Your Body and You

Your body is amazing but it is not you and you are not it. You have one but you are not one. You can respect it, appreciate it and live in it, but you can never be it. Unlike your body, you are not physical but for now, your body is your current address. It’s how I can find you. Know where you are. And while I can see it, I can’t see you until I look past everything that you are not. In fact, nobody can see you until you choose to reveal yourself to them.

Which is something you rarely do.

I suspect that you and your body have a complicated relationship. And at times, a painful one. Welcome to a very large club. But maybe it’s time to stop looking for yourself in the mirror.

You don’t live there.

It is important for you to understand that where you live (your physical body) is not who you are and I share this because, for much of your life, you have been misinformed. Misled. Unhealthy lessons from misguided voices have taught you to believe that your physical appearance somehow defines you.

It doesn’t.

You are so much more than a reflection in some glass. So much more than an appearance. An image. A face. A weight. A size. A number. You are the genius, the beauty, the awareness and the consciousness that recognises what you are not.

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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

Cathy S March 4, 2014 at 11:00 pm

:) Thanks Craig! x

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:03 am

Welcome Cathy :)

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VeganChic March 5, 2014 at 1:09 am

Thanks a bunch Craig!!! I appreciate the confirmation!! Yeah i know this i should have already known, but it feels good to hear it from someone else..

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:04 am

We all need a little confirmation Vegan Chic :)

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sage March 6, 2014 at 11:56 am

Hi Craig.Love this post. Whilst this is true unfortunately we are sometimes judged on the outer appearance, even in regards to employment opportunities and other opportunities in life. If only more people actually knew this and thought this way. X

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Annette W March 5, 2014 at 9:21 am

Thanks Craig, needed this – stepped on the scales again this morning after working hard, being good and had put on weight, .3 over the last few days, so not much weight granted, but what I see as unjustified weight gain given the effort gone in.

Your email has reminded me that it’s not just the body that counts but the me inside, the me my husband sees and loves.

So thank you, I won’t give up trying to become healthy, but I don need to remember it’s not the body defines me but the achievements I have made in becoming the person I am, and not just a body.
Annette

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:05 am

Good for you Annette and keep in mind that weight gain is often not fat gain. Weight fluctuations are completely normal -even when you’ve been ‘good’. :)

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Linda J March 5, 2014 at 9:23 am

Craig, I’m confused when you say don’t look for any trace of myself in the mirror because I don’t live there.

But if my body is my current address, I do live there. In my body.

Or are you saying I don’t live in the reflection?

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:02 am

Good question Linda. All you can see in a mirror is a physical body and you are much more than a body. So while you can see a reflection of your body, you can’t see a reflection of YOU because you are so much more than a collection of bones, muscles, organs and skin. Yes, it’s a little philosophical but at the same time, it’s literal. :)

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Linda J March 5, 2014 at 3:04 pm

OK, along the lines of gestalt thinking, as in the whole exceeding the sum of its parts.

So, if I am wanting to apprehend the whole-ness of me, where would I look ? ;-)

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 3:19 pm

Another provocative question Linda…

…you would look where you haven’t. ;)

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Kelly March 5, 2014 at 9:25 am

I really needed this today. Thanks Craig!

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:05 am

You’re welcome Kelly :)

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Leigh-ann March 5, 2014 at 9:46 am

That is THE most moving thing I have read in a long time Craig, thank you for sharing. LOVE IT.

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:06 am

Glad it resonated Leigh-ann :)

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Susan Sheard March 5, 2014 at 9:59 am

Craig, I dated a man in his late 50′s who was OBSESSED with working out — absolutely addicted! I mean, he worked out at 4:30 am, then walked on his lunch break, then worked out again when he got home, trained for marathons, and nagged me about not exercising as much as he did. The amount of time he devoted to working out became a real issue between us, but for him it was non-negotiable. As the months went on and I got to know him better, I realized that, for him, it had more to do with how he felt he looked (he had low self-esteem) than the health benefits. He was not especially smart IQ-wise, and not especially nice looking. He came from a large family of over-achievers, and he was not. For him, having a well sculpted body was something he could achieve, and it defined him. We broke up because his compulsive exercising came between us. I wish I could have shown him your article. It may have helped him feel better about himself and helped him understand that “your body is not you, and you are not it.” Thanks mate — you nailed it again.

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 10:07 am

Thanks for sharing Susan. :)

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Kelly K March 5, 2014 at 11:54 am

My version of this is that “I” am not fat or skinny, “I” am Kelly.
Currently there is too much fat hiding some excellent muscles – also there are too many clothes hiding the carpet in my bedroom – but both situations can be rectified with the right strategy and commitment. Neither defines who I am.

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 1:03 pm

Love it Kelly K :)

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Anonymous March 5, 2014 at 1:39 pm

The idea that I’m more than a reflection in the mirror is both miraculous and frightening – if I’m not what I can see, then just what am I? How can I not be physical when my brain, my thoughts, my memories, my ideas, are all contained in the bubble of bone I call my skull? Am I simply the spark of consciousness that one day will leave my physical body? If that’s who I am, what’s to differentiate me from all the billions of other people in the world? Or maybe there is very little difference? My belief is that God knows the difference between each and every one of us, better even than we know ourselves – what we are not is so vast, a small human brain can’t fully take it in.

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Craig March 5, 2014 at 3:21 pm

Hi Anon… if you get a chance, take a peek at ‘A New Earth’ (if you haven’t already) :)

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Anonymous March 5, 2014 at 7:12 pm

Thanks for the recommendation, I will enjoy reading it.

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chebbieanne March 6, 2014 at 9:49 pm

Ok I am not just my body but seriously without it I would be lost. Unable to find myself in fact. I would not exist in the physical world …. at all. I see my body as a vehicle. Maybe a bit vintage and often requiring a bit of mechanical assistance but past the faded duco and worn leather and creaky bits it’s pretty good. The motor always starts often with a splutter or groan but once it’s fired up it’s pretty reliable. Like most vintage classics it took a while to appreciate its unique qualities but I could never trade it in. Oh yes I see the new models all sparkling and hi tech but somehow I like the vintage classic best of all. It has served me well and when it finally gives in I will be lost but probably not forgotten. I may not be it but we are a good team. We just go together.

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Talia March 7, 2014 at 12:50 pm

Wow, love it Craig! Thanks for sharing this truth. It’s about time that we realize who and what we are.

If I may quote directly from a book I’ve read:

” Most of us identify with our daily physically oriented self. We would not think of identifying with one portion of our body and ignoring all other parts, and yet we are doing the same thing when we imagine that the egotistical self carries the burden of our identity.

We are not a cosmic bag of bones and flesh, thrown together through some mixture of chemicals and elements. We are not a forsaken offshoot of physical matter, nor is our consciousness meant to vanish like a puff of smoke. Instead, we form the physical body at a deeply unconscious level with great discrimination, miraculous clarity, and intimate unconscious knowledge of each minute cell that composes it.

Because our conscious mind is not aware of these activities, we do not identify with this inner portion of ourselves. We prefer to identify
with the part of us who watches TV, or cooks or works- the part of us we think knows what it is doing.

This seemingly unconscious portion of ourselves is far more knowledgeable, and upon its smooth functioning our entire physical existence depends.

It is the inner perceiver of reality that exists beyond the three-dimensional”

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