Last night a woman at Lockhart prison mentioned that during her sentence she took a class called "women's health". I asked her what that class was like and she essentially told me they learned about disease - how to avoid getting STDs, how to check for breast cancer, and other problems... She mentioned nothing about health... I felt the sinking feeling again that comes in regards to how our culture regards our bodies and the messages that are ingrained in our beliefs about fear and distrust of our nature. I'm sad that people in prison are bombarded with a religious view that is just another prison of the mind and I'm sad that women who have already endured a lifetime of hurt are being taught more bad news about their bodies. One common example is that many people (woman or man, in prison or not) were molested as children, which hurts a young psyche, severs our sense of self and invades our rightful dominion of our bodies. Add to that an ongoing "education" about bodies as basically uninhabitable places that have to be vigilantly measured and monitored for intruders, that are basically sinful and need to be saved by an imaginary man god so we can be whisked off to heaven after the misery of this life has passed. Such a conundrum.
This is a sad belief system that interferes with our inherent capacity to thrive freely in our bodies, in our lives and in our world.
We cannot teach what we don't explore and plenty of people are out there teaching about "health" but what they're really doing is teaching about fearing our bodies and managing the consequences of that fear, because in a very direct way the attitude creates and maintains tension that makes the disease scenario come true. Plenty of people are also out there preaching about salvation but what they're really doing is passing on this story that says humans are bad and have to be saved. No. Humans are consciousness in bodies that are designed by the movement of life. We are movement! We are fully capable of inhabiting our bodies in clear discovery so that we can experience more and more and more of this freedom that is already our nature. It's a play between consciousness and form, dynamic and robust in every one of us, in our uniqueness and our universality.
We are not sinful and we are not disease. We CAN condition our minds to fear ourselves and the world so that we live in a continual state of tension and stagnation, preventing the flow from doing its awesome renewal thing *if we choose*! Or we can choose to stop believing these dismal stories and go with the flow that is us. Traumatic experiences that have conditioned our minds and bodies to contract in the face of life CAN heal. This is our nature. Any class called "women's health" or "men's health" or just "health" needs to be oriented to the flow of life, not the blocking of it. Otherwise call it "illness and vigilance class". Or how about "sad class"? Haha!
In our culture we're so used to the sad story that we don't even notice how sad it is. Sure, all kinds of wild, crazy, graceful, funny, boring, painful, beautiful, scary, darling and ridiculous things happen throughout a lifetime, and we are fully equipped to go through the contractions and expansions, to learn and heal and grow as we go. Nature is resilient and life is incredible. We should embody it.
Hi, it's Ginger. I hope my thoughts here will add to freedom, expansion and creativity for you as you read them.