Day 1 – 3/18/18
“Dullness increases awareness”
This seems to be a contradictory statement. How can you be dull and aware at the same time? A knife, when its edge is sharp is called being a “live blade”. The opposite of sharp is dull but awareness and liveliness are synonymous.
I am speaking of natural dullness and its increasing of spiritual awareness, which is the point of a fast. Even from the first meal, which was devoid of salt and sugar, I had a blandness in my palate which was furthered by the lack of honey in my tea and sugar in my late morning oatmeal.
Jesus take the wheel and please pass the salt.
I did, however, have cinnamon in my oatmeal, which can enhance the taste of sugar even though it is not sweet in and of itself. I found that my sense of taste, through my dullness was enhanced because of what was NOT there and the same for the daily tea I drink. I found myself better able to detect all of the different tastes in my green tea that usually get overlooked with the honey. With the sweetener, despite the health benefits of oatmeal with the fiber, complex carbohydrates etc., if the oats are a bit rancid tasting or old, I may not detect it under the “influence” of sugar. If the tea is spoiled, despite all its antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties the honey may cover to my taste that which is no longer healthy for me to drink.
The translation is that sugar and salt can both enhance and cover up the things we ingest.
How much do we ingest through our eyes and ears that are dipped in sugar or seasoned in salt that we may not take in if we saw it in its raw state?
Sometimes we indulge without asking the most important question:
“What is in this?”
Indulge in an argument about politics because it’s salty and mixxy, we ingest bigotry and discrimination within the same “meal” and don’t even realize it. Listen to some music because the beat and hook are “syrupy sweet”, we eat some sex and misogynistic ingredients and take all of that into our beings and don’t realize it. Too much social media popcorn with the extra butter and salt, we getting some pride, anger and selfiness witth a side of loneliness. I am not against politics or music or social media but at times even a little bit can be too much, and a little bit consistently can add up to a lot later.
And on the flip side of things are the times we miss God in the good mornings and hellos from random people, my students who are genuinely happy to see me “Hi Mister!” When you are on social media and someone posts something valid and encouraging that hits you like a hug. That encouraging political discuss that is respectful and progressive and that music that has nutritional value that you might have heard many times but never listened to it. We want the big things like God speaking audibly, that’s that honey, but the undertones of the jasmine in my tea and the earthiness in my oats that get missed is the same “Still small voice of God” You can shout I love you and not communicate as much as the same in a whisper in the ear.
In conclusion, my major point is yes avoiding overindulgence is good but even stepping back indulgence from time to time to clean your palate is healthy and necessary. You have your everyday shower to maintain hygiene then you have those under construction, deep cleaning showers where you go in.
Being basic and functional allows for a recalibration for awareness for that which is good and that which is not good that somehow always slips in no matter how tight we tow the line. We can always experience life differently, even in our same routines, God is everywhere and always speaking but are we able to hear…….?