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Being Skinny Is Not a Christian Virtue

Finding the right motivations for caring for our bodies.
Being Skinny Is Not a Christian Virtue
Ed Yourdon / Flickr
Being Skinny Is Not a Christian Virtue

"Can a husband tell his wife he wants her to lose weight?" our friend Andrew asked, describing how his friend had recently sent his marriage into a tailspin by suggesting his wife could shed some pounds.

"What was his motivation?" I prodded. "His wife's health or her appearance?"

"Both, probably," Andrew admitted.

It's true that conflicted motivations often stand behind our dieting kicks and New Year's resolutions to exercise and lose weight. Despite recognizing today's obsession with beauty and youth and offering our own pronouncements against the culture of thin, we're often motivated to diet and exercise for no better reason than to get skinny and stay there.

A "hegemony of thin bodies" presides in society, perpetuating a stigma against being fat, Lisa Ann Cockrel wrote here at Her.meneutics. "The fear of fat is not the fear of death or even illness," she said. "It is the fear of life shadowed ...

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