You’d never believe it, but I had a thought today. It doesn’t normally happen to me. Or like ever happen. But today, as I sat at my desk waiting to take my lunch, I had a realization:
My stomach started to rumble (embarrassing), and it occurred to me how miraculous that is – like a serious, walk-on-water, miracle. Lemme explain…
I mean…obviously it’s not miraculous in the “I see angels and holiness” kind of way. As those who know me could tell you, my stomach being kinda pissed at me isn’t all that uncommon. I consume food like some kinda small army. So I’m always some form of hungry.
But think about…
…how odd hunger is.
I mean, you’d think your stomach would rumble when you’re hungry.
That’s what would seemingly make sense – that we’d feel compelled to seek food when we actually need it; when we’ve run out of our store of energy; when it’s eat or die.
But it doesn’t happen like that.
No. We feel hunger long before that – at a state when we’re actually entirely okay, and could still survive with nothing to eat for days more even (provided we had water and at least the hope of Taco Bell).
Yet way before it ever reaches that point – mere hours, often, since our last meal – we recognize that twinge in our stomachs as hunger, and seek food.
We’re never taught it. It’s instinct. We feel the hunger (though no food is needed) and then seek food.
Because the body knows it must act before it’s left completely devoid of energy.
Before there’s nothing left at all.
Before it’ll no longer even have the little energy required to find the smallest amounts of food – like a gas tank blinks before E. Because when E’s reached there’s no hope of being saved at all.
It comes from our days as hunter gatherers, I guess, when getting a meal required slightly more exerted energy than grabbing the car keys and driving to your nearest Cheesy Gordita Crunch dispensary. Because (like we all know), if you’ve gotta wrestle a buffalo to the ground in order to eat that day (as I still manage from time to time), or face another day in a snowy cave without food, you better have the strength and energy to finish the job. Because the weeds under the snow may be an easier catch, but they aren’t nearly as appetizing, or life-saving.
…is miraculous – in us and every animal.
With no thought, teaching, or guide, we innately know to trust that instinct for our own survival.
But what other instincts should we trust? What other signals ought we not ignore?
Don’t we always know what is best for our survival and our happiness – as our stomachs know when we need food, and our throats know when we need water?
Would our minds and bodies be so perfect in keeping us alive, yet so clueless in helping us choose the path to that survival – how we should spend our life, where, and with whom?
It seems instead we fight ourselves. We ignore our instincts. We hesitate. We fear.
When we are tortured by difficult choices in our lives, it’s because we struggle against that instinct; against what our Selves know to be the way.
And it’s when our fears and our needs collide that life’s choices can seem so difficult or so hard.
“What should I do? What should I do!?”
The thing is, though…
You KNOW what to do. SOMETHING in you is telling you. But you’re afraid.
Trust your instincts.
Just try not to stuff your face, like me.
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