ever since this cacao ceremony, I’ve been ruminating on what exactly constitutes SNAG traits and what a soulful sexy dude version looks like. (Qualification: Some women love SNAGS. I am just not one of them).

Here it is then, 7 Signs You are a Sensitive New Age Guy:

1. It’s a first date and in good SNAG tradition, you take her to Kirtan or a cacao ceremony. Soulful Sexy Dude: Let me cook dinner for you at my place, and then let’s go to a Jazz club for a night cap.

2. It’s been a fun evening (or day) together and it’s time for that first kiss. You lean in and bow namaste.  Soulful Sexy Dude: Leans in and asks if it’s okay to kiss  her. 

3. You’ve been dating several months. You finally pop the big question: Do you think we’re soul mates or karma mates? Soulful Sexy Dude: Will you marry me? 

4. It’s time for the wedding ceremony. You choose an interfaith minister who is also a cacao priestess and Reiki master and of course you get married barefoot on a beach or in a meadow. Your vows are Rumi quotes, softly spoken while a priestess harpist plays in the background. Soulful Sexy Dude: Let’s elope (and preferably to an exotic land of adventure).

5. Your partner is bitchy. You decide to leave the room (I’ll be back when you are not so triggered) or in an eerily calm voice you point out the obvious (I can see that you are upset). Soulful Sexy Dude: You know, you are acting like a jerk right now, but I love you anyway. Would you like a back rub or glass of wine?

6. It’s home movie night and you insist on watching romantic comedies or obsurce film festival documentaries. When your partner suggests a Bruce Willis or Tom Cruise action movie, you look at her like she’s suggested  a snuff film. Soulful Sexy Dude: Forget Bruce Willis, let’s watch a sexy flick together and then make our own erotic movie.

7. It’s time to have kids. You insist on gender neutral names, ideally referencing natural land forms, seasons or the animal kingdom (Tiger, Ocean, Sky, Summer). Soulful Sexy Dude: Let’s name our kids after our favorite relatives or friends.

Of course, there are countless SNAG traits, and this list could surely be extended, but why reinforce a kind of male species that is most likely headed for extinction. Afterall, if we women stop wandering around playing the dom new age priestess (DNAP, another article) then surely sensitive new age men will run out of mating options and go the way of the Dodo bird.

Authors Note: I’m kidding. This is a spoof.  Please don’t send hate mail, unless of course you are a SNAG, in which case aggressive words may be therapeutic. 

Bonus: Sensitive New Age Guys songtime.

 

Photo: Flickr/scragz

 

 

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About Lori Ann Lothian

Lori Ann Lothian is a sexy daring writer who challenges assumptions about love, sex and relationships in her columns at Huffington Post and elephant Journal and in feature articles at the Good Men Project, Origin Magazine, Yoganonymous, Better After 50 and more. Former editor of the relationship section of elephant Journal, she is now a senior editor at the Good Men Project. Follow her on Twitter andGoogle. Stay informed, sign up for Lori’s mailing list here.

Comments

  1. Haaaaaaaate!

    Just kidding. I love this, Lori. Thanks for pointing out the balance. We don’t gotta be cavemen–and we also don’t have to get our balls cut off to be soulful dudes.

  2. Hi Lori,

    Fun article. Thanks.

    Now for the truth. ;^)

    Did you decide to say it was a “spoof” at the end to disarm potential commenters?

    Or do the Soulful Sexy Dudes comments more accurately represent your preferences in men and their responses? If so, I think you should boldly yell it from the roof top without apology.

    I think it’s good for both women and men to be clear and confident about the values and personality and character traits they value. The single guys I know have trouble with this and think every woman in the room is a dating option.

    • Lori Ann Lothian says:

      Hi Steve. I think I have been raked over the coals for more than a few articles in which humor with some truth in it (or truth with some humor) has been deemed critical, heteronormative, gender stereotypical, or just plain old politically incorrect. The nutshelll is yes, I prefer the sexy soulful dude (and understand some women prefer other qualities in men). But hey, that punching thing was an eye-opener, and I almost wrote a serious tome on how men have become afraid to appear benignly aggressive in the presence of women and other men….I still might write that one. Thanks for reading.

