But man hath perversely continued to serve his lustful appetites, and he would not content himself with simple foods. Rather, he prepared for himself food that was compounded of many ingredients, of substances differing one from the other. With this, and with the perpetrating of vile and ignoble acts, his attention was engrossed, and he abandoned the temperance and moderation of a natural way of life. The result was the engendering of diseases both violent and diverse. (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, pp. 152-153)
This is a scary quote for me because it means that if I want to have good health, I have to change the way I think about a lot of things: I need to stop serving my lustful appetites (comfort eating, getting lost in social media, every addiction etc).
I need to be content with simple foods with simple ingredients (no packaged food, casseroles, most recipes). I wonder what this means for Bahá’í pot lucks in the future!
And I need to stop perpetrating vile and ignoble acts (shameful, depraved, base, despicable, ugly, unworthy, worthless, wretched, evil, morally bad or wrong, immoral, unethical or perverted).
In addition to the more obvious breaking of Bahá’í law, this means I also need to give up things like telling or listening to tasteless jokes, taking advantage of others, selling shoddy goods, being in a bad mood, having a bad attitude, swearing, lying and backbiting. “Ignoble” also means “common” and “completely lacking nobility in character or quality or purpose”, so in this age of the decline of the old world order, pretty much everything everyone around us is doing, will endanger our health if we don’t align our behavior with the Bahá’í Writings.
To protect myself from violent and diverse diseases, I need to focus on temperance and moderation as a way of life, and I am grateful to know these steps I can take.
What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation? I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!
If you liked this meditation, you might also like my book Making Friends with Sin and Temptation