Goddess to the Core
(Llewellyn Publications, 2010)
Sierra Bender, the founder of Boot Camp for Goddesses and the author of Goddess to the Core: An Inspired Workout to Maximize Your Fitness, Beauty, and Power, realized a woman’s need to reconnect with her feminine and redefine the meaning of health after a life-threatening experience. After this experience, Bender traveled around the world in a quest for the true meaning of womanhood. She traveled to ashrams, experienced Native American healing, practiced yoga, and along the way discovered that health—true health—must focus on all four aspects of the body—spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical. “Women are busy building other people’s kingdoms that they have forgotten their own desires and dreams,” shares Bender. And, in response, Bender offers an entirely new approach to reconnecting with one’s desires. Chapters in the book focus on each aspect of the body, offering insight into unhealthy behaviors and healthy ones with personal anecdotes, as well as research by esteemed medical professionals. Exercises are offered for each “body”: Meditation, prayer, and ritual for the spirit body; Aromatherapy and even archery for the mental body; Chanting, drumming, and dancing for the emotional body; and a full detox for the physical body. Yoga postures and breathwork are suggested for healing each type of the body as are daily rituals that truly allow you to nurture yourself. After reading this book, you’ll feel inspired to change, and if you’re anything like me, looking to book a retreat with Bender as soon as possible. Bender’s philosophy is inspiring, empowering, and what women and girls truly need in this world where we’re torn in so many directions. This idea that we have to do everything and be everything is causing our health—all four dimensions of it—to falter. Says Bender, “Of course we CAN do it all.” But the question is, “do we really want to?”—M.B.W.