On Food: The Five Contemplations

In 2008, I spent a few days at the Deer Park Monastery in Escondido, CA. One of the things I came away with was five contemplations about food. I enjoyed them very much and hope you will also find them interesting and/or useful.

  1. This food is a gift of the whole universe, the Earth, the sky, numerous living beings, and much hard work.
  2. May we eat in mindfulness and gratitude, so as to be worthy to receive it.
  3. May we transform our unskilled states of mind—especially our greed—and learn to eat with moderation.
  4. May we eat in such a way as to keep our compassion alive, reduce the suffering of human beings, preserve our planet, and reverse the process of global warming.
  5. We accept this food so that we may nourish our brother- and sisterhood, strengthen our Sangha, and realize our ideal of serving living beings.