In the Body of the World tells a deep and personal story of Eve Ensler’s treatment and recovery from uterine cancer. In it she courageously shares an intimate story of separation from her own body through sexual and physical violence that she endured as a child, to unity and wholeness through her cancer treatments. Ensler not only writes from personal experience, she also shares the vast knowledge of stories from many women who have left their bodies because of the violence. They too had suffered a form of sexual or physical [and psychological] abuse; acid burning, gang rapes, mass rapes, genital mutilation, etc. “When we connect to our bodies, we connect to the world.” says Ms. Ensler encouraging a universal attempt among women to return to their body and return to the body of the world.
Reading Eve Ensler’s book I am blown away by her ability to speak candidly about her experience in which she at time humorously communicates with clarity, vulnerability, strength and courage. Yet as I read about her journey through the passages of her book I am struck in awe as I began to see how her bodily energy centers affected her experience that illuminated her life’s path. There’s no doubt about it, Ms. Ensler was steeped in first and second chakra mysticism, in which she ends her book energizing her third center continuing straight through her crown (the seventh chakra). I am sure throughout her life thus far Ensler had been able to activate and energize all of her chakras, as she played her kundalini flute manipulating the energies as she saw fit, whether it was for her plays, her activism and especially toward fighting her cancer. I am delighted to experience her openness in sharing her difficult upbringing and the challenges she had faced growing up for this was her life lesson to overcome and what she did with this energy and her story that she constantly battled with is something to be admired.
“The body is like an earth. It is a land unto itself. It is as vulnerable to overbuilding, being carved into parcels, cut off, overmined, and shorn of its power as any landscape. The wilder woman will not be easily swayed by redevelopment schemes. For her the questions are not how to form but how to feel. The breast in all its shapes has the function of feeling and feeding. Does it feed? Does it feel? It is a good breast.
The hips, they are wide for a reason, inside them is a satiny ivory cradle for new life. A woman’s hips are outriggers for the body above and below; they are portals, they are a lush cushion, the handholds for love, a place for children to hide behind. The legs, they are meant to take us, sometimes to propel us; they are the pulleys that help us life, they are the anillo, the ring for encircling a lover…..They cannot be too this or too that….They are what they are.
~ Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes
When we experience trauma our bodies absorbs the feeling first before we are able to intellectualize the experience. We bury painful memories and let the emotions settle in various areas within our physical body. Overtime and left untreated we begin to accumulate additional layers upon layers of unresolved emotions as we face life’s challenges and transgressions through out the years of growing up. There are a lot of variables, yet how you respond to your traumatic experiences – face it on par or hide away – these experiences will develop into sickness whether it’s a chronic pain in the muscle, a psychological/emotional disorder to a full out sickness a ‘dis-ease’, even cancer. Somatic symptoms and its accompanying therapy is wonderfully explained in Dr Clyde W. Ford’s book, Compassionate Touch: The Body’s Role in Emotional Healing and Recovery, I highlight some of his somatic concepts including neuropeptides in a previous blog: Anatomy of the Spirit.
In medical intuition and depending on the area of your body in which the sickness appears you can then associate the chakra [energy center] to the sacred truth it contains within its domain. Learning the sacred truth of that chakra [energy center] will enable you to treat your body and your spirit to guide yourself back to emotional and physical well-being, ignore it, and it will eventually become your dis-ease. The term chakras finds its roots in Hinduism, yet these energy centers has its equivalent names and similar teachings in Judaism/Kabbalah (known as sefirot) as well as in Christianity (known as the Christian sacraments ). I cant encourage you enough and highly recommend for you to familiarize yourself with Caroline Myss work through her book “Anatomy of the Spirit” as well as “Why people don’t heal and how they can”, her theory on the language of “woundology” is something we all speak fluently – some better than others.
