The Weight of the World


I’ve been told before that I carry the “Weight of the World.” That I feel a lot, maybe too much. That it’s not my responsibility to carry the Weight of the World with all of its heartache and pain—that I should feel less and then I would feel better.

I respectfully disagree with this sentiment. This world is weighty. It is heavy. It is a lot.

We live in troubling and beautiful times. If we aren’t feeling the full weight of these times I’m not sure what else we are doing.

My practice for the past several years has been to learn to feel more, not less. To learn how to notice injustice in my bones. 

To feel the sting of heartbreak.

To sense how the Earth has been ravaged.

To savor the pleasure of a good belly laugh and the resonance of sharing time with friends.

I understand that the world is not mine to “fix” or “heal” or “save”—my White Savior Complex is watched and attended to.

Yet, I know that I have a responsibility to feel the Weight of this World. I know I have a responsibility, since I am still alive and breathing, to be impacted by the world. This is called being in relationship. This is called healing from dissociation.

I get concerned that when I am told by well-meaning loved ones to not feel the Weight of the World, that they aren’t paying attention. That they aren’t feeling the crises on our lands and the history of colonization on our hands and the beauty of being alive.

I suspect that feeling the Weight of the World is how I healed from years and years of disordered eating and body problems. I have come to know that my body, my weight, isn’t the problem—that the problem is a system that has trained me and the collective psyche to focus only on #1.

The problem isn’t cellulite or body mass index, rather it is a culture that dominates other people and the Earth for profit. 

Feeling the Weight of the World is liberatory rather than oppressive because it is true and connected. 

Feeling the Weight of the World is the antidote to believing that with a diet, income stream, or new outfit we will feel better.

Feeling the Weight of the World cuts through the façade of consumerism and capitalism that sells inadequacy to those who would be better off feeling the impact of being sold something they don’t actually need, that is made by a slave in another country. 

This is the Weight of the World.

It is heavy, grounding, nourishing. It is alive, awake, and real.

The Weight of the World isn’t sugarcoated plastic.

The Weight of the World isn’t a diet plan that will make you gain back more weight than you lost. 

The Weight of the World is a way of being in the world. Feeling the Weight of the World means we are feeling the impact of our choices, the choices of our ancestors, and the choices we need to make for the future health of our planet and co-inhabitants.

Feeling the Weight of the World allows us to feel the weight of a sunset. To drink in the weight of a river. To feel the weight of an open heart.

Feeling the Weight of the World is our task if we are seeking to feel better… because “better” isn’t “happy”… “better” is honest. 

With love,

Kathryn Holt