Re-Establishing a Sacred Relationship with Everything We Put Into Our Mouths
Excerpted from The Edge and Beyond: A Journey for Personal Self-Discovery, Awakening and Healing
Applying the following practice is an amazing and powerful tool. It can help desensitize food allergies and neutralize autoimmune conditions. It is the perfect answer for either losing or gaining weight.
Ideally, everything that goes into the mouth should be smelled first, including water. Smell individual items with your eyes closed. Be sure that you can identify the item correctly, based on smell exclusively, without a visual reference counter-point. Practice and learn to trust smell as a determinant to guide you as to whether to put the item into your mouth or body. The olfactory bulb transmits smell signals to the brain for processing. The olfactory bulb is the tip of the limbic system.
This system, in the middle of the brain, is the master control center for all neuro-endocrinologic functions, emotional equilibrium and influences autonomic nervous system function and balance.
Smell, and the re-establishment of its proper use and function, is a remarkable and powerful ally in our personal journey of health, well-being and enlightenment.
With a complex food mixture, smell the bouquet and try to isolate as many individual ingredients as possible. We should even smell our medications and supplements. Be grateful and mindful. I like to frame this in an American Indian context: to authentically thank the spirit of the food, for the gift of its life force essence (Chi).
When possible, eat while grounded. This is having physical contact with the Earth. Whether outside or inside, any natural material footwear on any natural material surface. Eat with hands or wooden chopsticks, wood or ceramic utensils.
Try to avoid or minimize metal utensils and instead use bamboo-ware. Most metal, being electro-conductive, creates a warping of Chi transmission from food, through the silverware, into the body. This potentiates food allergies, autoimmune imbalances and other health problems. Chew food until it is liquid. Be mindful and grateful, chew each bite, feel the texture with teeth and tongue. As fiber and muscle break up under the pressure of our teeth, a portion of the bite becomes liquid and we swallow it. Continue chewing as more of the bite liquefies and swallow again.
Continue this process with each bite until it has been liquefied and swallowed. This may represent as many as seventy plus chews. Practice counting at first to compare the different texture and density of foods. It is important that any food remnant not fully liquefied be discarded and not swallowed. This can often occur with meat sinew or very fibrous vegetables.
You may find yourself spontaneously being drawn to place another mouthful of food into your mouth before the last part of the last bite is fully chewed, liquefied and swallowed. This common behavior reflex affords the opportunity to practice circular eating—following the principle of chewing and continuously swallowing only that portion of any given bite that is liquid.
Slowing down allows us to tangibly feel life force Chi transmitted from food into the body. Life force Chi sustains and nourishes, a truly wonderful and delightful experience. Vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrate and enzymes are physical dimension, shell membrane forms, to encapsulate life essence. They are not the source of Chi, but carriers of it. As we slow down our eating, we can practice the difference between feeling full in our belly verses not full in the throat. This can help guide us to stop eating sooner. Consistent “under-eating” is one of the most important variables for health and longevity.
Apply the 80/20 rule. Follow these guidelines 80 percent of the time or more if possible. Practice moderation in all things. It’s not what we do occasionally that harms us, but what we do all the time.