7 Reasons Your Body is not a Temple

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temple

ˈtɛmp(ə)l/

noun

  1. a building devoted to the worship of a god or gods.

 

1. Temples are constructed with certainty and permanence.

 

You and your body are in constant construction. Each day you consume a mouthful or take a breathe; move a step or walk a mile, your body is being constructed. Your age is a mere representation of this work.

 

Our initial build speaks so little for the way we will one day be constructed. To demand that our bodies be something they are yet not, is like asking whisky to mature at a faster rate. That there is uncertainty amid this timeline is out-with yours and my own control.

 

Your body will change. It will develop. It will enhance. It will also lose capability. But our bodies are characterised by such development.

 

They are not built to act, to be, to display themselves much the same for years on end. They are built for change. Some would go so far as to say, for life.

 

Your body is not a temple.

 

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2. Temples encourage and value worshippers.

 

Unless you run a fitness account on Instagram – in fact, even in the case you do – your body is not an usher for worshippers whom travel to pray. Your body is little but a physical being. It’s a shape in which you exist. A shape of which, to a large extent, we do not choose ourselves.

 

Be there few or thousands who wish to see, it does not matter. For the only valued worshipper… is, of course, yourself.

 

Your body is not a temple.

 


 

3. Temples do not encourage human touch.

 

In a temple, it can be sinful to touch the walls, to place bare hands on the structures and the statues.

 

Our bodies are far from alike. They crave touch. It is human nature. We thrive off it. And where we do let ourselves – touch or be touched – it is not sinful.

 

For as long as we ask and as we answer with respect, our hands are not dirty.

 

Your body is not a temple.

 

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4. Temples are often built of stone; hard and indefinite.

 

Our bodies are soft. Our bodies are sensitive. Be that we hurt or attack them, that we are pushed or shoved, we will fall.

 

But we will lift ourselves again.

 

And on the final push, we will not look at ourselves having fallen with regret. We may feel sorrow for our aching body — but more than a terrorist attack, falling will be a lesson. We will not stand soiled by weakness, but by strength.

 

Your body is not a temple.

 


 

5. Temples can be replicated.

 

There is no single form that exists in the way that you do. Read that again.

 

There shall never be again your form.

 

The fact we try – why, the fact that others do encourage our pursuit – of another body, despite the very rarity of our own, is pitiful.

 

Our bodies cannot, by great effort, be replicated. For this sake, we should free ourselves of the pursuit. Instead, worship only that which is original. For to worship anything else, you see, wouldn’t be worthwhile.

 

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6. Temples are symbolic.

 

Our bodies are not symbolic. Not, of who we are or of where we’re going nor the reason why. Our bodies represent not the scripts of our lives nor the words in our heads or the stories in our hearts.

 

Our bodies are not symbolic. They are constructive. Built to be used, not to be translated. They are mechanisms for action, not worship. Platforms for experience, not promotion.

 

Your body is not a temple.

 


 

7. Temples are not an essential location for worship; you may worship elsewhere.

 

Where your body is concerned, it does matter the whereabouts of your worship. In fact, it matters the world. That you do not venture far from yourself to the body of another is the very secret to self-love.

 

Our bodies will not stand idle and waiting as we worship elsewhere. Such wandering worship will not have the same effect nor bear the same principles. The truth is, there are boundaries for your prayer and it is the circumference of your body.

 

Your body is not a temple.

 

Again.

 

It’s not a temple.

 

It’s your body.

 

McKenzie xx


Images shot by Adrian Jackson (A.J.) in Coral Coast Fiji, wearing Emma Ford swimwear.

Note: if unintentional (yet natural) display of my nipples does offend you, I’d recommend avoiding planet earth, particularly beaches or wet zones. Thank you for your concern.

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