Through Ensler’s story let me show you medical intuition in action (some people say spiritual intuition – it’s both) and how it can be of some benefit to you:
ENSLER: “I remember years ago – when I was going through a period when I seemed to be sick all the time – a shrink friend was saying to me in that knowing and slightly patronizing sorry-for-me way, “You somatize, Eve.” Somatize. It was one of those words like “individuate“. I had to look it up. Somatize: How the body defends itself against too much stress, manifesting psychological distress as physical symptoms in the stomach or nerves or uterus or vagina.” I read that women who had suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse tended to “somatize” more. [In the Body of the World]
Our first Chakra lies at the bottom of our spine that primarily concern itself with Tribal energy. The place that gave you and continues to give you your identity. In the early stages of life you garner this energy from your family, religion, and childhood friends. These are the people and the circumstances that you were born into and have no control of who they are nor the experiences that had been given to you. “Aggression, tolerance, prejudices, emotions, and other aspects of personal reactivity are not programmed by genetic determination; they depend on elements provided by culture and learned by personal experience.” [J. Delgado, 1996] Home and the environments that is exposed to you at an early age the place where your personality was made the trials that you needed (and continue) to overcome that has been provided to you as well as the tools for success. Tribal energy is very much of a group experience where the overarching message is All is One. We are all connected to life. In Judaism, the first Charka is the Sefirot is the Sefirah of Shekhinah meaning that we are all part of one spiritual community. Through the tribe we learn loyalty, justice, honor, bonding with one another and groundness – the basics to learn how to survive in this life. The first Chakra is the caretaker of our skeletal and immune system, legs, bones, feet and rectum – in other-ward the foundations of the human form and rightly so.
Ensler has not been shy about her family upbringing from a relationship of incest with her father at a very young age and a complacent mother who preferred to be complicit and never came to her aid. I’ll have to double check but I believe Ms. Ensler is Jewish therefore she may be channeling some historical transgression of her people through her family lineage as well. But it’s the way Ms. Ensler went about trying to export her demons from her body as she gave herself to the world through performance art, namely her world renowned play the Vagina Monologues. She gave mind, body, and soul and absorbed countless of stories of the women she had visited literally all over the world who would talk and share stories about their vaginas, their experiences with rape the physical, emotional and spiritual wounds left for each woman to handle the best that they can. But it was Eve who just inhaled all these stories and turned it into some fantastical literary art but in doing so she accepted layers upon layers of negative energy that wasn’t hers but since she related to it so well she made it her own – she needed to because that’s how she found her self-expression, her voice and her art.
Ensler’s traveling eventually led her to the Congo where the worse violence and atrocities in the world still exist today:
“It was the women, of course it was the women. Shaking women, weeping women, women with missing limbs and reproductive organs, women with machete lashes across their faces and arms and legs, women limping on crutches, women carrying babies the color of their rapists, women who smelled like urine and feces because they had fistulas – holes between their vaginas and bladder and rectum – and now they were leaking, leaking. Women who were funny, passionate, clever, and fierce, who turned ten dollars into a thriving business. They danced when they couldn’t walk. They sang when their futures were stolen. Dr. Mukwege and Mamma C, the women and the Congo, Let’s not forget the Congo. The silky, powder blue Lake Kivu; the sweet, warm African air that embraces, the high, green, fertile trees and shocking orange and pink blossoms and birds; the crazy chattering morning birds. I was a goner for the Congo.”
I find myself dialing [Mama C.] number. She answers. I cannot breathe. I whisper. “They have found a tumor. It is very large. It has broken through, invaded the sides of my colon. They are not sure where it’s coming from …Maybe you could help me.”
She says, “Get on a plane. Come here. Come now.”
The violence, Ensler explains, is in an effort to control the mines of minerals and precious gold that the country produces to make the products that we Westerners buy at the store. Basically, these militias go into these villages, rape the women and girls, destroying families, destroying the villages and once they have left, they take over the mines and take over the riches that belong to the indigenous Congolese. The Congo is the place where you would go if you want to lose all hope in humanity, the Congo is a place where your spirit dies because of all the despairs. And here is where our daring and adventurous Eve goes to listen to more horrific stories about ripped up, cut up, vaginas, acid burned faces and all sorts of deformities (emotional and physical) from women and young girls.
“Cancer threw me through the window of my disassociation into the center of my body’s crisis. The Congo threw me deep into the crisis of the world, and these two experiences merged as I faced the disease and what I felt was the beginning of the end.” ~ In the Body of the World
It is no wonder that Ensler is diagnosed with a Tribal energy related dis-ease. She was meant to work on her own family issues yet in the path that she took accepted and housed everyone else’s pain in her body. She allowed the women of the world to enter her body, stake claim and all that negative energy develops into uterine cancer. As a result the doctors, she tells us, have to pull everything out of her and I mean everything since the tumor laid right at the base of her vagina and the rectum – remember the rectum being an energy area for the first chakra.
