Posts Tagged ‘food’

Visionary Vegan Turned Praying Carnivore?

June 18, 2012

Diet seems to encourage conversation easier than many other topics. I notice this when I post a status update on Facebook that’s about food, and immediately the responses start pouring in, whereas if I post a prayer I might get one or two responses over time.   Not everyone prays, but I think it’s safe to say that every one of us eats. 

Vegetarianism, veganism, and raw-ism are some controversial topics in today’s world.  We heard a sermon, believe it or not, on veganism yesterday and it was conversationally stimulating, to say the least.  In fact, we are still talking about it, reacting to it, and in wonder about it.  It caused such intense reactions in the audience that the minister received some anonymous hate mail on her windshield.  I’d say that if one can elicit this type of reaction, then they are making some waves that cause growth one way or another.

A vegetarian for 21 years, a vegan for 3 years, and two different month long forays into a raw diet, I have some things to say on the topic.  I feel that I’ve explored different diets and the lifestyles that go with them.  I’ve even encountered health afflictions created by some of them.  My sweetheart reminds me that we visited veganism together twenty years ago and gave it our full monty…and have lived to tell the story, too.

My personal journey into vegetarianism first as a spiritual choice and then a health choice was not so difficult. My Higher Power made it abundantly clear to steer from cows by downloading an intense vision of a live cow being forced through a meat grinder as I bit into a Big Mac one day at a drive-thru.  That first bite was spit out vehemently and was the last bite of red meat I was to take for the next 23 years.

I was religious about it.  My poor mother tried to make my fiancé and I some vegetable soup one day and thought she could get away with a beef broth base without my noticing.  Wrong.  The soup ended up in the toilet.  I forced her to sit thru a Tofurkey at Thanksgiving against her will, and when she brought home what used to be my favorite dish ever, a live lobster that was a gift from a friend, I was mortified.  I begged and pleaded, tear streaming down my face, not to boil that lobster.  She finally relented and handed it to me, and I drove to the canal and sent it home in front of a fisherman at the dock who stood there with a strange look on his face.

My day of reckoning came when I became so ill I couldn’t eat.  My stomach was on fire, and my skin had broken out.  A plague of symptoms too terrible and personal to list had befallen me, and the doctor couldn’t help.  Nothing helped. As a final attempt at relief, I sought out a holistic nutritional doctor that a friend recommended, and they determined that my body had developed severe sensitivities to every substance foundational to my diet.  What was left to eat now?  Bark?  Trees?  Dirt?  It was indeed a big dilemma.

For a year or so I lived on meager fixin’s where no meat, no gluten, no soy, no wheat, no tomatoes and no yeast or dairy passed my lips.  It was impossible to eat at a restaurant, and it was painfully boring, but at least I wasn’t suffering from the horrible food reactions anymore.

Then I became pregnant and a new lesson was in store for me.  Five months in I could not stay awake, falling asleep even standing up.  I was exhausted, depleted, and unwell.  The doctor announced severe anemia, and no amount of pills or Floradix, or prune juice could fix it.  I was actually craving steak in my dreams.  And so, with great trepidation and deep concern, we went to a restaurant to order the first steak in well over two decades.  I couldn’t even bear to cook it myself, nor did I even know how.  That was a rough meal for me and for my beloved, who had to cut the meat for me because I couldn’t bear to.  The lifting of the fork was a push/pull, wanting to eat and not wanting to eat.

My baby’s life depended on it, though, and so eat I did.  I made peace with what was, in my own way.  Having a strong background in spiritual studies, my intention was pure and I prayed over that cow, chicken, fish hard and long before partaking.  Heck, I had been practicing praying over vegetables before chopping them for decades as well.

This was the full circle of my experience with extreme diets, and it’s not even touching on weight loss diets I’ve tried.  The message was very clear after this, that I had no right to judge anyone who ate meat or didn’t eat meat, nor did I have a right to presume that I knew best what they should be eating or whether they were ignorant or enlightened about food.  Even judging someone who is beginning to find their consciousness in what they eat is entitled to their experience without judgment.  I was that person who was zealous in my newfound passion for saving the lives of animals, cleaning up the planet, and honoring life the best I could.  I was also that person that had to eat things I would rather not have eaten, for survival and health purposes. 

Nowadays, I practice conscious choices and prayer, raising the vibration of whatever I consume, and forgiving myself when I forget or when I choose things I know aren’t good for me.  My current path is one of love and healing towards that which I consume, praying with deep gratitude for whatever gave of itself so that I could live.  I make the best choices that I can in terms of whether to purchase leather or cloth, natural or synthetic.  There are arguments in every direction for what is best or worst and it seems that evidence can be found in every direction according to one’s intention.

My mantra is balance in all things.  Balance is a good place to seek and a beautiful place to land.

 

 

How To Cook Anything Better

September 27, 2010

One thing I’ve learned that crosses all religious boundaries, that translates all hobbies into a blur, and that breaks exclusive barriers across the board is…love. This goes for cooking, knitting, pet care, raising children, scientific experiments, health, relationships, business, art, you name it.

My first mentor taught me metaphysics with some Buddhism thrown in for spice. She was the first person who whispered into my ear that when I chop vegetables, I need to thank them for giving their lives first. That information, because it seemed both bizarre and intriguing, stuck with me and I have diligently followed it to this day. Fifteen years later when I met my white tantric teacher, she taught me to chant mantras over my food, to never cook when I’m in a bad mood, and to find vegetables at the supermarket by touching them and feeling into their sentience and life energy. Then while cooking them, we would vibrate them even more with love and mantras, thereby improving the state of the planet through food.

I’ve found that these practices translate into all of life. For instance, we were also taught in Tantra that whatever we are creating will take on the vibration of our state. So if one is making a baby, be in a positive, spiritual state of mind. If one is knitting a sweater, one can chant prayers or mantras, intend love, and sing with each stitch. For business, when I’m writing a program, or sending out a newsletter, I pray, meditate for what to write, and fill myself with love and gratitude while I create. I intend love for all recipients, and the highest good for all outcomes.

This works for road trips, shopping, learning a new skill, eating a meal, and composting a garden. In fact, you can use this with kitchen witchery, which I do as well. The old rule of thumb when stirring food on the stove is to stir to the left to rid food of negative energy, and stir to the right to infuse good, positive things into the food. I’ve created many a meal in which people were uplifted before my eyes while ingesting what I ate. Have you ever gone out to eat and wondered why you left the restaurant feeling miserable, angry, or upset? It’s always good to consider that the chef may have been having a bad night. This is why blessing our food is so important before eating it.

I’m a firm proponent of blessings. Some might feel that they’re easy to come by, that they’re quite unnecessary, or that they don’t mean much. In my life, blessings are one of my most powerful tools. They impart grace, gratitude, hope and most of all, love. Blessing anything makes it so much better.


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