Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Head shave story

Why did I shave my head?
Almost two years ago I started walking a process of self realization. Within this process I started seeing all my fears/thoughts/beliefs/feeling and emotions as what they really are – mind made delusions…
I started exploring myself within this new perspective, not believing I am my thoughts feelings and emotions, but rather I am ‘self’ that is allowing these thoughts/feeling/emotions to exist, I am accepting them as the directive principle of me instead of directing myself within breath, here, as life…
At first this new realization was based on an idea that made sense to me, within the principle of oneness and equality, within seeing the polarity and separation of the mind, but not yet as a living experience. I didn’t leave it at that, I started experimenting and exploring (writing these words, I see I have stopped experimenting lately and now can see the value and importance of it).

At one point a little over a year ago the “face off face world” campaign came out and the challenge was to shave your head as a stand for life, to stop the use of shampoo and conditioner and by doing so to affect the water supply and environment, to make a physical act. Slowly many people started vloging about shaving their heads…  I couldn’t help but think about it as well. I remember I started seeing everybody as baldies with wigs, everybody’s hair looked glued on, looked fake. Everybody seemed bald to me, it looked like the “natural” way to be. Like we were all bald under our hair and our hair was just a wig, and could easily be removed and our true self would be revealed.

At that time I had a very ‘meaningful’ relationship with my hair. I loved it. it was soft and nice and easy to handle, it was all that a girl could ask for. Years back I wanted to get dreadlocks but decided not to because I couldn’t bear the thought of having to shave my hair when I would want to get rid of them… I would go to the hair dresser every few months, and I loved her, she was great and I recommended all my friends to go to her as well… This ‘hair and I’ relationship thing has been going on for the past ten years… and I would talk about my hair cuts with people. My hair was a part of my life.

Then came this “dare to shave”, and I could see for the first time this attachment. I could see the absurdity that my not wanting to shave it, was based on a relationship I had going on with my hair… lol… I could see the simple common sense in shaving my hair, cause it will, for a fact, have a good impact on the environment: shorter showers, no chemicals, no packaging for chemicals. It was like going to the supermarket with a fabric bag to not use a plastic bag, but something that I couldn’t forget as I do the fabric bag.

After seeing the simple common sense I started seeing more and more valid reasons to do it, and not one real/valid reason not to. As I was building my decision to shave my hair I was talking about it with friends and everybody was against it, no one could understand why the hell would I do such a thing, “there are so many other ways to help the environment, why do this?”. Through these conversations I could see the attachment they all held for their hair and their physical appearance, I could see they didn’t want me to do it because they fear the implications for themselves. But I hadn’t yet seen the deep fear I was holding towards shaving… not yet…

I could see the self definition I had of myself in regards to my hair, and could now see the absurdity of it: I am not my hair, nor am I defined by it, it is demeaning to believe I am defined by the dead cells coming out of my head, it is ridicules to believe I am more or less me with or without hair.

I could see the equality within shaving my head. We define ourselves and others according to hair, we admire one person and look down to another according to how their hair looks, or their looks in general, I could see it as a point if separation, we are separating ourselves from each other through our hair, we separate men and women through our hair. And seriously – it’s hair, I mean – come on…

I hadn’t yet seen my fears because I was focusing on speaking to others convincing them that it makes sense to shave, actually convincing myself… I went on like this until my friend told me she is getting the clipper… A heat wave went through my body, and that’s when I experienced the fear that I was suppressing up to that point. I didn’t realize I was afraid of shaving my hair, I was so focused on rationalizing it to myself that I didn’t see yet that I was in fact holding fear towards this point, I didn’t want to do it, “what am I doing???”

One of my fears before shaving my hair was that I will not be feminine, and I could see the absurdity of believing being feminine is defined by my hair. I then realized that I was born a woman, I am a woman; I don’t need to do or be anything to prove it. Within realizing this, I realized I am actually free to express myself as I please and will remain a woman, there isn’t a way a woman really should be, and believing so is all based on culture and beliefs, not on reality… the idea of women having long hair is limiting and restricting, when it is, in fact, much more convenient to have a shaved head. Thus hair is a point of inequality between men and women, so shaving it is a point of equality, not just between men and women but all are equal. We are in fact equal, men and women. Why do women need to grow their hair to be themselves? Why do we need to separate ourselves through how we hold our hair?

When I saw the fears come over me and possess me within this heat wave, that’s when I knew I had to do it, now. I wanted to prove to myself I am the directive principle of me, I will not allow this random fear to decide what I do and what not, I could see the fear as a mind made illusion. I could see the difference between a real fear, when I am standing at the edge of a cliff and this voice is telling me to watch out because I might fall if I don’t pay attention – that fear makes sense, it is revealing common sense, it is valid in a way. But fearing shaving my head, fearing what I will look like, fearing losing myself, fearing not being feminine, fearing not being desired, fearing being looked at as strange or sick… all these fears were based in ego, based in the mind, based in a self definition limited to judgment and opinions – why do I allow myself to limit myself to people’s opinions? Why would I believe people’s judgments? Why do I allow myself to confine my experience to this small limited definition that is accepted by others instead of living as myself, instead of allowing myself to take off all the masks and be free of all personas to actually be me.

