Fear of the Belly. Take 2!

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The post I wrote a couple days ago, “Fear of the Belly. A Cultural Epidemic” generated quite a bit of buzz regarding the photo I chose to post with it.

Why would a discussion about the realness of the belly include a picture that has defined hip bones and a tiny belly? The picture inspired this entire post. Without it it wouldn’t have been written and thus it was essential to include the photograph. While this belly is little it still doesn’t have the rock hard abs I spoke of and does have a small layer of fat. While it most likely has been photoshopped, as everything is these days I can almost guarantee that when this model sits down she still has some “fat” rolls lump over on her stomach. These “fat” roll are most likely a small layer of subcutaneous fat and skin and what I always deemed unsightly in my own mind and on my own body.

This purpose of this post was to talk about what comes from inside the belly. The emotions that are housed within and how this can make us feel that our bellies are unsightly and grotesque in spite of what their outward appearance might be.

The belly is the powerhouse of our soul. A thinking, breathing, vibrant, life-giving part of us. None of us would be here without the expansive abilities of the belly to grow round and full. To accumulate life affirming fat for growth and development. A quote left on my own blogfrom my own dear mother:

“The belly fills in a full breath. The belly fills with the satisfaction of food, nurturance. But, most importantly, the belly fills with new life. It rounds with the growth of the uterus, our progeny, our hope. When my belly grew with you, it was perhaps the highlight of my life.”

I thus give you a montage of real bellies. Bellies that have carried children, been through illness, surgery, joy, pain, happiness…life.

Would you be interested in including YOUR belly in a post with the heart mudra?  If so take a picture and send it to me at hannah.siegle(at)gmail.com!  Let’s make our own real belly gallery!

Photo Credits: xojane.com

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anonymous Jan 25, 2012 9:17am

[…] and read the flurry of activity surrounding it I realized that this montage suggests that “real woman” can’t be skinny, something that simply isn’t true. While many may not like it […]

anonymous Dec 27, 2011 3:38am

[…] course, many times what the client notices are thoughts, feelings or memories connected to some part of his body as it is being moved, held and supported in various yoga postures and […]

anonymous Dec 21, 2011 12:53am

[…] quite a few belly pictures in my inbox. Amazing bellies and amazing stories. All real, raw, and unretouched, even more beautiful in their truth. I’ve felt a shift in myself a bit as well as I step more […]

anonymous Dec 18, 2011 1:40pm

I have, more often than not, relied on my belly to guide my action/reaction to certain situations. Thank you for articulating thoughts that I might not otherwise have been conscious of. And, I just might send a pic of my belly! 🙂

    anonymous Dec 18, 2011 6:20pm

    You are very much welcome Rachel. Glad you like this! Yes, please send a picture!!!

anonymous Dec 18, 2011 5:26am

[…] Fear of the Belly. Take 2! […]

anonymous Dec 16, 2011 5:54pm

Love the belly pics! And (maybe) I'll send you a pic of mine too.

anonymous Dec 16, 2011 1:45am

Posting to Elephant Yoga on Facebook and Twitter.

Tanya Lee Markul, Yoga Editor
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Just posted to "Featured Today" on the Elephant Yoga homepage.
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anonymous Dec 16, 2011 12:55am

I am going to send you a belly photo!! Love this idea, Hannah. xoxo

Kate Bartolotta Dec 15, 2011 8:31pm

What I find funny is that after all the comments about the picture on the first post, no one seems to be clattering forth to send belly pictures to you! Was that a tumbleweed that just rolled by? Awfully quiet…. 😉 I will send you mine asap. Need to get to bed soon, otherwise I'd do it right now.

    anonymous Dec 17, 2011 12:13pm

    Thanks Kate! I'd love to get yours in the collection…I have some great ideas brewing about this!

      Kate Bartolotta Dec 17, 2011 7:20pm

      Thanks for the reminder! Will take and send in the morning!

        Kate Bartolotta Dec 18, 2011 8:38am

        Posted my belly to your facebook:) Will send to your email too.

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Hannah Siegle

Hannah Siegle began to do yoga four years ago initially for the physical practice, however she quickly discovered that the yoga began to do her in ways she never anticipated. The mind, body and spiritual connection that yoga cultivates has helped Hannah through the ups and downs of life, both large and small. She regularly blogs at Balancing on Two Feet on topics such as yoga, mindfulness, eating disorder recovery and all those things people don’t like to talk about. She was trained at the RYT 200 through Laurel Hodory and is currently working towards becoming a Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist. She teaches yoga throughout Central Ohio with GoYoga ,yogaServe, and also works as an Assistant Editor for the elephant journal!