Honoring the Body: Meditations on a Christian Practice.

Citation: 
Paulsell, Stephanie. Honoring the Body: Meditations on a Christian Practice. Jossey-Bass, 2002.
Abstract: 

Stephanie Paulsell explores several aspects of the Christian practice of honoring the body. Given the cultural preoccupation with glorifying a certain type of body configuration, Paulsell states up-front that this book is for people with all types of bodies. In chapters 1 and 2, she establishes the basis for the Christian practice of honoring the body beginning with the question of what it means to have a body; she brings out the ways in which the practices involved in honoring the body are mandated by God’s relation to human beings and the convictions surrounding creation, incarnation, and resurrection that Christians hold. Also, in her view the practice of honoring the body is integral to Christian spirituality unlike some ideas that would have the “spiritual” opposed to the “bodily.” In the next seven chapters, Paulsell explores a set of activities that are part of everyday living and how the body might be honored in these activities. These activities include: bathing, clothing, eating, working, exercising, loving, and suffering. Paulsell illustrates how the body might be honored in these activities through anecdotes and life stories throughout the book. She hopes that by reflecting on their bodies, readers might be led to cultivate a sustainable practice of honoring the body.

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