  3. Yes there is a balance. What is wrong with the name Tiger?

  4. I think this sensitive new age guy phenomenon is actually a very clear evoutionary step in men’s development, it’s just not the final step.
    Models of adult development, such as Spiral Dynamics, show how this trend arises.
    It seems to be really important for men as they develop to have a period where they can get in touch with our more sensitive and feeling side. The trap is a lot of us get stuck here and don’t see that it’s just a step to be integrated and then transcended further forwards into what you are calling a “soulful sexy guy”.

    What seems to be most important in taking the next step is cultivating a healthy suspicion of feelings as being the only information along with developing a deep relationship with purpose and moving beyond neediness.
    I write about some of these steps here:
    http://www.elephantjournal.com/2013/11/5-tips-for-men-to-enrich-life-damien-bohler-adult/

  5. wellokaythen says:

    I thought “Sensitive New Age Guy” became a popular phrase because of a _New York Times_ article on the “grunge” scene in Seattle in the 1990′s. The NYT reporter didn’t even bother to fly to Seattle to get the story. Instead, he called up the receptionist for Sub Pop records and asked her for the latest slang from the grunge scene. She made up some words on the spot just to yank his chain, including S.N.A.G., she fooled the reporter, and they went into the paper a few days later.

    The other words, like “lamestain,” never really caught on.

    The reporter was subsequently fired because of it.

  6. Hey Lori

    Continuing from our fun fb thread inspired by this article, I’d never heard the term before but I sure have met those SNAGuys. It may be a tongue-in-cheek article but you speak a lot of truth here girl.

    I’ve witnessed so much intellectual eliteism parading as higher consciousness. Over in Britland we have a technical name for this: Load of bollocks! (yes, I know this is most likely politically incorrect but that’s me, deal with it. The Goon Show is universally admired by comics the world over for its groundbreaking humour. And yet it is unbelievably politically incorrect and almost every show would most likely fall foul of today’s thought police. But off my soapbox …)

    I feel that women like you give me permission to be a real man. Over the years I’ve wondered if there was something wrong with me because I don’t fit the SNAG straight-jacket. Strange thing is that I’ve likely done wilder, crazier, more emotionally challenging things than most blokes. Yet I don’t see myself as a SNAG. More of a redneck with awareness and Heart if the truth be told! :-) (does that make any sense, no, probably not)

    And the women who have been attracted to me I would class as real women. Not cacao priestesses – that type don’t really seem to click with me nor me with them – but women who sit easily and elegantly in their sexuality. Women who ooze the Reality of the Divine feminine. Women in whose company I feel like a man.

    Ah, and on that note, and with some wonderful memories arising, I see the time and must retire; alone in my bed but not in my Heart.

    blessings,
    Leo

    What we need, methinks, is a new breed of man who

  7. First of all, thank you for getting the spelling right in terms of Ramd Ass, and in the context of giving buddies instructions in the Here and Now.

    This article reminds me of one of my grown daughters asking me if I’m a hippie…actually I think it was more of an accusation. It completely caught me off-guard, and silently I thought WTF! I then informed her that I was a few years too young to really grasp the movement, and besides, in a small town in northern Manitoba there really weren’t many hippies any more than there are SNAGs today.

    Eventually I had to concede that perhaps in some way I’m a hippie, but a pragmatically, and ultimately it came down to, “I’m just me.”

    That’s tough enough, especially when it comes to finding the right the costume to fit the role . . . the script seems to vary day-to-day . . . and writing that great novel was easy. As for selling it, perhaps I’ve run into a few snags, or maybe I’ve ruffled the feathers of the divine feminine?

    One thing for sure, a day without Thalia just isn’t a good day, so thanks for the humor!

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