Unscientific Postscript, again • 28 June 2008

I. Art/Science

Do practitioners treat eating as a science? Do chefs? Or do they learn the chemistry and then use it to experiment and create interesting variation and rich experience?

(Is ashtanga a “science” or is that reductionis bluster?)

What is lost when personal food choices, a chef’s creation of a menu, or a yoga practice is treated as science? What forms of inquiry, relationship and chances for sublimity?

II. Being Empty

Ashtanga generally feels and works better when you eat less. But… strong practice also kickstarts your metabolism and this, for some, can make it difficult to eat enough. Especially if you’re eating a clean, plant-based diet, given that these foods are expensive and high labor but also low calorie.

Does a person who eats less enjoy food less? (Does food taste better when you’re already full?)

Can one attribute too much or too little meaning to food?

Does it make sense to resent what we have eaten?

Are people afraid to feel empty? Is it correct to associate hearty eating with self-care, and what about western families might wrongly shape that association? Could allowing the belly to empty be a form of self-care… and what would it take to get the mind-body to believe that this was true?

III. Meat, etc.

Holy mechanized death Batman, why are people hostile or apathetic to questions about the morality of eating meat and dairy?

Is this not a moral question?

Are people afraid that if they start knowing about feedlots, animal welfare, and the big environmental picture they will have to take too much responsibility? Is it possible to know these things and still eat meat and dairy?

Have the dork-vegans and the sanctimonius-yogis captured the question?