Femme Friday – Inspirational Book: The Way of Tenderness by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel

Here at the Total Femme, we do adore some Buddhist wisdom, but there are times when it can just be soooo straight, sooooo white, and soooo smug. The Way of Tenderness: Awakening Through Race, Sexuality, and Gender is balm. I flip it open at any page and come across profound and healing wisdom.

Deep gratitude to Zenju Earthlyn Manuel for thinking and writing so deeply and with such great love about our precious bodies.

Seeing the body as nature is to directly see form as nature, as of the earth. It is to see the pure form of life without the distortions. Although we are confronted with the challenge of the varied forms of nature, we have a tendency to view this challenge as strictly non-organic, as not of nature. Rage springs up when certain embodied forms of life – blackness, queerness, and so on – are not recognized and honored as part of nature. The embodiments of race, sexuality, and gender are in fact the fires through which we must pass to awaken. The fire will not destroy us if we can see authentic interrelationship in its flames.

 Are these bodies really the enemy of the spirit? Do our struggles with race, sexuality, and gender belie a hidden denial of the body, a mortification of the flesh? Need we sacrifice our bodies in the name of spiritual attainment – hurting our backs and knees far too long in meditation? Why do we ignore the nature of our bodies, something we all share in common? What is this body?

The Way of Tenderness: Awakening Through Race, Sexuality, and Gender by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, “Body as Nature”, p. 91.

Every Friday, I showcase a queer femme goddess. I want to feature you! Write to me at thetotalfemme@gmail.com and let me shine a spotlight on your beautiful, unique, femme story! If you’ve written a femme story or poem or song, oh, please let me post it! New Femme Friday feature starting fall 2018: Books from which queer femmes can draw inspiration. What are your trusted sources of light and love? Please share!

At the Total Femme, my intention is to post three times a week: Meditations for Queer Femmes on Monday, Pingy-Dingy Wednesday on Wednesday and Femme Friday on Friday. Rather than play catch-up in a stressful fashion on those weeks when life prevents posting, I have decided to just move gaily forward: if I miss a Monday, the next post will be on Wednesday, and so on. Thank you, little bottle of antibiotics for inspiring me in this! (“…if it’s almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Don’t take a double dose to make up for a missed one.”)



Published in: on February 22, 2019 at 6:13 PM  Comments (2)  
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