You are Life passing through your body, passing through your mind, passing through your soul. Once you find that out, not with the logic, not with the intellect, but because you can feel that Life — you find out what you are the force that makes the flowers open and close, that makes the hummingbird fly from flower to flower. You find out that you are in every tree, you are in every animal, vegetable, and rock. You are that force that moves the wind and breathes through your body. The whole universe is a living being that is moved by that force, and that is what you are. You are Life.
-Don Miguel Ruiz
from “Why We Have a Body” by J.G. Bennett
The answer is a very important and deep one. The body is an instrument which enables transformations to take place in us which are necessary for our freedom and for establishing ourselves with the possibility of existing in a different way. One of the reasons why a body can do this is because the physical body is related in a special way to time and therefore it is a very well-devised instrument for overcoming the problem of time in ourselves. Until we can overcome this problem of time, we are always undergoing a process of destruction. From the moment it is born, this body of ours is undergoing a process of destruction which is only partly compensated by its power of renewal, and we are inclined to think that the renewal mechanism that is placed in the body is just for the purpose of keeping it alive and active for the span of time allotted to each one of us. In other words, that we have this power of organic renewal simply so that the body can maintain itself.
It is really necessary for us to bring our bodies into the service of our aim. If we try to do this with our thoughts and our feelings only, it is almost an impossible task, but with the help of the body it is possible. Something in you will be listening for that bell and that something is your own body. If you ask of your body that it should remind you of your wish when it hears the bell, you will see that it will begin to do so. I say “ask” because there is an intelligence in the body which we can rely on. We are inclined to treat the body as if it were a donkey that cannot understand anything; but even donkeys understand a good deal of what is said to them and our own bodies can understand a good deal more. They can be spoken to and they will respond; they will help us. In fact they will help us better than our thoughts or our feelings, because they are more reliable-if only we will let them do the work for which they are intended.
(Thanks to Cindy Bennett)