Imagine a world where women and all femmes were worry-free in regard to our bodies. I’m not talking specifically about love for our bodies—we’ll get there—right now I’m simply posing the possibility of the absence of fear, shame, guilt and judgment.
Energy is the essence of life, matter, and even spirit. Energy is everything. Energy is what makes us up and what makes us tick. When you get down to the core, there is only energy.
All processes take energy to complete, whether that is the digestion of our food, the starting of our engines, or the act of thinking thoughts. Thinking takes energy. Thinking takes so much energy that, in the context of Chinese medicine, we can weaken an entire organ system, the Spleen, simply by overthinking.
How often do women think about the appearance of our bodies? It might be easier to try to simply think about when we don’t. I would guess that thousands of thoughts per day go by, most unnoticed by the conscious mind, critiquing, criticizing, and fantasizing about the never-reachable perfection of our bodies. These thoughts inform how we sit, stand, eat, talk, and sometimes even what we choose for a career, what we study, with whom we partner, and what we believe we can do. That is a tremendous amount of energy being expended.
What I am suggesting is a redistribution-reallocation-reappropriation of our energy. I am suggesting that we take that shit back. That we take our power back, and that we take it back with the intent to use it, to live our dreams, to find our dreams, to make space for even knowing what our dreams really are. This is not a piece about finding the perfect meal plan so that then we can stop worrying about the size of our thighs, or whether or not there is a gap between them. This is not a piece about the fitness plan that will set us all free. This is not a piece about "loving yourself" while simultaneously trying to change your body, to beat it into submission, to make it earn its place here. I’m positing a truly radical idea that, were we to pull back entirely from any external demand regarding our bodies, to take that energy and pull it deep within, into our core, into the center of our being, and stoke the fire of it, that we would end up living in an entirely different world.
And I mean that, literally. That the world would be entirely different if that abundance of powerful energy were to shatter the mirage we live in and become something that matters, something that can do or be something real, to become simply something. Because if there is one thing that body hatred is not, it’s something. Body hatred amounts to nothing other than the spinning of our mental and emotional wheels, in a cycle that never ends, feeling increasingly worse, increasingly drained, increasingly robbed.
My vision for you is the vision of women reclaiming this energy and channeling it into our art, our writing, our healing, our children, our loved ones, nature, the sky, the planets, animal friends, our connections, our education, our support for one another. Think how thick and strong and fine the connections between us would be, if all that energy went to strengthening them, like a robust dandelion stalk filled with the milk of badassery and possibility.
Let’s take it back. Do you have one more day to waste on hating an arbitrary stretch of skin or shape of tissue? Why, when we could spend our days flying free, working hard, resting, nourishing, healing, feeling in love, participating in restorative justice and nurturance of our ailing and struggling world.
What if this powerful woman-energy went to respecting and loving and restoring the earth. Think of this tidal wave of energy and all it could do. That is my vision for you.
I mean, think of all we do, create, build, and sustain already, even with this constant hum of body bullshit in our ears. Imagine without it there at all?
And then, once free, we will be able to know and explore what it means to love ourselves, and to love our physical bodies, entirely apart form the paradigm of body fascism in which we exist. Where taking a moment to "love our thighs" won't be problematically framed within the idea that there is some reason our thighs are unlovable in the first place, and that we need permission to love them, in spite of it all. We will not love ourselves in spite of it all. We will love ourselves truly, wholly, completely, in the way of our choosing, which may or may not include emphasizing our bodies at all. We will decide that, and support one another's decisions.
And all that reabsorbed energy, it is ours to use however we choose. I know how many of us as women, in one way or another, want to change and heal the world. It is in our lunar feminine goddess nature to be tapped into others' suffering, and to hope to heal it. I believe the recipe for saving the planet, this Earth that sustains us, is to re-route our energy that way, toward the urgent need for sanity and humility and survival. Our deep, primal feminine power energy is capable of effortlessly healing ourselves, our own minds and hearts, and our world. We simply need to rebel, break free, and use it.
(to be continued)
love, Emily, The Voluptuous Witch