Updated: Nov 24, 2021
Everything is energy, including food!
Food has always been a central theme in my life. I grew up with parents who loved to cook and entertain and as a result, my brother became a chef and my sister, and I are serious “foodies.” Years ago, my husband told me a little about Macrobiotic Cooking and the concept that really stuck with me was that when you pour love and good intention into your food while making it, the people eating it will benefit and be nourished by that love and intention. I fell in love with this idea and have always tried to be present, mindful and set intentions when I’m cooking or baking.
“Everything we do is infused with the energy with which we do it”
Recently I discovered something that completely inspired me because it has to do with two things I love, Feng Shui and food. As with most things, it turns out, they are linked!
While researching the origins and meaning behind Macrobiotic cooking I learned the Macrobiotic diet is associated with Zen Buddhism and is based on the idea of balancing yin and yang. As a Feng Shui practitioner I found this information fascinating and decided to look further.
Apparently, the earliest Chinese dietary text is found in Sun Simiao’s Prescription Worth a Thousand Gold which waswritten in 650 during the Tang Dynasty. The food chapter is divided into four sections on fruit, vegetables, cereals and meat and the author outlines the properties of individual foods and how they correspond to the Five Phases (5 Element Theory - used in Feng Shui and Traditional Chinese Medicine) including the five flavours (sour, bitter, sweet, pungent and salty) and the five grains. Simiao goes onto explain dietary interdictions, some based on timing, such as no water chestnuts in the seventh month and no clear wine with horse meat. Again, the use of timing is interesting to me, as much of Feng Shui is based on timing and date selection is an important aspect of the science.
While date selection is generally used for things like moving into or out of a home, getting married and even when best to break up, obviously there is a link between food and the seasons. Naturally, we eat foods that are in season, and while we have moved away from this concept with the modern practise of shipping foods all over the world, we still reach for foods that warm and nourish us in the cold months and foods that are light and cooling in the warm months. How interesting, and yet logical that the Chinese included the yin/yang and 5 element theory to elaborate further on this concept.
As with the Macrobiotic theory, in Ayurveda philosophy it is also believed that the energy, attitude, intention and feelings you have while cooking is infused into the food. This energy is then absorbed and digested into the person receiving it. Cooking with love, devotion, and kind energy is essential for optimal digestion. Food can not only nourish your body, but it can also nourish the mind and soul!
PRASHAD, in Sanskrit, means food that is cooked with love, infused with devotion, offered to God, and sealed with a prayer of gratitude!
This brings us back to conscious cooking which is the idea that when cooking we allow ourselves to be free of distraction and any disturbance allowing us to focus all our energy on making the meal at hand. Staying present and mindful while preparing the ingredients and cooking the food will support your ability to infuse the food with loving energy, healing, and nourishment.
Can you imagine if we all set an intention of infusing good energy into our food before we ate it? Here are some tips to start cooking consciously.
1. Carve out time to make meals, so you are not rushing and can really enjoy the process and stay present.
2. Try to only cook or bake when you have the energy and are feeling at peace, positive and upbeat.
3. Find gratitude in the bounty that most of us experience in our daily lives when it comes to nourishing our bodies.
4. Make preparing and eating food a ritual rather than a chore. Take the time to appreciate the food on your plate before you eat it and give thanks for all that we have in our lives.
5. While cooking think of the people you are cooking for even if it’s for ourselves. We all deserve love!