The subject of Alpha vs Beta male is heated, often contradictory. Some people love the concept, others completely reject it. Still, it has a strong cultural appeal.
The origins of the Alpha/Beta discussion stem from now-discredited studies of wolves in captivity. Nevertheless, this doesn't diminish the usefulness and popularity of using these terms to describe different types of people with different mindsets and behaviors. The concept or model has resonated with many people because they see it as having the power to quickly communicate important ideas in an easy to understand way.
A side note about Models
The universe is extremely complicated. Often that complication gets in the way of our understanding and discussing reality. To facilitate our discussions we create simplified, stripped down models.
All our models are imperfect. Yet they are often very useful. The fact that they simplify discussions by striping away superfluous information is a feature, not a flaw. When discussing the Alpha vs Beta model we may be tempted to inject "but what ifs" or focus on hypothetical exceptions. That is not productive thinking. Instead, use the model to see how closely it matches reality for the majority men and how you can use it to become a better man.
Our terms are not always clear
Perhaps the terms Alpha and Beta are not very descriptive. It might make more sense to think of them like this:
- Alpha = The idealised and fully developed man
- Beta = The deficient or underdeveloped man
Lots of confusion
There is a lot of confusion around this subject. Conflicting definitions, and individual bias color how we think about masculinity. Most people view Alphas positively and Betas negatively, while imbuing the Alphas with qualities that closely align with the ones they themselves already have or ones they have been conditioned to believe are ideal.
- Some people will say an Alpha is a man who sleeps with a lot of women. But others will describe such a degenerate man as having a major moral and perhaps emotional defect.
- Some will say that an Alpha needs to be violent and aggressive. Others will point out that such men often end up in jail or dead; certainly not very Alpha.
- Some insist that an Alpha needs to be wealthy while others point out that many of our most masculine and manly heros of the past were virtually paupers.
The nice guy, the pushover, the cuck, the neck beard, the wimp, the male feminist, the LARPing anti-fascist. They all are generally thought of as betas, even within their own communities.
Betas are almost universally described in a negative way, defective, unable to be real men, forever alone. But what about young men that have not yet developed into their full potential? They certainly are not Alphas, however they are in a natural phase of progression and not necessarily defective in any way.
- The concepts of Alpha and Beta exist on a continuum. No one is 100% Alpha or Beta and most men are somewhere in the middle, perhaps stuck in their development and unable to reach the place they want to be in.
- I don't claim any special authority on the subject of being an Alpha. As you will see below, since we have two distinct and conflicting lines of thought on the subject your group may simply have a different definition of being an Alpha than my group does.
How did we get such opposite opinions on a commonly discussed subject?
Much of this confusion surrounding the Alpha/Beta issue is due to two very different groups viewing it as a single continuum yet these two distinct groups describe their Alpha and Beta members very differently. Therefore, sometimes when discussing what and Alpha or Beta is with someone we may actually be discussing two different topics, that will lead to confusion.
Two Groups = r/K reproduction strategy
The two groups we discussed earlier are divided according to their reproductive strategies which influence the way that they see the world and their value systems. If you don't know what r/K selection is, please watch some of the videos listed below.
The original concept of applying r/K selection theory to human behavior was expressed by Anonymous Conservative. Stefan Molyneux produced a series of easily digestible videos covering the subject.
- Short term thinking (wants instant gratification, unwilling to plan for the future).
- Quantity over quality (promiscuity, high reproduction rate unless they use contraceptives, low survival rate for offspring).
- Low investment in relationships and parenting, don't want or value children (low empathy).
- Low in-group preferences (low loyalty, low trust societies).
- Status is based on deception and lying.
- Avoids competition, conflict-avoidant.
- Open to any and all new experiences; thrill-seeking.
- Long term thinking (defers gratification, makes and executes plans for the future).
- Quality over quantity (monogamy, high survival rate for offspring).
- High investment in relationships and parenting, want and value children (high empathy).
- Strong in-group preferences (strong loyalty, high trust societies).
- Status is based on merit and virtue.
- Embraces competition, thrives in conflict.
- Very risk-calculating and cautious. Enjoys routine and stability.
