But, she wasn't happy, despite achieving her goals. What Taryn didn't realize was the source of this particular sin. "Body beautiful" wasn't filling her "empty soul."
This sin—not loving the unique and unrepeatable body in all of human history that God has entrusted to each human being—provides evidence of a culture of secularism and materialism that attributes one's "value" as a human being to how the consumer market values one's body. "I need to look like someone else," is how this sin begins to sap life from the soul.
Don't look like the stars and starlets? The solution: Learn to hate your body so much that you're motivated to shape yourself into someone or something else. Then, the crowd will adore you!
Yes, adored as a "thing"—a product that is easily replaced tomorrow or next week when tastes change, as they surely will—not loved as a "human being" irrespective of body shape, size, and/or attributes.
Now, contrast the effects of that sin with being able honestly to love the body God has entrusted to you.
Consider 27-year-old Jessamyn Stanley who took up yoga as a way to cope with depression--evidence of an empty soul--because since her adolescent years, Jessamyn was subjected to harrassment. Why? Well, she's...er, um..."plus size" or, as The Motley Monk's physician writes on patient charts, "appears to be well-nourished."
According to the folks over at Omleto.com, Jessamyn is a Yogi and she's teaching women how to love their bodies. In trying to love herself, she has helped others think differently about their bodies, and not merely accept what society had deemed was beautiful.
One day, she started taking pictures of herself to document her progress. “I wanted to watch my development, which is difficult when you are practicing at home and you don’t have an instructor to guide your body,” she said.
When Jessamyn began posting online the pictures of the progress she was making as a yogi, she received e-mails. Some people called Jessamyn an "inspiration." Inadvertently, Jessamyn had shown people—from young curvy girls to the elderly and the disabled, too—that anything is possible. She said:
We live in a society where we are trained to think that being overweight is wrong—so people are going to stare at you. Our society throws crazy shade at anyone whose body differs from the models featured in Western media. So the only thing that you can control is your reaction to that.
I’m not afraid of my body, I’m not afraid to see every awkward curve or strange way it can look. I’m willing to be in my underwear upside down.
Acknowledge your own greatness, acknowledge your own potential. It’s so hard to believe in yourself… but once you get to that point, everything is possible. There are infinite possibilities.
Your body is not standing in your way. Only your mind is standing in your way.
Let the discussion begin...
To read about Taryn Brumfitt's body image movement, click on the following link:
To read the Omleto.com article and follow Jessamyn's progress, click on the following link: