Provocative Thoughts

Sex sells. While the phrase inspired by Rudyard Kipling linking prostitution to the oldest profession in the world may be true, why have no significant, progressive changes taken place regarding our thoughts and reactions  to seeing the body as a work of art? Perhaps better termed, sensuality… The very silhouette used in this article, a photo of myself in the waves across from my home, will be judged by many as taboo, likened to a provocative image and will fall under the same enormous umbrella of sex-related content, however slight. I am not arguing that some will find it sexual…but…why is that the knee-jerk to the brain? I love this picture. I love that it was snapped without my awareness. And, in my eyes, captured what I was feeling in the moment, at one with the sea. I use it to prove a point. We have strong opinions on the topic and rarely challenge these dogmatic views. That we hardly delineate the human form as art, creating an entirely separate category for the physical body and its artistic features, not only carries a savage component, it all but eliminates the ability to express appreciation for one of the most natural, living things on the planet…us. It is insulting and normally unacceptable to find and express sincere beauty in and to a stranger. I have been on both sides of the coin- feeling the green monster rear its ugly head when I have witnessed a partner momentarily admiring another woman, as well as being the one admired while the other half of the duo stood by feeling her own green monster. While “admiration” may make innocent, thoughts that are not, it further proves my point that the norm is rather effed up. Early on, I want to make it clear, I am not down on men for this issue, solely. Women do it, too. Shut it. Yes, we do. Science claims the brief, physical sizing up of a body takes place from different psychological standpoints between men and women. While men supposedly are determining if the person would be a sexual candidate, women are shopping for stature that insures protection. I call bullshit. When did you last go to a bar and scan the room for a lumberjack/sniper/shield for the purpose of saving you from danger? No. You were looking at the physical features from a point of sheer lust. There ya go, men. Secret’s out, if you have been badgered for gawking. (Please, stop gawking for an unacceptable length of time,) but know we do it more subtly and briefly, with the same thoughts. I will stand by the fact that we don’t do it as often as men. We just don’t. Being as authentic as I vowed when I began writing publicly, I rarely catch myself noticing a male’s form…taking it in, admiring it, because, while I may see a work of art, I am sending another message, entirely. I don’t go to bars or other environments where the objective, or at least a probable outcome, is to hook up for a one night stand. Still, these same people must eat, go to the bank, restock their office supplies.. dragging the same body to the overt tasks by day as the covert operations by night.  Over the years, I’ve undergone quite a transformation in how I view the human body. Behind my eyes, one the most incredibly beautiful human forms is an older woman- aged, gray, wrinkled and wearing her life in her lines, her hair, natural, uncolored, maybe even a choice to not to cut it, decades of thousands of life experiences, joyful and challenging, adorning her figure. I can study the hands of a baby and only imagine what, one day, those hands will accomplish, where those tiny feet will carry them. I see the body as a form of art. All ages, shapes, genders, sexual preferences, colors…we are living, breathing art. I couldn’t leap into my stance without first acknowledging the animalistic response conjured when we hear the words, “beautiful,” “flawless,” “a ’10′”…descriptives  that insinuate a body that would draw attention in a lustful way. So, as I often do, in my ongoing goal to reach my Warriors through interactive challenges, suggestions and thought provoking analogies, I am asking for a huge paradigm shift the next time you notice the body of an individual. First, can you think of the opposite of what you would consider “attractive” or “your type?” If you’re a heterosexual male in your 30’s this may be an elderly man in his 80’s. In other words, a body to which you would never see in a sexual way, whatsoever. We’re conducting our own personal study, and only we will know the results. Hopefully, it will at least give pause to an age old, unquestioned, unchallenged mentality of beauty in the human form. I wasn’t born yesterday. I don’t, for a second, pretend the first two words of this article will ever be untrue. But, I AM hopeful that we can begin to find beauty in ways we may have never considered when we pass one another around the world. A nursing mother is beautiful. The baby she is nursing is beautiful. A shuffling couple in their 90’s celebrating 60 years of marriage? Divinity. As always, I am asking you to put your findings in writing. (quick shout out to those who relay their experiences on such challenges: Holla! Thank you for furthering my motivation to shake up our worlds from time to time!) And, when you find only the “tens” are catching your attention, scan your environment for a baby, an elder, a giggling 13 year old experiencing the world with his or her first taste of independence. It’s all beautiful. In a world where everyone seems to have their own make up tutorial, wash your face. Wash entrenched thought patterns. Give silent dignity to all those who cross your path. Find the beauty. Look in the mirror. Do it naked, if you dare. Art. If you think we don’t need to develop and grow around the idea of the human body and true beauty…what first grabbed your attention about this article? The title? The image? It probably wasn’t because you knew you were going to be asked to look at an 80 year old and see deeply, the art of having lived so many trips around the sun, that even the brain it houses is beautiful. Now, go, you sexy beasts. There’s a whole world out there just waiting to be admired in a brand new way. As always, I look forward to your insights. Peace, Warriors.

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