There are many ways to give thanks for our food. Any sincere expression of gratitude will slow us down enough to connect with the sacred. Most cultures and religions have a way to express thanks for what is about to be eaten. Holding a deep connection to the earth🌍, Native Americans honor the exchange of life in regard to food. They ask the spirit that dwells in the living food - whether animal or plant - for permission to take its life. They then give thanks to the Spirit for its willingness to sacrifice its own life for their benefit and sometimes make an offering of corn or tobacco, for example, in exchange for this sacrifice. Such an act acknowledges that something has been given and received 🔁 on both sides.
Anyone who eats food that has been prepared for him or her can be equally present to this exchange of life. Many recite a prayer 🙏 from a spiritual text, while others speak freely from the heart ❤️. Others may practice gratitude through silence. If the expression is sincere, the offering will be effective.
For many years now, I have been writing daily in my gratitude journal 📘. Usually doing so within the first two hours of waking up, it is my favorite way to start the day. You can use any type of journal you like. Introduced to me by my dear friend, Lori, I like to use The Secret Gratitude Book by Rhonda Byrne because it has a format in which you write down the things that you have already received on the left side and the things you desire/want/need but have not yet received on the right side.
It’s so much fun to witness over time how the things that you wrote down ✍🏼on the right side do, indeed, manifest, thereby leading you to record them ✍🏼on the left side. The trick is to express your gratitude in the present tense, whether you have already received the things you want, or not. This is because the law of attraction doesn’t differentiate between past, present, and future. Rather, energy responds to our vibration. So, if you write the things you want as being in the future, they will remain in the future. Instead, express thanksgiving in the present as if you have already received what you need or desire.
Expressing Gratitude for Our Food Thanksgiving invites us to express gratitude 🙏for our food. Because most of us eat at least several times a day 🍑🥗🌯, food can be our greatest reminder to give gratitude not just around the banquet table, but each and every day. After all, given that we are dependent upon it for life, doesn't it deserve our constant appreciation? Still, we can use this time to strengthen our practice of giving gratitude for food.
Indeed, the universe has gifted us with a bountiful supply of beautiful food. By offering gratitude for our food, we are acknowledging that it did not just appear out of thin air but was produced from the earth🌏and the people who planted, nurtured, and harvested it. Gratitude cultivates seeds of compassion that will strengthen us to do something to nourish others, and helps us to pause long enough to recall the reasons why we value food.
Following are some food-related examples of how to express gratitude for things that you already have now and things that you intend to have. Note that the language is the same for both. It’s pretty remarkable to experience the law of attraction at work through this simple exercise.
This last intention would most likely be written in the GRATITUDE NOW section after Thanksgiving:
I would love to hear how you express gratitude! Please share your expression on my ImperfectlyVegan FaceBook Page.
BONUS: Using a gratitude journal is also a good way to keep memory of your life. I haven’t developed the discipline to keep a classic journal, but my gratitude journal offers up some level of recorded events. Give it a go and let me know how things are moving forward in your life.
With sincere gratitude for YOU,
SPRING HAS SPRUNG! Today, at 3:37 AM Mountain Daylight Time, we celebrate the Spring Equinox in Aries (Autumn in the southern hemisphere). Aren't we all more than ready to usher in the new? Well, now is our time. And in order for something to arise, something must die. This is the continuous play of paradox in our lives. The pregnant woman transforms into a mother with the birth of her child. The college student becomes the graduate when studies are completed. The fianceé becomes spouse after marriage vows are exchanged. When it comes to our relationship with food, I invite you to explore those parts of yourself that need to die in order for you to grow into something new. Of course, we looks towards growing in positive directions, toward greater and greater levels of physical, mental, financial, and spiritual wholeness. Following are some questions to consider during this spring equinox. You just have to choose one area of focus to create a positive change. And then, of course, is the time to take action.
1. What is ready, or getting ready, to die in your relationship with food:
· The habit of adding salt to your food before tasting it?
· Rewarding your children with unhealthy snacks?
· Reliance on caffeine to sustain your energy levels?
· Eating meat on a daily basis?
· Eating while driving, working, and/or talking on the phone?
· Eating to avoid doing other things?
· Eating to fill an emotional void?
· Carrying home your groceries in paper or plastic?
· Purchasing packaged foods when alternatives are available?
· Something else?
2. What is ready, or getting ready, to be born or to spring forth with regard to your relationship with food:
· Tasting a new fruit or vegetable?
· Starting to make regular visits to your local farmers’ market?
