I’ve been thinking a lot about the Buddhist and Hindu demon, the vile creature known as the Hungry Ghost, and the drives that are at play in the addicted. “I want this, I need this, I have to have this, NOW”.
Hungry Ghosts are described as having “mouths the size of a needle’s eye and a stomach the size of a mountain”. This is a metaphor for people futilely attempting to fulfill their illusory physical desires. These beings are “ghosts” only in the sense of not being fully alive; not fully capable of living and appreciating what the moment has to offer.
This is the realm of intense craving. Hungry Ghosts want to eat, but cannot swallow; when they try to drink. the liquid turns to fire, intensifying their thirst. The torture of the hungry ghost is not so much the frustration of not being able to get what he wants. rather it is his clinging to those things he mistakenly thinks will bring satisfaction and relief.
How often do we find ourselves medicating with whatever is handy, sex, food, shopping, over-exercising and other compulsive craving driven behavior, despite having had success letting go of drugs, alcohol and other addictions ?
What of this resonates for you?