Memes can act as a salve, soothing the burns we obtain from the trash fire of our contemporary culture. As people and pundits tear themselves apart fighting over what it means to “be a man,” an all-embracing, fungal brand of masculinity may be stepping up to save us all.
Enter the Shrigma Male.
Might this magic mushroom meme be able to lead us to salvation, or shall we crumble to our destruction at the hands of a bunch of Sigmas and Betas?
What Is a “Shrigma Male?”
The Shrigma Male (a combination of Sigma and Shroom) is a new, transcendent, memeified classification of masculinity. Existing as a response to absurd expectations of hyper-masculine online culture, Shrigma Male is god-tier; he is the Ultimate Dude. Shrigma rejects the isolation and repression of modern masculinity, rising above the petty squabbles of lesser men by literally being a psychedelic mushroom.
Shrigmas get red-pilled. They trip so hard they escape the matrix and realize all other men are actually all Betas, even the Alphas — and especially the Sigmas. Shrigma Male guides those lost in the maze of the manosphere with his worldview-altering psychedelic realizations
Realizations may include:
- Other people have emotions
- Yes, shockingly, women are people too
- The Matrix, a movie often quoted by transphobes in the manosphere, was written by two trans women
What’s the Manosphere?
The manosphere is an anti-hierarchical hierarchy of men on the internet. They predominantly communicate with other men about where they stand in the hierarchy via podcasts and 4chan forums.
In this corner of the (anti)intellectual world, there are two types of men:
- Alpha Males — Dominant, ambitious, action movie-leader types. The type of guy who can reach things on the top shelf at the grocery store, but won’t do it for free.
- Beta Males — Passive, sensitive, “a good listener.” The type of guy who takes more than one grocery bag trip back from the car.
This idea of a hierarchy within masculinity comes from a false interpretation of animal behavior studies. To date, it has not received much scientific attention or validation as a concept but continues to persist nonetheless. Contrary to popular belief, humans are a bit more complicated than Yaks, goats, or other pack animals.
Through the wisdom of the psychedelic mushroom, Shrigma males exist beyond the confines of traditional masculinity. At their core, Shrigma male is a fungal variation of a Wojack that symbolizes the transcendence of all social constructs.
Uh, What’s a Wojak?
You know Wojak… he’s the Feels Guy from the internet.
This bust ranks among the ancient Greeks and belongs in a museum. An infinitely human Microsoft Paint image of a sad, bald man which has already achieved meme immortality.
Mememortality, if you will.
But Rowan, what does this have to do with Shrigma Male? Dear reader, to discuss the Shrigma Male, we must first trace his origins back through ancient times, to the dark ages of prehistory: humor sites of the late aughts.
In 2009, this manifestation of the Sysiphean torture that is “existence” entered the collective consciousness. It came to us through a meme of some guy having a bad time at a party on the site Sad and Useless.
This image paved the way for infinite Wojak possibilities. A search of Wojak yields over 200 results on the internet’s largest collective archival effort for meme history: knowyourmeme.com
Where Did Shrigma Come From?
On January 30th, 2021, the universe was anonymously gifted a new Wojak — Shroomjak. His calm, gentle demeanor brought a moment of calm to the constant whirring of the internet’s cultural garbage disposal — 4chan’s /b/ board.
4chan users responded in the only way they know how:
But despite fierce initial resistance, the anti-intellectual forces of 4chan couldn’t halt the inspiration shroomjak sparked. You cannot kill an idea any more than you can kill a mushroom. In the face of hate and tyranny, shroomjak persists.
In June of 2021, Shrigma Male “spored” into other platforms, growing like mycelium networks into Twitter and Reddit. Unlike 4Chan, these communities more readily embraced the essence of the meme: a satirical response to the rise of Sigma Male culture.
Okay, Seriously, What’s A Sigma Male?
Sigmas are hyper-individualist, self-identified, and don’t believe in the patriarchy’s alphabetical ranking of masculinity — despite using another Greek letter to identify themselves. This individual attitude is almost universal in Sigmas, and most of their independent personalities and beliefs align with each other.
