Posted by Lisa Meade
Dr. Eve Bruce recently shared with us her thoughts on the stop the beauty madness dilemma. She recalls her mother not telling her that she was pretty for fear that it would hold her back in life. She remembers being thought less of by those in the academic field because she was a female. Her irritation over this followed her through life. It did not take her long to realize that a woman's beauty, body shape, size and more was used to judge her abilities, her intellect, her stamina, and her position in life.
Her frustration grew with the fact that so many women struggle with their image in order to conform to the role they are cast in or choose for themselves; whether it be to be more pretty, more feminine, more studious looking or more business-like. It is as though we need to look the part in order to find success or happiness.
As a plastic surgeon she observes that there appears to be a shadow side to body acceptance. That it seems that those who wish to alter their body to achieve "perfection" rarely find an end to that journey. This drive to perfection keeps many from living a full and real life. It takes great intention to choose to move away from this expectation. To get off the "hamster wheel" is a difficult thing once one steps on it, and unfortunately, many unknowingly get caught up in the mad cycle of this expectation and the ridiculous beauty standards for much of their life.
Culturally, she explains, there are tremendous ways that people will choose to adorn and decorate their bodies. But the intent is the crux behind the view of whether one is doing so "playfully" to bring pleasure, for enjoyment and more versus doing it to conform, to fit in, or to hide from.
Dr. Eve feels we need to discover what we believe beauty is and how to we find our definition about beauty on a conscious level as opposed to having it defined for us by those who are seeking to make money from that definition. We have lost the ability, she states, to see the beauty in everything, in the world, in nature, in each other because we have grown so confused in what beauty is.
She challenged us to ask, "What does this body bring to me?" And perhaps within that answer we can find our beauty-body definition. We can choose to see it differently. Our choices come from building a deeper relationship with our body. It is in the willingness to revisit who we are and why we are choosing to do what we are doing. It helps us to bring awareness to our body acceptance.
As a shaman, Dr. Eve recognizes the need to tend to the "house" of our body. How we accept it, love it, and embrace it will impact hugely how we live our life and react to others around us. Bringing a presence to the beauty of our body and how it engages with the world brings a better understanding to our body.
Dr. Eve Bruce brings a wonderful honoring of the body and helps us to explore questions regarding our relationship with our body. It is in these questions, she believes, we will find our inner wisdom and understanding. It is there that an acceptance and appreciation with how our body serves us and the ways in which we can feel powerful, beautiful and whole can be found.
You can learn more from this insightful woman who brings her engaging spirit to everything in life and sees the beauty in all in her book, Shaman M.D.: A Plastic Surgeon's Remarkable Journey Into the World of Shapeshifting.