The Inner Path: Gain Control of Gluttony: Food and Otherwise

“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with 
what he would like to have.” ~ Socrates

Many are familiar with the term Gluttony; to gulp down or swallow; to over-indulgence, over-consume food or drink, or things to the point of extravagance or waste.  Maybe you’re really picky about your food… wanting it to be prepared just right, or in just the right amount.  For the most part, one of the biggest misunderstandings about Gluttony is that it only pertains to food.  However, for people who can’t have enough toys, clothes, shoes, entertainment, sex, collections, or even company … it’s about the excess of things and stuff, including food.  Sometimes we might complain about unimportant defects in a product, the temperature in the room, or the color of a napkin.  Most people understand there is a certain amount of discomfort to be expected in life, but those who’re Gluttons don’t see it that way. Instead of becoming strong by suffering the minor inconveniences of life, the Glutton insists on being pampered. No one dares to point out how petty or foolish they are. In fact, some celebrities are praised for their excessive perfectionism, as though it were a virtue.

    As we know, in this wonderful world we live in, there are an endless array of good things to see and enjoy without becoming focused or consumed on any one of them to the exclusion of every thing else. Don’t become so caught up in a pleasure, whether food, fun or people, that you can no longer enjoy other things, and would be willing to sacrifice other pleasures for the one.  It becomes gluttony when you demand more pleasure from something than what it was made for. Bulimia, an eating disorder characterized by binge eating and purging, or consuming a large amount of food in a short amount of time followed by an attempt to rid oneself of the food consumed (purging), typically by vomiting, taking a laxative or diuretic, and/or excessive exercise, is an example of gluttony… they enjoy eating more at the cost of health and dignity.  There’s also Hoarding, a pattern of behavior that is characterized by the excessive acquisition of and inability or unwillingness to discard large quantities of objects that cover the living areas of the home, causing significant distress among family and friends worried about dangers of fires and accidents. And, too many demands, these days, from parents who require too much time or too many accomplishments from their young children is another example of gluttony.

    Gaining Control

    To gain control of your over indulgences and contain your desires.  o do this, live in a state of awareness  and contentment.  Plan meals; consider your budget, never skip breakfast and eat at a slower pace since eating anxiously is deemed gluttony. Gluttony is generally considered a sin of the flesh and the flesh will let you know when enough is enough, for instance, if you consume too much food or drink, you will either gain weight or become ill.  Also, reduce your use of excessively pleasurable things. Not necessarily eliminating them, but cutting back and being aware of what you’re doing at the moment. For example, cut back on eating before you’re stuffed or give away item when you purchase more of similar items, such as shoes and clothes.  And, be mindful of other people’s time. Allow some quiet time – some together and some alone. And, of course, if you find that you’re finding that being alone too often is pleasurable, then get out more and find some company.

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