These days women are not only haunted by the usual Matrix images in the media telling them what to look like, what to eat, and how to live (lifestyle porn) but even in the spiritual community women are now being programmed through the whole “spiritual goddess” and “vegan yogi” culture-trends to be another thing: sexy, successful, perfect and of course, ultra-spiritual, demi-gods who are “manifestors of abundance” (who can teach you how to be like them!) along with a whole other bunch of New Age catchphrases that present a new certain stereotype of how the “spiritual woman” should look like, act like, and be like.

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Every course, teacher, article, retreat who promises others how to be a “conscious man” or “conscious woman” or tells others how to be the “divine feminine” or “divine masculine” and then lists a certain set of attributes for others to emulate in order to embody that ideal is basically a manipulation strategy, spiritualizing “the game” wherein the sexes are pitted against one another by trying to be an ‘ideal’ of what they feel the other wants in order to gain more love/attention/affection from them.

There seems to be an idea amongst these communities that to be a goddess is to present yourself in a flowing dress, modestly to overtly sexualizing yourself, in order to show the world how you have embodied the “divine feminine”.  Everywhere we are now bombarded with images of this “sexy spiritual woman” and told that this an aspect of “empowered” marketing. But the trap of using the sexualized female image to sell a product is nothing new, it is a classic media ploy wherein quite simply “sex sells”.

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Peruse Instagram these days and you will see many women posting excessive selfies with quotes from enlightened masters as a caption, showing how beautiful and also how spiritual they are, with their perfect yoga body, and somehow always on vacation or in some minimalist home. This pattern I vaguely bought into as well. Yet as time went on, even if I posted a selfie that got a thousand likes, I could see that the mere act of doing so was still feeding into my need to be ‘validated’ for an appearance. I was also selling myself short by using my image more than I was using my gifts, and as time went on something felt very “off” to me in the energy I would get from the excessive predatorial and “thirsty” comments from men. Many of the people who were drawn to my image didn’t seem to care much about what I said… which I couldn’t complain about either, because I was feeding on the attention with my own narcissism.

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Me pretending to meditate so that I can seem more spiritual

Let’s also look at this image of the Goddess and how we’ve begun to distort this inner essence by attributing it to certain sets of external imagery. I feel that once we travel along far enough in our journey, we begin to discover that true beauty is in fact, mostly internal. There are older women who are strong in themselves and have been through an immense amount of internal transformation and simply Radiate; grey hair, wrinkles, and all. There are also younger women who have not done any inner work and still mainly depend on their beauty in the world and use it as an excuse to be vain, cruel, and self-centered. The most powerful archetypes of “goddesses” I have met have been elder women; women who can demonstrate strength, compassion, wisdom, love, sensitivity, receptiveness, and most importantly – self-respect with a simple look in their eyes. I believe the true ‘divine feminine’ has little to nothing to do with an image but has to do with an ability to carry sensitivity, strength, and receptivity into the body so much so that the mere presence of women like this can heal.

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“The dark feminine”, which I have also witnessed in myself, had a lot to do with deluding oneself and manipulating others, especially through using sexuality to do so. When we use sexual manipulation to get others “attention”, when we use our image to lure others in so that people will be distracted by aesthetics instead of the inner aspects of ourselves, when we attempt to hypnotize by this image so that others treat us with a certain way, we are using power of the lower vital urges to draw people in. Our lower self, insecure and never satisfied, continuously feeds off the energy that this attention gets us. We use this cheap form of power and perpetuate the collective abuse of reptilian-like hypersexualization that is plastered all over mainstream advertising. And in ‘spirituality’, many women now sell their own image in this same way as these Matrix programs and dress it up as something “enlightened”. But when we objectify the female image by looking at it as something we can sexualize and sell, we perpetuate this toxic pattern by using our own bodies against our soul.

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I have found one of the biggest barriers in me being able to be authentically me is caring about being ‘popular’ and about what others think, and believing I had some kind of ‘image’ to maintain. In 2015, over the course of a year my Instagram blew up to over 30k followers, I also signed a contract with a publisher (one of my so-called ‘dreams’ at the time) and during those couple years that followed I saw myself buying into the image that I was projecting. I felt I had to maintain this “spiritual” “mystical” image because that’s the image that people were projecting upon me. I wanted to be seen as something otherworldly, something that was not my messy, human, normal and quite frankly, kind of boring self.

