Benefits of Macrobioticsby Edward Esko
What are the benefits of macrobiotic living? Eating this way can help us maintain optimal health and achieve longevity. People such as the Hunza in Kashmir, known for their good health and longevity, eat grains and vegetables as their main food. They were eating more or less a macrobiotic diet adapted to their mountainous terrain and climate. The first benefit of macrobiotic eating is physical health and longevity.
A second benefit is peace of mind. That peace of mind comes from the awareness that we are living and eating in harmony with the universe. We are living in harmony with the movement of energy. That is the source of inner peace. Our mind and emotions are very much conditioned by what we eat. If you feed your child sugar, what kind of mind or emotions result? Children become hyperactive or cry a lot, and become overly emotional. If we eat plenty of meat, what kind of mind and emotions are produced? We become aggressive or in the extreme, even violent.
As your mind and emotions become more stable and peaceful, you naturally develop a sense of family and community. Modern values such as competition, dog-eat-dog, survival of the fittest, etc.have arisen from a carnivorous diet. Grain-eating people develop a completely opposite view. Instead of seeing scarcity they realize we live in a universe of abundance. Rather than fighting over resources, the issue becomes how to share the tremendous natural wealth on our planet. Eating meat produces isolation, something like the lone hunter or lone wolf, rather than a sense of community. Hunters such as lions and hyenas are constantly fighting. Grain-eaters develop a completely opposite way of thinking based on cooperation.
Eating meat leads to a nomadic lifestyle, following the herd, and we tend to become unsettled, rather than stable or settled down. Grain-eating agricultural life is more stable, more settled. Which way of life encourages family life? When the men are off hunting all season, or if the entire village has to constantly be on the move, it is difficult to maintain stability. Macrobiotic living strengthens community and family life.
People naturally desire to help and support each other. Through macrobiotics, you become friends with everyone. As we continue to eat this way, our concept of family expands to include all humanity. We reconnect with our human family on planet earth.
Macrobiotic living can help us gain spiritual understanding. Do you think it is easy to practice yoga or meditate if we eat hamburgers, or if our mind is very angry or upset, or if we are always stressed out? Or if we are eating sugar or drinking Coke all the time, so that our mind is often hyperactive and scattered, can we really stabilize and center our energy? These conditions make if very difficult to enter into deep, tranquil, and peaceful meditation. In order to allow spiritual energy to smoothly channel through us, and to use that energy, macrobiotic eating - grains and vegetables - is ideal.
Finally, as we achieve good health, peace of mind, a sense of family and community, and spiritual understanding, we gain the ability to have a big dream or adventure in life. Macrobiotics is based on change or transmutation. In other words, we gain the ability to change things into their opposite according to free will. So if we are experiencing difficulty, using macrobiotic understanding, we change that into pleasure or enjoyment. Or if we are experiencing sickness, we transform that into health. Or if the world is in danger of war, as our adventure, as our play, as our challenge, we transform that into peace. You even gain the ability to transmute or transform any type of food into your health and vitality. In other words, you embrace your antagonist and turn it into your friend.
As George Ohsawa said, ultimately there are no restrictions. The realization of freedom, or the freedom to play endlessly in this infinite universe, is the ultimate benefit of macrobiotic living.
Edward Esko is a macrobiotic author and lecturer. Contact him at: [email protected].