by Frank Tybislawski, Brisbane, Australia
A NEW EXPERIENCE
Recently my wife and I visited Vietnam to attend a Universal Medicine Retreat and also to explore the country a little. The first location we stayed was Hanoi in the northern part of the country. We made a few trips from our hotel into the main center of town to experience the Vietnamese shopping culture, and of course noticed the chaotic (by our standards) road traffic. Most roads are filled with bicycles, motorcycles, cars, taxis, buses and trucks, with the bicycles and motorcycles making up the majority. There was also a lot of horn beeping, not as an indication of aggression, but it seems more of a courtesy to say ‘beware, I am passing beside you’.
On our last day in Hanoi our hotel booked a taxi to convey us to the airport. About halfway to the airport we were looking out the window from the back seat of the taxi as we crossed over a large bridge. The next moment I heard a loud crashing sound followed instantly by a sudden jolt across my lap, shoulder, and through my neck. After a moment or two I looked forward and realised the taxi had been in a car accident.
A quick check revealed that we had no major injuries, the taxi driver was ok, and the front of the taxi had the bonnet bent up. Now, I should stress that this was not a high speed collision. I do recall the traffic on the main road to the airport was heavy, and had slowed slightly for some reason. I don’t know how fast we were travelling but it must have been less than 40kph, perhaps about 30kph or even less. I saw that I had a graze to the shoulder and waist from the seatbelt, otherwise there was nothing visible, but I felt generally sore and shocked from the sudden jolt. My wife was in a similar condition, but with the addition of a bruised knee. The taxi could not continue; after the taxi driver checked on our well-being, he flagged down another taxi to continue our journey to the airport.
REALISING HOW FRAGILE THE MALE BODY ACTUALLY IS
Thankfully this whole event had no serious physical outcomes, but it did give me much time to ponder on the accident. I decided to take it easy for a few days, with plenty of rest to allow my body to heal, and was greatly supported during this healing process by my Universal Medicine practitioner. Even though I knew my injuries were minor with just some bruising and aching muscles being the result of what I call a ‘slow speed car accident’, the physical discomfort I experienced was not something I felt to brush off. I realised there and then just how fragile the human body is… just how fragile my body is. Any faint image I had of men being tough and able to withstand physical punishment and pain were now surely gone.
STRENGTH IN FRAGILITY
The world presents to us that men should be strong, not show pain, not show fear, not show emotion, but that is just a false façade I and many others have created to fit in with everybody else. I cannot understand how or why anybody would intentionally do something to their body that negatively affects it, or has a significant potential to affect it physically.
With my clarity of just how fragile the human body is also came a great sense that it is therefore absolutely necessary to take care of my body, and to not subject it to anything which can damage it. Even if I think my body will be able to repair the damage, I don’t want to damage it in the first place.
I have a new found recognition of the fragility of my body and therefore a new found respect for my body. With that respect comes a stronger desire to be more nurturing and supportive of my body. That concept isn’t new to me and it is exactly what I have discovered when working with Universal Medicine and its practitioners over the last few years. They have helped me discover the need for respect and self-care for my body, and also the awareness to feel and take note of what is going on within my body.
While I have already been experiencing that with my sleep patterns, food and diet, it now extends more to other aspects I sometimes overlooked:
- Care of my skin by using protective clothing and by looking after my skin with quality products which both clean and nurture it.
- Care of my muscles by not over-exerting them and honouring when they feel tired by stopping and resting.
- Careful choices of clothing to ensure I’m not subjected to cold or wet conditions at any point during the day.
- Careful choices in what I’m doing and how I’m doing it to ensure there are no physical implications, long term or short term.
Although it was unfortunate to be involved in that car accident, the end result is that I have a much higher regard for my body, its fragility and tenderness. I have gained a strengthened desire to care for and nurture myself in every way possible, which is a beautiful result from an initially bad situation.
Inspiration can come in the most unexpected ways.
Inspired by the work of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine.
174 thoughts on “The Fragile Man”
“The need for respect and self-care for my body, and also the awareness to feel and take note of what is going on within my body”, is an important and valid statement. We are not taught to care for our bodies, we are instead taught that everything needs to be worked for irrespective of the body and there is a taboo/belief/consciousness about this that rules this world.
Man or woman, the gentleness and sensitivity is within all us. So every body needs to be taught this from an early age. And not taught by lectures, but by being a reflection of our own liveness and constantly be mirroring and be mirrored too. There is always more on offer and to offer.