Over the course of a couple of years, I became an avatar of my own destruction, a creation based on a fantasy I had on what the spiritual journey looked like and of what others wanted it to look like too. I began catering what I shared with what people seemed to like – believing that the more popular I got, the better I was doing, the more opportunities it would make for my “career” in the long term. It became less about my own process but how I could Monetize Spirituality. I even deluded myself into believing that through this curated image I was actually helping people.

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Again, pretending to meditate in the forest

Looking back now, I see how many things I posted were drenched in my own inauthenticity of wanting to be more popular, to be seen as sexual, spiritual, and awake. This felt even more wrong because a lot of people went along with it, but my true self knew and felt how I was lying to myself. I saw people buying into the manipulated image that I created and I was caught in another Matrix trapping of thinking I had to be this thin, perfect, vegan yogi, to present this certain image to the world, and at the end of the day no matter how popular I got – I still never felt good enough.

When I faced my own narcissistic wounding, I went through an intense disillusionment process. I had to give up everything I was “trying” to be to become who I was again. In doing this, I also had to give up my ambition to turn any part of my spiritual path into a “career”. I made a deeper commitment to my journey – where I would put seeking truth and the process of my own awakening above EVERYTHING else in my life; especially these petty concerns of being popular, being liked, or being “successful”; otherwise, I was about to sacrifice all the wisdom I gained and turn it around into another form of self-deception.

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I saw how through lying to myself, by creating this false image of a “spiritual person” I was lying to others, creating more karmic entanglements, and it was great misdeed towards humanity and WOMEN especially – one which I could not bear the weight of. My publishing deal fell through, a blessing in disguise, which gave me the freedom to truly not give a f *ck anymore. I could be me again as I felt I had nothing to “lose”. I stopped focusing on my image and started focusing mainly on my writing. I lost a lot of “followers” who were mainly focused on this false image and I was grateful for it. This experience grounded me into a deeper level of commitment towards the path and reminded me why I even started this journey.

The benevolent forces of the universe and my internal guidance system wouldn’t allow me to get away with “selling my spiritual journey” or a “spiritual image” and I got right back onto the true path of honoring my self and my heart. I was brought me back to the aspirations that started me on this path to begin with. My soul knew that in my small human life there is no other option but to awaken, and awaken, and awaken deeper, and that we are all here to expand our own shallow understandings of who we think we are. In that expansion, all the lies, the delusions, the ambitions, all the plans we had for ourselves need to disintegrate so we can reveal the larger plan of what God has planned for us. In order to stay in integrity, we need to identify when the ego tries to hijack our experiences, take credit for them, and attach more of a false identity to ourselves because of it.

These Divine forces have much better plans for our soul than any diversion our small self tries to architect, and whatever falsities the ego tries to build the higher self will take no mercy is demolishing.

We live in a “selfie” generation where narcissism and propping up our self-image is the norm, however, this does not mean that this trend should be continued or bought into for the sake of gaining more followers, clients, etc. When we are in alignment with our true purpose, invisible forces will assist in having the right people find us – we will not have to use seduction or deception to draw them in.

Using female sexuality to sell a product is one of the number one matrix marketing tools and if the content is good then it won’t be necessary. As women, if we feel the need to seduce someone in to buy our services we are selling our souls to the system that treats our body as objects and commodities. This is very important. Our seeing the feminine as a commodity to be used, bought, sold, is the main driving attitude towards the mindless destruction of the resources of the Earth itself. If you want to sell high-quality organic food do you need a beautiful woman wearing a bikini holding it in order to sell it? If our gifts are valuable we will not need to “market” ourselves in a way which objectifies the body at a cost of the soul. This is not “body shaming” anyone, but I see too many women using their images to seduce people in order to buy their services.

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Conversely, we also cannot be who we truly are if we are thinking we must be or act a certain way, and hold ourselves up to impossible standards that this new Spiritual Beauty Myth tries to create. Only when we allow ourselves to be the changeable, unknowable, living and dying yet infinite Being, with our own unique flavour as we live our purpose do we become more true embodiments of the Divine, in it’s masculine and feminine form, merging and dancing together as ONE.

We must be brave enough to show up as our TRUE SELVES and this means however that shows up, in every form it can possibly take. You are enough. In order to embody the authenticity of this true self, we must dissolve old programs where we expect ourselves to be a certain way, look a certain way, act a certain way, take off every mask, dissolve the old conditioning that breaks our spirit, so that we can allow the essence of our unique imprint to arise as it is in every moment. You are never more sexy, spiritual, and successful, than when you allow yourself to be the person that you truly are.

