Would you drink your own spit?

Reading Mary Roach’s book, Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, a curious question came up – would you drink your own spit? It seems like a no-brainer; after all, if you discard your own saliva into a clean glass, filling it, say, half way, why wouldn’t you put that bodily fluid back into where it just came from? It’s not like our saliva exited our colon or bladder – it arrived directly from our mouth. Interestingly enough, Roach discloses that the bulk majority of people, that is, hmm…, us, will find this idea appalling. Furthermore, if one is to spit into their own soup, that too, turns out, will be a deterring factor for skipping lunch. It seems like we do not like to spit on the cake and have it too…

Why? Why do we find our own saliva disgusting once it is no longer in its natural habitat? It seems like we apply a double standard; after all, quite a few mothers seem to be okay, if the need arises, to wipe their baby’s dripping nose with a bare hand; passionate lovers kissing, exchange saliva without giving it a second thought. Skipping a further discussion about taking back in other forms of digested food which originated involuntarily out of our open lips, let’s just say that we seem to follow a rule; that once something leaves our mouth, it is not allowed back in. In examining the root cause of this code, it seems much of derives from social conditioning. While this habituation changes slightly from one culture to another, I am more interested in how come I was not aware of this observation; that what seems fine to us in one environment, utterly disgusts us in another. Some food for thought?

Round and about, it makes me wonder if there is a connection here to the idiom, eating your own words. I am going to chew on that too for a little while.

Learned from: Mary Roach’s book, Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal


About Ronen

Ronen Divon had been walking spiritual and holistic paths for well over thirty years. Born in Israel, educated in New York, and currently residing in North Carolina, Ronen had traveled the world, spending time with teachers, masters, healers and guides. With wisdom that spans multiple traditions, including the Far East, India, Israel, Brazil, Peru, and Native America, Ronen remains a student, learning and adding modalities that will best serve his clients, each according to their own unique needs. Ronen is also a published author, a Yoga, Meditation, and Tai Chi instructor.
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1 Response to Would you drink your own spit?

  1. Food for thought? Hmmmmmm.
    Maybe ejected bodily fluids are simply nature’s version of Taylor Swift’s mega opus – “We Are Never Ever Ever Getting Back Together”
    A baby’s dripping nose – I don’t remember ever trying or wanting to use a syringe to get that snot back in!
    Passionate lovers may share their saliva but, unlike an engagement ring for a couple that doesn’t make it to the altar, has there ever been a small claims court case for the proper return of spit? There is a corollary here to other love-making fluids but in the interest of a G rating, we will continue on to the sneeze.
    A sneeze. Fluid out. Nobody wants it back.
    Vomit is mostly liquid – no more need be said here.
    I think once anything is expelled from the body, the fluid is meant to be shared with others or be absorbed by nature.
    Reminds me of that stream that never stops moving. The water never stays in the same place.
    It’s a journey. Our bodily fluids are meant to move on.
    And I shall do the same…
    Happy holidays!

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