I loved this statement’ “Inspiration can come in the most unexpected ways”. It is so true, what we consider a disaster can be a wake up call to nurture ourselves. At the time we may not see it as that, but if we take heed and look at our life from a different perspective, then we may take on healthier and nurturing choices. OR, stay the same and the ramifications can be different.
We all have choices to abuse or nurture ourselves and in both cases there is an end result. One leads to disarray of the body, the other well, try and see for yourself and observe how the body responds. I know which I prefer nowadays…
I love seeing a fragile man, it has helped me remove that image I’ve had of how men need to be, strong, holding the fort, no tears, keeping things together. There is a strength behind observing a man being sensitive and fragile, it isn’t weak at all.
I have recently been to Vietnam again after 20 years and was delighted to see again what an amazing flow there is in the traffic and how incredibly busy it can be and yet there is not that typical aggression that you can see in western traffic congestion. That said I also know that there is a huge incidence of accidents in Vietnam to the point were western doctors will train in Vietnam to learn how to do surgeries as there are so many accidents and of a potentially severe nature. This shows that the body is so vulnerable indeed, and there is all the reason to look after oneself.
I love the fact that you honoured how you felt rather than be with the pictures of how men ‘should’ be; which of course, as we all know, is simply that ..pictures and not the truth. Man or Woman, Girl or Boy our body is precious and should always be treated and cared for in such a way. A gorgeous read.
I agree Vicky, we have so many ideas of how men should be like, and yet a man can be just as strong and sexy showing their sensitivity. That is a man who knows himself through and through.
From such a young age in men/boys, it is ingrained in them that it is not ok to say ouch nor to cry nor to express if something hurts. Frank is here returning this very right of expression to each and every man who chooses to hold on to their true tenderness within.
Beautifully said Elizabeth, and in so doing, Frank also gives permission to all men to do likewise.
Man or woman, the body is sensitive and to be cared for. This is simply a fact and not a wish nor a curse. In fact the body is our bridge to our Soul hence a very valuable and treasured vehicle.
Frank I never used to understand how fragile the body is and indeed life is, and I’d say I’m still learning. It is not just men that learn to toughen up and override fragility, we do it as women too though it’s much more socially acceptable for women and girls to express their fragility. What I’m taking from reading your blog again today is a deeper respect for my body, I really feel I still take it for granted in some ways.
Reading this, I can feel how much care our body actually deserves just to be, not because it is weak, but because it is so precious and delicate and it is what houses the true light that we are.
Our body does deserve to be treated with delicateness and care, ‘I realised there and then just how fragile the human body is… just how fragile my body is.’
‘Any faint image I had of men being tough and able to withstand physical punishment and pain were now surely gone.’ It seems a little bizarre that we have the notion that men can actually do this and that men are forced to hide any fragility what-so-ever. How beautiful to come to a point where you can be tender with yourself as a man and honour that fragility of the body.
“The world presents to us that men should be strong, not show pain, not show fear, not show emotion, but that is just a false façade I and many others have created to fit in with everybody else.” Very true Frank. Seeing how tender young boys are the imposition that gets put on them to ‘be a man, don’t cry’ as they grow older is huge. Time to reverse the trend and show our vulnerability – be we man or woman.
Reclaiming our fragility is a very powerful statement to the world.
This is very lovely to read of the changes you have made for yourself, ‘I have a new found recognition of the fragility of my body and therefore a new found respect for my body. With that respect comes a stronger desire to be more nurturing and supportive of my body.’
Our bodies are intricately fragile in how they are put together, so many tiny incredible details all working together to allow us to live, walk and breath – we often don’t appreciate how delicate we are until something goes wrong.
I am always in awe at how constantly constellated we all are to have experiences that help us return to our true and authentic selves. We are all given it all, all the time. It is what we do with it that counts.
It is incredible what the body can withstand. Yes our bodies are fragile but many do not allow themselves to feel this. It’s almost as if we believe we are not broken unless we are so injured or unwell we cannot go to work.
Frank it is beautiful to read how tender and honouring you were to yourself after this accident. Men are so naturally sensitive and yet cover this up with layers of protection but your willingness to not harden up in this situation is very inspiring indeed.
Men embracing their tenderness and fragility are so beautiful and inspiring for women.
I so agree Fumiyo. If men were more aware of this maybe there would be less need for them to ‘act tough’.
The only reason why men should show no pain is because of the amount of pain they have naturalized and normalized.
It’s amazing the growth and development we can enrich our lives with directly from what we experience in our day to day life – even seeming disasters can prove to be fertile opportunities for learning when we are open to them.
Yes it is almost funny that a woman’s skin needs all these beauty products and that a man is expected to be ok without all of this, or that a woman can feel pain due to an accident and a man not, even though our bodies are exactly the same ‘material’ so to speak.
