What Is Your Body For?
by Cassendre Xavier
What is your body for, do you know? Reared Fundamentalist Christian, I was taught the body houses the holy spirit. Later, when I studied other spiritual paths, I came to realize the body means different things to different people or groups. Some, like Catholics, think we are to be pious and only be sexual for procreation. Others, like Tantra and Tao practitioners, believe the body to be, in part, instruments of pleasure. What do you believe for yourself?
When we decide for ourselves what our values are, then we can begin living our lives according to what we choose for ourselves, and not what our parents or the dominant culture told us we should be or do.
Take the time to get to know different cultures’ ideas of what the body is for. Choose, or create for yourself, what you would like your body to mean to you. Then go about living your life according to your own system of values. This will increase your self-esteem and self-confidence, especially as time goes by and you become stronger and stronger in your faith.
This is what happened to me. I grew up a pagan queer girl surrounded by people who told me that the likes of me were evil. I internalized a lot of that, but in my 30s (I’m now 41), I decided to reclaim for myself my own values.
Since then I’ve had a spiritual path that is right for me, and I decide for myself what my body is for – and much of that is to make my dreams come true. To me, my body is a tool to bring forth and wo/manifests all the gifts I’ve been given. I’m here to sing, to write as I am to you now, to dream and to live my dreams. I’m here to serve and enjoy life and have pleasure. I’m here to love and to receive love. And none of those things are dependent on what my weight is.
I love myself much more than I ever have, and it’s largely because I decided, for myself, what my body is for.
If you haven’t already, I invite you to take a similar journey. What’s your body for?
Cassendre Xavier (aka Amethyste Rah, aka Amrita Waterfalls) is an award-winning multi-media artist, personal growth author/recording artist, founder and director of Philadelphia’s annual Black Women’s Arts Festival (since 2003). Visit her at http://cassendrexavier.com
© 2010 by Cassendre Xavier. All rights reserved. www.cassEndrExavier.com