I was asked recently by a friend, what exactly did I mean when I named this web blog Tao Babe, and to be honest, I had to think about it for a moment. In the early days of this blog, I had written up a quick explanation of the meaning behind the term called What Is a Tao Babe?, but as with all things, one never quite understands a concept until one has been living and breathing it for a few years, and it had been several years since the start of this thought process so it took me a few minutes to formulate my answer. I had to go back to the start of it all, when I first decided that it was going to have to be a way of life for me, and not just a quick and easy buzz-word that would come and go, leaving no trace of its influences.
First of all, I needed to nail down a definition of the word Babe. It is so often thrown around loosely and used to describe anything from a calendar pin-up type of woman to a guy who plays baseball to an adorable little pig. Since nobody had a good consensus on the term ‘Babe’, I went looking for a definition I could live with.
Since I wasn’t an expert on the subject of Babe-ism at that time, I went to the top of the food chain for expert advice. I found a doctor who knew what she was talking about. Her name is Dr. Joy Davidson. Dr. Davidson is a Clinical Sexologist, Diplomat of the American Board of Sexology, and licensed marriage and Family Therapist with a Phd in Clinical Psychology, and she wrote this little gem of a book called, How to be a BABE.
Now, I got the book, not because I needed advice on overcoming any romantic obsessions or trying to get any sex life that I supposedly deserved. I was doing quite well in those departments, being fairly balanced in most things. I got it because it had a great definition of the word Babe.
According to Dr. Davidson, being a “babe” isn’t about being cute and objectified—far from it. She defines babe-ness with four words: Balance, Authenticity, Boldness, and Eroticism. If we take each individual word out and examine the required attributes, we find a woman who, by the act of fulfilling all four requirements, has a very mature, inspiring, and sexy outlook on life. A Babe, then, is not something easily achieved, however, in the process of becoming a Babe, a woman accumulates wisdom and self-confidence along the way. What do I mean when I say that? It is quite simple. In trying to become more balanced, one is balanced. In trying for authenticity, one becomes authentic. In going for Boldness, one is seen as doing bold things. In exploring one’s sexuality, one becomes comfortable with one’s eroticism.
I knew that it sounded easy, but it would be no small feat. It was a serious change, from the inside out and no amount of hairspray or lipstick was going to bring out the four attributes. To be a true Babe is really a state of mind that one has to work at to achieve. The transformation from non-Babe to Babe is a gradual process and has little if anything to do with what color her hairstylist has dyed her hair at any given day, or what color makeup the latest fashion magazine deems is the most fashionable that season. Of course, as Lao Tzu said, “A journey of a thousand leagues begins beneath one’s feet.”, so the first part of it was Balance.
Since I was in the process of starting to learn about Taoism, and since Taoism is all about Balance, I figured that was a good place to start. I thought I would begin by attempting to balance my yin and my yang (whatever that meant to me at the time). Problem was, there was so much clutter in my life that I couldn’t tell what was tipping the scale. This meant I had to take out lots of clutter and trash from my life and it started with my possessions. Anything I could not use went to recycling or Goodwill.
I went from having lots of things to having much less things. I found I could live with very few items, and it didn’t affect how I looked at all because most of the clothing and paraphernalia I removed from my possession, I hadn’t touched in ages. Then I went on a spree of eliminating all the most harmful people surrounding my life. Those psychic vampires who mooched off my life energies and sucked all the joys out of my energy field, I politely began distancing myself away from. Pretty soon, I was down to a small handful of very, very close friends, those I found it a joy to be around with, and with that came the realization that I had so much free time, I could spend serious quality time with them. It was a major win for me. The balancing act was starting to happen, and I could feel its effect almost immediately. Next on the docket was Authenticity.
Authenticity is a hard one. After all, one can only be authentic if one knew what was true and what was real, and I was having serious issues with the ‘real’ part. I mean, come on, I was an Asian woman with blonde hair. You can’t get much faker than that. But this is inner authenticity we are talking about. I figured, if I was true to myself on the inside, then I could have pink and blue hair with green lipstick and I’d still be authentic.
Turning the magnifying glass inward was (and still is) a difficult thing. I could see all my flaws, big and small. I could see all the issues and psychological damage that those really cool and glamorous people didn’t have to deal with. The beautiful girls around me had so much more glamour in their little pinky than I ever did in my whole body, but I talked myself out of my insecurities. I knew that once I accepted the Me that had grown up out of the muck and mire of a horrendous war and its subsequent upheavals, I was well on my path towards authenticating and encompassing my life experiences and imbuing my actions and my thoughts with high value. The life I went through had many very tough lessons for me to learn, and if I had to take a measuring stick to my trials and tribulations, I think I came out on the other side fairly well and mostly intact. I can’t complain. I was as real as I was going to get, going through what I went through in my youth.
Boldness was not a hard one for me. As I stated previously, I never had any serious romantic obsessions. In fact, it was more often the fact that I was trying to get away from someone who was more interested in me than I was in him (remind me to tell you the story about the guy who chopped off his little finger). I also wasn’t trying to get the sex life that I supposedly deserved. I didn’t have issues in this department. I am anything if not Bold.
Last on the list is Eroticism. Since I didn’t have much trouble with Boldness, let me assure you that I don’t have any issues with Eroticism either. A healthy sense of sexuality is a good thing, because we all are born with a mind, a body, and a soul. As far as I know, everybody who has a body also has sex organs. One cannot claim to be a balanced individual if one ignored one’s sexual health. And besides, unlike most religious or philosophical ideologies floating out there, Taoism actually celebrates human sexuality, and there is so much I can go into about Taoist sexual practices (and I did touch upon this briefly in this posting called Sex and the Tao Babe), but that’s for future explorations. Needless to say, I sailed through this one quite easily.
So it was, and armed with a few tweaks and changes, I adapted Dr. Davidson’s Babeism and turned it into my very own brand of Tao Babe. I added Intellectual Curiosity (because intelligence in a woman only turns off the undesirable men) and Spiritual Awakening (because an unenlightened and unaware woman is very NOT sexy). With these five attributes, I decided to call it Tao Babe-ism, and it is my steadfast (mostly) adherence to these elements which have allowed me to grow upward and outward towards that huge ideological Tao-Babe-ness that ancient Immortal Taoist Women all seem to own and revel in (Read about the Ultimate Tao Babe, Hsi Wang Mu).
As with most new thought processes, at first, it seemed as if I had to continually try to remain on the track of Tao-Babeism because it was a very novel way of thinking about myself. After all, most people don’t wake up in the morning and think to themselves, “I am a Tao Babe and will behave accordingly.” That sounds truly narcissistic and self-absorbed if the true meaning of what it is to be a ‘Babe’ was either misunderstood or falsely ascribed to be something else. Since I knew otherwise, it didn’t bother me what people thought, and so I named by blog Tao Babe. I wasn’t one yet, but it never hurts to visualize oneself into the role and/or function of which one is trying to achieve, and so it was that Taobabe was born.
In the early days, I had to keep thinking about it, needing reminders everywhere to maintain that mindset; however, after I had been living with it for awhile, it just became such a part of my natural state-of-being, almost like smiling or breathing that I just haven’t given it too much thought. I just am. I’m just being me. I have internalized it to the point where it is no longer a separate and individual identity. I think I have finally earned my first wu-wei star in Tao-Babeism.