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28 thoughts on “The New Deception: the “Sexy, Spiritual, Successful, Goddess”

  1. Thank you Laura! Such a great read, accurate and on point with my journey too. Thank you for describing the toxic feminine shadow so perfectly. Much respect and love, Elicia

  2. As a man who wonders about these things , thank you for helping me understand the feminine journey.
    Wonderful insight as we move towards balance in all things. Haux

  3. Thank you for your insights and vulnerability. I’m a yogi and dancer about to turn 50. My body is changing–wrinkles, muscle loss, menopausal dryness, etc. Its hard to accept. Easy to get swept up into Botox and fillers to keep my face as youthful as my heart, work outs to fill out curves instead of heal body and soul, pills to keep the estrogen flowing. All to keep my identity as a “beautiful woman.” But maybe my sense of identity, the source of my acceptability, is misplaced. I do not have the answers, but i am grateful you inspired the questions. ❤

    1. excellent, honest, authentic post that so many people in the spiritual communities need to hear. I had to share, thank you for being real.

  4. Yes, and spiritual Goddesses love wearing hoods/head scarves. 🙂 Looks so Egyptian, so very spiritual. Even I had a facebook profile with one on several years ago. But that was a fleeting toss-a-sweater-over-my-head while taking portraits with my mother thing, and I had been living in Turkey and it seemed kind of exotic at that time. I didn’t really give it a thought. Several years later, today, I notice it is the look for spiritual goddess.

    Oh by the way, I live in Bali which is, at this (ever changing) moment, the land of The Yoniverse with Womb healing, jade egg workshops and much more. I’ve watched the Bali New Age community go through various phases from Yoginis, Raw is the New Religion and I carry my Bottle of Green Juice with me everywhere, tantra temples, spiritual medicine journeys, and so much more…one following another year after year, until today, we have the day of the spiritual mystic Goddess. Feels like this phase may be coming to a close.

    I wonder what’s next!

  5. It took me a long time to not feel insecure about myself and this journey. None of the images I see everyday resonate with me. I am plus size and black. I am spiritual in my own way and had to learn to accept myself to really begin to heal. So much of my trauma was rooted in not feeling good enough. Judging my worth on how people treated me. The images of the white, slender goddess haunted me at first. Reinforcing my own poor self image. It has been a rough road, but I am
    finally figuring out how to love myself, and look within.

    1. Hi Phoenix rising, I am black too and have always been heavy. I too learned to love myself and others like me. We are so infintely varied in our hair textures and skin colour, so beautiful, brown, caramel, dark brown, nearly blue black, paler hues of brown tinged with peach, pink or yellow. While I hate to compare, I have stopped reading american books, wtaching american movies that feature only our paler brothers and sisters as though only they have lives, loves, tragedies and valour. I find the fact that people of colour are systematically shut out of mainstream media to be dehumanising. It has helped for me to focus only on our humanity, only. I hope to soften my heart and to be able to deal with those whose pov dominates the waves. To date it is hard for me to look neutrally or with interest at the so called majority. My focus is the rest of the world which is bigger than america. Blessings x

  6. It took me a long time to not feel insecure about myself and this journey. None of the images I see everyday resonate with me. I am plus size and black. I am spiritual in my own way and had to learn to accept myself to really begin to heal. So much of my trauma was rooted in not feeling got enough. Judging my worth on how people treated me. The images of the white, slender goddess haunted me at first. Reinforcing my own poor self image. It has been a rough road, but I am
    finally figuring out how to love myself, and look within.

  7. Wow! This so perfectly outlines what I have been feeling uncomfortable about for ages. I live in Ibiza, home of ‘the beautiful people’, and a huge ‘new age’ market place, where every second person is a yoga teacher, retreat leader or a guru of one kind or another. Image is everything and content seems to lag far behind. Ibiza is an island of slim, young yoginis, dressed in flowing white, with fringes and feathers and very little substance. How sad! Great to have someone point out that the Emperor has no clothes! xXx

  8. Thank you for your view of your journey. Its a refreshing and powerful ownership of a developing pattern amongst usually young, good looking women and it appals me.

    As an older male and also a psychosexual therapist I view seduction and coercion daily in my client base ( especially when childhood sexual abuse has been experienced) using ones body, smile & spiritual voodoo to captivate and beguile has been a deceitful artform for millennia. But the inherent damage one does to ones self-esteem through this consistent creation of the false self is tantamount to self-harm and resultant mental health dis-eases that follow.

