In the Aquarian Teacher’s manual, the Ten Bodies are talked about. It was a fun experience for me to sit in class and wait for the next slide, guessing the key words of the next Body.
When it came to the fifth Body, the physical body, the tutor said: Teacher.
Hmm, isn’t that obvious, I thought. We are here to train our bodies to teach aren’t we? Then we moved to the arch line, the subtle, those which are intangibly much more fun to talk about.
So I thought about living by presenting myself as a teacher, by doing my Sadhana, by being a vegetarian, by regulating my life listening to my body.
Then in China I am often stunned by how people focus on the body, how they appear to others and how easily people are influenced by any comment to satisfy the not-so-gently-fed ego. At first it felt like an awareness of taking care of the body by drinking the right kind of tea, by avoiding particular types of food which represent fire, if you have already too much fire, by retreating to resting when women have their moon; Then comes in the crazed pursuit of a collective decision of what is beautiful and acceptable: endless plastic surgeries to heighten the nose bridge and cheeks, enlarge the eyes, fat reduction, bleach the skin, narrow the face and many more ‘beauty packages’ which sounded like a pleasant spa treatment, being placed in the elevator of residential buildings right next to the other commercials to ‘fix things’.
At dinners or just by sitting around randomly, I hear my family talk about how my body is not as nice as before, how I don’t look thin and fare like they wish me to be. Daily talks usually start with if a person looks nice and slim, and women are praised for starving herself after kids into her old pants.
That is deeply offensive and hurtful. To me and I thought, humans. My heart cried. Nobody cared what my amazing body went through and is still going through by baring a baby, birthing a baby, nursing a baby, caring for an ICU baby and grieving for losing a baby. No one said a word about what my body did and still is doing for me. It was straight on my face, you have put on weight and why don’t you wear something nice.
The more often it happened the more it guided me into my consciousness through the physical body- a teacher’s body.
What should I teach?
Teach why you love your body and why it doesn’t need fixing.
Hmm. You might wanna sit down for this.
I love how strong it was for supporting my two kids to grow inside of me; I love how badass it was to go through such traumatic birth with me, never giving up; I love how adaptive it is to support my every passion and hobby like Pilates and yoga; I love how free it makes me feel every time I hop into water or dance like a river; I love how wise it is for silently being there as the temple of my soul and my sorrow, pulling me through all darkness and jumping with me in pure joy. I love every stretch mark on my belly, I love my hurting heaps and hips, I love my love handle, I love my pained heart, I love my ultra strong arms when I carry my kids, I love the sun my skin was able to get for me and I am disappointed when I gradually lose that tan, I love the change in and around my eyes which carry the years lived, I even love the bliss my grieving for losing my old body was able to get me to. It is generously open to my soul so I am honored to feel its pain and sorrow; It is vigorously honest with my ego so I know what doesn’t feel good and when to stop; It loves me unconditionally so when I fell, it always got me, firm and steady.
I share my experience here but this deep imbalance of the physical body and refusal of teaching is not unique in only one culture, gender, age group or ethnicity.
If a human doesn’t love his own body but thinks all needs fixing, I guess the whole Ten Bodies must suffer greatly together with the poor physical body’s grief of not being appreciated, the person himself first feels the unexplainable negativity: jealousy, anger, insecurity. Then the whole projection is spread to others, and all-the archline, the aura, the soul, the positive negative neutral, the subtle bodies..are never given any chance to meet each other’s true essence, nor to grieve hand in hand for all their pains, or celebrate the wholesome and balance of this amazing journey they are on altogether.
I am hurting for my hurt and mourning for the whole society’s obsession to spread the hurt, then I realize perhaps not long ago I was unconsciously one of those judgmental voices of my own body and many others’. And now I am trusted to be given the role as a teacher for the body.
If you are taught to constantly fix your body because it is not good enough, you hurting ego knows best that’s all bull; If you are already a teacher, perhaps, what those who trust you enough to hear what you say need is not fixing their posture or lose some weight, but to embrace and love their bodies, and Bodies like they are always loved by the latter.
Now I kinda get it:
Your body is expansive, strong, to be taken care of, and fearless. Just like the rest of you.
Respect and love others’ bodies too.
Because they are your teachers.