How’s this for a "catch-22:"
When I dieted down to an acceptable size 12 I’d suspect the main reason any guy was being friendly to me was my looks; which made his attention bogus as that was superficial and not the real me…
When I ballooned into plus-sizes I’d be satisfied that any guy who was being nice to me had the intelligence and imagination to discern the REAL me hiding underneath all that fat.
Either way, without questioning the assumption at all, I lived in a world where the body my brain was animating on behalf of my personality was not a part of me, not a reflection of me, not an expression of me – just something "off the rack."
Then I began to learn and experience the meaning of INCARNATION, what it truly means to be fully human and filled with that divine Spirit.To those of us in the USA who choose to engage in that lifelong dialogue and intimate relationship with the Mystery that is most often labeled "God," and have surrendered to the agony of obesity or anorexia/bulemia – it is a vexing denial of the true magnificence of our creation that we separate the concept of Self from our physical bodies.
Moreover, physical science would seem to confirm the wisdom of the divine blueprint: there is "intelligence" hardwired into every interdependent biological system running our bodies – including our brains! The invitation of the gift of incarnating (the question of re-incarnating is irrelevant to this discussion) is to use the gift of this lifetime consciously, intentionally and with absolute integrity integrating the internal, intimate dialogue among and between body, mind and spirit.
Fact is, the original Christian Church and its seminal theologians wrestled, fought and killed one another over this very issue: the gnostics argued that bodies were little more than inanimate containers that we put on and discarded at the end of life; that when Jesus became THE Christ, he borrowed a body so it would appear that he suffered and died on the cross. Ultimately, the Gnostics lost and were labeled heretics. The mystery of being human is not meant to be reduced to a simple answer.
(Not all heresies are created equal, BTW; but that’s another blog!)
That’s why it takes a lifetime to accumulate bits of wisdom.Little children are fully integrated in that un-self-conscious state of one-ness. As we are taught about this world we start to abstract and compartmentalize – necessary survival skills. And, sometime in adulthood, the pendulum reaches an uncomfortable extreme where we realize we’re living "totally up in our heads" and starts to swing back.
Some of us, on the journey from obesity swing past balance and "act out" our need to experience the gluttony of lust. Even then, however, we will likely find ourselves searching for that middle place of balance.
So as we contemplate the coming of Spring, the coming of Easter, the coming of swimsuit weather, etc. give yourselves the opportunity to reflect on the miracle of incarnation you are and measure the gap between how you’re treating your body and its participation in your self-realization as an original work by God!
Lauralyn (I’m still documenting my journey with photography. It’s still the best way for me to honestly see myself. I took this snapshot at home, 2 weeks ago. It ain’t art; but, it’s real!)
BEFORE & AFTER" photo album.