At that night I asked my friends to shave it off
It was a challenge for them to shave my hair, they had their own share of resistance, and at first they just made it short, they didn’t shave it clean. when I saw how long it was (about a centimeter) i asked them to finish the job and make it as short as possible, I wanted to see my head, I wanted to face myself without the cover up of my hair. Like being completely naked, I wanted to see me fully. It wasn’t short enough. So they made it shorter…
The experience of touching my head for the first time… my entire body was excited, I stroked my hand across my head and got shivers down my whole body, I never felt my head in such a way before, it was amazing, I was so happy. It felt great and I felt brave, I walked through my fears, I didn’t let my fears direct me, I stood up and directed this point. And till this day, every time I shave my head it is a physical living reminder of the process that I am walking, willing myself to walk, and pushing myself to walk. This process of facing myself without the masks that I am use to, facing myself naked as I am, facing myself within self honesty. This process of equality, a process of changing myself to be able to stop self interest and start living as what is best for all. because within common sense i know that what is best for all is best for me.
There is no real importance or value in shaving one’s hair, it isn’t a principle, but when you start seeing why you don’t want to shave your hair you will realize all these reasons are bullshit, they are all a lie, and you either accept yourself as the lie you believe yourself to be, or you stop, and start walking.

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  1. thank you so much for sharing your story and being brave enough to admit all of your fears surrounding your experience. I shaved my head yesterday and I´ve been on a roller coaster of emotion since, sometimes feeling empowered and free from the attachment of the opinions of others and sometimes feeling the panic of what have i done! In truth I agree with everything you said, and I also have been self destructive in the past because I didn´t truly love myself. Part of the reason behind this act was to cultivate more self love as I accept myself without the hairmask, and today I convinced myself that it was another act of self destruction, not loving a part of myself that was beautiful, but reading your words helped me get back to my center and see through my own minds tricks, thank you.

    1. hey Ruquell, i'm grateful you found my blog supportive - it's cool you can see that all this noise and ups and downs within you is you playing mind tricks with yourself - we have defined ourselves as so many things and we believe that who we are exists within this definition of ourselves - when in fact it doesn't, just as you are not defined by your hair - though it's hard to free ourselves from these beliefs becasue we have always existed as such - i can only recommend for you, if you are at a place in your life taht you've had enough mind tricks, to check out the Desteni I Process lite, it's a really cool and direct free online course with personal support, and it will walk you through the constructs of your thoughts, emotions, and feelings, as you will get to know yourself better and understand more why you are playing these mind trics with yourself - and most importantly - how to stop - check it out, seriously, it's a life changing process http://lite.desteniiprocess.com/

      and thanks for reading

      i am currently writing daily on a separate blog, you should check it out http://mayasjourneytolife.blogspot.co.il/

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  3. Hello Maya!
    Thank you so much for sharing your story! I can totally empathise with you about the feelings you described before you finally did it.

    I am a 23 year old girl and also thinking about shaving my head. Today, several months afer having quit a long-term relationship and after doing what i feel is best for me, i experienced really bad self-hatred from time to time. I actually do not care about finding a partner again at the moment, cause i want to be myself, still keen to learn and change, but just being able to be me. Sometimes i feel that my body is not what it used to be, i feel that i look old, sad and ugly. My skin is not clean since I quit taking the (contraceptive) pill. I am simply afraid of being even uglier with a shaved head. On the other hand I know that my life is only what i make out of it and what i say it is. And also I am just what I am. But somehow, still i am experiencing this self-hatred and fear of loss again and again. I dont want to be a slave of my mind or anyone else. I feel that shaving my head could help me accept myself as i am, from head to toes. somehow i want to free myself from any burden, to be accepted as i am. to be free but also be loved.

    So i am here but i am hesitating... the problem is that i am going to graduate in a few months, which means i am going to be an elementary school teacher. i am afraid of the parents reactions, of not getting a job...even of frightening the kids.

    I know that i am not the only one wanting to do this but who is still hesitating because of these reasons.
    I am not sure if these reasons, especially concerning my job, should keep me from doing this. How could something like shaving my head possibly be a mistake, if i am not saying that it is/was one?

    I'd be very glad if you'd share your opinion on this.



    1. Hi Jenna
      shaving my head was a symbolic step, and it really empowered me in realizing that i am not defined by my hair, nor do i have to be directed by my fears - having said that, you must consider your physical environment - i found a teaching job with a shaved head, but it was a very open minded school, i don't know if i would be standing in front of a different principle would they have given me a chance.

      you must ask yourself why are you shaving your head, and from there, once you know what you are looking for you can actually get to it without shaving your head, you must look at the fears of shaving your head and investigate each one of them as to make sure you are not being directed by your fears, but that you are making a self directed decision within practicality and common sense - make sure you are not shaving your head within a starting point of self hatred - you must be self honest with yourself, ad realize there isn't right or wrong, only consequences, and you must be willing to live with the consequences of your actions.

      check out the DIP lite course, it is a supportive way to get to know yourself, and learn tools of self support, such as writing, self forgiveness and breathing - here is the link: http://lite.desteniiprocess.com/

      because the result you want to get from shaving your head - you can get to from walking a process of self investigation in self honesty, and applying self forgiveness to re create yourself as a being of self integrity, honor and respect.

      you should also investigate the journey to life blogs that many people have been walking, it is very supportive, i will share with you one that is dedicated to self image within overcoming an eating disorder - i don't have an eating disorder, but i can very much relate to what she is writing, and it is very supportive. http://malingunilla.blogspot.com/

      thanks for reading, and posting a comment
      if you would like to follow my writing, i have started a new blog here:

      and of course, once you get the idea, you are welcome to join us on the journey to life