It is refreshing and beautiful to feel how something like a car accident which is commonly dramatised and viewed in negative light, is actually an opportunity for healing and growth.
Yes, if we took every incident as just such an opportunity to grow and evolve the world would be in a different place.
“I have a much higher regard for my body, its fragility and tenderness. I have gained a strengthened desire to care for and nurture myself in every way possible, which is a beautiful result from an initially bad situation.” So often it is an unexpected ‘stop’ moment that offers us the opportunity to look at the way we are living and caring for our body.
As men, embracing our fragility and being willing to go there is something to be celebrated as it is only then that we get to show the world the truth of who we are – transparency of our beauty within for more to be revealed.
It is an inspiration for this article to have come from a man, it is deeply needed. One day all men would equally feel and acknowledge this tenderness, who is simply them and live according to it, this is what this article and your livingness Frank together with many others have opened up the way for.
What a beautiful surrender to your natural tenderness Frank.
I have noticed the most real and down to earth and open men are the ones who are deeply fragile and respect-full of their bodies and their environment or at least attempting to be.
A great reminder Frank of how fragile the human body is and how much we truly need to support and look after ourselves, beautiful how you brought your awareness back to your body and honoured its fragility.
Thank you Frank for the inspiration to more deeply care for my body and be aware of how fragile I actually am.
The capacity of the body to heal is extraordinary and I know I have taken this for granted many times. You remind me that our bodies are precious and worth cherishing and caring for in every way.
When men let himself be fragile you can see all his beauty.
Inspirational what you took from this moment Frank. We have that in every moment especially in the more traumatic events. If totally honoured our body is waiting to be surrendered to giving us the answer/s. It never ceases to amaze me the power that is within. It is always more, and so much so, that the mind whimpers to hold onto its self-created fortress and what it wants to own. So, I agree, and now have the greatest respect for my body too – “I cannot understand how or why anybody would intentionally do something to their body that negatively affects it, or has a significant potential to affect it physically.” and psychologically.
It is beautiful to feel how fragile our bodies are and treat them accordingly, and live in a way that deeply honours and cherish them.
This is beautiful to read, ‘I have a much higher regard for my body, its fragility and tenderness. I have gained a strengthened desire to care for and nurture myself in every way possible,’ I likewise am treating my body with more respect, care, and honouring as you describe.
Our bodies are fragile, the belief that we are tough and strong can be disrespecting of our innate fragility, ‘With my clarity of just how fragile the human body is also came a great sense that it is therefore absolutely necessary to take care of my body, and to not subject it to anything which can damage it,’ beautiful.
Men who are willing to reflect fragility and their natural tenderness is asking all men and all women to consider where are we all at? Are we moving in a way that respects our sacredness and preciousness?
Very beautiful Frank, this applies equally to women also… there is enormous strength in fragility, and when we realise this is our true power, the world will be a very different place.
The human body also experiences trauma. Even in an incident like this where there may be no physical injuries, there can be trauma. The trauma is stored in the body and it can be much harder to address something unseen by the eye.
Beautiful to read your account Frank and to see how you are honouring your precious body now. There are always new levels we can go to with this and ironically it empowers us, both men and women, rather than making us feel weak.
‘I have a new found recognition of the fragility of my body and therefore a new found respect for my body. With that respect comes a stronger desire to be more nurturing and supportive of my body.’ Most people would say and stay with the idea that an accident is only a bad situation not able to look further. When we are honest and open enough to feel, we will feel there is always a deeper meaning why things happen the way they do, so never bad but something to learn.
Frank this is beautiful to read. Even the fact that you decided to take it easy for a few days after the accident is very self honouring. Many would have brushed it off and soldiered on. And yes our bodies are delicate and fragile whether we are men or women.
Yes it is true, there is such a ideal that men should be strong and be able to handle anything yet their body is the evidence that this is not true. We all bleed and bruise and that shows we are all equally tender and delicate and are worth being treated like that.
Thank you Frank for writing this blog, as it is so important to break that consciousness of the the tough and hard man, that tells man not to take care of themselves and their bodies and allow them to bring harm to themselves in the many ways we all know so well.
Thank you Frank. It is amazing to see that every circumstance brings a lesson and an opportunity to develop a more loving relationship with ourselves.
It is through self-care and self-love that we come to know and experience what true strength is. For in accepting and embracing our fragility and tenderness we allow a greater quality of who we are to come to life, as such bringing a greater quality of presence to all we do and all we meet. When we live in connection to and in honor of all that we are, it is here that our true strength naturally shines and leads us through life.