I recently read another article on meditation and I do feel guilty about not meditating. I hear about the benefits; I read about the many ways it has of helping our bodies, calming our nervous systems, relaxing our muscles, aiding us in handling stress and probably curing bunions and ingrown nails if we just give it a chance.
I try it every so often. I find a comfortable position, close my eyes and ears to all distractions and relax. I think of nothing, or as little of nothing as is possible. I think of myself thinking of nothing. I think maybe I should chant something. Isn’t “OMMM” the suggested mantra? Should I be contemplating my navel?
I think so hard about not thinking that I can’t stop thinking. “OMMM” I intone over and over. “OMMM” becomes “UMMM”. “UMMM” becomes “YUMMM” as I try to drive stray thoughts out of my mind. “YUMMM” becomes “YUMM-YUMM” which reminds me that it’s almost lunch time – which reminds me I must make out a grocery list – which reminds me of a couple of other errands I need to do, such as checking out the new bakery that’s being advertised…..and that does it; my eyes fly open and my stomach growls. I can think only of rows of mouth-watering pastries. I can almost smell freshly baked bread.
I give myself a shake and a stern lecture. Why do my thoughts, which I’m trying so hard to control, always turn to food when I try to meditate? This isn’t the first time this has happened. I seem to be obsessed with food; let my mind drift just a little and I see visions of muffins and rolls, hot and buttery.
Here I am trying to concentrate on creating a more healthy lifestyle and those sneaky thoughts come crowding in. And I don’t think of good nutritious food either. It’s never fresh asparagus or crisp apples, roast chicken or split-pea soup. It’s always chocolate and whipped cream, caramel toffee and pralines.
I blame our modern culture for this. Our food has been evolving into richer and richer forms as availability, advertising and competition all do their thing.
We used to think of oatmeal as an excellent breakfast cereal. A steaming bowl of oatmeal with fresh fruit or plump raisins and cold milk, what a great way to start a day. Now our cereal is so sugared up and gimmicky it’s like eating a bowlful of crumbled cookies.
And cookies are now like candy, filled with chips, chunks and nuts, colored frostings and exotic flavorings. Candy has become insanely rich, with candies decorated by other candies. Muffins have evolved into huge cupcakes with maybe a token sprinkle of a few raw oats so they look nutritious. Cakes groan under inch thick layers of gummy goop.
There is actually a popular coffee shop in town that makes a milkshake out of a slice of cream pie tossed in with the ice cream. Talk about overkill!
Where will it all end? Will our pancreases and gall bladders tolerate this abuse? Are we all doomed to be sugared right into our graves?
This gives me a whole new subject to meditate on. However, it is so distracting I can’t concentrate. I find myself dreaming of something… anything disgustingly rich, topped by mounds of whipped cream – the real stuff – no chemical fluff allowed. At the very least I need a handful of Dove chocolates.
So much for improving my health through meditation. It defeats its own purpose and I’m left with my cravings. I guess I’ll have another piece of “MILKY WAY” cake. Yes, it’s made with those candy bars.