The Seduction of Obesity: When Too Much of a Good Thing Becomes a Jeopardy to Well-Being
Goodness is defined within respectable circles of the Truth as the measure of the effectiveness of any given thing to serve as a vessel for the essential fulfillment of Life, usually referred to within our times as Love. Life is the precious substance of experience, and those things that convey Life’s Essence are recognized as particularly Good. We have to call to mind here the line from Genesis wherein the Creator is recalled as having affirmed “It is Good” upon examining the completed offspring of the Universal Creative Impulse, the material Creation. Since that time, Goodness has been correlated with the efficacy of each vessel of Life to evoke the response of Self – Appreciation, Essence – Appreciation, or Love, from the Creative Principle of Identity within the core of our Being.
Since Goodness is then so strongly associated with Life, Itself, it is almost maddening to think of Goodness as having any sort of effect which is contrary to Life, that is to say, not Good. But that absurdity is precisely the horror that is caused within the timelessly wise Creative Principle of Life when the confusion we know as “greed” or “intemperance” or “gluttony” causes its dreadful effects amongst living beings. Since Goodness is of the essential Nature of the Creator, it is almost impossible to conceive of anything that is “too Good” because Goodness is Infinite. Yet this sad and startling condition is what results when the misdirected will or desire is manifesting the error of “greed”.
There is no more appropriate realm in which to observe this Truth than in the realm of the physical body. Air is a Good Thing. When a new member of our species emerges from the womb, it normally is the one most essential gift from the life process. The preciousness of Air is so fundamental that it is literally essential to maintain our living existence. But too much air is not Good. By breathing excessively rapidly, a person may take in so much air, that, instead of helping to maintain the regular metabolism and even the balance of the body, the air may cause the person become light-headed, and possibly even fall, like a physically disabled person. A very hard lesson is learned if this fall causes actual damage to one’s physical vessel of the precious essence, Life. But even if only light-headedness was caused by this ‘hyperventilation’, as it is called, and no apparent physical harm resulted, the message is clear: air is a Good thing, but too much air causes dis-function, and possibly even harm to the physical body.
The next primordial blessings that are given by Life, normally, to each individual, are Food, and, implicitly, water, and the identical principle of manifestation is readily observed. The Goodness of food blesses a person with the substance and the power to live and breathe, to grow, and mature into the fullness of the beingness they were intended to become. The feeling that receiving this natural Goodness conveys to the person receiving is indisputable satisfaction. The child at the mother’s breast is in a state of irrefutable bliss.
Easy to see how people in a culture of abundance, with a highly stressful, almost frenetic pace of politics and business, could be led by a little inattention to partake of that primordial, instinctive blessing to the point of excess. Bliss is associated with the experience of the Infinite Creative Essence, Life. And nourishment is so essential to Life’s continuation and fulfillment, that some experience of bliss at nourishment is certainly natural. We all need to experience the bliss of closeness to Life to renew our faith in our day-to-day existence. But when the nourishment experience of this primordial bliss is sought to excess, the result is quite the opposite of the joy in Life’s fulfillment. Rather than becoming the actuality of life-renewing fulfillment, obesity causes a person to live in a reality wherein the simple gift we all naturally love, food, becomes not only a source of joy, but also a “Tempter” - the instrument of the betrayal of their vital existence itself, their physical body.
Food being one of the most fundamental blessings of Life, and certainly a pleasant focus for our attention and social interactions, day-to-day, we should certainly take care not to jeopardize this readily available source of energy and pleasure, personal and social, with an attitude that is bi-polarized due to over-reliance upon eating as a natural source of bliss. The catharsis or renewal that we receive from the bliss is effective because it is a pure enough experience to remind us of the precious Primal Purity from which we all emerge. There are many ways to evoke the experience of bliss or pleasure, to re-associate ourselves with the Primal Purity, and we have deprived ourself of the precious resource of inspiration as well as the vitality that we gain from nourishment if we neglect the development of the more social or more skillful pleasures that the natural energy from our sustanence is calling us to enjoy. To live is to move, and we must be attentive to allow the pure energy that is food to incite us to indulge the engaging, healthful, pleasureful activities that life innately invites our healthy, satisfied bodies to enjoy.
Certainly the nourishing blessings from the Provider, the Goodness of Life, should enhance our ability to experience Life and express the creative essence of our Humanity. Through the encouragements of the intelligence of the Life within us, it becomes self-evident to us that we need to blissfully touch more, to sing more, to get out and appreciate Nature more, to dance more, to play sports more, and so on, thus providing natural expressions for the vital energy of the precious foods that fuel and sustain our physical existence. And these are all stimulating, engaging, fulfilling experiences that all of our bodies naturally desire. Everything we do that advances or enhances our ability to experience the joy and goodness of Life satisfies the primordial desire of our bodies. And everything we do that diminishes or impairs our natural ability to experience Life, of course causes inner conflict, leading to self-doubt and depression, and thus opening the door to illnesses of every sort.
The extreme reliance upon the convenient bliss of eating in our abundant society has more than merely personal ramifications within a world wherein hundreds of millions are suffering from malnutrition and some are even dying from starvation every day. There is always a better activity available than overeating to the extent that the health of the vessel of experience itself is impaired in the process. And in our World, where so many teeter on the edge of the precipice of starvation, one can hardly think of a more inappropriate form of experience for the most advanced and abundant societies to be showing the less advanced and needy than wasteful over-use of the blessedly precious resource of food. Food is the very resource for which those in less sophisticated regions of our planet are suffering and dying for the lack of.
There is no attribute of an individual or a society’s life that is more valuable or more admirable than health. In fact, Humanity agrees with the general principle that ‘The greatest wealth is health!’. As essential as the air we breathe, wholesome nutrition is certainly a central factor in the manifestation of a healthful existence. For nutrition to become the instrument that unbalances and oppresses the metabolism that strives continually for our perfect health is an irony too unpleasant to be permitted to continue. Life is simply too precious to allow so many people to suffer for having ‘too much’ of a Good Thing. The precious experience of wholesome, adequate nourishment is one that must never be denied any being upon a fully civilized planet. And it is only within the context of a thoughtful, well-balanced experience and expression of Life that the powerful potentials of our precious foods can be enjoyed to the fullest.
Because obesity is an oppression to the health of the individual, and an anguished outrage upon a civilized World where many still strive to obtain merely adequate nourishment, we all must come to regard wholesome, balanced nutrition as not only a pleasure, but a natural human right which must be certainly made available to every member of human civilization. Here is the invitation to become engaged and act on behalf of the universal well-being of Humanity and all of Life.