I was raised to not trust my body. I was taught to distrust aches, pains, hunger, desires and any kind of signals I may receive from my body trying to speak to me. All conventional wisdom was stemmed with the intent of the mind having complete control over the body. This was the goal that was expected without explanation. In the fifties, culture, fashion, and maintaining normalcy was the orientation. It seems absurd reflecting upon that now that I'm older and out from under feeling like I have to maintain some kind standard and idea of myself.
Is it any wonder we fall so ill so often and find ourselves wrapped in identities and situations that do not serve our health and well being? Our body consciousness, when seen as a truant child, is denied its voice in choices repeatedly.
It is still very difficult for me to empower my body to co-create with me in matters that, frankly, should be centered upon just those conversations. Without a second thought, I default to knowing better forgetting that most of the assimilation to social norms that I was raised with were erroneous and, frankly, sensually brutal.
Hafiz reminds us that we might want to listen to what our body needs and wants to do to self correct our journeying in this poem. First, however, we must own our confusion and our alliance and find the right question to begin to hear in these conversations.
Thank you for listening.
Music: I can't believe I have managed to put two Tom Jones and the Stereophonics songs in these posts back to back, but here we are! Of all the renditions of Mama Told Me Not To Come (originally written by Randy Newman and made popular by Three Dog Night) Jones slams this one out of the park and the video is staged but cute. I was drawn to this song while writing this post because I was thinking how liberating my youth was with music and how I accidentally gave my body permission to be bodacious and rowdy. When dancing, my body was free to express itself within the sound track of my days. This music, when I was young, demanded my action. Rock and roll was a rescue of sorts from the constricting norms of the day. Mama and the construct may have said don't but I had to answer the call of the wild. At least my body had a say there.
Painting Rabbit In Front of the Mirror by Michael Sowa
The Gift: Poems by Hafiz and translated by Daniel Ladinsky can be purchased here.