He's absolutely correct, especially about the 'biology and rite of passage' part. And I'm so glad you read this, because hopefully this will resonate within you. There is a reason why we constantly are taking that journey to 'perceived' manhood, and why it leads so many to an early grave.
But he left out one thing that he obviously doesn't have a certain thing controlling him. And that 'certain thing' is drug addiction. Most males, who do 'on the margin' things, place themselves in harm's way, do because they are addicted to adrenaline. I'm a certified adrenaline addict. I did things that would make your hair stand on end. Driving a motorcycle down the interstate, with lots of traffic, and doing it at over 100mph is a sure-fire, absolutely positive way to know an adrenaline addict when you see one.
I loved combat. Its the most invigorating activity out there. Its the ultimate, and proves to others that he is indeed a fearless male, willing to go through anything. Of course, inside you are scared shitless, and the adrenaline is washing all over you, everything slows down, and you are moving at regular speed in a slow motion world. You are thinking faster than anyone else, and you feel like a g-d. I shit you not!
That's the 'biology' part Junger(as in Yunger) overlooks, but he doesn't understand because he is not addicted to adrenaline. Why do you think I miss jumping out of airplanes so much. I'd love to try sky surfing, which wasn't around when I was exiting the Cessna, or C130/141. Its great, and I know it really isn't dangerous,.....like combat, or speeding on a motorcycle.
As for the 'rite of passage' part, I understand this because I am an anthropologist. I've studied primitive societies and current tribes. And they too have the very same need we all do. They make a ritual out of warfare. There's the exhibition/posturing/feigning, etc, that goes with warfare, and especially manhood. While you are still in college, you need to take an anthropology course in primitive tribal behaviour, if it exists there. Its very enlightening.
And its exactly why you are doing what you do. You have this compelling need to prove not only to yourself, but others, that you are a Real Man. You collect guns, show them off. You posture publicly and am an exhibitionist on malehood. You swagger and swear, and gladly accept accolades from other members at the Manly Excellence forum. You love it, because its your way of being accepted into the group and held to high esteem.
And as someone, who has "been there, done all that" I find it a bit needless, because I already Know where I stand in it all. Its sort of like the old wolf, viewing the actions of the adolescent pup, and getting a few good laughs over it all. I really do enjoy it, this rite of passage right in front of me. Its sort of like "Did I really act that way once upon a time"?
But here's another thing. Victor Davis Hanson is way ahead of Yunger on all this. His "Carnage and Culture" is a masterpiece on Western warfare, and why other countries cannot compete with it. He begins with the Greeks, goes through the Anabasis, and shows why ideology is so important to how warfare is fought. If you haven't read it yet, you should be required to. Its eye opening, especially the preface.
And if you think the West is headed to destruction, think twice. The Western art of warfare is not dead. Its just dormant, with the exception of the US.
I know I am looking at this from a societal POV, and you are talking personal POV, but you have to understand the former before you can truly understand the later. Anyway, you're actually collecting the tools for bringing this all together. I see hope for you. Just don't get yourself killed in the process: you have plenty of time to reach your destination.
"INSIDE EVERY PROGRESSIVE IS A TOTALITARIAN SCREAMING TO GET OUT" - David Horowitz