I’ve been doing this thing lately where at the start of every month, I sit down and decide what the overarching “theme” or “project” for my month will be. Something to completely immerse myself in for 30 days that will make my life more interesting or yield some kind of personal growth benefit. This could literally be anything as long as it excites me and I can go deep in it. So yes, that includes your mom.
In September, I picked “religion” as the theme. I always considered most religions a form of brainwashing and their followers some of the biggest nut cases on this planet. So I decided to become one for 30 days ?
Every day I meditated for at least an hour and prayed about every hour. I read and contemplated books like the Bible, the Zohar, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, Tao Te Ching, etc. And I often literally asked myself “What would Jesus do?”
I learned a lot from the experience. Interestingly enough, some of the little habits that stuck with me were the ones I had expected to be the most irrelevant details.
One of them is (you guessed it) blessing my food. I’ve found that every time I bless my food, not only does the food taste better, it also increases my happiness levels for that day.
I started out doing this very haphazardly, just taking a moment to say thanks for the food I was about to eat. But a ritual like that usually loses its original feeling/intent. Around the point you start routineously mumbling “praisethelordforthisfood” to get it over with so you can start devouring that shit ?
It felt like I was missing the point. So instead of saying thanks, I forced myself to “feel” thanks first and then simply observe what popped in my mind. And that’s when the magic happens.
For example, the other day I was eating some hummus.
When I took a moment to feel thankful for it, an infinite supply of happy thoughts popped into my mind all at the same time:
• Thanks, people who grew these chickpeas so that this hummus could be made
• Bless the soil, the water and the sun that nourished them.
• Thank you, people who turned them into hummus
• Thank you, the people who packaged this. The people who shipped it. The people who opened a store where I could buy it.
• Now that we’re at it, bless the guy who invented hummus in the first place. How awesome was that guy? (or girl, I know, I’m a sexist pig ? )
• I’m so lucky to be born in one of the richest parts of this planet, which gives me access to this delicious hummus.
• And it’s not just the place I was lucky to be born in. How awesome is it that I was born in a time in history where I can actually just pick up some hummus whenever I want instead of having to go hunting in the forest all afternoon first? (Not that anyone ever hunted down a live hummus in the past. But hey, you get the point ? )
• …and now that we’re at it, how cool is it that I was born in the first place?
All these thoughts and more came to me in the 2 seconds before I started eating it and savouring the flavor immensely (because gratitude is the best sauce, after hunger of course).
And that is why I realized such a simple habit was actually worth a blog post.
Because the truth is, I kinda lied in the title of this post.
Blessing your food doesn’t make your life more awesome. Your life is already extremely awesome. But blessing your food can make you realize it.
And what’s the point of all that awesomeness if you can’t even taste it?