According to some proponents of the sigma male concept, a sigma male is an individual who is independent, self-reliant, and does not conform to social norms or hierarchies — but not, like, in a gay way. (It’s okay, I’m trans.) Sigma males find inspiration in figures with sociopathic tendencies like [redacted for legal purposes] or Andrew Tate (he’s in jail, what’s he gonna do?)
What Are The Qualities of a Shrigma Male?
Shrigma male represents the good vibes of a guy who does a ton of mushrooms, instead of the rancid vibes of spiritual narcissism. Shrigma Male cares about the set and setting, always has enough water, is an incredible trip sitter, and meticulously measures out their microdoses to find balance in their life.
As a fungal-human hybrid — not in a The Last of Us way — Shrigma male goes beyond the divisions of modernity. Our identity-based divisions mean nothing in the infinite unlife of the Shrigma.
This mycelium-based universality is why people of all kinds can see themselves in Shrigma. As some anti-hierarchical, gender-transgressing, and vegan memes have shown.
In all, he’s a force for pure good.
Negative Response to Shrigma Male
Though, as with any philosophical movement, there is a counter-reaction. An intellectual antithesis to a drive for unity and harmony among all forms of life, fungal and human alike.
Just like the mushrooms that inspired him, Shroomjak is pluripolitical, appealing to all with no agenda of his own. In an attempt to wrest Shroomjak from the hands of his community, Alpha, Beta, and Sigma Males took his name and image in vain, creating a golden calf of sorts.
Shroomjak idols in their own image.
However, they did not see the ironic masterpiece of self-satire they had created. In the example above, the meme’s creator uses Shrigma to express his sadness at the perceived wrong of being “friendshroomed.”
Shrigma male contains the infinite, boundless love of the mushroom, unrestricted by human divisions of platonic and romantic love. Can one mycelial network be friendshroomed by another?
In this meme lord’s eyes, Shroomjak is a stand-in for any other Wojak — which is simply absurd, bordering on heresy. To reduce him in this way ignores the essence of the Shrigma Male.
In the creation of these reactionary Memes, these Sigma-wannabes have unwittingly revealed themselves to be false Shrigmas, maybe even Betas.
Is Shroomjak Demonic?
On July 5th, an anonymous user of 4chan’s paranormal board /x/ posted an image of shroomjak. Along his image, as you can see in the image below, is a wall of panic-inducing text describing the Wojak’s alleged demonic origins.
Disclaimer: There is no evidence for or against this claim. It is highly unlikely Shroomjak is a demonic entity or a manifestation of high concentrations of focus, such as a tolpa or some form of chaos magick.
Scientifically speaking, however, we cannot rule this very real fear out.
How Does Shroomjak’s Creator Feel About Shrigma?
Though not all is in jest.
In today’s environment, even those vigilante heroes we have come to idolize can fall so quickly from their own grace. There is a reason Batman stays in the shadows, G-d stays in heaven, and mushrooms grow in the dark.
It seems Shroomjak’s creator was not pleased with the universal direction his fungal First Man had taken.
If we are to believe this anonymous response was the same anonymous poster from the original anonymous post, my worldview is shattered. This symbol of universality is falling from the pedestal on which I placed it even as I type this.
But there is hope yet.
Conclusion: Shrigma Male Can Help Us All Heal
Even in the face of hatred and rejection, Shrigma male continues to embrace compassion for their Wojak brothers. Through his use of magic mushrooms, he can see the absurdity of ranking men as Alphas, Betas, or Sigmas and transcends the system entirely.
We are all the same in the eyes of Shrigma. Through love and psilocybin, we can escape the matrix of masculinity. (Again, seriously, just look up the Wachowski Sisters.)
This may evoke emotions in those still asleep and trapped in the matrix of the manosphere. Your anger, your vitriol, is not at Shrigma Male. It is only misdirected fear, a feeble attempt at control in a changing world. A sense of control the Shrigma male — in his infinite, fungal capacity for endurance — has long since surrendered.