After one of her surgeries Ensler writes:
“Here’s what’s gone; nine hours, rectum, sections of my colon, uterus, ovaries, cervix, Fallopian tubes, part of my vagina and seventy nodes. Here’s what’s new: A rebuilt rectum made out of my colon, a stoma, a temporary ileostomy bag, a catheter in my bladder, my face, the size of two faces, A button I push anytime I begin to feel what is missing.”
It’s unbelievable the size of the tumor her doctors tell her that they had rarely seen her kind of tumor before:
“Cells of endometrial (uterine) cancer had created a tumor between the vagina and the bowel and had “fistulated” the rectum. Essentially, the cancer had done exactly what rape had done to so many thousands of women in the Congo.” she says, “I ended up having the same surgery as many of them.” Her doctor she tells us is so in awe of the mystery of what they had found and says to her, “these findings are not medical, they are not science. They are spiritual.”
Then she goes into 7 months of intense chemo and she gets through it.
“A Masterpiece. Ensler has accomplished the impossible: weaving together huge, bold, world-changing ideas with beautiful writing, amazing metaphors, and original structure. Truly one of the most courageous and original works of our time.” ~ Naomi Klein
Ensler’s experience is a classic example of the emotional and psychic garbage that had grown within her that began in her childhood from her toxic parents. Tribal concerns are the most pressing that everyone has to deal with and the most difficult to handle and is the root cause of most emotional trauma that affects the physical body. Most illnesses are a result from a loss of energy from the first two chakras, while other illnesses that are associated with higher levels of energy centers are also rooted within the first two chakras. Not treating the problem and then accepting others people’s garbage, like we always do, is what made her [us] sick. Part of Ensler’s emotional healing came from her visit with her Mother who was also in the hospital dying from cancer the same time Ensler was receiving her treatment. Once her mother dies Ensler had to travel again to manage the cremation and the scattering of her mother’s ashes “over her beloved Gulf of Mexico” and then return to her treatment at the cancer center. It’s only during this time that Ensler thinks of her father:
“I see now how, almost, twenty years later, I have never really grieved his [father] loss. He was there. Then he wasn’t. I never experienced it as a loss, more like an existential magic trick. He was a man who adored me, committed incest with me, then regularly tried to murder me. Then, gone. My father left this world without a call or a wave or a touch. This was his final cruelty. The last thing he could control was how my mother would leave this world. So many years after his death, my mother was still under his spell. He haunted her.” [In the Body of the World]
There are seven levels of power in our biological system in which each contains a single sacred truth. Violating these truths weaken both our spirit and our physical body while honoring them enhances the strength of our spirit and our physical body. Energy is power and our bodies need power. In wondering how or even why she had her sickness, Ensler begins to makes the connection of climate change denial and the impending doom we are facing with her denial of seeking help when her body was sending her signals. It didn’t magically appear, our sickness never “magically” appears, there are symptoms, the body sends us warning signs and Ensler counts all the ways in which her body sent its signals for which she ignored.
Somnolence: A paralysis that comes when strung between two extreme moral choices – loyalty or shame, change or die. Many of my early years were lived in this semi-sleep. There I did not have to confront the twisted agony of betraying my mother each time my father found me in bed in the middle of the night. I did not have to try to unravel the madness of what it meant that the person I loved the most in the world was exploiting me, raping me, abusing me. I did not have to experience any conflict because none of it was really happening. We do this.
Think climate change.
All the early warning signs are here: heat waves, sea levels rising, flooding, glaciers melting, earlier springs, coral reefs bleeding, diseases spreading. All of it happening right in front of us. Just like the blood that first came from my vagina five years after I stopped bleeding, my strange swollen belly, the terrible indigestion and the slightly sick feeling in my stomach. Then the blood in my poop and my wanting it to be hemorrhoids although I knew it wasn’t hemorrhoids. Staring for minutes at the red swirl in the toilet, a clear marker that my end was near. I knew it of course. We all know everything. I knew when the size and shape of my poop suddenly changed and became skinny, something was wrong. It felt as if there was something blocking my insides. I knew it, but where did I go? Why didn’t I fight for my body? Because in order to fight I would have had to face what was wrong. Because secretly I didn’t think my fighting would make a difference and I was going to die and I might as well die now. [In the Body of the World]
Myss explains the three truths that are common to spiritual traditions and to the principles of medical intuition:
- Misdirecting the power of one’s spirit will generate consequences to one’s body and life.
