Feb 29, 2012
Taste refers to the appetite and is most commonly understood in the physical sense, the intake of food and liquid.
In its basic expression, taste grasps what is bitter, sweet, salty and sour. An expectant mother may crave a certain taste in food. The goal of taste is enjoyment and union with what is tasted. The loss of taste is an unnerving disorder but can be cured by stimulating the taste buds with medication and natural remedies.
Our contact with food provokes a reflex of pleasure or revulsion. Certain kinds of foods bring the expectation of pleasure and our eagerness to enjoy them. Other kinds conjure up disagreeable expectations, and they restrain our contact with them. During Lent, in imitation of Christ, Catholics and other Christians reduce their intake of pleasurable food and drink and also abstain from meat on prescribed days.
Feeling pangs of hunger symbolizes hunger for God, our full and complete satisfaction. Fasting from a created reality frees us from that object, revitalizes the spirit, and brings self-mastery and interior freedom. To embrace Lenten asceticism is to avoid those things which over stimulate the senses—not only food but also entertainment and the excessive use of electronic devices. The practice of Lenten asceticism is meant to intensify one’s taste for God.