    An example of such would the late Psalm Isadora. She had it all, money, fame, superstar friends, a comfy lifestyle….spirituality didn’t save her…nor could she reach out to mere mortals to support her as her ego had built her ivory tower…and now emptyness, a void left…but do not worry thousands will soon fill the void offering their version of spiritual porn.

    I hope this piece is shared widely and people can question their direction in life, but i doubt it will scratch the egos of the sexy, spiritual narcissists…after all, sex sells, honesty doesnt.

    1. Hey Meghan, yes you may but obviously, with my name credited. Send me a link when it’s up and I’d love to see.

      1. Laura, bravo for getting through this tough phase in womanhood. For that’s what it is. You have a “goddess image” that has nothing to do with herstory and I had the “earth mother” image; when I was a young woman, to maintain. The sad commentary is that you lump knowing the “feminine divine” or suggesting that it is one and the same as chasing the inner or outer image of beauty. Understanding our “her”story is a story that is literally as old as humanity itself. And it is messy as well as magikal. Did you know that “Tantric” & Matrikas are only about 600 years old – new kids on the block compared to female deities that are hundreds of thousands of years old – and not very attractive by contemporary standards. Many of the young women you reference are reading spiritual “self help” books and not necessarily well researched works that take time and effort to understand. But, you’re well on the path and will be an elder one day and you too can look back at all this with humor. Jayne 4 Womens Heritage Project.

  9. thank you for expressing it and putting a name on what is a plague today. more importantly i feel genuinely happy for you truly do… 💙

    today in the morning i was discussing the very same with my daughter, after catching myself being annoyed by similar images of “marketed sexualized healing services” and later with two other friends. In the same evening a third friend, forwarded me your article, which was about exactly the same…

    i want to humbly add a phrase by a friend who softened my judgment and dilluted the frustration I felt after browsing Instagram. He said : “i do not know, whether these individuals who sell healing, and spirituality deceive only others or themselves too..”

    and it is true… brutally said, but with gentle heart…

    i wish more moments of such transformation as witnesses and gone through by you.. my encouragement.to you on your path….

  10. I applaud the courage it takes to call oneself on one’s delusions (for lack of a better word – I have compassion for our all too human ways) and for unmasking them publicly. I honor you and admire you.

  11. As an elder woman of 62, I am secure, healthy, attractive, intelligent, and creatively productive. Freedom to accept one’s true self is learning the truth of your real identity. Media is a poor place to buy bricks for building the foundation of your life from. Your truth is already waiting within you, so don’t become a cheap and faulty copy of another image, as it is beneath your dignity! Kudos to you, young lady! I’m on your side! Nice going, kiddo!

  12. As a man who has engaged (and been willingly seduced by) such imbalanced and shallow image in otherwise bright, creative and dynamic (though too often highly ungrounded and manipulative) women, I truly appreciate this article and your spelling it out so clearly. I concur 99.87% with your perspectives. Thank you.

  13. So very on point! I too “aspired” to become this visual goddess, but discovered the genuine value of going within. I understand even more now how important it is to be authentic to yourself. I did not go full blown fake-goddess but was on the cusp. The hesitation I felt was real and not the marketed “fear” to get over. I just couldn’t. Thank you for this divine writing!

    1. Hello!

      Thank you, finally a post about what I’ve been perceiving on the internet and in humans around me!! Feels nice to acknowledge that it was not judgement of these types of humans, however concern that the image promoted left no real room for the true imagery of the journey to self- mostly feelings of raw, naked, often quite lonely, confusion and trusting all to follow in due course until the lessons have been integrated and entangled in the core frequency of the soul!

      Really feels nice to see honesty and a call for those who may not even know how they’re truly ‘being’ to see and question for themselves! I had a big question session of my own being too — always great to check in with your heart and see where it lies on the matter!

      keep being honest and you!!

      1. This is eaxactly what the publishers and editors of what has become “The Yoga Journal” need to read. Almost every story, article, service I see from the Yoga Journal on Facebook, has sexualized women in skin tight “yoga pants” . I make comments pointing this out but never get a response. Indeed, many people attracted to “yoga” think of it mainly as an exercise movement. Yoga Sutras? Who needs it. Thanks for sharing this. I’m gonna share it too.

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