- Every human being will encounter a series of challenges that tests his allegiance to heaven. These tests will come int he form of disintegration of one’s physical power base; the inevitable loss will activate a crisis of faith forcing one to ask “What is it, or who is it, that I have faith in” or “into who’s hands I commended my spirit?” Apart from such major loss, the trigger that cause people to seek deeper meaning and psychological and spiritual “ascension” is usually a physical disorder that creates a personal or professional earthquake when the ground beneath our feet shifts out of control.
- To heal from the misdirection of on’s spirit, one has to be willing to act to release the past cleanse one’s spirit and return to the present moment.
Acts of awareness create good karma; acts of fear or negativity create bad karma, in which case one must “retrieve” one’s spirit form the fear that motivated the negative action. (More on “retrieving”, see previous blog: Extreme Unction) In the Christian tradition the Sacrament of Confession is the act of retrieving one’s spirit from negative places in order to enter into heaven complete. One calls back one’s spirit from its mis-directions so that one can walk straight. What drains your spirit drains your body. What fuels your spirit fuels your body.
Earth is a Sentient Living Organism
Today we are encouraged to adjust our view of the Earth to see Her as a living organism. Ensler is quite fluent in this language and through her storytelling you can certainly make the connection between the individual body, the collective body and our connection to the body of the Earth. Liz Bently who, at the time of writing her paper, was a graduate in geology and freelance journalist with an acute insight into fossil records and climatology. Her article entitled, The Earth is a Sentient Living Organism, explains that, “The homeostasis regulated by the Earth is much like the internal maintenance of our own bodies; processes within our body insure a constant temperature, blood pH, electrochemical balance, etc. The inner workings of Gaia, therefore, can be viewed as a study of the physiology of the Earth, where the oceans and rivers are the Earth’s blood, the atmosphere is the Earth’s lungs, the land is the Earth’s bones, and the living organisms are the Earth’s senses. J. Lovelock  calls this the science of geophysiology – the physiology of the Earth (or any other planet).”
An excerpt from Ensler’s book provides an example where she connects her experience with the infamous BP oil spill, regarded as one of the largest environmental disasters in American history, off the Gulf of Mexico:
Chapter: The Rupture/The Gulf Spill
“At Sloan-Kettering they show it [cancer] to me on the CAT scan screen: a huge pool of blackness in the center of me – the same day as the Gulf oil spill, the now poisoned Gulf of Mexico somehow inside me. Sixteen ounces of pus. Two point five two million gallons of oil a day. An intra-abdominal abscess. Contamination from post-surgery, post explosion leaking, the spread of infection to the bloodstream to the ocean. My body is rupturing, shit leaking from where they closed it up, leaking there and spilling, purging – same moment, same day BP exploding rising up, gushing out of me from every orifice, nothing can stop it, trying to shut it down, but not able, there is no stopping it, and it smells putrid, otherworldly, and it fills the bag and I can’t get to the bathroom and the bag explodes and I am puking, my guts still sewn raw from the surgery, and it really hurts.
Symptoms may include abdominal pain, chills, diarrhea, oil penetration destroying the plumage of birds, making them less able to float in the water, less able to escape when being attacked, preening lead to kidney damage, altered liver function, ruptured digestive tracts, lack of appetite, nausea, dolphins spurting oil through their blow holes, rectal tenderness and fullness, seal fur reduced in its insulation abilities, leading to hypothermia, vomiting , weakness.
They need to start the chemotherapy, but they can’t until the infection is gone. I’m too weak and there will be too many complications. Chemo compromises your immune system and I am a sea of infection. They will need to suck it out of me. Treatment of an intra-abdominal abscess requires antibiotics (given intravenously) and drainage. Drainage involves placing a needle through the skin into the abscess, usually under X-ray guidance. The drain is then left in place for days or weeks, until the abscess goes away.
After two false starts, BP engineers successfully insert a mile-long tube into the broken riser pipe to divert some of the oil to a drill ship on the surface. Over nine days, the tube siphons off about twenty-two thousand barrels of oil, which is just a fraction of the total spill.