· Planting a fruit tree in your backyard?
· Using a TowerGarden to grow produce in an environmentally sustainable manner?
· Exploring your artistic side by learning, creating, or teaching a few new dishes?
· Considering the planet when deciding what foods to eat?
· Considering alternatives to traditional fast food while traveling?
· Taking your first step to being Imperfectly Vegan?
· Eating a meatless meal for the sake of the planet, if not for yourself?
· Taking a moment to give gratitude for your food before eating it?
· Something else?
Please share how you are releasing the old to become something new!
Reasons to be Imperfectly Vegan
I love the way the universe works! Way back in 1993, my then fianceé and I had been attending Unity Church in Walnut Creek, California. Dr. Will Tuttle played the piano at the services and we fell in love with his music! So, we asked if he would play at our wedding and he said, ‘YES!’
What I didn’t realize at the time was that he and his lovely wife, Madeleine, were vegans. And not only vegans, but advocates for the lifestyle! Now I joke myself that ‘It’s no wonder they left after the ceremony, given we were offering salmon and prime rib (or some other fine cut of meat) for dinner.’ I can, however, give myself a small break in that it wasn’t for another approximately 10 years that he would publish The World Peace Diet, one of the most important books of the 21st century, currently published in over 16 languages worldwide.
And while I was already a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who was a very strong advocate for the relationship between food and spirituality, I had not, as said, begun my own plant-based journey.
Fast forward, all the beautiful learning and experiences I had been receiving combined to deepen my understanding of this connection and I proclaimed myself to be Imperfectly Vegan. After publishing my book, The Sacred Art of Eating, I was honored to speak at the 2015 San Francisco World Veg Fest. As I visited the vendor tables, there he was: Dr. Will Tuttle! After all these years, we had a new connection that was at the core of each of our lives.
Below, I share a podcast that I did with Dr. Tuttle in 2018. In it, he helps us understand what is meant by “the domination of the feminine” and how it relates to our food choices and enlightens us about the foundation of a more conscious society based on the truth of the interconnectedness of all life. He makes explicit the invisible connections between our culture, our food, and the source of our broad range of problems—and the way to a positive transformation in our individual and collective lives.
I have long maintained that we can voluntarily contribute to world peace every day by making conscious decisions about what to eat. Dr. Tuttle has a provocative, challenging, and ultimately inspiring way of highlighting that concept. If you have been vegan or plant-based for a while, you will no doubt find strong affirmation within this podcast. And if you are just opening to the idea, or even if you have no interest in releasing an omnivorous diet, this podcast will enlighten anyone wishing to understand the big picture of our culture and why we have the unyielding dilemmas we face. The connections run deep! I hope you enjoy this podcast even half as much as I did!
MY GUEST, DR. WILL TUTTLE
Dr. Will Tuttle, visionary educator and musician, is author of the international best-seller, The World Peace Diet, published in 16 languages. He is a recipient of the Courage of Conscience Award and the Empty Cages Prize. Dr. Tuttle is the author of Your Inner Islands: The Keys to Intuitive Living and is the editor of Circles of Compassion: Connecting Issues of Justice, focusing on the interconnection of social justice issues. A vegan since 1980, he is a frequent radio, television, and online presenter, and has created several wellness and advocacy training programs. Featured in Cowspiracy, he is the co-founder of the Worldwide Prayer Circle for Animals. With a Ph.D. from UC Berkeley, Dr. Tuttle focused on educating intuition and altruism in adults. A former Zen monk and Dharma Master, Dr. Tuttle is also a noted composer and pianist, and lectures and concertizes extensively throughout the world promoting peace and cultural healing. See www.worldpeacediet.com for more details.
TWO PLACES TO LISTEN TO THE PODCAST
A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with degrees in nutrition and spirituality, Lisa is uniquely qualified to help us understand our dynamic relationship with food. Her passion about the unbreakable links between food and spirituality is the result of over twenty years of academic, professional, and personal exploration. In 1987, she graduated from UC Berkeley with a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics and received the Nutrition Sciences Departmental Citation Award. In 1990, she earned a Master’s Degree in Public Health Nutrition from UC Berkeley with High Honors. In 1996, she obtained a Master’s Degree in Culture and Creation Spirituality from Holy Names College, and is a Shamanic Soul Coach with certification from the Integrative Arts Institute. She is the Founder of the Imperfectly Vegan movement and author of The Sacred Art of Eating.
A sustainable lifestyle for ourselves and the planet.