Good Mood Food

Michael Pollan’s Supermarket Pastoral illustrates the nation’s organic food craze.  Over the past few decades, more and more American’s are showing a heightened interest in the food they consume.  People are choosing to shop at places such as Whole Foods and Fresh Market instead of at large chains such as Wal-Mart or Kroger.  They are also, in most cases, choosing to spend much more on food.  As Pollan states, the organic food industry has become an $11 billion industry.  Why are so many people forgoing their previous food choices and switching to organic?  Continue reading

What Has Religion Done To Us?

I was brought up in a traditional, Baptist church.  My mother is very religious and made my brother and I attend church every Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night.  We were also required to participate in our church’s youth group and activities.  I can hardly remember a summer where I didn’t have to go to some church camp or mission trip.  I was always taught about God and Jesus, and what the Bible said we should and shouldn’t do, how we were supposed to live our lives and so on.  When I was about nine years old, I gave my life to Christ because it was what I thought I was supposed to do; not because I felt any true calling from God.  When I was old enough, I told my mom that I would no longer be going to church with her.  Continue reading

What Really Knocked Me Out Was Her Cheap Sunglasses…

It all started with a pair of sunglasses.  At the end of the spring semester, I decided that my sunglasses were old and outdated and that I MUST have a new pair.  I thought that if I had to go one more day wearing my old, ugly sunglasses that I would just die.  So I shopped around online, went to the mall, and ended up buying a pair of way overpriced, killer sunglasses.  After about three days, I changed my mind and took them straight back.  The happiness that I had experienced while trying them on in the store quickly faded once I got them home and the reality of just how much I had spent on some plastic that I would more than likely end up breaking or losing sank in.

The point of me telling this overly dramatic story is not to embarrass myself by making my moment of vanity public, but because I feel like it made me stop and ask myself an important question:  Why are people today so obsessed with material possessions?  Why do we think that our pricey belongings will bring us happiness?  This idea of materialism has consumed our existence.  Why can’t we just be satisfied with what we have?  Continue reading

The Theme of Loss: Then and Now

One of the overwhelming themes in pastoral is the theme of  loss.  In Virgil’s Eclogues, Eclogues I and IX are mostly about loss; Meliboeus describing the loss of his land due to civil war in the first, Moeris lamenting about the loss of his farm in the ninth.  This continuing idea of losing one’s land reminded me of a serious problem many people  are facing today – home foreclosure. 

Many people have been laid-off, unable to pay their mortgage loan(s), and the bank comes and takes away their home.  These people’s tragic tales of hardships are very reminiscent of Meliboeus’s and Moeris’s trials and tribulations. Continue reading