“Life is a dance”
I’ve felt inspired to write down my thoughts again recently, and so here it is; a collection of some of Peter’s finest messy thoughts! I am a firm believer of faith in that which connects us all, and I will directly connect my beliefs of the higher power and spiritualities into my topics of this piece–and quite honestly, likely most of my pieces–so all I ask for from you is that you keep an open mind.
This piece I am writing tonight is a collection of some of my thoughts on “physical health”, a matter which has shaped my life significantly and which I am continuously trying to become more in-tune with. I dedicate this brief piece, and my total solidarity, to all spirits who struggle with their own physical well-being, and especially body image, because I know how tough that can be. I want everyone to remember you’re all loved equally, beautiful in your own ways and we’re all at different stages in our own journeys. If you ever feel you want to connect, please reach out to me and I’m always here for anything and I love to make new connections! My spirit is most free in this life when my mind is peaceful and my body is healthy–creating positive vibes aplenty, which I in turn seek to share.
So what is the “physical direction”? Well obviously physics is the study of movement and to be physical is to move, and in turn to move is to live, just as to be fully still is to be dead. Thus, I suppose the physical direction in our lives is fundamentally about movement and how we transfer energy via work, in a very scientific/logical/factual/rational/black and white kind of way, but that’s boringgg and humans are hardly, if ever, rational and I find there to be so much more to the picture on how we all embrace movement in our lives. So, as we delve into my picture, I’ll have you know I am not “religious” per se as I find Truth in all forms of religious and cultural teachings, but I am tying spirituality and spiritual concepts into my beliefs of physical health because, well, why the heck not? I AM a living witness of God, a physical entity of him and his creative abilities! This, and because my body is most healthy when I “worship” it, and I hope that by writing about physicality through a spiritual lens, others are able to become enlightened of the beautiful movements they own as well. Life is just one big beautiful dance, is it not?
To give some context, I have been internally and as a result externally shaped my whole life by social influences in how “to move” in ways that really didn’t fit me and I’ve struggled in this way for as long as I can remember. In the physical direction we often think exclusively of only the body itself and it’s role to our physical well-being. Okay granted, it’s how we move, but in Western secular society we’ve really stripped the Spirit from the body. As such, many of us may have come to the notion that we are only a mind operating the body, and in this thinking we’ve forgotten to feel, because it is within the body our soul resides, lives, and creates feelings. This can be disastrous, especially to children, being fed notions that we are bodies, and sometimes that these bodies are not even our own or can perhaps be used or exploited by others. Disgusting. Have we totally forgotten about the holistic nature of our existence?
Only talking about the body in physical health (or only the mind in mental health) accentuates the egoistical nightmare that comes with body image to a grossly imbalanced extent, and leads to fake images of people being produced and reproduced at staggering rates. People become afraid to be real, afraid to feel, and as such, thrive off their perceived body image and what they think other’s think of themselves. Big mistake. Believe me, I lived it, as I’m sure many of you reading this have. This egoism of the body image is easily recognizable in Western society’s schools or communities whilst supposedly learning about “physical education” in such things as the gym slang terms (ie. “gains”, etc.), and of course the bazillions of selfies, not that there’s anything inherently wrong with these things, but it’s often perceived as if these things made you better (more “gained”(?)) than your peers. Well, I’ll be honest, I learned hardly any useful education in those “Phys-Ed” classes. I learned I was deemed “skinny”, “weak”, “not manly”, etc. and that my physical health was about how many push-ups I could do or being good at dodgeball. It led to me growing into this same box-framed mindset in my later teenage years, that “getting huge”, “swole”, etc. and being hypermasculin & basically putting all my feelings into countless hours in a gym, were the keys to a good body, level of fitness, and overall physical well-being. How destructive this was to my ideas of not only physical health, but also larger concepts such as gender (ie. masculinity) and other important social concepts, I can’t even begin to get into. I’m not one for compartmentalization of my identity or lifestyle though, and eventually I outgrew this fake garbage I’d be sold throughout most of my life: to buy this or that to make myself look better or feel better. I stopped looking outside for happiness. I stopped searching for love through my body image, began feeling love as who I already was.
It’s imperative that in my life, I explore outside of what becomes my norm, and even my comfort zone, and to always be learning. Due to many years of explorative trial and errors, there is so much more to the physical direction that I now see, including incorporating the spiritual connections to our whole UNLIMITED universe not just our LIMITED body, into our movements.
