Contemplating Our Food

Eating together is a meditative practice, and there are many ways to help us become fully present for every meal. When we serve our food, we can be conscious of the many elements that have contributed to form this delicious meal—the rain, sunshine, earth, air and love. Before eating, practicing The Five Contemplations can help us be fully aware and express our gratitude for all aspects of the universe that have gone into our meal’s creation. These contemplations also remind us to eat in moderation, and eat in a way that sustains the planet.

Honoring the Food

We appreciate that the earth, the sky, the rain, and the sun made this food possible.

We thank those who have made this food available, especially the farmers, the drivers, the workers at the market, and the chefs.

We only put on our plate as much food as we can eat.

We chew the food slowly, so that we can savor.

We eat in a way that protects the environment, and minimizes climate change.

We eat to be healthy, to be happy, to be more present and productive.

The Five Contemplations

  1. This food is the gift of the whole universe: the earth, the sky, numerous living beings, and much hard, loving work.
  2. May we eat with mindfulness and gratitude so as to be worthy to receive it.
  3. May we recognize and transform our unwholesome mental formations, especially our greed, and learn to eat with moderation.
  4. May we keep our compassion alive by eating in such a way that reduces the suffering of living beings, stops contributing to climate change, and heals and preserves our precious planet.

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