As you can see these are two opposite ways of looking at the world. Humans in general are K-selected compared to animals however some humans are very K-selected compared to others humans. The differences are so drastic that it almost forms two species.
Both r and K generally can’t stand each other and they don't mix voluntarily. Marrying someone of the opposite strategy to you will put great stress on your relationship. This leads to an ever widening gap and a polarisation between the two groups.
It’s only natural that each group would view their ideal male differently. So, let’s add the r/K selection concept to the mix and see if that can clear up some of the confusion.
Presenting the Alpha/Beta and r/K matrix
To bring clarity to the subject I propose that we create an Alpha/Beta matrix that combines that concept with the theory of r/K reproductive strategy. When we combine the two concepts (Alpha/Beta and r/K selection) we get a more complete understanding of the issue and we can propose logically consistent answers to our questions.
"The r/K theory of sexual selection describes two very distinct sexual strategies. It is only natural that each strategy would have its own dominance hierarchy. This is why society has such divergent ideas about the ideal man." - Noah J Revoy
What is an Alpha male?
The answer depends on your reproductive strategy. Of course, we are all on a continuum of r/K selection. No one is 100% to one side of the continuum or the other. In fact as we age we tend to become more K-selected. Our life circumstances and society around us will affect our current personality and view of the world. Even our hormones can change our behavior significantly.
Lets look at the archetypes more deeply.
K – Alpha
The father/husband archetype, the complete man.
- Abundant in masculine virtues (strength, courage, mastery, honor).
- Abundant in fatherly and husbandly virtues (empathetic leader, teacher, care taker, lover).
- Sexually attractive (sexual “pull”).
The Alpha K is the father figure that we all want and the husband that every K-selected woman desires. He is the fully-developed K-selected man. He's a masculine man who is well respected in his community. His advice is valuable, his leadership makes his group stronger. His wife and children, if he has them, love and respect him and are also good examples in their community. He is constantly improving himself and if he does not have a wife and children he dedicates himself to a cause that improves his tribe. He will die a warrior defending his tribe or an old man surrounded by those who love and respect him.
K – Beta
The Little Brother archetype, the potential man.
- Some masculine virtues are still underdeveloped.
- Follows the Alphas leadership.
- Not yet ready for leadership commitments (He's “under development”).
- Sexually chaste.
This is our little brother. We love him, we respect him, but we know he still has a few things to learn before he's ready to take on a position of leadership in important matters. This is the natural state for K-selected men who have not yet finished maturing. Historically, young men would transition out of this archetype in their late teens and early 20s. However, due to poor parenting, r-selected propaganda, and societies lack of respect for masculinity and commitment many men in their 30s and even in their 40s have been unable to move on to becoming a K Alpha. If we want to strengthen our tribe, the most important thing we can do is to help our beta man transition into Alpha status.
r – Alpha
The Don Juan archetype, the incomplete man.
- Incomplete development of the masculine virtues.
- Dishonest, violent and incapable of long-term commitment.
- Sexually aggressive.
This is the stereotypical player, the pick up artist, the man slut, the degenerate. Hes only about 20% of the r-selected men yet he sleeps with 80% of the r-selected women. He lives to game women and take what he can regardless of whether he earned it or deserves it. He can talk a good game, he is smooth, he might even seem cool, but he's a dishonest dirty liar and associating with such a man is eventually going to bring trouble. His advice might sound tempting but it's all self-serving, focused on the short term and destructive to those who listen to it. His old age, assuming an STD, a bar fight or addiction issue doesn't kill him first, is going to be lonely and sad as he sleeps his way through the old wrinkly ladies at his retirement home.
r – Beta
The Cuck archetype, the useless man.
- Severely lacking in masculine virtues.
- Dishonest, lives to virtue signal.
- Sexually inert, frustrated and confused.
Here is where you find the kind of man, and I use the term man loosely, who marries a fat, purple haired social justice warrior to raise her mixed race kids.
