One of the perhaps surprising elements of rejecting the tenets of a religion that I have ardently believed all of my life is that I have felt a little lost lately. I find it difficult if I try to discuss this with anyone, since almost everyone I know well enough to have deeply personal discussions like this is a member of the religion that I abandoned, and at any sign of potential weakness, they seem quick to jump on me about how they knew I would eventually come to regret my decision. I want to be honest and sincere with them, but I hate to feel I am giving them ammunition that they are only too happy to use against me.
In addition, I’m not entirely sure myself of how I feel. I have known my entire life how I was supposed to view the world, how I was supposed to think about sin and righteousness, how I was supposed to act in just about any situation. I no longer have that understanding. I no longer know at a glance what to think about things, and that often includes what to think about myself.
In most parts of the world, insects constitute just another category of the many dietary options available to people. In some cultures, in fact, insects are considered delicacies, and rather than being quickly swallowed with a pinched nose when other food sources are not available, they are sought after, prized, and savored.
There’s a word for it, of course. Entomophagy. The dictionary definition of the word is, unsurprisingly: the savage practice of eating what no civilized person would ever consider food. Yes, the thought of it grosses me out. Yes, on a very cerebral level, I understand that it shouldn’t bother me at all. But when it comes to images of, for example, furry little spiders with too-tickly legs briefly deep-fried to get a crispy exterior and a sensuously juicy taste explosion after that first crunch, I can’t quite seem to envision myself making the transition from squeamishly eyeing the little critter on a plate to actually picking it up, tilting my head back, and dropping it down the hatch.