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 Blooming Stars

Eating, Clothing and Hygiene

            Body and mind are the two essential aspects of a person that can be observed and measured. The third essential and the most important aspect, spirit, relates to the intangible super-nature. A spiritual person is always guided by the demands of the spirit. For him/her the body and mind are at the disposal of the spirit. A sound mind needs a sound body; a sound spirit needs a sound body and mind. The spirit dwells in the temple composed of body and mind. When we think of the purpose and destiny of human life, the immortal, eternal spirit (soul) acquires paramount importance as everything in life is subordinated to it. It is in this context that we need to look at nutritional eating.

            Nutritional Eating: A healthy body requires nutrients coming from wholesome food. Food actually is the first line of medication. Food is eaten for its nutritional value not so much for its taste. In a materialistic, consumer society taste is given primary importance; nutrition plays only a secondary role. The results quite often are obesity and a host of diseases flowing from a life-style of unbalanced diet. In any celebration or family get-together food plays the most important role. And persons eat what they like, not necessarily what their body and health require. The affluent societies of the west have created a consumer-oriented market based not only on supply and demand but also on wants rather than needs. Internal control is replaced by external control. Typical examples are: bariatric surgery such as gastric (stomach) by-pass to deal with over-eating and obesity, taking aversive drugs to treat alcoholism, using methadone to deal with heroin addiction. Certain persons will not keep certain food items like chocolates or ice-cream at home as they have no control over them. For a spirit-led person nothing substitutes for nutritional eating. A spirit-led person has control over his/her eating and drinking habits.

            Appropriate Clothing:Clothing is for bodily health and protection. They are also used for modesty. Clothing indicates a person’s character, culture, and outlook on life. Currently fashion in dressing has taken over the whole clothing industry. Fashions and models dictate what is in and out of style. Apparel is used to accentuate one’s sexual appeal/attractiveness or erogenous zones. It is used to bolster one’s poor self-image. Neither Victorian prudery in clothing nor modern obsession with fashion in dress is helpful. Appropriate, modest, simple, and tasteful apparel that serves spirit-life is the need of the times.

            Proper Hygiene: The old saying cleanliness is next to Godliness is very apropos. Proper hygiene is essential for physical and mental health. A clean body and mind contribute enormously to the spirit. It is very difficult for spirit-life to thrive without proper hygiene. We pollute air, water, and the earth destroying ecological systems and balance. We produce a great deal of waste without properly disposing it. Consumer society with its profit motive is engaged in generating wealth unconcerned about the environment. All need to be duly conscientized with regard to the effects of their actions on the environment. Taking care of the earth and its resources for us and future generations is a great part of the theology and spirituality of ecology that we cannot any longer neglect. It would be impossible to have proper hygiene and spirit-life without also ecological hygiene.

 

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