Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Living the Omer - We are HOW we eat!

These posts are an alternative to the daily "count" of the omer, meant as a meditative practice to guide us from Pesach through Shavuot.

As a practice to live a life of tikkun (healing or repair) which many of us seek to do, we need daily preparation. Allow me to post a series of suggestions to help you begin, or to revitalize, your practice of tikkun.

We all want tikkun ha-olam -- to be a part of repairing the world, but in order to do so, we need to focus on tikkun ha-nefesh, which is restoring our inner spirit. I think, however, that we need to back up a little further and look at the mind, body, spirit connection as a place to begin.

Because of this belief, I titled yesterday's post: Your body, don't leave home without it.

I want to keep the focus on tikkun ha-guf -- healing of your body - today as well.

I suggest a practice of connecting with everything that passes inward through your mouth -- be aware and mindful of all that you eat and drink.

Stop before you eat.
Sit down before you eat.
Look at your food: how did this food get to your table? who planted it, who harvested it, who delivered it, who prepared it?
Be aware of this process and bless it and those who enabled you to have that meal before you.

Connect with your food: smell, appearance, texture.
Take pause to bless your bounty prior to taking the first bite, silently or aloud.
Taste your food.
Chew it.
Be aware that you are eating.
Stop eating when you are no longer hungry.

Bless your body processes that allow this food to enhance your life.

How many times have you eaten your meal while driving in the car, or standing over the sink, or walking down the street? Were you even aware of the fact that you were eating and what you were using as fuel for your precious body?

As part of healing the body, make every meal a sacred time of blessing. Eat mindfully and with awareness and gratitude.

As you do this practice, you may choose to eat healthier foods, to declutter your body of chemicals and unnatural additives; you may choose to eat less since by eating mindfully, you become aware of the sensations of fullness. All of this is beneficial to the health of your body, putting you more in tune with your needs.

May you be blessed with healthy food, friends with whom to share it, and time to sit and savor it.

1 comment:

Jan said...

Beautiful post, Ann! Thank you for that gentle reminder that our bodies are temples and our true homes and we need to be mindful of how we nurture and maintain them. Maybe if we were all more mindful of what we each individually put in our house/body we'd take better care of our BIG house, the planet.