Tuesday, July 19, 2011

July 19th, 2011 - Day 10 of 60

Paradox is strange phenomena we experience in life.  There are occasions when something can be considered both a blessing and a curse.  I've heard people say this of their children more times than I care to remember.  I've heard it used concerning our modern world which brings us no end of conveniences and advances, yet leaves us isolated from our planet and yearning for more meaning in our daily lives.  I've experienced this paradox a bit over the last days regarding diet and consumption.  Most people are so busy with the requirements of life, there is little time left over for meaningful connection with friends and family.  A third of our lives are spent asleep (physically), almost a third at our jobs (that doesn't include preparing to go to our jobs or the commute) and the remainder spending time catching up on the things our jobs and sleep prevent us from doing.  I am not making a condemnation against our world.  We did what we thought was best.  Modern life certainly has benefits and is likely a better opportunity than those afforded our grandparents or great-grandparents.  Still, the idyllic image of friends and family gathered over a meal of freshly harvested ingredients is one more likely seen on TV or movies than in real life.  In real life we have one or maybe two jobs.  We have kids.  We have grand-children.  We have responsibilities.  The idea of coming in from the farm or garden with fresh produce is more a fantasy story than a possibility.  More than 82% of Americans live in cities and suburbs as of 2008.  Even if we wanted to grow food, could we?  Where?  Are we zoned for a garden?  Would the condo board allow it?  Would the neighborhood association allow it?  Think that is a nutty question?  Go ahead and Google "woman arrested for growing vegetables front yard".  Still, that is a rant for another time.  Right now we are discussing things that are both a blessing and a curse.  Our lives are filled with modern conveniences that save us time, yet we have no time. We have the best medical technology in history, yet Americans seem to be sicker from more maladies than in anytime in modern history.  We live in the midst of the paradox.

The paradox with which I am concerning myself today is the paradox of choice.  As an American growing up in the 60's, choice was the norm.  More brands, more options.  My mom and dad had less choice.  Technology made more choices available.  For example, oranges are a fruit many have never been without.  You see them all the time.  My parents didn't.  Often, oranges were given as Christmas gifts as they were novel (not navel).  My parents also didn't have fast food in their youth.  Now, our choice of food options has blessed us with abundance, convenience and variety.  We are blessed with food in all seasons.  Yet, has that blessing really turned out to be the blessing we'd hoped?  While modern food economics makes meals simpler, does it make them more nutritious?  Does it make meal time meaningful?  No one wants to slave over a stove for hours making the evening meal each day.  Take-out is tasty, inexpensive and time-saving.  Yet, no one would argue that America's choice of foods has been for the best in the long run.  We are heavier than ever.  We are sicker than ever.   Everyone is on medication from childhood to their autumn years. We are given more food with less nutrition.  Our calories are empty.  Eating isn't a sacred act or act of community.  Eating has become a consumer activity.  It is a sport.  It is a mindless hobby.  We are awash in "food".  And the quotes mean that fast "food", snack "food", and convenience "food" is less food than consumer goods.  That "food" is food only in the sense that "cheeze" is cheese. Yes, they have a place, but we've let the pendulum swing too far away from center.  Too much salt, sugar, refined carbohydrates, bad fats, chemicals, preservatives, additives, pesticides, packaging, processing and fabricating.  Food is just one more item to sell for profit like a lamp, a t-shirt or a pair of fuzzy dice that hang from your rear-view mirror.

Those who are Rebooting may be having a vague, unconscious understanding of this, but they've not been able to put it into words.  When you eat just food (as opposed to food-like consumer goods) you may start to see things differently.  When you are drinking your juice and looking around, you see that people never stop snacking all day long.  The juice allows you to slow down and observe.  You don't worry about what is for breakfast.  That would be juice.  You don't think about the lunch special.  That would be juice.  You are not concerned with some trendy food distraction to help your day end with some joy.  That is the job of your juice. 

Now, for some, maybe the juice IS a problem.  What do I make?  What should I add?  How much?  How often?  Organic?  It reminds me of the scene from the Robin Williams film "Moscow On The Hudson".  When purchasing coffee, Williams, who plays a Soviet-era Russian defector to the US, goes to buy coffee in the store. Upon seeing his endless choices (in lieu of his normal standing in a long line to get the coffee he is given with no choice) he immediately passes out from being overwhelmed. 

Don't make a blessing a curse.  Stay focued on why you are doing the juice and not exactly "how" to do it or "what" you'll juice.  Give yourself some grace and enjoy it.  Don't make food a distraction.   Don't take it for granted. Enjoy the extra time you have to worry just about your health and your juice.  Enjoy less cleaning up (unless you eat out all the time).  The juice frees you.  Don't let it feel like a prison.  Remember, you have a choice.  You don't have to do this.  This Reboot is a choice.  It is choice born of the abundant blessing and curse that is modern nutrition.

It is only for a short time.  Keep going.


I am 15% through the 60 days.

Weight: 160.0 lbs.

Food: Fruit/Veg Smoothie With Hemp Seed

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