Saturday, March 24, 2012

How to Cook a Balanced Life

A few weeks ago, I found myself saying “I wish I had more time to cook”. An hour or so later, I had another thought: why can’t I spend more time cooking?

How often do we tell ourselves that we can’t do something that really calls to us? Yesterday, I noticed that I was telling myself that I “shouldn’t be doing so much music”. I thought that I should have been doing some necessary housework. For someone who believes that we should each honor and bring our gifts into the world, to the best of our ability, this is a kind of insanity. It is at the heart of the human dysfunction: to ignore the whisperings of our soul which lead to the blossoming of our gifts and the realization of our purpose in the world.

I thought that centering on cooking would take away from my time to record music (something that I want to do during the winter studio season). I thought I would play less music; contrary to my expectations, I actually have spent more time both playing and recording music. We are sitting down to good meals; and, I can hardly drag myself away from the current recording that I am editing.

Rearranging the elements of our lives can bring surprising insight. By putting another leading of the heart, cooking, into action, I cleared the way for a true purpose, a real gift, to move forward. By holding my thoughts in rigid structure, demanding that my life flow in a certain way and only in that way, I prevented the more “organic” flow of energy that resides in me and between me and others, from flowing. That flow of energy that connects us all helps us to realize and express our gifts.

And the process of that expression looks like this: I make a beautiful meal for my husband and myself. All the time spent enjoying the kitchen that he built for us this last year, moving about in it, creating in it, setting the beautiful space for us to eat, nurturing us with the food I have made, all this time and energy flows into us both. We are both enriched by it. With this enrichment, we return to our creative endeavors and there is something more to put into them. This is such a simple and obvious thing and yet I set this understanding aside often. The enrichment that feeds our souls and feeds our creative endeavors is not just the food; it’s everything that flows into that food and the sharing of it…all the openness to creativity, to preparation, to involvement with process, to serving another, to loving another. What part of that can fail to touch all that we create after?