Explore In the Garden Is a Mirror; in the Mirror Is The Beloved, Matthew David’s guest stories for Fruit-Powered Magazine.
A raw food diet gives us an opportunity to reconnect with our nature. Reconnecting with our nature is not the same thing as cultivating awareness of the relationship we have with our environment or ecology. For me, nature and environment are not necessarily synonymous. The perception of nature as some static thing—as plants, rivers, oceans and clouds—is reductive and can be almost a nonsequitur in these important philosophical discussions. Nature is not a thing at all, but rather a complex organic force that is constantly evolving with the ultimate intention of harmony and balance. To me, something that is natural is something that is existing in full practical awareness of all connected life and consciousness. Anything that is happening for an isolated purpose, willfully ignorant of any other aspect of the greater organism, is unnatural. It is most often a manipulation carried out by a conscious being who is acting from a deluded and limited sense of self.
Our compass to what is natural is our intuition and the senses of our body. Our body is, by design, attracted to and equipped for what is natural for us as a living organism. When we view our diets and lifestyles in the context of our innate attractions and the anatomical tools that we inherit as humans, we determine how natural such a diet is. We ask ourselves: Why is our food source dependent upon outside factors that are destructive to our larger planetary organism? Why does our food choice involve so many products and appliances whose production requires unsustainable synthetic resources and pollution? Why, with such a large and pervasive conventional institution of diet and nutrition—one that is purported to be reinforced and justified by the most advanced technologies—is the world so collectively malnourished and dis-eased?
Yet among all these questions, maybe the most important question of all—a question that perpetually becomes an underlying influence in the way we perceive ourselves—is why do I feel like I am inferior to the me I know I can be? Why do I feel like I should look better, feel better, have more energy, be more functional and productive? Even when we have never actually experienced these higher levels, even when we have no logical reasons to expect more from ourselves, our innate connection to our intuition tells us that there is so much more to be experienced. By our natural design, we are equipped for experiences and sensations far beyond what our conventional lifestyles allow, and being ignorant of the cause of these apparent impetuses, we can become devastatingly frustrated in our seemingly mediocre existence. This is what I consider to be our essential disconnection from our nature.
This was the phenomenon that I believe compelled me to engage in my life of copious drug use. I felt the subtle presence of greater things and desired to experience them. I found no answers to this struggle in school, from the institutions of science and medicine, or from the example of the adult members of society. I could only find some semblance of contentment in narcotic and psychedelic drugs. As an intelligent person, I was surely aware of the detrimental implications such behavior had on my body, yet in the context of my experiences and intuitive expectations, it was the only rational thing to do. The choice I faced was to either extend my spiritually neutered existence of sensual mediocrity and confusion, or risk that life to pursue experiences and sensations that would at least get to some proximity of what I felt I knew was out there.
Of course, this was just another kind of self-deception for which I would surely pay a heavy penance. Even through the highest of highs, I was sent abruptly back down to the bottom to soak in the stagnant waters of emptiness and lack. No experience, no matter how high the high, ever got close to the heights of which my intuition had promised. In fact, the closer I came, the starker the contrast, and the farther the possibility seemed. In this constant and futile struggle, I was racked with torment, depression, anger and angst, which makes me wonder how I am even writing this today. Yet despite it all, I have never considered this path of mine to be the wrong one.
The truth is that despite the apparent superficial contrast of my past and my present, I never stopped seeking those intuitive heights; I merely began making more enlightened decisions in determining the best means. Even now, I would consider myself a fool not to partake in the drug use for any fear-based reasons; to preserve some half-life of mediocrity. As I struggled through this experience, I eventually found clarity in my quest. I stumbled across my awareness of my nature and realized that I could not expect to find that kind of higher pristine experience of being unless I found my own natural way. I realized that the world and society I was actively participating in and tacitly depending upon was a blatant deviation from such a nature and that if I wanted to find what I was looking for, I would need to go back to the drawing board, find my intuition and let it guide me to new uncharted ways of life and being.
Our bodies want to grow, evolve and actualize their infinite mystical potential of experience and sensation. They were designed to do so, and it is only rational to assume that they were designed to experience nothing short of the most pleasurable and enjoyable experiences that can be imagined. It is foolish to deny this reality while engaging in choices, actions and belief systems that greatly impede the natural development of your sensual and intellectual faculties. If we are not engaging in the practices of life that are most intimately aligned with how we feel, and are the most holistically and globally harmonious, how can we submit to any inherent impetus or shortcoming in ourselves; anything that would prevent us from naturally and effortlessly experiencing the pinnacle of joy independent of anything beyond ourselves.
The more you put these intuitive principles into practice by making diet and lifestyle choices that reinforce our most important relationships and bring abundant energetic resources to the continued development of our body—our spiritual instrument—the closer we get to feeling like we know we can feel and looking like we know we should look. This is reconnecting with our Nature.
Check out Matthew David’s transformation story!