The Self-Love Book Club Reads Red, Hot, and Holy // Our First Link-Up

"The way Home isn't just through Self Knowledge, but also through Self Love. The old adage is true; We cannot truly love another (or the God/dess of this Universe) until we love ourselves. And the Love we long to experience most above and beyond all else, is with our Selves. So this universe kindly sets us up for the Fall...and then, We are romanced into our own Remembrance. We are seduced by our own soul. We are serenaded (and okay, sometimes spanked) by our Divine Self until we come to realize that We are the ones we have been waiting for, searching for, praying for. In other words, You've been calling yourself back into your own arms from the moment you swallowed the belief that you've been separated." - Sera Beak

I named this blog after an essay I read in university that had a profound impact on me: The Laugh of the Medusa by Hélène Cixous. In it she talks about a specifically feminine style of writing. She calls it "writing in white ink" - a writing 'from the body' that is visceral and true and utterly important for elevating the status of the feminine in Western society and also liberating the self. “Censor the body and you censor breath and speech at the same time. Write yourself. Your body must be heard," she says.

Red, Hot, and Holy is not quite like any text I've ever read before. In a lot of ways, I think Sera's write embodies this écriture féminine that Cixous writes about. It's a spiritual memoir that puts all of Sera's ways of knowing and experiencing the world onto the page. It is at times academic, when she discusses the deities that she studied throughout university. At other times it's poetic, when Sera speaks the "red" truths that seem to come through her from another realm of existence. Her story is woven with the wisdom of those who have shaped her spirituality and offered guidance on her path.

It is a deeply personal text. Unlike other "spiritual gurus," Sera came to understand that being of service to the world lies not in creating a path or a movement for others to follow, but in authentically sharing her own journey and encouraging others to find their own way.

"If a tradition or teacher or practice feels in alignment with your soul, then trust it. All paths lead Home ... eventually. Essentially, anything 'true' out there isn't attempting to fill you up with more information or exercises or philosophies or paradigms or belief systems or techniques or 'how-to's'; it is actually pointing its metaphorical finger right back to you: What Do You Know?"

At times, I found Sera's writing alienating. It is so intensely her and I couldn't find my place within it. Yet I appreciate the honesty of her work and the underlying message at its core: follow your heart. Be true to yourself. Forge your own path. Tell your story.

I may not speak in red, as Sera does. My spiritual journey may not take me into the arms of a goddess. It may not be filled with radical visions or personal conversations with the divine. But reading Sera's work has inspired me. To find the words that speak deep within me. To honour my own spiritual path, whatever that may look like, wherever it may lead me.

What was your experience of reading Red, Hot, and Holy? I hope you'll share your thoughts in the comments or link-up your post below.