June 2019
We invite you to read about and watch our new video clip of men expressing their gratitude for Council Circles by Anthony Monticchio .
elder profile
Wayne Stevens is the Coordinator of the Australian Centre for Men.

Illuman  is an independent, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose vision is to see men transforming men and, through them, families and communities for generations to come. Our mission is to engage those seeking a life-long journey of spiritual transformation. 

1.  Illuman on the Threshold   by Terry Symens-Bucher,  Illuman President
From May 29 to June 2, 2019, the men of Illuman SoCal organized and hosted the second UMBRALES MROP —a rites of passage offered in Spanish and English. The first UMBRALES MROP was held in 2017 and opened the rites of passage to men who speak only Spanish. This Rites confirmed the inspiration of the first UMBRALES. Ten men registered who only speak Spanish, with five alone recruited in Nashville, Tennessee by Jose Valencia. The Rites were held at Camp Teresita near Wrightwood, CA and I had the opportunity to attend. I would like to share with you how well it went.

One might think that using two languages for a rites of passage would be time-consuming and cumbersome. That was not my experience. The Weaver teachings, given by Jim Clarke, and the Ritual Elder instructions, given by Joe Lonergan, were beautifully and efficiently interpreted by Giovanni Perez and Geno Gallegos. After Weaver teachings and ritual instruction, the group split into a Spanish-speaking group and an English-speaking group to receive the elder teachings in each language from dual teaching elders.

While interpretation adds some time to the presentations and instructions, it brought significant benefits. First, the need for interpretation really encouraged men to be concise and precise in the teachings and instructions. This is a bonus. In addition, I found that the interpretation added further bonuses. First, it gave me time to let what had been said be absorbed for greater effect. Second, knowing a little Spanish, I was able to gain further insights based upon the choice of words used by the interpreters.

Furthermore, and perhaps most important to my sense of things, the presence of men in the rites speaking different languages and bringing diverse cultural experiences invoked a sensitivity and appreciation of the richness of men’s experience in the circle. That sensitivity grew beyond language and culture to acknowledge every man’s unique experience of the rites and a corresponding space to incorporate the breadth and depth of men’s experience that validates our belief that rites of passage speak to all men. Truly, it seemed that the concrete experience of appreciation for one specific aspect of diversity expanded to an appreciation for all our diversity in general. For that alone, the experience was rich and deep and needed. Already, we are looking forward to further UMBRALES MROPs in other regions.
2.  REGISTRATION OPEN: Soularize 2019 Men Transforming Men: What Does Healthy Masculinity Look Like?
Join Illuman and Fr. Richard Rohr for Soularize 2019 as we reflect upon what it means to be “Men Transforming Men” for a healthy masculinity. Let’s stand shoulder-to-shoulder with men across the world as we consider what makes a man healthy and whole. What challenges do men face today? What are the obstacles we encounter in developing a deeply integrated and healthy masculine identity? Where can we get support? How do men’s rites of passage and initiation rites, today and historically, help create men capable of living their lives with purpose and meaning, doing their soul work, and contributing to a world that deeply needs men to show up as generative learners and elders? We will be sharing wisdom, commitments, and practices that men have found powerful in living fulfilled lives as spiritually healthy men.
Soularize 2019 opens with registration on Thursday afternoon, October 24 and the first session starts promptly at 7:00 p.m. Soularize 2019 will end by 1:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 27. Learn more and register on our event website!
3.    The New Illuman Website!
The Illuman Marketing and Communications Council is pleased to announce our new website is now live and accessible at Illuman.org . We encourage you to explore this update to our website on your computer, tablet, or phone, and we hope you’ll agree that it is a step forward as we continue our efforts to expand our mission of reaching men wherever they may be on their spiritual journeys (and through whatever device they may use to communicate).

Work on this website redesign began in 2016 when the Marketing and Communications Council began drawing up a preliminary proposal for the Illuman Board of Directors. A budget was approved at Soularize 2017, after which we began collecting additional input from the Illuman members and deliberative bodies.

As is often the case, undertaking a large project that addresses both internal concerns as well as the need to communicate with those new to our organization is a tremendous challenge. While we are happy with our efforts so far, we want you to know there is still much work to be done and this website is, and always will be, a work in progress. We still have much more content to integrate and welcome further constructive feedback going forward.

We also believe this website will be a tremendous tool and asset to Illuman as it continues to organize and grow around our mission and founding principles. This new website was built on a platform designed to expand as our needs develop, so please stay tuned for further updates this year, including a new website for our Spanish-speaking brothers!


The Illuman Marketing and Communications Council
Please submit website feedback and suggestions to administrator@illuman.org . Feedback will be compiled and distributed to the Marketing and Communications Council.
4. Men's Rites of Passage for 2019 Continue this Summer
We heard great reports from the Southern California Men’s Rites of Passage (MROP)/UMBRALES earlier this month and are excited to welcome our new Brothers into the Illuman community (see Terry’s article above). This month, we have two MROPs taking place. Tomorrow, our Brothers in Minnesota will be starting their MROP and, at the end of the month, our German Brothers will be holding their MROP. We will be holding all the initiates, initiators, and team members in our hearts during these sacred times.

Five more MROPs across the globe are scheduled for the remainder of 2019 and they are open for registration. Details for each MROP can be found by clicking the links below. We hope you will join us!

The MROP experience is not a “regular” retreat, but a five-day, four-night, deeply prayerful and soulful experience that builds on the classic patterns of male initiation through simple and moving rituals and teaching. Each day includes participating in group prayer, major teachings on central masculine spirituality themes, quiet time for reflection, and sharing in the context of a “home group.” To learn more about Illuman’s Men’s Rites of Passage and the need for male initiation rites, please click here . To learn more about specific opportunities in 2019, please click the links below.

June 19 – 23, 2019

June 26 – 30, 2019

July 24 – 28, 2019

August 13 – 17, 2019

September 11 – 15, 2019

September 11 – 15, 2019

October 2 – 6, 2019
5.    Soularize 2018: First Session with Bill Plotkin
Continuing this month, we are sharing videos from Soularize 2018. In this session , Bill Plotkin begins exploring some of the tools and teachings with the participants to help them discover who they are born to be and what they are meant to do. His first talk was a discussion of his Nature-Based Map of the Human Psyche.
You are invited to join along with Bill Plotkin’s teachings and to participate in the activities he offers, at your own pace or within a group setting. Find and share more Illuman videos on our YouTube Channel .
Your  support  in all forms, including prayer, service, and money, is met with gratitude and a commitment to honor your gifts by using them to support men on their spiritual journey.
We are ILLUMAN: 
"Without us God will not,
but without God, we cannot." 
Fr. Richard Rohr