I have always had a bit of a different way of seeing and putting things together. For at least several weeks now (probably closer to a few months) I have been quite frustrated with the amount of time I spend on the computer – particularly Facebook. And I have been quite unable to make a significant dent in my Facebook time. I have gotten out books I want to read, I have chastised myself, I have made to do lists and made deals with myself to only go check Facebook after I have completed this or that to do.
And, I spend a fair amount of time checking out food related information. I want to lose a significant amount of weight (and have for decades!) and want it to be easy (I do indulge in magical thinking!). I have been involved in a lot of different weight loss groups and have wondered about the food and addiction ideas that are out there. None of those ideas have actually felt just right.
Today a post of Facebook referred to an article from Huffington Post on addiction that caught my eye (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/johann-hari/the-real-cause-of-addicti_b_6506936.html). The title indicated that the cause of addiction had been found. I read the article.
Basically the article stated that the cause of addiction was lack of bondedness or lack of a sense of community. Two of the main studies that they cited were the effect of “Rat Park” on the ease of getting rats addicted to drug-laced water and the effect of “Rat Park” on already addicted rats. Rat Park was a lovely cage where rats had lots of friends, plenty of things that rats like to play with, places that rats like to explore, and highly nutritious rat food. What they discovered was that Rat park kept most rats from becoming addicted and cured most addicted rats. (For the details, please go to the article; it is interesting and includes lots of other data.)
I put the concept of Rat Park, my unwanted affair with Facebook, and my interest in food and weight loss together. And what did I come up with? Facebook will never give me the equivalent sense of community that I want. I want the human equivalent of Rat Park! I need a pack of rats to run around with, access to the healthiest food around, great toys to play with, and interesting territory to cavort in! I can easily see that if I had those things, I would spend much less time on Facebook, would have less time to think about eating, and I would be….content! That would happen because I would be connected with others of my kind, have interesting things to do with the people in my park … I would have a community.
Far be it from me to call all of you rats, but I think that part of the purpose in creating this website was to create our own Rat Park for humans. I hope that you find rats to play with, things to encourage you to play, interesting ideas to pursue, and maybe even an interesting recipe or two! I hope you enjoy our version (for spiritually minded humans) of Rat Park!