He's not very good at the r strategy. He’s likely to call himself a male feminist yet he dreams of becoming a player so he spends time and money to learn the pick up artist con game. He white knights women way out of his league yet claims that all women are degenerate sluts who only care about money. Alternatively, he claims to reject women and societies expectations as a MGTOW, while secretly being involved in a long-term relationship with a very low SMV woman he is too ashamed to marry and too horny to leave. He makes up about 80% of the r-selected men yet he sleeps with around 20% of the r-selected women, if he's lucky. He will spend his old age living in extreme poverty, paying alimony to one or two ex-wives without a single child of his own after having raised several of his wife's sons who hate his guts.
These archetypes cover the vast majority of men. Do you think I'm wrong? Please leave me some feed back and explain why. This matrix can be easily disproven if a major percentage of men fail to fit into one of the categories. Let me know what you think below.
Should every (K-selected) man strive to be an Alpha?
Yes. A fully developed man, a mature man is someone who takes leadership of his own life, his own course and his own future. That kind of a man will eventually mature into an Alpha, usually he will marry and have children. The strength of K-selected communities is based not just on the family structure these Alphas seek to create but also on the voluntary association of groups of Alpha men who work together to achieve their goals and lead younger men towards maturity.
How can a K-selected man become more Alpha? / How can I move more towards the K-selected side?
Work on developing the virtues associated with masculinity, fatherhood and husbandry. Create an environment and social circle around yourself that emphasizes the K-selected alpha virtues. Associate with and learn from men who display those characteristics in abundance. Listen to their guidance, follow their counsel, and grow in maturity. It's not easy, it takes time energy and attention to develop virtue. Don't give up, seek help when needed. Also, stop being a useless degenerate and stop listening to other degenerates. It’s poison and it’s killing western civilisation.
Is calling someone a beta an insult?
For r-selected men being a beta is insulting. However, for K-selected men we recognize that being a beta just means you have not yet reached your full potential. We value our beta men as they move towards maturity and support their efforts to grow. For us being a beta is a temporary position, and have been there in the past. Every single K-selected man can become an Alpha if he's willing to put in the work and has the humility to accept the council of mature men.
Can an Alpha backslide into being a Beta?
Absolutely! Maturity is the development of virtue and it requires constant work to maintain. Bad association, isolation, unhealthy propaganda, our own internal negative tendencies and other influences can cause us to stop displaying the virtues of an Alpha K male.
Should I date a man who is not yet an alpha?
That's up to you. However, take into consideration the following:
- How close is he to demonstrating in abundance the Alpha virtues?
- Is he on a trajectory that will take him into K-selected maturity in the near future, especially before he becomes a father?
How can I identify whether someone is K- or r-selected?
Give very little value to how they describe themselves. Remember, r-selected individuals are very comfortable and skilled at lying about themselves. They might say they are K if they think it will help them game you. Instead, observe the virtues and qualities that they demonstrate. Are they more r or more K-selected? There is a continuum and no one will be 100% on either side; however, most people fit easily into one category or the other.
Additionally, ask them how they describe the opposite sex. If a man describes all women as being degenerate sluts that indicates that they themselves are heavily r-selected and therefore only have experience with women like that. If a woman describes all men as being liars or somehow abusive that is a strong indication that she is r-selected and therefore only has experience with men like that. Remember, “Like attracts like”; people tend to see in others what they themselves are.
Is there a female equivalent to the Alpha/Beta r/K selection matrix?
Maybe. As of yet I haven't created one. As a man, naturally I've given a lot more thought to male roles. I’ll be thinking about it for the future and I'd love to hear your ideas.
NOTE: Ive now produced a version of this matrix for females. o
Why is it important to understand these differences?
A society grows and develops based on the people it holds up as examples. Alpha men tend to be held up as worthy of imitation; yet, we need to make sure we are learning from men of strong virtue.
Young K-selected men need to have confidence and our support to grow from Betas into Alphas, supplying our communities with strong leaders, defenders, husbands and fathers. Women who are looking to marry need to know how to identify dangerous r-selected men and avoid them.
I hope this post and the included matrix helps to clarify what has been a very common and wide reaching confusion about Alpha and Beta men. You probably have your own questions related both to the matrix and to what it means to be an Alpha male. Please ask your questions below and I'll try to get back to every single one of them in a second post.