A Baited Trap
Saturday, June 07, 2014
It occurred to me that temptation functions a bit like bait on a trap or fishing hook. A worm is dangled on a hook. A bit of cheese is placed on the mousetrap. If the bait weren't desirable the trap wouldn't work. I am amazed by my mind's ability to focus in sharply on the bait and put completely out of focus and out of mind the trap into which the bait is leading me. I am aware of the trap but I push thoughts of it aside. For example, one of my weaknesses is Mexican food and specifically the chips and salsa delivered to the table. Are the hot spices and creamy condiments and crunch intensely luring - yes. I am alone on this occasion and I eat all chips every one, loving the salsa, and then the entire meal - enough for three or four people truth be told. Did I enjoy it - of course I did and yet not so much. Enjoyment was diminished by the knowledge that I was wrecking my diet in ways that would take days to recover from. Yes there was awareness of this consequence in the back of my mind but I chose not to dwell on it. After the meal however the discomfort in my stomach which lasted through the night reminded me constantly that I had fallen for the trap. I could have brought two thirds of that meal home and enjoyed it much over a longer period of time. I could have stayed within my calorie range and gotten much more enjoyment out of it this way. The question for me to reflect on is what are the mental conditions and emotional needs that cause me to override my awareness of traps like this and pursue what I know full well doesn't and ultimately can't bring satisfaction. What I desire is a consistent awareness, focus on, and desire for choices that will truly satisfy. I must not let myself get fooled into thinking that the bait is what will satisfy. Bait is a deception. Its purpose is to deceive and lure one into trouble. I want to stay alert to any deception stirring in my mind. I want to choose each moment what will make me feel physically, emotionally, and spiritually healthy and content. To do that I need to stay alert and name the deceptions for what they are, and get on with enjoying life.