“Over the next three weeks, the Sloan-Kettering team will insert tubes on three different occasions into the center of my abscess to drain the pus…Afterward I meet with my oncology team, who seem utterly distracted….He tells me that they were planning to radiate the place where my cancer was but that scar tissue has already formed around my intestines and they don’t dance and move the way they should. There is a risk that the radiation could zap the same intestine section over and over, and if that happens I would probably never be able to eat again and I would have a permanent bag. And so I ask my irritating questions: Is the radiation necessary? “We don’t know” Is radiation more effective than chemo? “We don’t think so” Are radiation and chemo more effective together? “We are not sure“. Is chemo more effective than radiation for uterine cancer? “Yes, we know it is“
They why, I ask, are you even thinking of radiation if it could destroy my intestines and make it impossible for me to eat or poop again? He says “It’s up to you. Only you can decide. We have given you the data.” Implicit in this is my impending wrong decision. And I say, “What would you do if this were your body?” Trying to bring his body into the room. And he says, “Can’t say.” And I say again, annoying him further, “But if you do not know if it will help, why are you putting me in the position where I have to choose?” Then he says the mantra of the ‘end of the world’. “WE WOULD LIKE TO THROW EVERYTHING AT IT. That’s all we know how to do.”
“The only problem is that IT is attached to ME”. And I swear he doesn’t even flinch. Me is irrelevant. Me is personal and specific. Me is what has to be passed through to get to where he is going. Me is what can be sacrificed to get better information. And I suddenly know what the bride in Pakistan felt when the drones bombed her wedding and her fiancé splintered into pieces and her mother was only fragments of dress. They were throwing everything at al-Qaeda. And I suddenly love my infection and my protective scar tissue, which are saving me from what they want to throw at me.” ~ end of excerpt
Human Rights and Environmental Law
Wow. Now think of what we’ve done to the earth extracting it’s precious resources – its a form of ecological genocide, otherwise known as ‘ecocide’. Ecocide is the extensive damage, destruction to or loss of ecosystem of a given territory, whether by human agency or by inhabitants of that territory that has been severely diminished. Think of all the stories SHE could tell from the cutting to the poking to the drilling, to the suffocation, the bleeding, the dumping, the draining and the inserting of various instruments to suck its regenerative spirit from the nutritive dirt, earth’s soil from the lands in which its sole purpose is to nourish US.
As I read about Ensler’s relation to BP’s oil spill I think of all the environmental disasters littering about the earth that are just as cancerous and immediate – Chernobyl’s disastrous nuclear power plant explosion, Bhopal gas tragedy, our oceans littered with garbage and choking the marine life and radiation spreading outward with the tides across the globe from Fukushima nuclear disaster. Right here in Canada, for example, 50 years later we’re still handling the fall out and un-kept promises from Grassy Narrows environmental disaster.
CBC recently reported, “Advocates say the community is one of Canada’s worst environmental disasters, with studies linking the historical dumping of 9,000 kilograms of mercury-contaminated effluent by former owners of the mill in Dryden, [Ontario] into the English-Wabigoon River system throughout most of the 1960s and into the early 1970s, to the comparatively poor health of Grassy Narrows residents”. The acid mixture dumped into the near by water is poisoning the fish and animals that depend on its water for sustenance as well as the indigenous communities who’s way of life is to live off their land who inadvertently eat these poison animals, fish and drink the dirty water. They get sick. They get suicidal, they get cancer. They die.
Meanwhile we have Mount Polley mine disaster in British Columbia, where 25 million cubic meters of water, slurry and toxic mine waste was released after a dam wall collapsed. The contaminated water first polluted Polley Lake, then continued to contaminate nearby creeks and neighboring lakes such as Bootjack Lake and Quesnel Lake which are now all but destroyed. “Whether it’s the devastating legacy of mercury contamination at Grassy Narrows, ongoing pollution from the Mount Polley mining disaster, or the looming threat of the Site C dam construction, Amnesty International says government decisions that ignore the health and well-being of Indigenous peoples must be recognized as a form of environmental racism.”
“It’s no coincidence that three of our highest priority human rights cases in Canada all revolve around contamination and threats to the rivers and lakes on which Indigenous peoples depend for their livelihoods and ways of life. Far too often, governments in Canada have demonstrated that they place little value on the health and well-being of Indigenous peoples and the revitalization of their cultures and traditions. That’s why we are marking World Water Day by renewing our commitment to support the Indigenous water defenders leading these crucial and inspiring human rights struggles.” says Tara Scurr, Business and human rights campaigner for Amnesty International Canada.
Human Rights are often characterized in terms of “three generations”. The first generation gave us civil and political rights which are designed to protect and defend the freedom of individuals against arbitrary state power. It includes equality before the law in terms of security, of the person, fair trial, not to be tortured or arbitrarily detained, to own property, freedom of conscience and religion, free speech and expression. The second generation gave us economic, social and cultural rights. It requires that the state provide certain services such as; the right to food, housing, work, health, culture and a minimum level of material comfort, and the right to water (an add-on to food and health). The third generation of human rights include the right to national self-determination and rights of indigenous persons among other collective, communal and group rights.
