pleasure and entertainment

I finally sat down a few days ago and watched “Eat Pray Love” from beginning to end.  I found it to be an overall enjoyable movie.  Mostly, it just made me aware of how long it’s been since I’ve been outside the States, and made me want to change that really soon.  But there was one part in particular that resonated with me, and has been rolling in my head ever since.  It was when a wonderful old Italian man said to the main character, a recently divorced woman struggling to find herself in life and life in herself, “Americans know entertainment, but they do not know pleasure.”

Mmmm.  That is not a lie.  How many times have I sat down to an absolutely delicious meal, and before I’ve even started to eat the main course, begun thinking about and longing for dessert? How often do I start shoveling in another bite of food before the previous had been thoroughly tasted? Certainly not in regard to food alone, I forget to savor things that are beautiful and delicious, mostly because I am simply too busy mentally moving on to the next thing.  I forget that a major difference between entertainment and pleasure is that, while entertainment may happen at rapid-fire speed, pleasure very rarely does.  Pleasure, beauty…they take time, they require thought and commitment, and don’t announce themselves loudly.  They’re so easily missed.

May I take time this week to sit quietly in awe of pleasure and beauty.  May they remove my need to be entertained.


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