Monday, November 3, 2008
Dieting as a Means of Emancipating Ones Self From the Yetzer Hara's Grip
I wrote before about eating in a more restrained way as a method of controlling one's ta'avos, desires.
Although my current work as a Law Clerk in a general practice law firm does involve driving 1-2 days a week, my previous jobs involved much more driving. I had some very very bad habits that developed over time. Essentially, I was too rushed in the morning to pack up food for the day, so I would grab snacks and soda on my way from place to place at various convenience stores or gas stations. I would essentially order whatever fatty or sweet food or drink that I felt like getting at any time and, to my embarrassment, I munched through my day without any meaningful self-control over what I would eat.
But about three months ago, I was very unhappy about what had become of my formerly slender build and so, with my wife's undying and faithful support, I totally changed my eating habits. Now, much of the time either my wife or I prepare my daily rations of food, I do not buy or eat any of the high fat or sugar foods (think Drake's) that I used to get, and I am now good friends with my former nemesis, diet soda. Although I don't go to the meetings, I've started keeping to the Weight Watchers system as well.
B"H, I have lost about 22 pounds so far, KA"H, these last three months and I hope to lose another 15 or so.
I ponder quite often how I could have lived such an animalistic lifestyle before, simply ingesting anything that I wanted to, only hesitating to check for a hechsher and mumble a quick bracha. It is clear to me now, after having extricated myself, to some extent, from that this way of life, that I was truly a naval b'reshus haTorah, a boor, who didn't transgress halacha. It may have taken a shelo lishma (non-spiritual) reason to get me started in this, but it now seems to me that it is essential, for one trying to live a more ruchnius-dikeh life, to control one's ta'avos in eating in order not to be a slave to his nefesh habahamis, his animalistic soul.
P.S. Thanks to A Simple Jew for suggesting that I write about this topic, especially given our e-discussions about this avodah.
(Picture courtesy of Drake's)
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