I suggest that we either add the environment/climate change as a human right in the third generation or declare in our fourth generation which in this case our youths are taking the lead challenging adults and corporations to change their ways to leave a healthy planet not only for themselves but for their children and generations after their children. The indigenous communities (The “Earth-keepers”) are key in protecting our human right to a healthy planet, nutritive soils, clean water to drink and air to breathe, It affects all life on the planet as we all rely on these resources – yet governments and corporations are slow to respond.
Amnesty points to “the responsibility of resource development companies to respect human rights – and for [our] governments to swiftly act when they do not. The ongoing environmental crises in these communities are the result of massive resource development projects that either have had or risk having irreversible harmful effects on the communities’ water sources, cultural practices and way of life. These destructive environmental crises exemplify a pattern of rights violations experienced by Indigenous peoples that amounts to environmental racism. For too long, the rights of those living in these affected communities have been ignored.” It certainly is a form of ecocide, however, with ecocide we are concerned especially for, but not just the indigenous communities, but for all human life on the planet.
Ecological theologist and feminist Sallie McFague in her book The Body of God she has us thinking differently about our bodies. Simply stated simply she writes:
“We do not HAVE bodies, we ARE bodies. We are bodies, made of the same stuff as all other life forms on our planet. As such our human bodies parallel to the body of nature such as the body of a mountain, heavenly bodies, or oceanic bodies (etc.) and although we seldom think of trees or plants as bodies – they are!”
Therefore loving and honoring the body, our own bodies, and the bodies of all other life-forms on the planet set the premise for [her] essay. By taking us on her journey from sickness to healing Ensler makes the link between women’s oppression, for example in the Congo, and the degradation of nature that is parallel to each other. Degradation of nature contributes to women’s degradation because, in an area where the environment is devastated, women are primarily those who are affected. Radiations, chemical wastes, and other pollutants have unfavorable effects on women’s reproductive system. Hence, to preserve nature means to preserve women and next generations.
Third Eye – Symbolic Sight
This Chemo is not for you: “Sue arrives. She has not been my therapist for many years. We are post-therapy friends. Sue was a psychic surgeon who reattached shards of body sensations to memories. “Tell me everything”, she says and I start to cry. Sue tells me that she has never understood how I have not been sick before. She tells me she knows I will survive everything because I am the most resilient person she’s ever known. And then she does what I call a Sue. She gives me back the same information I am giving her but with a genius spin, a way of seeing things that immediately and spontaneously unlocks the neurosis. In this case, she gives me a way to reframe the entire chemo experience. She says:
“The Chemo is not for you. It is for the cancer, for all the past crimes, it’s for your father, it’s for the rapists, it’s for the perpetrators. You’re going to poison them now and they are never coming back. Chemo will purge the badness that was projected onto you but was never yours. I have total faith in your resilience and the magical capacities of your body and soul for healing. Your job is to welcome the chemo as an empathetic warrior, who is coming in to rescue your innocence by killing off the perpetrator who got inside you. You have many bodies; new ones will be born out of this transformational time of love and care. When you feel nauseous or terrible, just imagine how hard the chemo is fighting on your behalf and on behalf of all women’s bodies, restoring wholeness, innocence, peace. Welcome the chemo as empathetic warrior.” Consciousness leap, consciousness shift. I think rain forest. I think walking into what the shamans call “the frontiers of mental death.” I think that what was terrifying and impossible two minutes ago is suddenly the thing I need to be doing most. I think yes, chemo will be my medicine. I will ride it like a lion. I will let it do its work in me. I know that whatever happens, will be what is required.” [In the Body of the World]
Medical intuition is about paying attention to the energy and physical vibrations of your body, to your thoughts, emotion and surroundings. The trick is to focus on what drains your energy sources and seek proper treatment, if necessary, before the negative energy turns into an illness. First and foremost, Myss instructs us to focus your attention on learning to interpret your life’s challenges symbolically. Find meaning in them. Observe what causes you to lose power and where you feel the loss. Second, think of yourself at all times as an energy being as well as a physical being. The energy parts of yourself acts like transmitters and a recorder of all your thoughts, feelings, emotions and interactions. Keep in mind that your biography becomes your biology. Think of your illness as a power disorder, a technical malfunction and once you identify the sacred truth (seifot/sacrament/chakra) that applies to your malfunction organize your internal healing process around learning from that truth.
