Today we ask that you appreciate your physical body.

The human body is a miraculous thing.  Right at this moment, as you read these words, countless processes are taking place within your body.  They are highly complex, perfectly timed, and totally unique to your specific body.  Though all human bodies share the same structure and general functions, no two bodies are alike.  Your body is uniquely yours.

It is a masterpiece, truly.  Even if it does not function as you believe it should, it is still a masterpiece.  Humans are still a long way away from being able to replicate anything near the complexity of a human body.

So just stand in awe.  So much is happening in there!  Food is being digested, and converted to energy.  Impulses are traveling through your nervous system at incredible speeds.  Your immune system is working to clean your body of toxins and unhelpful organisms.  Your heart is pumping — this extraordinary muscle ceaselessly, steadily circulating your blood.  Billions of cells are performing their unique functions.

And no matter how flawed you may believe your body to be, the vast majority of its function is perfect.  This is true.  If your body were not functioning mostly perfectly, you would not be alive within it.

Really think about this.  There is a great deal that needs to go on correctly within a physical body in order to sustain life.  No matter how dissatisfied you may be with your body, it is still doing a very good job.  If it weren’t, you would not currently be alive within it.

Human bodies take a lot of punishment.  Most of it comes from human minds.

You expect so much of your bodies.  Really, you expect your bodies to be superhuman machines.  You want them to be beautiful, thin, continuously energized, eternally youthful, never sick — flawless.  

Many people spend a lot of time mentally attacking their bodies for all of their perceived physical imperfections.  This is a terrible thing.  You must understand, the body is aware of these attacks.  But the body is very innocent.  It is innocent, like an animal.  It does not want to let you down.  It wants to do its best for you.

Any attack or criticism of the body is a rejection of the life force itself.  You have no idea how damaging some of those body-attacking thoughts can be.

We say this not to make you paranoid, but just to make clear that your body is listening.  When you attack it for its perceived flaws, it hears you.  

And sometimes the body, in its innocence, attempts to make you happy in ways that you do not actually want.  There is a communication breakdown that occurs.  The body wishes to serve you, but its consciousness is different from that of your mind.  Sometimes the body attempts to communicate with you in ways that you find quite unpleasant.  Sometimes the body responds to self-attacking thoughts in ways that you find quite unpleasant.

It is possible for the human mind and body to have a healthy, loving relationship.  This must begin in the mind.  It begins with you consciously loving and appreciating your body, no matter what condition it is currently in.  This is an essential practice in terms of cultivating physical health.

Also, you must learn to listen to your body’s cues.  When it is tired, rest.  When it is sick, rest.  Sickness can be very important to maintaining health, as many illnesses actually assist your body in releasing toxins.  This only works if you work with your body, and allow the detoxification process to occur unchecked.

Your body is good.  It is miraculous.  Please love it.  Please appreciate it.