Tuesday, October 28, 2014

On Habit

So if overeating is `just a habit` who does one address such a persistent habit?  The net does not offer much help. Overpower it with a new habit. So how does one overpower a necessity of life? Displace the habit? Just eat the prescribe bit of food and then go away. Yah sure. What about the craving or desire for more? Well it will not hurt you. Just ignore it. Yah Sure.

It is the craving or desire function that drives this whole problem. So how did the stoics handle excessive desires?
Suppression of desires.
Desires are the root of all evils, all vices, and slavery to organizations, money, property and other things. It is the desire for goods and services that drives consumerism. It is desire that drives greed, lust for power, property, prestige, control and the like. Freedom is not attained through the satisfaction of desires but through the suppression of desires. Diogenes lived free of desires, well so the book says. He did tell Alexander to get out of his sunlight, so he desired sunlight.

Desires are within our control, well sort of. We have control over them, they are generally within our power, except if the desire is from some physical or chemical source. When other polish it, to make it shiny, we can then metaphorically "piss all over them to make it unsuitable to consume." Brutal but effective. It is in the extinguishing or all desires that relief can be found.

So where does this all leave me? It is me that is primary on my mind, as it is with each person, even if few will admit that fact. Well I need to control my desires, and not let anyone polish them up to make them attractive. Perhaps with food it should be a small limit of freely consumable food, say for now spinach, cabbage, kale and perhaps boiled potatoes, but no fats with those. Limit all other foods to the prescribed quantities.  I do not know how else to eliminate desires yet. I have never been schooled in such things, other that to walk away muttering.

Expectations of how life should be, delusion of how life should be, and desires are intimately connected.  Inner peace is the result of no desires and living by virtue. No desires result in inner peace. Circular logic, either we have inner peace and no desires or we do not. It is a mental triple pole double throw switch, as with three phase delta connection, where ground is a true neutral. Rare, but possible. But we humans are guided by the dark horse of passion and the white horse of reason, but not equally so. We who have the passion higher have the more difficult time. Those who have higher reason guidance should be able to follow logic. Ah yes, but it is their logic, and we may not understand the reasons or their weighting of the reasons, as there is likely more than one. Perhaps that is the clue; to weight logic higher, to give some thing more emphasis or value, long term, or possible future pain, or current pain, in the case of weight management.

Understanding where my desires arise, and how to eliminate them may be the next challenge.

Any ideas? 

No comments: