To know and to love God.
Maybe this is why there are many different kinds of people with such variety of personalities, and as the years go by, the population seems to grow bigger, with each individual born as someone different than ever – yet as time goes by, our character differences grew more subtle, and sooner or later, every one on Earth will realize that if we all hold our hands together, we can understand each other better and then love one another.
Earlier today, I was reading Rick Warren’s best-selling book, The Purpose Driven Life, and I was covering the chapter on Cultivating Community.
In some of the previous chapters, Warren covered on the fact that God loving variety. He does not only created a species, but he created numerous different kinds of that species, so many that each of the created one is different from another one – but in the end, they are all still one species.
Then I step aside from all the things that are visible. I came to the realization that there have been so many ideas, individual and valuable ideas, that have changed the world in some way, good or bad. There are many opposing ideas, analogous ideas, ideas that depended on one another, and so on. Ideas of good and evil, ideas of the fallen apple, ideas of morality and of faith, and as time goes by, we keep telling and re-telling each other stories that have been told again, new ones springing from the quilting of the old ones we have heard and known. Some we love, others we love to hate.
As we’re stepping onto the modern idea of the world as a global village, there can be no other time when all kinds of people from all walks of life and of all cultures imaginable have to go through the tunnel of conflict, believe in God, have faith in getting through the conflict of their differences with one another, and finally coming out of the darkness united as one, in order to know and to love God.
Knowing leads to wisdom, yet love requires a leap of faith. Each villager of this global community must have a reason why he or she is different from his or her neighbor, but is of the same species, a special species that are given both the choice to be stupid and the capacity to be wise. Everything we come to understand has happened for a reason. Everything happens for a common reason.
To know and to love God.
Just my little epiphany.
What can you make out of this little idea?
Bucket list cross-out: 3-day fast!
No, technically, it’s not a real fast. And this is just the first day.
I’m being honest here. I was not 100% confident whether I can make it today, much less follow through till the day after tomorrow. Last night, I planned out what I will eat for the next 3 days, assessing the things I crave and keeping it all balanced nutritionally with supplements and a couple of healthy foods. It was quite a spontaneous decision: I didn’t make the decision yesterday morning, or the day before yesterday, but it was literally last night. Out of the blue. I wanted to do it. I’ve always wanted to try it, see how far I can go, challenging myself and all.
This is my first ever fast I documented. I’ve done a complete fast before with absolutely no food throughout the day, but it only wrecked my health because I wasn’t really prepared and largely because I feel so much deprived. I was depressed – my monthly period has been absent for more than a year at that time. The bottom line is, depression literally kills you. You have weird metabolism that makes the weight on your scale creeps up steadily over time as long as you’re depressed, even when you’re eating healthy.
At least that’s what happened to me. So I learned overtime that emotional and mental health are my top priority over physical health, because they all go hand in hand.
So, today, I almost couldn’t believe that I reached my goals without even putting as much effort as I could have (besides if you constantly think about food all day, you’re bound to fail). Instead, I feel a steady energy level throughout the day. It’s easier for me to do the fast because I stayed at home all day. I’m currently taking a speedy 3-week class in school, editing and building my art portfolio, doing assignments ahead of time for my summer classes, making a surprise for you readers, and another gift for my love next month. At the same time, I’m clearing up stuff at home so that everything either goes to the trash can or the baggage I’m bringing home with me on August, 10, 2012. Sorry, I can’t help but keep saying the date and put it in red. You just have to bear with me. That’s how excited I am to finally be home forever.
Back to the topic. Throughout the day, I just did my assignments for my class, researched for the final essay for this class, doing my laundry and clearing up stuff. Also writing some drafts and editing some more drafts for you readers to enjoy. (Starting to be even more committed to blogging…)
So, in the morning, I got up with 2 eggs fried on olive oil.
And that kept me feeling full for a while. Then I went to do my long-overdue laundry. While waiting for the dryer I was doing my readings for class and researching the net about the final essay.
Then I think my brain needed glucose, so thankfully I had a medium sweet potato at home.
In the mid-afternoon I had my favorite drink, teh tarik. My mother brought a lot of my favorite instant stuff when she camehere. This is one of my favorite drinks ever since my primary school years in Singapore (ages ago).
Then in the early evening, I was a little hungry. I made an instant oatmeal and topped it off with golden flaxseeds.
Of course I still have the help of supplements for this partial fast. I don’t think I can resist my favorite foods if I have them at home now. I take a mutlvitamin, vitamin C, calcium with vitamin D, and my GNC supplement for hair health.
One of the first things my mom said when she arrived at the airport last Thursday was: “Your hair is so long now (compared to the last time she saw me, the end of January).” That kind of gave me hope for it to grow faster. That’s also been the main motivation why I eat healthy and cook a lot at home now too, besides trying to embrace frugality. I guess I have to give credits for the supplement, because I have done zero exercise during the past 2 months and have quitted the local gym anyway. But it’s still growing thicker and longer. So, thanks to GNC and thanks to my mom for the good genes.
Also to note: I don’t normally take so many supplements. I keep a lot of supplements to ease myself according to my ailments. Vitamin C is when I’m feeling tired, vitamin B is when I don’t have food at home, calcium is when I don’t go out during that day. But I take multivitamins everyday.
Something to share too is that I didn’t weigh myself last night. The last time I weigh myself (when was it? I can’t remember, but it was sometime last week), I weighed 56.3 kg. So, to keep myself accountable, I will post a picture of my weight on the scale the day after the day after tomorrow.
So how do I define the fast? I guess it’s any quantity of meal you eat during a given day that’s below 1000 calories. An average woman requires 1500 calories a day to maintain homeostasis, so anything below that is not recommended. But people fast for different reasons, and I just want to check my bucket list to challenge myself and develop perseverance. Grit is something I think I lack.
All-in-all, like I said, it’s surprising to notice that throughout the day, my energy levels are pretty steady, even with such little calories. Well, if you want to know how little, let’s do the math:
2 eggs fried with 1 tablespoon olive oil: 300 calories
1 medium sweet potato: 160 calories
1 packet of teh tarik: 100 calories
1 packet of instant oatmeal with half spoonful of flaxseeds: 160 calories
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil: 160 calories
300 + 160(3) + 100 = 880 calories
Plus the supplements and innumerable cups of hot tea and 3 liters of water. Teas I drank today include green, black, and darjeeling tea.
I keep telling myself that this is not a real fast. A real fast, for me, is absolutely no food. This 3-day partial fast is just a precursor to the bigger challenge I’m going to face in the future. And I know there are tremendous health hazards professional physicians normally would say. But I genuinely believe in the power of abstinence, of experiencing contentment, satiety, and therefore gratitude. I consider myself as an ungrateful bitch, so that’s also what I’m working on. And I believe that abstinence from things we don’t really need in the first place gives us focus to what we have to do for the day, for 3 days, for 40 days, however long you want your fast to be. I feel pretty productive today, as I don’t spend a lot of time eating, preparing meals, or thinking of what to eat. I wasn’t really craving for anything either.
And I suspect that tomorrow I will have some. And that’s another challenge I have to face within these 3 days.