Updated: Mar 31, 2020
The practice of gratitude is cultivated merely by a few moments spent in stillness together, in connection -- looking at and really seeing the wholeness of this creation we call body, like a beautiful work of art.
This week, Danielle shares some of her thoughts regarding one of our most significant relationships - our relationship with and to our own bodies. “I looked at my naked body last night noticing the deep line of my spine, it looks so much more pronounced and straight. I don’t know if that’s true or not, but it struck my attention, so beautiful, like a river through the valley of the land carved out over time and experience. I wish I could see my whole back and front side. 'Maybe I need a full length mirror!' I love looking at my body, it fascinates me now. When I started doing this looking at myself I felt completely ridiculous and self conscious. I was self conscious, I was embarrassed. Our relationships to our bodies is the only relationship we will have for our entire lives. It's been through everything with us and therefore anything we want to forget is right there for us to see. Despite it being there for us everyday, we often want to escape from it, in a never ending pursuit of trying to change it into something else, disguise it or numb it from feeling the voice of growth and wisdom. Our bodies are a reflection of all the experiences and feelings that we hold inside ourselves and it's scary to see ourselves in such a raw state. This practice of looking at yourself naked is a practice of full on acceptance and gratitude. It’s pretty simple. Strip down and look at your body with non-judgmental awareness and gratitude for being with you all these years. Rule No. 1 from one of my favorite books, “If Life is Game, These Are The Rules” by Cherie Carter-Scott says “You will receive a body.” The first lesson that this receiving of a body rule imparts is that of acceptance -- love it or hate it, it is yours for the duration of your life. My body has certainly changed over the years, but I think how I perceive it has changed even more. If I see from the eyes of my heart with gratitude rather than the eyes of my head, I am more able to see with appreciation and respect for what my body is capable of providing me and for all it has endured. I see with a resonance and a vibration like I would see a painting or a sculpture that moves me to feel. There is an essence, wisdom, and understanding of the relationship I have with myself, how I have treated myself and the stories I have lived. Through the eyes in my head I see all that is on the surface and all that has aged or changed color, shape, and texture. The practice of gratitude is cultivated merely by a few moments spent in stillness together, in connection....looking at and really seeing the wholeness of this creation we call body, like a beautiful work of art. It is my body for which I am grateful and therefore will serve with acceptance and respect. I will care for it as I would something I hold very precious. I will talk to it with kindness as I would my closest friend. And not to worry, I will also enjoy great fun and pleasures together as we are meant to experience joy through this lifetime. I wish you gratitude for your body through out the holidays. See it’s wholeness, ask it what it needs, then deliver it to your temple."