For centuries, Christianity has colluded with forces of destruction – white supremacy, patriarchy, ableism and others – in teaching us to despise, deny, and neglect our flesh.
Traditional takes on the Lenten season tend to oversimplify topics such as temptation, denial, suffering, and abstinence, often furthering anti-body practices and theologies.
We all have healing to do. We all have unpacking to do.
The Sacred accompanies us on the journey to love y/our flesh and our collective future depends on it.
Why “y/our” flesh?
Because it’s about Your flesh. And also Our flesh.
Your neighbor’s flesh.
The recognition that the well-being of our flesh is inseparable.
Inspired by the words of Toni Morrison’s Beloved, in which Baby Suggs, holy calls for those gathered to imagine, honor, nurture, and create spaces where, “here, in this here place, we flesh; flesh that weeps, laughs; flesh that dances on bare feet in grass. Love it. Love it hard…”
Morrison also serves as a compelling reminder: any call to love all flesh must pay particular attention to whose flesh is most endangered by systems of dominance. Morrison’s call is particularly attuned to black flesh suffering under the violences of slavery, exploitation, sexual violence, and other extensions of white supremacy. So too, should be our Lenten observations.
Morrison’s work ignites possibilities of healing in restored relationship to the Sacredness of flesh even when “yonder, they do not love your flesh.”
White supremacy, always entangling and intertwining with other sources of domination, has always been anti-flesh. It turns us all – to various degrees and in different ways – against our own bodies and the body of the earth. But the Sacred still calls to us, from the depths of our own precious flesh and the flesh that surrounds.
In the journey to love y/our flesh, we connect with sources of what can save us: vulnerability, connection, tenderness, acceptance, love, and embodiment as sites of resurrection.
For this season, you’ll be encouraged to set up a sacred space in your home – an altar that will help you hold your reflections and honor your sacred connections to others. We’ll provide some guiding suggestions for how to set it up!
You’ll receive 47 cards – 1 for each day – to ground your morning with a reflection, a question, or a brief practice to help you love y/our flesh that day.
You’ll be encouraged to journal along the way.
You may consider engaging this resource with a friend, journeying together.
You may also consider reading (or rereading!) Toni Morrison’s Beloved in accompaniment with this Lenten resource.
(Consider purchasing from and supporting your local, independent book store!)
We have a very limited supply of 100, at just $6 each. Pre-order yours now (ready for shipping by Feb 1) and we’ll make sure it arrives before Ash Wednesday on March 6.