Combine your internal healing with conventional medical treatment that is essential and stick to your program. Remember you are to move through your wounds not live with them. Therefore don’t waste your time by thinking, acting or praying like a victim. Feeling victimize only adds to your illness and should it become a full time state of mind it would qualify as an illness in itself. Develop a habit of evaluating the people, experiences and information that you allow into your life – be consciously intentional with this process paying attention to its influence on your emotional and physical power.
Do all that is necessary to support your physical body, such as taking the appropriate medicine, maintaining a daily exercise program and eating properly. Simultaneously do all that you can to support your energy body by releasing your “unfinished business”, make whatever personal changes necessary for healing to take place, the specific changes you make are not important here but to actually make the changes that healing requires. Talking does not heal, action does.
Lose the illusions of the unicorn’s horn, employ what lies beneath, your third eye of symbolic sight.
“Simplify your spirituality. All my earthly studies of heaven have led me to the conclusion that heaven is not a complicated realm. Therefore one’s personal theology should not be complicated.” ~ Caroline Myss
Now let’s try to apply some of these principles of the ‘third eye’ insight to the body of the Earth. No doubt there needs to be a broader discussion about the ethical relationship between humanity and nature; one with anthropocentric underpinnings and the need for law to transform to reflect on a eco-centric ethic. those who are guilty of destroying our planet rationalize their actions by saying they have the right to make money without taking responsibility for decisions that adversely impact all life as we know it. This is our business, however, there is a common agreement within the Global Ecological Integrity Group (GEIG) that the exercise of legal rights such as those to the land and natural resource has led to large-scale ecological deterioration because natural resources are viewed, almost solely as economic factors of production.
Humankind’s liberation from and domination of many natural elements and the existence of our mental activities are changing the world’s ecology and influencing the needs, purpose, and general organization of human life. “Wishful thinking and archaic philosophical ideas will not solve our present problems. A new economic and political system based on scientific reality is necessary.” [J. Delagdo, 1996] In the business realm, we need to change our thinking and language when it climate change and the environment and transition from the language of ownership to the language of stewardship, for example, ‘we owe a duty of care as opposed to we own’.
In Earth is Our Business, the Law of Ecocide is explained as a set of legal legislation, one that would close the door to investment in high-risk ventures which give rise to ecocide. It is a governing mechanism to protect the Earth’s ‘right to life‘, and making environmental destruction a crime and where decision-making will be determined on a value-driven basis premised on intrinsic values, not permit allocations. Ecocide comes in many forms and is either human-made or caused by a catastrophic disaster. Human made ecocide is corporate driven activity (i.e. Bhopal, BP, Mount Polley, Grassy Narrows, Cherynobl) or caused by catastrophic disaster (Fukushima, Hurricane Katrina, tsunami in the Thailand, earthquake in Haiti). Yet to environmentalists, the question is how to separate natural factors from unnatural ones. Climate change has made it clear that human action are responsible for the degradation of nature and unnatural weather patterns.
Protections in the interest of the wider Earth community will then become the over-riding consideration for business driving innovation in a new direction .Comparing it with apartheid and genocide such abuses arise out of a value system not only based on a lack of regard for human life but for all life on the planet. To avert, mitigate, even slow-down the inevitable affects of climate change we are at a crucial point in history where we need to give our planet the same attention and care that we give to those living on it.
For example, in a previous blog (see: A Tale of Two News Stories PtII) we were questioning Canada’s right to implement another pipeline in the west to ship raw bitumen to China. There were all sorts implications moral, ethical, environmental, and commercial, pros and cons to consider many of which were raised by the indigenous communities who lobbied to stop the Keystone pipeline. For an answer to these debates the article pointed in the direction of evaluating the customer; China. Yes, we can trade our natural resources with countries in need but what are they doing to reduce their carbon footprint, especially with China being one of the world’s largest producer of pollution.
Pollution is understood in law to be the introduction of contaminants into an environment that cause instability, disorder or harm which can occur miles away from the source of the contaminant being released. Pollution travels. By shipping natural resources to countries that do not have the same regard for the Earth or provisions in place to do their part in the protection of the Earth our home, that we all have to share; do we become just as accountable?
Can we ask a country that is known for environmental disregard to put some environmental measures in place before receiving our shipments of raw material. How do we place the environment over profit with other countries and make this a universal practice with all countries around the globe. This type of thoughtful dialogue (and follow through) should now be an active ingredient in our business dealings and decision-making regardless of the nature of your business.
