Chandogya Upanishad taught tat twam asi meaning, you are that.
you are what?
we are comprised of so many things:
- you are your thoughts.
- you are a result of your decisions.
- you are the summation of your actions.
- you are a mashup of all the souls you have ever encountered.
- you are what you eat.
and clearly from my last posts we eat so much more than just food!
in the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson – i cannot remember the books i’ve read any more than the meals i have eaten; even so, they have made me.
but even with that in due consideration, why do we eat what we eat?
as a child correct answers at school were rewarded with tootsie pops and hard candies. birthdays and other milestone events go hand in hand with cake. holidays are associated with rich heavy meals as the cornerstone to creating a “special” occasion. in this way we reinforce the perceived value and comfort of these foods. we entertain ourselves with food when we’re bored, we compromise quality of our food sources, of our lives, to accommodate the clutter of overbooked events and overstimulating iScreens, losing track of the circadian rhythms to fall into the Standard American Diet (SAD) and lifestyle. sinve i’ve gone raw, i actually had someone beg me to eat a doughnut at their birthday celebration saying please, eat it for me, its my birthday. what has happened that food, deeply processed foods, are such an integral part of our cultural climate. i did a google search of comfort food . . . check out the results. how are these items contributing to obesity, pollution, global warming, deforestation etc etc comforting to us?
we have to consider what consumption we were raised with, tv shows, living environment, lifestyle and of course tv dinners and happy meals that actually reward you with a toy for the way you are eating. and in looking at what consumption we grew up with, this begs the question, how much of it is genetics. we can work to resolve karma’s, and change our diet, our actions. but is there a certain amount that is hard wired in us?
please take a minute to check this video out, it is heartwarming, and difficult, but such a great reminder of how this plagues our society. Standard American Diet.
my mother was just with me for a few days visiting. there is so much of myself that i see when i gaze upon her. so much of her voice that i hear in my own opinions and views. and beneath that, so much of her personality in how i organically react in different situations.
at around the same time, my mother and my second aunt (her cousin), were told they had all the pre-diabetic signs and needed to do a major overhaul regarding both food and exercise habits or they would be getting progressively more and more ill. my aunts reaction was oh, diet and exercise works for some people, but not me. my mother, with similar news reacted the opposite way; drastically changing what she ate, did, and how she lived.
my mother went on a sugar free, nearly grain free, heavy on the turmeric simple foods diet. her intake is quite different from my own choice of raw fruits and veggies. but holds many similar tenants and facets, and the similarity lies in our approach. yet despite the changes, there are things she is up against inherently, just from the pool gene she was given. the same pool i was then born into. even after 16 months of nearly completely pure raw living, tendencies are slow to go.
i’ve found that patience and time are the key for any changes. as my guru Sharon Padmaji Gannon teaches, joyfully sit with something again and again. each time will bring fresh perspective, give in to the repetition and through this again and again, a gain is made. slowly, but inevitably, i am finding even the seemingly “hard wired” patterns in myself can change, be they sugar addictions, trigger responses or thought patters we change over time like the shape of an iceberg. for now, i work towards steadiness and joy for all sentient beings.
through repetition, magic is forced to arise.