What motivates your diet?

About three weeks ago my BMI was 26.59. A BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight.

Today my BMI is 25.68. I’ve been focusing on my eating habits and motives for about ten days, and from past experience I’d expect to refine my process more over the coming week.

I won’t put a timetable on it, but while I’m preoccupied with my own motives and sensations around eating, I’m eating more to keep going with other aspects of life and less for escapism and pleasure and therefore it won’t be long before I’m back in the normal range for BMI.

Where I go from there is an open question. I tend not to focus on weight or aesthetic goals, because I really like the idea of seeing how my body and mind respond to a balanced and…let’s say philosophically satisfying…approach to eating.

If I eat only to give me the energy I need to keep going, what will I look and feel like? Not just because I’m consuming fewer calories but because I’m no longer using food to manage my emotional state. I’ve walked that path before, but I have to admit I’ve never gone right to the end.

To me that is an exciting and intriguing question. I’m curious to see what happens. Will I have to make myself eat more to have enough energy? Will I become someone who forgets to eat because I’m so engrossed in other activities? Will I find even more refined and satisfying sources of pleasure and fulfilment?

These questions are, for me at least, far more motivating than weight-loss goals and physical aesthetics these days.

Seeking solace and fulfilment

When I used to practice detachment I would run into a problem of feeling bored and yearning for something more, yet I couldn’t think of anything in the world to satisfy that desire.

This is perhaps where my melancholic temperament shapes my experience, because melancholics are excited by ideals and ideals are hard to locate in physical reality.

…aren’t they?

Rethinking idealism

There’s no question that I am more excited by things like spiritual teachings and principles than material possessions and experiences.

Yet this dichotomy is informed by my own past belief that reality was dull and miserable. If what I’m longing for is the fulfilment of my exciting ideals, then naturally it’s frustrating and disappointing to believe reality can never rise to meet those ideals.

But the whole point is that manifestations are only a reflection of thought, and feeling guides us as to the alignment of our thoughts with God/inner being.

Hence quashing my ideals because I couldn’t see or even imagine them manifesting in my reality is, in A-H terms, like digging up the seedlings you just planted because they haven’t borne fruit yet.

Don’t go looking outside

My old frustration was guidance telling me my thoughts were off. And boy were they off! I was using my reality as the measure of my ideals, my excitement, my good feelings. I was shutting down my own enthusiasm because I didn’t know what to do with it!

What I can do instead is accept that my manifestation is a reflection of my alignment, and the profoundly good feelings I have right now are telling me I am aligned with God/inner being.

It feels good to know this now. It feels good to know and to see that manifested reality is a perfect match to what I’m feeling right now. It is wonderful to know at last that I don’t have to go searching for something to justify, anchor, or explain this inner peace and satisfaction and ease.

The excitement of contrast

Contrast refers to anything unwanted in your experience.

According to the Abraham-Hicks teaching, contrast is an essential feature of our physical experience. We welcome it because contrast provides a basis for new desires to evolve, and desires are the essence of new creation.

But at first it’s hard to see it this way. We don’t welcome unwanted conditions, instead we long for them to vanish.

As we become more and more aligned with our own inner being, the part of us that is always united with God, we get better and better at handling contrast.

We begin to appreciate that the “fly in the ointment”, the one thing that’s ruining an otherwise perfect experience is actually the path or thread calling us on into bigger and better things.

And when we are aligned enough to see it that way, then instead of the wanted and the unwanted, life is about the wanted and “what’s next?” Satisfied with what is, and eager for what is coming.

There’s a delightful moment that keeps recurring for me, where I feel an old issue, problem or struggle coming up, but all of a sudden I realise it’s not a problem or a struggle, it’s contrast!

I know how to deal with contrast!

Deal with it by looking for the wanted, the desire that springs from it. Follow the thread of the joy latent in sorrow, the ease called forth by struggle, and the hope implicit in despair.

Ask yourself “since I know very clearly that I don’t want this, what is it that I do want?” and then start focusing in that direction.

Then you will find that the experience of contrast is truly exciting and thrilling, because an encounter with the unwanted is the doorway to all we desire.