Monday, June 13, 2011

Chapter one

Chapter one – Getting around to it

I have my theme, I’ve gathered my recipes, my husband is on board, I’m motivated, I finally have the time, I have a computer ( so the work is easy) and being self disciplined I’m ready to get down to the hard work of writing this book.

Each day for five days a week I’ve posted a page of this book on my blog. I told myself that if I’m writing a daily blog I might as well multi task and make it into a book. Monday I write a recipe for health, Tuesday a recipe for sex, Wednesday a recipe for happiness and Thursday a recipe for love. On Friday I shared a recipe for a meal that incorporates health, sex, happiness and love into a set of directions with a list of ingredients for preparing and making a meal based upon health, sex, happiness and love. What else could there be?

If you follow the daily recipes you see how a well thought out meal can bring health, sex, happiness and love into your life. Breaking bread should be more than simply filling the tank. There is nothing more satisfying than enjoying a wonderful meal, carefully prepared for and with those you love.

You won’t need a gourmet kitchen or fancy cookware to make these meals. The ingredients are simple, the recipes are uncomplicated and directions are easy to follow. Anyone can cook a meal but not everyone takes the time to develop an awareness of the process by which we all derive life and that is through the sustenance of food, which supports out health, sex, love and happiness.

I’ve arranged some of the recipes to be complete meal. Others are a dessert or appetizer that also supports health, sex, happiness and love. You can rearrange them to fit your taste. And even if you never cook one of these recipes you’ll learn how to order food in a restaurant that will become more than simply a meal to be eaten. Food will become an expression. For example: you’ll eat salmon not because it’s supposed to be good for you but because it is both good for your heart health, circulation and for lifting your mood. It’s a healthy and happy food and you’ll know why.

I am a Naturopathic Doctor by education. A naturopath looks at the world through natural eyes and organic senses. That does not mean organic in the commercial sense. Today the media is full of organic praises for this and that. It means that we look at the natural aspect of things and how they affect our being. Food or diet is the essence of health. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine said “let food be thy medicine.” And why is good food essential to health? Because the body-mind derives life, health and continuation from the essential elements found in food. We need vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbohydrates, sugars, fats, salts and water to sustain life and those elements can only be found in whole and natural foods. The human body-mind was design to operate efficiently based upon the right ratio of nutrients. We did not evolve under artificial light and on processed foods.

We need a healthy supportive diet to survive and to thrive. We need variety, as found in nature to insure we get all the essential nutrients we need. Nature provides all that we need to survive in a healthy and prosperous manner.

Take a little time and look around you, especially at the rich color of whole foods. Smell the freshness and marvel at the design. Lift your palette to a new height by trying different foods. Open yourself up to different cultures through the experience of cuisine.

There is a branch of yoga; Annamaya-Kosha that is the branch of yoga dedicated to conscious eating. The branch of yoga teaches us to consciously inspect and be aware of the foods and drinks we take into our being for the essence of our being is reflected in our health and our health is dependent upon what we eat and drink. Moderation is the key. All things in moderation bring about balance. When we think of yoga or spirituality and diet we often think of being vegetarian or a vegan. But even the Buddha believed that destroying a tree for commercial use was more harmful than eating a piece of meat. It’s not the meat but the choice that you make to bring vitality to your body. The simple question is; will this bring vitality to the body-mind. It is about promoting the ideals of a long and healthy life, which means to consciously promote health rather than a focus on the eradication of disease.

The ideals of a long and healthy life means that we experience radiant health which includes vitality and adaptability, sexual vigor and response, mental keenness, love, compassion, harmonious relationships, happiness and wisdom.

The joy in doing something that sparks passion and excitement while at the same time brings balance and health to one’s life is probably the ultimate in living a fulfill life. Fulfillment is different for each person. We all have our own unique talents and goals. Sharing with others the fruits of our labors, especially through food and drink touches the body, the mind and the soul. Therefore be conscious of the all that you think, say and do.

I mention this branch of yoga because I am dedicated to the practice of yoga. It has taught me many things among them the path of balance. Many spiritual people believe that we should always choose good over pleasure and that eating and drinking some foods and beverages is a pleasure. Good becomes defined as living a very austere life where one denies all pleasure in favor of choosing what is considered the “good” path. But if we choose good and there is no pleasure in choosing the good; just how long will we stay on the path of good?

By nature we are programmed to seek out pleasure. It is what gives essence to life. Our senses are wired to respond to pleasure. The secret is found in balance and moderation. The pleasure found in consuming food and drink can also be good for you and good food and good drink can also be pleasurable. It is best not to deny yourself all pleasure in pursuit of the “good”, because good at the expense of all pleasure usually leads to destruction. Therefore seek balance in all things and in all things find balance. This is the essence of good and pleasurable living.

All the recipes in this book are made from foods that are good for you and that will bring vitality to your being. After all, health, sexuality, happiness and love are the essence of living a full and vital life. What else could one want? More money? Many people with lots of money are not living a very vital life. When health, sexuality, happiness and love are missing life is dull. Enjoy the moments of pleasure and good balanced with thoughtfulness.

Each day, for four days, for one year, I have written a page with a recipe for health, sex, happiness, and love. On the fifth day of the week I have given you recipes for creating a meal that will bring health, sexuality, happiness and love into your life. Whether you cook these meals or not you will learn something about the foods you eat and how to bring vitality and balance into your life.

Within many texts there are hidden meanings. There are allegories that lead to a deep understanding of the essence of life. Often times these are missed in search of something more profound. Nature in all her wisdom provides everything we need to be healthy, sexy, happy and loving. We need look no farther than our pantry shelf to find the secret to the mysteries of life. Life after all is simply nature unfolding in all her grace and glory; enduring because of health, sex, happiness and love.

As you move through the pages in this book think about the yoga of eating. Think consciously about the foods you consume and the foods you prepare. Think consciously about the health of your body, mind and soul and how goodness and pleasure can co-exist in harmonious and fruitful ways. Although this is a cookbook of sorts it’s also a recipe for bringing health, happiness, sex, love and ultimately peace to the body, the mind and the soul.

Look for the hidden meanings and allegories tucked neatly with the text. Search to discover something more meaningful than simply cooking a meal. When you find it you will recognize it. It was given to me and I will pass it on to you. I have a gift for you. Don’t rush. Take your time and you will find it when the time is right tucked neatly within the pages ahead. Remember don’t miss the journey in a hurry to reach your destination.

There are no secrets only thoughts, words and deeds to be shared. Let me share this thought, these words and deed with you…

Attaining wisdom is the ultimate goal in life. But wisdom can only come about through knowledge and knowledge only comes about through experience and experience only comes about through doing. So just get up and do it!

Ten Things I learned about cooking

1. Every oven is different. Always adjust the recipe cooking time to the idiosyncrasies of your oven. Thanks Mom!

2. Always use the right size pans. Size matters.

3. Always be willing to experiment. How many times did it take Edison to get it right?

4. If at first you don’t succeed; try, try again. Don’t stop one foot from the gold.

5. Cooking is therapeutic. Sometimes it’s better than a stiff drink.

6. Cooking is an art that is colorful, pleasing and tasteful. Thank you Andy Warhol.

7. The energy you put into cooking will present itself in the meal. Cook with love.

8. Add your own special flair to what you cook. Too many cooks spoil the stew.

9. Not everyone is going to like everything you cook. Everyone has different taste.

10. Always thank the cook. You never know when you are going to need a meal. No matter what appreciate the time, energy and thoughtfulness of a home cooked meal.

No comments: