You have a very perfectionistic idea about how the body should be, how you
should I be. You have a very clear-cut goal, and because of that clear-cut goal you fall short and you cannot accept yourself, you go on rejecting. And out of that rejection, you feel miserable.
Just destroy those goals and ideals: those ideals and goals that you are keeping in your mind of how things should be, how you should be. Drop them! And there is nothing missing, nothing is lacking; your energy can start flowing. Once you are in the moment, your body will start losing weight. It is continuous antagonism with the body that is making it fat, because when you are continuously against the body the body feels insecure, and out of insecurity it goes on eating.
It is like a child who cannot trust its mother. If the child cannot trust the mother, once he has the mother’s breast he will not leave it because he cannot trust; he does not know when he will get the breast again. It is not certain, he cannot remain secure in it — so he will grab. He will go on drinking as much as he can. He will stuff himself because the future is uncertain. When the child knows the mother loves him and knows the mother will be available — whenever she is needed she will be available — he does not bother to stuff himself. He can rest, he can eat as much as he needs in that moment, there is no need to hoard.
In fact fat is a hoarding; for some uncertain future one goes on hoarding. A man can live three months without food, one can gather that much fat. It is an old, ancient habit, biological. There were times, thousands of years hack, when man was a hunter and the food was not certain. One day it was there, and in abundance, and for days together it was not there at all. Man carries that biological habit. That is associated with insecurity. Now there is no problem — at least not in America: you have enough food. For the first time society has enough food. Americans should not be fat at all. Indians can be allowed to be fat because the food is not certain.
Now food is available, good food, good nourishment, there is no physical need to eat more, but now psychological insecurity triggers the mechanism of the body, and the body starts feeling insecure. It knows only one way of how to avoid insecurity, and that is to eat more, to go on eating and stuff itself. It becomes an occupation.
Drop the ideals! There is nothing that you have to improve; you are perfectly beautiful as you are. And start living! Rather than thinking that you will live in the future when you are perfect, when you are like this, like that, you will live when you have attained a certain standard according to your mind…. But life is herenow and slipping out of our hands. Tomorrow there is death — only today there is life… it is always today.
Start living and start enjoying. The more you enjoy, the less you will eat. A really happy person does not eat much. It is out of misery, out of pain, out of emptiness, out of a meaninglessness that one wants to grab on to something — at least food, something, the body has accumulated much wisdom, the body is very wise. If you eat too much the body says, “Stop!” The mind is not so wise. The mind says, “The taste is beautiful — a little more.” And if you listen to the mind, then the mind becomes destructive to the body, this way or that. If you listen to the mind, first it will say, “Go on eating,” because mind is foolish, a child. He does not know what he is saying. He is a new arrival, he has no learning. He is not wise, he is still a fool. Listen to the body. When the body says, “Hungry” — eat. When the body says, “Stop” — stop.
If you listen to the mind, it is as if a small child is leading an old man — they will both fall in a pit. If you listen to the mind, then first you will be in the senses too much; and then you will get fed up. And every sense will bring you misery, every sense will bring you more anxiety, conflict, pain. If you eat too much there will be pain and there will be vomiting, and the whole body will be disturbed. Then the mind says, “Eating is bad, so go on a fast.” And a fast is also dangerous. If you listen to the body it will never overeat, it will never under-eat — it will simply follow the Tao.
A few scientists have been working on this problem and they have discovered a very beautiful phenomenon: small children eat whenever they feel hungry, they go to sleep whenever they feel that sleep is coming — they listen to their bodies. But parents disturb them, they go on forcing: “It is dinnertime, or lunchtime, or this and that, or sleeping-time — go!” They don’t allow their bodies. So one experimenter tried leaving children on their own. He was working with twenty-five children. They were not forced to go to sleep, they were not forced to get up. They were not forced at all for six months. And a very deep understanding came.
They slept well. They had less dreams — no nightmares, because nightmares were coming from the parents who were forcing them. They ate well, but never too much never less than necessary, never more than necessary. They enjoyed eating and sometimes they would not eat at all. When the body was not feeling well they would not eat, and they never fell ill because of eating. And one more thing which no one ever suspected came to be understood, and it was miraculous. Only Sosan can understand, or Lao Tzu or Chuang Tzu, because they are the masters of Tao. This was such a discovery: they came to understand that if a child was ill, then he would not eat particular foods. Then they tried to understand why he was not eating those foods. The foods were analyzed and it was found that for that disease, those foods were dangerous. How did the child decide? — just the body.
When the child was growing he would eat more of whatsoever was needed for his growth. Then they analyzed and they found that these ingredients were helpful and the food would change, because the needs changed, One day a child would eat something and the next day the same child would not eat it. And the scientists felt that there is a body-wisdom.
If you allow the body to have its say, you are moving on the right path, the great way. And this is so not only with food — this is so with the whole life. Your sex goes wrong because of your mind, your stomach goes wrong because of your mind. You interfere with the body. Don’t interfere! Even if you can do it for three months — don’t interfere, and suddenly you will become so healthy, and a well-being will descend on you.”