October 28, 2019-
Today begins yet another cusp, of another revolution around the Sun. This coming year is significant, in that it is the last year of my seventh decade. People warned me that 68 would be the year that health challenges would surface. They haven’t. Maybe because of my personal regimen, and open-mindedness to the suggestions of friends and family, the overall state of my physical frame has actually been better this year, than last.
When a cusp begins, the month before my birthday, I start to think of goals, and changes I might make. One change is the way I sit, and for how long. Someone has suggested using 135 degrees as good posture, when having to sit at length. A thirty minute limit to any one sitting session has also been suggested-which works everywhere except in a theater or on a long road trip, or flight. In those cases, every 1-2 hours works better.
Another change is to think even more out of the box than I have been. This, of course, will give my critics fits, as they already roll their eyes at unconventional things I do and say, but no matter. I will need to be even more flexible, with regard to my schedule and commitments, over the next several months, than has been the case in the past several years.
Now, let’s get to the lobsters. In his work on “Twelve Rules for Life”, the psychologist Jordan Peterson begins by describing the behaviour of lobsters. The crusty crustaceans have a hierarchy. There are ten levels, with the alpha lobster having a high level of serotonin, which leads the animal to maintain an erect, well-balanced posture and the low creature in the hierarchy having low serotonin, but a high level of octopamine, which leads it to splay its limbs and slump around- in other words, to be a low-achieving lobster slacker.
The implications for us human animals is fairly clear. Seratonin is huge, for those of us who want to feel strong and be taken seriously. If it affects posture, then let’s have more of what the singer John Mayer calls “a serotonin overflow”. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81yl_76s7jA.
I would prefer not to depend, though, on a romance, or a respite from daily life, to provide me with the juice that affords me with respect from self and others. Towards that end, as with other health-related matters, let food be my medicine, as has been said by wise men, from Hippocrates (and probably the ancients who preceded him) to ‘Abdu’l-Baha. https://www.healthline.com/health/healthy-sleep/foods-that-could-boost-your-serotonin. More attention to posture is also in the offing.
I will have more to say about Jordan Peterson’s “Twelve Rules”, over the next several days.