So yes, I am a spirit. You reading this are a spirit. I practice my spirituality in so many different ways but so far it’s always been rooted to my body where I’ve built and continue to build my persona, until I learn to transcend the ego that I’ve tied to this body. My body is my “holy temple” that I find His love within, and my body has energy centres (aka. “Chakras”) that I am blessed to be discovering. Too spiritual for you? Oh just wait, it gets worse. Personally, the “service” I give, and my place for forgiveness of sin is not usually within some glorious building with stained glass windows (although it most definitely can be, just as it can be truly anywhere), but it. begins within my own body. They say the body never lies. And so I learn to move by what Truths I live by. All movements are done through connection to breath. Even though I said the Physical direction is about movement, it is also at the same time about the lack of movement. That too is a physical state. Meditation can be key to physical health, especially because of it’s focus on the breath. I have so much gratitude and owe many people thank-you’s for teaching me ways and things to help me along my path, and there’s no way I could be where I am today without help–not that I am where I want to be in physical health, but I’m where I’m supposed to be, and am only improving in overall balance and health I feel. I love my body.
My well-used shoes. I walk or run nearly everywhere. Can’t beat the basics.
Moving on, (get it? Haha so punny) I also practice physical well-being by honouring all creation in what I physically eat. My service to my body can be seen extending into many different avenues; such as the grocery stores, restaurants, kitchens, or even the forest floor, bodies of water, etc., wherever I get the nutrients that I put into my body. I once heard a beautiful and spiritual reference to the consumption of food as “eating our ancestors”, because in a way that’s what we do; we eat that which was once us. All that has ever existed is a part of our food, and all that will ever exist is a part of our food, the circle of life being a continuous and all encompassing cycle. Of course my whole body is built from the ground up, every accumulation of mass sourced from our Mother Earth, so I strive to eat in a way that is low impact and sustainable upon her system as well.
Food is an art– don’t try to tell me it’s just fuel.
This leads me to something I believe we all need to do more of, which is to think more deeply about our food every time we eat. How can we remove the toxic notion we’ve been fed into our thoughts that we are simply the body? It is usually flashing through your mind when you are very hungry or are suffering from eating disorders. Well, granted you’re blessed to not be suffering from a eating disorder (and please reach out to someone including me if you are–I’ve been there and can maybe help), you can do this by simply giving “grace” and saying a prayer to Creator before you eat, or, being TRULY grateful for the parcels of molecular energy you receive from the universe in the form of food, and, just like that you have a much deeper connection to your food. This can give us the will power to make good food choices. Food is vital to physical well-being and is necessary for growth, however, our current rates of growth (of population, and of personal mass) and rates of food production/diet choices are totally unsustainable as most of us are all well aware. There are already huge food shortages for so many, but they are projected to only get worse. Growth and evolution could easily be returned to sustainable levels if we all ate in good ways. We must take responsibility. We need to create a global shift of consciousness for our diets and return to that healthy balanced connection to Mother Earth, and it begins with ourselves (the best thing we can do is greatly, greatly reduce our consumption of animal spirits). We need to consider our future generations when we make our actions, so that those inheriting our bountiful world can live and enjoy their physical health too, without having to suffer because of our poor choices and physical demands today.
So, finally–if you’ve actually read this long, wow, that’s crazy, I appreciate your amazing attention!–I decided I don’t want to make this piece any longer for now, my stream of consciousness is running dry, but maybe in the future I’ll add on to similar ideas. I didn’t even touch on sleep and how it, as well as so many other components play into a healthy physical lifestyle. But I feel, if you actually put some thought into what you read then you get my picture that there’s so many variables, factors, ideas and opinions on physical health. In the end, what really matters is you love the body you’re in, your lifestyle isn’t causing anyone else’s suffering, and it is sustainable to our planet. With all those checked, I say you’re on the right path in the journey to totally loving yourself. My two best pieces of advice for more healthy movement; drink copious amounts of water (nature’s healing life force) and breathe deeply (preferably fresh air). Remember it’s the thought that counts, so stay positive! Thanks again for reading, stay active, rest well, and live well my relatives!
Now time for a whole bunch of epic physical fitness guru Bruce Lee quotes:
Practice makes perfect. After a long time of practicing, our work will become natural, skillfull, swift, and steady.
Always be yourself. Have faith in yourself. Express yourself. Do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.
A goal is not always meant to be reached. It often serves simply as something to aim at.
Don’t fear failure. Not failure, but low aim is the crime. In great attempts it is glorious even to fail.
Defeat is a state of mind; no one is ever defeated until defeat has been accepted as reality.
Be water my friend.