China: Why won’t you sell us your raw bitumen?
Canada: Well China, you haven’t done anything to reduce your air and water pollution and we’ve tracked your trajectory as to how it pollutes our air quality and oceans – we’re on the other side of the planet! And – Your garbage is washing up against our shores. Until you can show us what you’re doing to reduce this carnage – you’re not getting our natural resources!
“What is equally concerning,” my article continues “is our country’s present environmental regulations. In a conference not too long ago CBC reported that “Both Prentice and Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall agree that Canada should harmonize its environmental regulations with the U.S….Wall urged the Harper government to bring in long-delayed regulations on the oil and gas industry…The federal Conservatives have said since 2007 that they would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by imposing regulations on industrial sectors. But the federal government has so far avoided the fastest-growing and most contentious sector: oil and gas. The Saskatchewan premier said he doesn’t know why it has taken eight years to regulate such an important sector, [and why we citizens had not made him accountable] but Ottawa needs to get it right.” [emphasis added]
Conversations like the one above should be had with all countries in the business of trading around the globe. “Our oceans are a mess, our fish and marine life are choking and suffocating on the garbage you are throwing into the water India. No you are not getting [blank] until you’ve come up with a better garbage disposal and recycling program and start cleaning up your country!” Japan, “Fukushima was an avoidable disaster. If you had only payed attention to those who actually put markers in the ground to say no development past this point, although a natural disaster that you have no control over, but did you really have to ignore your ancestors and build a nuclear reactor right by your shores despite their warnings? Now look – radiation is traversing across the ocean, poisoning our fish and marine life, people out here in BC are seeing the carnage wash up on to the shore. The radiation in the air doesn’t just stay in your country we have winds blowing your mess right into our atmosphere that contributes to the global air quality AND the radiation seeping into your grounds because your containment units are deteriorating and you need to keep it’s containment up-to-date – it’s killing your people. NO – we are not selling you [blank] until you fix your mess!
It’s called creating boundaries. We need to do it in our personal lives, professional lives, within our communities and there is a definitely urgency to do this outwardly within our global community.
We have covered a lot of ground in this entry. It is my hope that in using Eve Ensler’s personal experience, the mystical teachings of Caroline Myss (and others), connecting the body of the Earth to these experiences and universal truths that we begin to see the interdependence and dualistic themes that mark our human biorhythms, and natural patterns of the body with the cycles of Nature that harmonize with a the spiritual reverence (chakra, seifort, sacraments) for a higher power. Medical (spiritual) intuition, I believe, should be a natural component in the task of updating the study of man. It’s a task that should bring together tradition and modernity, merging it with classical and universal culture in the formation of a modern humanism. Body, nature and intelligent design. Viewed in this manner it is not difficult to comprehend that when one is ill-treated it affects all three levels; body (mental/physical sickness), nature (climate change /ecological crisis) and an intelligent design (disconnection from primary source – a draining of all systems). There’s good bacteria and there’s bad bacteria and we humans over millennia have played both sides. Earth needs treatment and she needs it quickly. Our bad habits is Earth’s cancer. It’s time to clean up our mess!
Become The Change We Need
Did you like my story? Well let’s do something about it and become the change we need! I volunteered with Ovarian Cancer Canada for about three years as their volunteer coordinator. I met some fabulous dedicated individuals determined to do their part to raise funds to further research and offer support for those who are affected. Watch the video and then join me in supporting their Walk of Hope campaign in your respective City.
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Living with Ovarian Cancer
“Thousands of women are living with ovarian cancer in Canada. It is estimated that this year 2,800 Canadian women will be newly diagnosed with this disease. Ovarian cancer is the 5th most common cancer for women and is the most serious women’s cancer.
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Research is the only way to stop ovarian cancer. With strategic partnerships in place to prioritize research studies in need of investment, Ovarian Cancer Canada funds a variety of important initiatives focused on prevention, improved treatments, and ultimately a cure. Bringing the impact of donations even further, the organization works shoulder to shoulder with groups that match its financial contributions. So while Ovarian Cancer Canada has put forward $6 million in research funding over the years, it’s also triggered $3 million in added investments from partnering organizations.
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Guided by a committee comprised of leading scientists, clinicians, and people who have been personally affected by the disease, Ovarian Cancer Canada’s research strategy focuses on building capacity and advancing knowledge.” ~ Ovarian Cancer Canada