In the previous episode we had commenced an extremely important discussion on how different categories of people consume food differently. We had started this entire discussion with Vidura’s explanation on what would be the contents or ingredients of food that is consumed by three different categories of people – Rich, middle class and the poor. Vidura had mentioned that the rich people always have food that contains meat. Middle class people consume food that is more on milk content, that is, milk and milk products like butter, ghee, etc. Finally the poor category of people consumes food that is excessive in oil. Primarily this classification of Vidura is based upon the professions each category of people undertake in their lives and of course on their financial condition and buying capacity too. Generally the kings and Kshathryas who are royal by birth make up the rich category of people. Also because their main duty is to fight for the country, they had to consume food that contains meat, owing to its abundant supply of energy and strength.
In the next sloka, Vidura extended this point further by explaining the levels of hunger for each category of people. In that he mentions that those people who are poor are blessed with hunger that would give them an opportunity to consume adequate and a balanced diet. However those people who are rich are completely pressurized mentally and with respect to various responsibilities that they’ve to carry on their shoulders and hence they consume very little food, just enough for their survival. Even if the rich people consume more amount of food at times, they end up consuming food that is unhealthy.
Thus Vidura clearly hints that in the modern day, we need to be extremely careful about our food habits. This point sparks up an important extended discussion on the modern day food habits and the various ways by which we are inviting unwanted health issues. In today’s busy lifestyle we see people running around every time, owing to extremely demanding professional and personal commitments. However, one important aspect that we always tend to compromise for our urgent lifestyle is our physical health! Today we are ready to compromise our physical health for achieving anything in this world and pathetically little do we realize that only if our physical health is intact, will we be able to enjoy the fruits of our hard work.
Now the question comes as to why do we tend to overlook our physical health for other tasks in life. One main reason is that, our physical body while being young in age, tends to absorb all kinds of “tortures” and “hardships” that it is put through on the pretext of our professional and personal commitments. However as we advance in our age beyond 40 or 45, this is the time when the physical body starts giving up! This is the point when all the disasters start unfolding one by one – Diabetes, Blood Pressure, Stomach ulcers, liver problems, etc. are becoming the order of the day as these problems start surfacing when the body gets older. Sadly we never realize these physical hazards when we are young in age! This unawareness has gone to even such an extent that “skipping” breakfast in the morning hours of the day has become a thing of fashion. Going one step forward, we skip breakfast and directly have our lunch in the afternoon, which modern day youngsters term this phenomenon as “BRUNCH”! Little do we realize the extreme hazardous effects of moving into this disastrous fashion called “Brunch”!
Hence the message from this episode is that, we should make it a point not to skip any meal of the day – Be it breakfast or lunch or dinner. Just like how we take care of our personal and professional commitments everyday, we should also take care of our physical commitments too and this is extremely important. If our physical body is out of shape owing to various reasons, then what is the use of excelling professionally and earning enormous money? Who is going to enjoy the benefits of all what we earn? Sadly the doctors and hospitals do!
Hence it is important that we strike a balance between our work commitments and maintaining our physical health intact. This is exactly what Vidura is also explaining here – He says candidly that poor people are able to balance both their professional and physical setups, whereas rich people unfortunately fail to achieve this balance. Thus Vidura advises us that we should somehow find time in such a way that we strike a balance between our work and maintaining our physical health in a good way. Our food habits need to be balanced and spread with an interval of 4 hours between each meal. We should devote time to do some physical exercise or yoga every day. These things are extremely important for our healthy living.
So for today let us ponder upon this very important point and let us try to start implementing this in our day-to-day life. We shall wait till the next episode to witness more of Vidura’s advice. Stay tuned! 🙂