I've left aside spiritual reading for a little while in order to read some neuroscience (brain books). It is a kind of spiritual study if you admit that you can't define God or Spirit until after you define physiology and chemistry and evolutionary patterns.
Currently reading "The Ravenous Brain." This morning I read, "We overeat because normally, in nature, food is scarce, so when there is a plentiful supply, the desire to stock up is incredibly powerful. We suffer heavy stress, even when there is not even a remote threat to our lives, because we are built to strive desperately in a dangerous world. We are also engineered to impress -- to rise socially as far as we can -- partly to secure more resources, but also to find sexual mates. Sex is one of the main driving forces of adult life, because, after all, passing on our own brand of genetic ideas is the main evolutionary purpose of our existence."
So I understand my fights and my fears. I understand those powerful urges, maybe not overcome even if a different conscious choice is attempted.
Prayer is a belief that one of these instincts can be met by divine intervention.
I went running. I noticed that cigarette butts laying on the ground represent a threat to my life. I thought about how I evaluate every single man in terms of his usefulness as a mate or as a threat to my safety. The people closest to me are most likely to try to control my behavior so that I am not a threat to their evolutionary success. Some of my exercise is in the "survival of the fittest" category. The little things I do to please the boss or gets positive attention are evolutionary difficult to escape behaviors.
I try to give up the dopamine reward cycle. I am not fat. I don't go along with the tribe. I don't want to live a food centered life. I'm celibate. I don't know if I believe in God or not at the moment. I want to run endless miles. This represents eternity to me. I still sit in silence and listen. My intuitive thoughts come this way; I just don't think it is God talking to me. I go to work, pay the bills and have no purpose.