Thanksgiving Day is around the corner, and culturally it’s a season of over-indulgence. I’m all for relishing in the pleasure of good company and delicious food, but I invite you to shift the way you approach it this year. Can you embrace the moment while staying conscious, connected to both your body and the blessing of these gifts from the Earth?
I recently had a re-kindling with the practice of blessing my food before I ate it. To be honest, I go through streaks of being conscious around food consumption. I can often rush, but slowing down takes almost no time. On my pilgrimage through Ireland and France last month, out of convenience, accessibility, and also desiring to revel in the experience (especially in France!), I ate food I normally wouldn’t, like bread and cheese. I was a little anxious my body wouldn’t respond well, so I was very intentional about blessing my food before I ate it, and wouldn’t you know, my body responded favorably. While I believe it’s so important to be conscious about what we put in (and on!) our bodies, I do believe intention trumps all. Eating a delicious, homemade, fresh-baked chocolate croissant at breakfast or a bit of goat cheese with roasted vegetables at lunch, while feeling shame and fear was not going to serve me. So I remembered to bless my food. There are so many ways to do this and I don’t think you can do it wrong, but just in case you need a little guidance, here’s what I do:
I place my hands over my plate and say, either out loud or silently to myself and my food, “Thank you for your sacrifice, for coming all this way to offer my body your vitality. May my digestive system accept you with ease and may my every cell be nourished. May all beings on this Earth be blessed. May every step of bringing you to my plate be done so in conscious beauty. May I honor you, and live in a good way.” I wait to feel the food energetically pulse back to me, and then I begin eating.
It’s so simple. Sometimes I go on and on, thanking each individual plant, animal, herb, the people who’ve hands they’ve gone through, from seed holder, farmer, grocer, and chef, for how absolutely wonderful I think each ingredient is…It all depends on circumstances, but this simple practice is an opportunity to remember my Creator, to give thanks to Mother Earth and all that she provides, for a minute or two, three times a day. I highly recommend you try it, and let me know how it goes.