Religion & Spirituality
Memoir of a Body
Australian actor Anna McGahan tells with searing honesty her story of fame, and of unexpected faith.
“It was, I suppose, a divorce that looked like an estrangement, and even a hatred. Just this sense of ‘I’m not at home in my body, I don’t like the way my body looks, and I don’t like the way my body feels, and I don’t like the fact that I’m stuck within it’.”
Anna McGahan never really expected to be an actor - but after graduating, she landed a series of high-profile roles on TV shows like Underbelly, House Husbands, Anzac Girls, and The Doctor Blake Mysteries.
There was a dark side, though, to the glamour of her new life. In her newly published memoir Metanoia, Anna describes her struggles with self-worth, body image, relationships, and spiritual hunger, and how they led her to an unexpected place.
“It never occurred to me that I could be friends with Christians,” Anna laughs. But meeting some believers who didn’t fit with her mental image of Christianity kickstarted a journey for her that was to change fundamentally how she related to spirituality, work, art - and especially her own body.
“I remember so clearly this one scripture. I took it completely out of context, but Jesus is chatting to a whole bunch of people and he tells them, ‘You are the light of the world’. I read that and I took it to heart immediately - not because I felt like it validated my point of view about myself, but because I had never heard words like that spoken over my life. I had never considered that I could be a force of goodness or light or kindness. I just wasn’t. It permeated me. And what’s more, it permeated my body.”
Check out Anna’s book Metanoia: A Memoir of a Body, Born Again
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